ACLU v. Trump and Pence
|ACLU v. Trump and Pence|
|United States District Court for the District of Columbia|
|Full case name||American Civil Liberties Union Inc.; American Civil Liberties Union Foundation Inc. v. Donald J. Trump, in his official capacity as President of the United States of America; Michael Pence, in his official capacity as Vice President of the United States and chair of the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity|
|Date decided||Pending (filed July 10, 2017)|
|Judge sitting||Colleen Kollar-Kotelly|
|Counsel for plaintiff(s)||Theresa J. Lee|
Sophia Lin Lakin
Dale E. Ho
Arthur B. Spitzer
|Plaintiff(s)||American Civil Liberties Union Inc|
American Civil Liberties Union Foundation, Inc.
Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity
ACLU v. Trump, No. 1:17-cv-01351 (D.D.C. 2017), is a case pending before the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. The plaintiffs, the watchdog group American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), alleges that the defendants, President Donald Trump and the Vice President Michael Pence, are in violation of the Federal Advisory Committee Act by establishing the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity for the purpose of supporting the President’s "claim that he won the popular vote in the 2016 election—once millions of supposedly illegal votes are subtracted from the count."
Although the defendants were served immediately, because President Trump and Vice President Pence are being sued as elements of the United States government, no official action was required before September 8, 2017.
Kris Kobach has been the Secretary of State of Kansas since 2011 and is candidate for Governor of Kansas in the election to be held in 2018.
On November 20, 2016, President Trump asked Kobach to co-chair a commission ("Pence-Kobach Commission" or "PAEC") to investigate possible voting irregularities in the 2016 Presidential Election. Kobach is a defendant in a parallel lawsuit filed by Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC).
On June 28, 2017, the Commission requested voter records from each of the states and the District of Columbia. Forty-four states rejected the request to deliver voter records  On July 10, 2017, the Commission postponed its request of the states.
The United States Department of Justice represents Trump. The United States District Court for the District of Columbia judge is Colleen Kollar-Kotelly, formerly presiding judge of the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISA).
According to the text of the complaint, the suit asks for relief in the nature of mandamus and declaratory judgement. The suit asks that the records of the previous meetings of the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity be made available to the public and that future meetings be open to the public.
- The Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity (“Pence-Kobach Commission”) violates the procedural requirements of the Federal Advisory Committee Act 5 U.S.C. app. 2 §§1-16
- The Commission's membership is not “fairly balanced in terms of the points of view represented and the functions to be performed by the advisory committee”
- The "Commission was established for the purpose of providing a veneer of legitimacy to President Trump’s false claim that he won the popular vote in the 2016 election"
Latest developments and next steps
This section needs to be updated.April 2018)(
In anticipation of a government reply in September, the ACLU described certain recent actions of the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity which it contends were insufficient to meet its obligations specifically in respect to its planned July 19, 2017 meeting.  President Trump opened the televised July 19, 2017 meeting of the PAEC. 
On July 18, 2017, Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly rejected the ACLU's motion for a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction, allowing the July 19 meeting to go on.
- Complaint, Docket 1, p. 
- Summons, Docket 12, No. 1:17-cv-01351, D.D.C., July 10, 2017 FRCP Rule 4(i)(2).
- FRCP Rule 12(a)(2). FRCP Rule 6(1)(C).
- "EPIC v. Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity, Pence, Kobach and GSA" (PDF). July 3, 2017.
- "Letter from Kobach to Secretary of State of Maine" (PDF). June 28, 2017.
- "Forty-four states and DC have refused to give certain voter information to Trump commission". CNN.
- "NH fight on voter data release put on hold". New Hampshire Union Leader.
- ACLU Reply, Docket 17, No. 1:17-cv-01351-CKK, D.D.C., July 14, 2017
- "Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity". The White House. July 19, 2017.
- Motion for a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction denied, Docket 19, No. 1:17-cv-01351-CKK, D.D.C., July 18, 2017
- Complaint, No. 1:17-cv-01351, D.D.C., July 10, 2017