Amending the NVRA in such a manner "will lead to a dramatic reduction in access to voting," said Wendy Weiser, director of the democracy program at NYU's Brennan Center, in an interview. "Every time legal obstacles to restricting the vote have been lifted in recent years, we've seen substantial spikes in efforts to restrict the vote."
Passed in 1993, the NVRA contains a number of provisions intended to increase voter participation. Among other provisions, it requires states to allow voter registration at motor vehicle offices and by mail.
Kobach told the Daily Signal last year that every time an illegal immigrant votes, "it effectively cancels out a vote of a U.S. citizen," and said there is "huge potential" for those votes to alter the outcome of an election.
"Even if it’s just a handful of votes, it's still a huge injustice," he said.
The ACLU filed a motion for Kobach to release those documents. Kobach attempted to argue that the documents were not related to the proof of citizenship requirement, but he was subsequently fined $1,000 by the federal court for making false claims about their contents.
Critics of Kobach say the email proves the voter fraud commission is aiming to restrict voting access regardless of any findings it may make. "I think the email is wholly unsurprising," said Justin Levitt, elections expert at Loyola Law School."I won't be shocked as more proof emerges that the cake is already baked."