Chuck Gray Joins Supreme Court Fight Over Biden’s Voter Registration Order

Wyoming Secretary of State Chuck Gray has joined a U.S. Supreme Court filing fighting President Biden’s get-out-the-vote executive order. He said turning "federal agencies into get-out-the-vote operations is not only unconstitutional; it is outrageously wrong.”

Leo Wolfson

June 10, 20244 min read

Wyoming Secretary of State Chuck Gray, left, and President Joe Biden.
Wyoming Secretary of State Chuck Gray, left, and President Joe Biden. (Matt Idler for Cowboy State Daily; Getty Images)

An effort by President Joe Biden to increase voter participation in America is being opposed by Wyoming Secretary of State Chuck Gray.

Gray has signed onto an amicus brief with seven other secretaries of state asking the U.S. Supreme Court to rule that a Biden 2021 executive order is unconstitutional and violates the authority granted to states by the U.S. Constitution to administer their own elections.

Biden’s order directs federal agencies to develop ways and means to expand and promote voter registration and increase mail-in voting.

“The Biden administration’s use of executive action to convert federal agencies into get-out-the-vote operations is not only unconstitutional; it is outrageously wrong,” Gray says in a Monday press release. “As secretaries of state, we must speak out against Biden’s illegal administrative actions.”

Joining Gray in the supporting brief are the secretaries of state from West Virginia, Arkansas, Indiana, Louisiana, Mississippi, Montana, New Hampshire and Tennessee.

All are Republican and responsible for overseeing elections in their respective states.

“I am proud to join other secretaries of state across the country in pushing back against this unconstitutional and inappropriate interference in election administration,” Gray said. “It is pivotal to the integrity of our elections that this overreaching executive order be struck down.”

What Does The Lawsuit Say?

The original lawsuit was filed by 27 state lawmakers from the Pennsylvania Freedom Caucus, who argued that the order is an effort targeting key demographics to benefit the Democratic Party and Biden’s own reelection.

Like Gray, they argue the move is unconstitutional as Congress has never explicitly granted this power to the Oval Office.

The lead petitioner on the lawsuit is Pennsylvania state Rep. Dawn Keefer. In 2020, Keefer supported efforts to overturn the presidential election results in Pennsylvania, writing a letter with 25 other state representatives requesting the disqualification of Pennsylvania's electoral votes.

She’s also the inaugural chairwoman of the Pennsylvania Freedom Caucus.

In March, a Pennsylvania federal judge dismissed the case, finding that legislators lacked standing to bring the lawsuit. The group appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court in April.

Who Runs Elections?

The Supreme Court has already rejected the theory that only state legislatures can regulate federal elections.

At issue in this case is Biden’s Executive Order 14019, which promotes voting access and Pennsylvania Gov. Josh Shapiro’s enactment of automatic voter registration.

“Executive departments and agencies should partner with state, local, tribal and territorial election officials to protect and promote the exercise of the right to vote, eliminate discrimination and other barriers to voting, and expand access to voter registration and accurate election information,” Biden’s order reads. “It is our duty to ensure that registering to vote and the act of voting be made simple and easy for all those eligible to do so.”

The executive order directs the federal government to look into a variety of efforts to expand voting access, including making federal workers and resources available to help staff polling locations as well as allow federal agencies to share data with states that wish to establish automatic voter registration efforts.

Participating federal agencies include the U.S. Departments of Agriculture, Justice, Veterans Affairs, Education, Treasury, Housing and Urban Development, and Homeland Security.

The secretaries of state argue that Biden’s executive order to expand voting access violates the U.S. Constitution’s Electors and Elections Clauses because they improperly regulate the “time, place and manner” of federal elections, and the authority granted to the states as set forth in the National Voter Registration Act.

“No power is vested in the president to direct federal resources towards supplanting a state’s jurisdiction to determine and implement laws to secure its voter rolls,” the brief reads.

They also claim that non-appropriated federal money is being used to fulfill the directives set by the executive order.

Par For The Course

Gray has consistently questioned the results of the 2020 election and efforts to expand voter access.

Instead, he has expressed a belief that voting regulations need to be tighter in Wyoming to prevent fraudulent voting.

While a state legislator, Gray passed a voter ID law to “stop cheaters from trying to steal elections.”

Wyoming is below the national average for voter turnout based on percentage of the state’s population.

Gray also livestreamed outside the U.S. Supreme Court in February, minutes before the justices heard oral arguments about whether the Colorado Supreme Court was right to remove former President Donald Trump from that state's election ballots.

Leo Wolfson can be reached at

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Leo Wolfson

Politics and Government Reporter