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CNN's Chris Cuomo expertly corners Republican Jay Ashcroft on Trump's bogus voter fraud claims

CNN's Chris Cuomo on Wednesday interrogated Missouri Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft about why he's participating in President Trump's commission on voter fraud, given there's "absolutely zero proof" that there were "3 million illegal votes" cast in the presidential election, as Trump has claimed without evidence. "Why waste time and money with a commission to look at fraud when you don't have a major fraud issue?" Cuomo asked Ashcroft, one of the few state officials to agree to the Trump commission's request for voter data, including registrants' full names, addresses, birthdays, political affiliations, felony convictions, and the last four digits of their social security numbers.

Ashcroft claimed to "regularly see instances" of voter fraud, pointing to a small handful of cases, but Cuomo countered that the problem was not nearly "widespread" enough to necessitate this commission. "It's not something that you're dealing with on a major scale. Isn't that just the truth?" Cuomo pressed.

But Ashcroft argued that "any time elections are changed based on voter fraud, that's a problem." He tried to make the case that "there are smart, good people on both sides of the disagreement," prompting Cuomo to cut in. "This is not a 50/50 proposition where maybe it's 3 million, maybe it isn't," Cuomo said. "There are no numbers anywhere like that coming from anywhere that deserves respect, except the president's mouth."

Watch the exchange below. Becca Stanek