Sat. Apr 13th, 2024

Pennsylvania governor unveils election security task force to mitigate threats to the 2024 vote

By 37ci3 Feb29,2024

Pennsylvania’s Democratic governor, Josh Shapiro, will announce a new election security task force on Thursday. This group will carry out a series of actions between federal, state and local agencies. 2024 votes on a battlefield free from interference, misinformation and other major obstacles.

The Election Threats Task Force, first reported by NBC News, will be led by Secretary of the Commonwealth Al Schmidt and will involve officials from at least 10 government agencies, from election administration and law enforcement to homeland security and emergency management.

“We take our responsibility as stewards of our democracy seriously, and the Election Threats Task Force will ensure that all levels of government work together to combat misinformation, protect the rights of every citizen, and ensure that this election is safe, secure, free and fair. Shapiro told NBC News.

The main purpose of the task force will be to coordinate plans and share information and intelligence among a wide variety of offices that contain election security elements that may have close jurisdictions.

These include the U.S. attorney’s office for the state’s three federal districts, the state attorney general’s office, commissioners and directors of elections in many of the state’s 67 counties, state and federal departments of homeland security, state police, state information technology and emergency services. management departments and the Pennsylvania National Guard.

A broader goal? To reduce threats to elections, protect voters and election officials, and ensure that voters have accurate information about their elections.

The task force comes nearly four years after Joe Biden’s narrow victory over Donald Trump in Pennsylvania – which left him sidelined in the Electoral College – threats to Distribution of election workers disinformation and disturbing speed of vote counting.

Experts have long been amazed at how easily interventions can affect outcomes. Now, Pennsylvania officials are trying to leave less to chance.

It’s the latest move by Shapiro to strengthen the voting process ahead of the 2024 term. Faced with a divided Legislature, he resorted mainly to executive activities.

Most prominently, he automatically signed the order last year Registered everyone with a driver’s license in Pennsylvania to vote.

At the time, Trump wrote on social media that it was a “disaster for the Republican electorate” — which some interpreted as a call for allies to try to boost GOP prospects by meddling in future races.

“In recent years, we’ve seen malicious actors attempt to exploit these changes and delegitimize our safe, secure and fair elections by spreading lies and baseless conspiracy theories,” Schmidt said. is the highest election official of the state.

“This task force is working together to develop and coordinate plans to combat this dangerous misinformation and provide all voters with accurate, reliable election information,” said Schmidt, a Republican appointed by Shapiro.

Shapiro, who was attorney general until he was elected governor in 2022, led similar efforts as the state’s top cop. The new task force will also build on a similar initiative launched by Shapiro’s predecessor, Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf, in 2018, called the Interagency Election Preparedness and Security Task Force.

Even so, Pennsylvania has been home to countless efforts to overturn the election — both during and after the 2020 race.

There are also allegations that want to throw at them A large number of absentee ballots appearedThe efforts of Trump allies Check the 2020 ballot papers and for access to ballot papers, as well as voting and election equipment. They also attracted election officials in some states who were skeptical that Trump would lose to Biden in 2020. in some cases, they refused to confirm the election results of their counties.

A task force will not be equipped to handle all such potential problems. For example, Slow counting of ballots in Pennsylvania in 2020It’s a problem lawmakers in a divided Legislature have yet to address, drawing numerous lawsuits and conspiracy theories from Trump and his allies.

The Legislature, where Republicans control the Senate and Democrats hold a slim majority in the House, has failed to advance bills that would speed up ballot counting, despite pushing for changes to allow mail-in and outside ballots to be processed ahead of Election Day. november

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By 37ci3

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