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In the aftermath of 2020, election integrity is on every good conservative’s mind.
All around the country, state legislatures are stepping up (and Texas Democrats are stepping out) to make sure that every legal vote is counted and that our elections are safe and secure.
Naturally, these efforts have garnered primarily negative attention from left-wing media.
What has not been publicized anywhere near as much was the fact that the federal government was doing the same thing — but now isn’t.
According to The Associated Press, the U.S. Election Assistance Commission prepared draft guidelines on election security in February that did not include language banning voting equipment with internet connectivity.
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The EAC does not have binding authority, but some states apply federal guidelines to the letter, meaning the commission’s words have a real impact on American voters.
Unfortunately, the ban’s absence in the February guidelines does not appear to be a mistake. The AP reported that voting machine industry officials had private meetings with federal regulators, and the change came shortly after.
You would think that the voting machine industry would have a vested interest in ensuring that its machines are safe and secure, but evidently, for some, election integrity can burn at the altar of profit.
It’s not important if online evildoers hack voting machines and alter results if the executives make their money, after all.
Fortunately, Free Speech for People, a left-wing nonprofit, has filed a lawsuit against the EAC alleging the commission violated transparency rules in its meetings with industry leaders.
Susan Greenhalgh, speaking for the group, told the AP that the commission was supposed to include the public in every step of the regulatory process.
“Instead, the EAC brazenly flouted its legal obligation to adhere to a transparent process, choosing instead to invite the manufacturers into private meetings so they could alter the voting system standards to ease requirements and benefit the manufacturers,” she continued.
The AP said the lawsuit was filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Washington.
EAC officials defended their new guidelines, asserting that under the new rules, any feature that allows a voting machine to connect to the internet “must be disabled.”
The previous rules, they determined, put an undue burden on voting machine manufacturers and significantly increased their expenses.
I’m no computer whiz (my approach is usually to scream at technology until it works), but something doesn’t feel right about all of this.
As a voter, I am much more comfortable with the notion that any machine I use is fundamentally unable to use the internet. I don’t want to be the person whose voice is smothered by hostile actors.
While this wouldn’t affect all states, the ones in which it would concern me. Evidently, I’m not the only one. Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose reassured his constituents last month that his state would be taking a stronger stance.
OHIO SECRETARY OF STATE FRANK LAROSE SAID HIS STATE’S VOTING MACHINE STANDARDS GO FURTHER THAN THE U.S. ELECTION ASSISTANCE COMMISSION’S, WHICH DIDN’T BAN WI-FI CAPABILITIES @FRANKLAROSE @EACGOV HTTPS://T.CO/VHAGJWSCMG PIC.TWITTER.COM/H7P7PT4804
— STATESCOOP (@STATE_SCOOP) JUNE 17, 2021
I hope the lawsuit succeeds. Our elections are not something in which we can cut corners.
Arizona lawmakers approve bill vetting voters for citizenship before they can vote
Arizona lawmakers approved new voter restrictions that supporters said ensure only U.S. citizens can cast ballots but opponents said will wipe countless voters off the state’s rolls.
A unanimous Republican caucus approved House Bill 2492 on Wednesday in the Senate, sending the legislation to Gov. Doug Ducey for consideration.
While Arizona is one of the few states that already require proof of citizenship before registering to vote, residents can bypass that by registering for a federal-only ballot under the National Voter Registration Act and can vote on federal contests.
HB 2492 would require counties to check those individuals for citizenship against multiple databases. Counties must reject any federal applications if they find the individual is not a U.S. citizen. Any official knowingly ignoring the requirement could be charged with a Class 6 felony.
Democrats accused Republicans of seeking to purge the voter rolls as revenge for the 2020 general election, where President Joe Biden narrowly defeated former President Donald Trump.
“This is absurd, illogical and discriminatory,” Sen. Sally Ann Gonzales, D-Tucson, said.
Constitutional analysts told GOP lawmakers in another hearing the bill presents some issues that could face a legal challenge. Opponents were quick to note that in debate.
“We are voting on a bill that is unconstitutional and has a tremendous impact on the voters of the state of Arizona,” Sen. Martín Quezada, D-Phoenix, said. “There are many provisions in this bill that are offensive, and that will have a negative impact on some communities more than others.”
Republicans said their legislation simply ensures U.S. citizens are the only ones voting in U.S. elections.
“The issue is making sure the citizens of this country are voting,” Sen. Warren Petersen, R-Gilbert, said. “If you’re not a citizen of this country, you’re not allowed to vote. We have over 35,000 people registered to vote where we are not certain whether they’re citizens or not.”
The bill passed along partisan lines. Democrats gathered in Phoenix on Thursday to pressure Ducey to veto the legislation.
US Senators Question Motives of AT&T For Refusing To Renew OAN Contract…Cite AT&T Board Chairman’s Ties To Dominion Voting Machines
Two U.S. Senators, Ted Cruz and Mike Lee, have written an official letter to AT&T inquiring into its politically-motivated decision to cut One America News Network (OANN) from DirectTV. Cruz and Lee both press the AT&T Board of Directors for answers regarding the “personal financial” influences that may have swayed the company’s decision.
The decision to not renew its contract with OANN was announced by DirecTV in mid-January. DirecTV, which is primarily run by AT&T, has a contract with OANN that is set to expire in early April.
In response to this major decision, President Trump spoke out at an Arizona rally, saying, “This is horrible. This is a great network. These are great people. I watch it all the time and you really get the truth. And they want to cancel them now because of politics – for purely political reasons. It’s a disgrace what’s going on.”
“I don’t think that people are gonna stand for it,” added Trump.”Maybe what we should do is not use AT&T.”
On Tuesday, Senators Mike Lee and Ted Cruz submitted a letter to the members of the AT&T Board of Directors, expressing “grave concern for the future of journalism and political discourse in America.”
They then listed six specific facts/concerns regarding the issue:
- One American News Network (“OAN”) is being sued for alleged defamation by Dominion Voting Systems.
- Dominion Voting Systems is owned by Staple Street Capital.
- William Kennard is on the executive board of Staple Street Capital
- William Kennard is also the Chairman of AT&T’s board of directors
- AT&T owns 70% of DirecTV, and controls two seats on DirecTV’s board of directors
- DirecTV has decided not to renew its contract with OANN.
The main concern pointed out by Lee and Cruz is that William Kennard, the Chairman of AT&T’s board of directors and executive board member of Staple Street Capital, is pushing to end its contract with OANN to benefit his personal financial interests.
The Senators then request a response to the following question within 10 business days: “Did any employee or agent of AT&T at any time convey or suggest to any employee or agent of DirecTV an instruction or request not to renew OANN?”
Read the full letter below:
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