“To Trust Election Results, We Must Trust The People Administering Them”

Heather Balas, vice president of the Election Reformers Network, and Amber McReynolds, a leading expert in election administrator and governor for the U.S. postal services, challenge tpractice of partisan election administration, arguing it is ill-suited to an era of polarization. The Op Ed appears in Talking Points Memo:

There might once have been a time when, despite their partisan affiliations, we could nonetheless count on election officials to act impartially. But in today’s hyper-polarized era, it’s clear we no longer can. Today, 19 states have seen candidates for secretary of state who either dispute the 2020 election results, express a willingness to overturn the results of a legitimate election, or both.Partisans are also mobilizing to take administrative positions at the local level. It’s perhaps no wonder that as many as 56 percent of Americans have little or no confidence that U.S. elections reflect the will of the people.

They share a menu of policy options that could be considered on a state-by-state basis as well as “Model legislation prepared by the nonpartisan Election Reformers Network with support from Campaign Legal Center.” They insist, however, that “all states should require statutory ethics codes for election officials that prohibit the most egregious activities” such as “fundraising for other candidates; endorsing or opposing candidates; and failing to recuse themselves from oversight of decisions in their own races.” 

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