Editorial Roundup: Baseless election claims threaten integrity of process

Published 8:50 pm Tuesday, March 29, 2022

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Republican officials and other bad actors across the country continue to threaten the integrity of elections with Orwellian rhetoric fueling hostile takeover attempts of nonpartisan fair elections.

Dozens of bills have been introduced in 11 states this year calling for reviews of election results by partisan groups, following the lead of Arizona and Wisconsin last year.

In Arizona, a company whose leader was a GOP election conspiracy theorist was allowed to review all the ballots in the 2020 presidential election without having any experience in election audits. In Wisconsin, a former GOP Supreme Court judge was put in charge of an investigation in that state even though he stated the election was fraudulent before he began his investigation.

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Both investigations have produced no evidence of fraud or faulty election results. In fact, the Arizona case found more votes for President Joe Biden than the first count.

Last year, eight states proposed laws to review the 2020 election results and 12 states proposed to establish new election review processes, according to the Brennan Center for Justice.

There, again, is little evidence to suggest that any state’s election review processes are somehow flawed. Many of the proposals have been thwarted by a handful of sensible Republicans who see the evidence is thin or nonexistent. They make good arguments that public support for these unnecessary laws are easily generated through misinformation on social media.

The Republican-led South Dakota Senate rejected a Republican House measure to require in-depth review of ballots and voting, noting the legislation was based on the false narrative that President Joe Biden did not win the election. The House Republicans’ push was fueled by MyPillow chief executive Mike Lindell, who gave a presentation in Sioux Falls about an odd-computer algorithm type theory of election fraud.

South Dakota Republican state Sen. Lee Schoenbeck said it best: “Uncertainty comes because we have these extremists across America who with the social media can get a forum, and they are raising questions only for the purpose of creating uncertainty about our elections.

“Regular, normal people don’t have those fears at all. They trust those little old ladies that you see when you go to vote here for the first time,” Schoenbeck told the Associated Press.

Proponents of these bills that threaten election integrity come mostly from crackpot central with one Virginia woman telling legislators who opposed these conspiracy-election checks they would face “eternal consequences.”

Still, not enough Republicans are standing up against these so-called election investigations that are no more than ruses by rogue players.

Elections in America are administered by your-friend-and-neighbor volunteer election judges. Hacking election computers appears nearly impossible. Again, no evidence.

But the pushers of these baseless theories either don’t know or don’t care about the facts. The rest of us need to defend the facts and our elections.

Mankato Free Press, March 28

About Editorial Roundup

Editorials from newspapers around the state of Minnesota.

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