By Shawnna Bolick
Like many of Arizona’s voters, election integrity is on the front of many of our minds. You want voting processes that are secure, inspire confidence, ensure anonymity, and are robust and defensible against fraudulent attacks. With so much on the line in every election, criminals are motivated. Only a couple hundred of fraudulent votes can sway many local elections.
In Arizona, the Secretary of State is the chief election official, responsible for overseeing campaign finance, ballot measures like propositions and candidate petitions, and verifying the official outcomes. As a State Representative for Phoenix’s 20th Legislative District, I have been fighting to restore confidence in our elections and defending your elections. I am running for this Arizona Secretary of State because it’s high time that our elections are secure, our citizens are confident, and our Secretary of State drops the politics.
Late last week, Mayor Kevin Hartke of Chandler authorized a Mobile Voting pilot program to test cell-phone voting in future elections. I am strongly opposed to Chandler authorizing this program for future elections. Though Mayor Hartke’s proposal pushes “innovation” and making voting “more accessible”, I believe our right to vote needs to be taken more seriously. In good faith and conscience, I cannot support this latest move by one of our municipalities. Voting is a serious matter. Utilizing technology to cast a vote means we need to ensure additional security measures are enabled. But without adequate back-up systems, voting relies on the good intentions of the user. Voting by phone may be easy, but how can we ensure only voter is voting with that system. It is quite possible one-time use passwords will be thwarted. Right now, public distrust in the current system is likely at an all-time high. If those who distrust the system stop voting, that puts the results of the election in the hands of those that trust the folks running the system. I want a secure voting system that represents the citizens. At this time, voting by phone is not foolproof. We don’t want to become tomorrow’s fools who have been hacked by DefCon’s attendees.
Another example is Maricopa County Officials rebuffing Arizona Senators subpoena to audit the integrity of our 2020 presidential election. I fully support Senator Borelli’s call for Attorney General Brnovich to investigate the subpoena and bring Maricopa County Officials in line.
I support this move and strongly oppose Chandler’s cell-phone voting program for the same reason.
Both undermine the fundamental tenets of good elections.
We want elections that are:
- Resilient to Fraud
- Reliably and Easily Audited
- Easily Understood by Voters and Trustworthy
- Front- and Back-End Anonymous
E-voting, ballot harvesting, out-of-precinct voting, and resisting audits all undermine American principles of voting. Many Democrats are willing to manipulate the vote with such ideas to politically redesign a system better suited to keep them in office longer. But beyond this being deplorable, I would remind everyone that our nation’s common enemies can just as well exploit a weakness designed for Democrats—more effectively, too, as we witnessed during 2016 and the rise of the misinformation campaigns stirred up by the Chinese and Russians.
I spent some time in Yuma earlier this week to meet with small business owners and farmers to discuss the importance of water. This coming week I was invited to attend a cyber security briefing for state leaders. I take these elevated attacks and threats to our election system seriously. And our future leaders, especially our next Secretary of State in Arizona, needs to be on the cutting edge of election integrity, able to confidently navigate the present challenges. I am fighting each day to build a system which you can be confident in, and together I know we can achieve that vision for Arizona.
Finally, we have two events this week. I hope to see you there!
September 8, 2021
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September 9, 2021
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