Despite a year of intense media coverage and ceaseless public discourse, very little has been done to overcome the vulnerabilities which threaten the security of America's elections. States and districts continue to utilize outdated voting machines, some of which produce no auditable paper ballot. Election officials across the country have not received timely security updates, with 21 states waiting nearly a year to learn that they had been targeted by Russian hackers (there is no evidence that vote counts were changed...this time). Additionally, states lack proper federal support in regards to cyber-security expertise and updates.
Luckily, the Senate has not been completely inactive on this issue. The bipartisan Secure Elections Act (introduced by Sens. James Lankford (R-Okla.), Susan Collins (R-Maine), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), and Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.)) addresses every one of the concerns mentioned above. It provides block grants for states to upgrade their outdated voting machines, streamlines communications between states and DHS, and creates an independent council to recommend cyber-security updates as well as supply funding to states so that they can implement these recommended upgrades. This bill makes explicitly clear that every state retains authority over their election process. Any assistance from the federal government must be accepted by the states voluntarily. Such considerations have brought this bill bipartisan support in the Senate, acclaim among policymakers and advocacy groups, and praise from state and local government officials.
It is imperative that we enact the Secure Elections Act as soon as possible. The time for action is now! Let's tell Congress to get moving. The security of our democracy is in their hands. They must act, and they must act now. Contact your Senators and tell them to pass the Secure Elections Act.