In Focus This Week
“Some good news”
12 newsmakers from 2020
By M. Mindy Moretti
They say it takes a village to raise a child, but any election official will tell you that it takes a small army to run an election.
Most of those involved tend to toil away in obscurity (or at least they hope they do) but this year with the media and the nation laser-focused on the election officials and advocates found themselves constantly in the spotlight.
Here is a look at 12 people that made elections-related headlines this year for their work to provide a safe and secure election that saw the largest turnout in more than a generation. There are certainly some headline-grabbing folks not listed here (hello Louis DeJoy), because in the same vein as John Krasinski, we’ve chosen to focus on “some good news.”
Stacey Abrams: The fact that America has been talking about Georgia since Election Day can, in large part, be attributed to the work done by Stacey Abrams and her voting rights organization Fair Fight. “She really put the spotlight on Georgia, convinced the people that needed to be convinced that there was room here, that there were voters here, and that this place really was competitive if people would just put in the time, the money and the effort in to do that,” State Sen. Jen Jordan told The New York Times. In the months before the election Amazon released a documentary All In: The Fight for Democracy about the voting issues Abrams faced in her 2018 run for governor in Georgia as well as the broader fight for voting rights. “We should not live in a nation where your access to democracy depends on your celebrity, your wealth, or your ZIP code,” Abrams said in an interview with NPR.
Jocelyn Benson: While every state and local election official have been in the news this year due to the unprecedented circumstances surrounding the 2020 election, Michigan’s Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson has probably spent more time in the media spotlight than most. From her active presence on social media to her willingness to take on the president and his allies over the integrity of the election in Michigan and nationwide, Benson has been front and center for much of 2020.
Centenarians: If you looked for it, the media was filled with stories about centenarians casting their ballots this year despite the pandemic. In San Antonia, Texas, Sara Muiz voted curbside on her 106th birthday. Ruth Rosner, 104 lost her father in the 1918 pandemic but the 2020 pandemic wasn’t going to stop her from voting, in-person in New York. C.B. Stewart, 101, of Somerset, Kentucky was born during the Spanish flu and has only missed one election—while he was serving in the army during World War II. And Gertrude Stackhouse at 102 voted in her very first election ever. Stackhouse’s Fayetteville, North Carolina polling place was located on lands that used to be a field where she picked cotton.
Gabriella Cázares-Kelly: Winning nearly 59% of the vote, Gabriella Cázares-Kelly will be the new Pima County, Arizona recorder and the first Indigenous person elected to county-wide office in Pima County. Cázares-Kelly is a member of the Tohono O’odham Nation. Cázares-Kelly told Arizona Public Media that one of the first things she plans on doing in office is restoring the Pascua Yaqui early voting site. Cázares-Kelly.
Sara Knotts: The Brunswick County North Carolina elections director made headlines after she spoke out via Tweet about having to challenge her mom’s ballot. “Hardest thing I’ve done as an elections administrator: present a challenge against the absentee ballot cast by my mom. In NC, the qualifications to vote are judged on election day. She passed away from glioblastoma after submitting her ballot but before Nov. 3 #electionintegrity.” “I couldn’t even bring myself to start doing the briefings on the challenges and I couldn’t figure out why,” Knotts told the News & Observer. “Then I opened the folder, saw her name and realized I had been putting it off.” Knotts told the paper this election has been hard on her and her staff. The allegations and suspicion hurt them. “I wanted people to trust the process and know that not just me, but all election administrators, worked hard for this,” Knotts said. “We really want people to have trust in the system.” Knotts’ story took off, especially after she was interviewed by the News & Observer. While Knotts’ story was very specific to her, it certainly encapsulated the integrity with which all local elections officials tackled their jobs this year.
Chris Hollins: Chris Hollins was named Interim County Clerk in and quickly found his name in the headlines as he did battle with state-level authorities over his plans to safely conduct the November 2020 general election. Hollins fought many legal battles aimed at ensuring all the votes were counted. He showed the nation what 24-hour voting periods could look like and he moved to expand physical access to the polls. “We tripled the number of early voting centers,” Hollins said. “We strengthened our wait-time tools so that voters could choose to vote at a place that was going to be most convenient for them where they could get in and get out, and we ended up with an Election Day where there were essentially zero lines across Harris County.” Hollins was the youngest person to ever hold the office and the first minority to serve in this position. “It’s been the honor of a lifetime to serve in this position and protect the right to vote in Harris County,” Hollins said. “Despite so many court battles, we were able to protect the right to vote.”
Chris Krebs: The 2020 general election has been labeled the “most secure election ever,” with a lot of that credit going to former CISA Director Chris Krebs and his staff. Krebs became a newsmaker however when he challenged the president’s allegations of voter fraud and was fired from his job via Tweet. An attorney for the president has even threatened Krebs’ life. In an op-ed in The Washington Post Krebs talks about the tireless work of his CISA team and state and local elections officials to make the election secure. “The 2020 election was the most secure in U.S. history. This success should be celebrated by all Americans, not undermined in the service of a profoundly un-American goal,” Krebs wrote.
LeBron James: Following the death of George Floyd, NBA All-Star LeBron James established More Than a Vote, a voting rights organization aimed at protected Black voting rights. The organization raised millions of dollars to help with get out the vote efforts, helped spearhead the movement to get sports venues to serve as polling places and helped recruit thousands of poll workers. “Because of everything that’s going on, people are finally starting to listen to us — we feel like we’re finally getting a foot in the door,” James told The New York Times. “How long is up to us. We don’t know. But we feel like we’re getting some ears and some attention, and this is the time for us to finally make a difference.”
Amber McReynolds: As soon as it became clear that, due to the pandemic, more Americans than ever would be voting by mail former Denver, Colorado elections director and now CEO of Vote at Home Institute Amber McReynolds went into overdrive. McReynolds and her organization published a national mail voting proposal which laid out all the different paths state election administrators could take for a vote-by-mail election. She was interviewed by every media format, spoke on countless Zoom conferences and consulted with dozens of elections officials. “We know what the solution is,” McReynolds told Time Magazine in a lengthy profile. “It’s just a matter of shifting the giant Titanic that is election administration. And really, it’s 50 Titanics because it’s all run differently in every state.”
Brad Raffensperger: Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger has taken on his own party and president to argue that the election in Georgia was free and fair. He’s been berated by the president and he and his family have received threats. Through it all he has stood by the integrity of the process in Georgia. In an op-ed for USA Today he wrote: By all accounts, Georgia had a wildly successful and smooth election. We finally defeated voting lines and put behind us Fulton County’s now notorious reputation for disastrous elections. This should be something for Georgians to celebrate, whether their favored presidential candidate won or lost. For those wondering, mine lost — my family voted for him, donated to him and are now being thrown under the bus by him.”
Allie Young: Allie Young, a 30-year-old Diné woman made headlines when she created “Ride to the Polls” and organized trail-rides on the Navajo Nation to early voting sites in Arizona. She started “Ride to the Polls” in early October, hoping to empower Native American youth to vote in the 2020 election while connecting with their cultural heritage. She lead groups on horseback along a 10-mile route from Church Rock in Navajo County to the polling stations in Kayenta, Ariz. “Our Indigenous children across the country are feeling the urge to connect with our culture more than ever,” Young says. “We thought this was a great way for them to feel inspired and motivated to vote in honor of our ancestors who rode longer miles to make their voices heard by voting at the polls.”
Marc Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan: Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, donate $400 million to help local election offices prepare for the November election. The money was distributed through a grant program administered by the Center for Technology and Civic Life. Zuckerberg and Chan initially donated $300 million in September and followed up with an additional $100 million closer to the election. “Due to the unprecedented challenges COVID-19 will have on voting across the county, election officials are working around the clock to make sure that every voter has the ability to participate safely and have their vote county, Chan and Zuckerberg said in a statement. “Many counties and states are strapped financially and working to determine how to staff and fund operations that will allow for ballots to be cast and counted in a timely way. These donations will help to provide local and state officials across the country with the resources, training and infrastructure necessary to ensure that every voter who intends to cast a ballot is able to, and ultimately, the preserve the integrity of our elections.” The donations of course weren’t welcomed by open arms from everyone and several lawsuits were filed to stop certain counties from accepting the funding. CTCL provided an update on the grant program in October.
Protecting election workers is critical to securing to our elections
By David Levine
While much has been reported about the security of the 2020 election, there is one critical area many news reports are missing—the security and protection of the people carrying out the election, and that has fallen woefully short.
Securing elections is about more than protecting the physical security and cybersecurity of the systems and assets that support elections. It is also about protecting the people who secure these systems, including state and local election officials, information technology staff, temporary staff such as poll workers, and vendor support staff. The U.S. appears to have done an admirable job protecting the former during the 2020 cycle, but on the latter, there is still much room for improvement. From exposure to the coronavirus to armed protesters demanding access to people tabulating votes, those conducting our elections have faced an onslaught of threats.
Election officials have unique training, knowledge, and skills, and their offices are often under-resourced and understaffed. As a result, their absence can significantly hinder our country’s ability to successfully protect elections from bad actors, including foreign adversaries. Yet, there have been numerous instances during the 2020 election cycle where election workers have been unnecessarily exposed, and in at least one case, fatally.
The news cycle this year has been dominated by the coronavirus—an ailment that has not spared election workers. In April, an employee from Fulton County, Georgia’s elections office died from COVID-19., And a couple of weeks ago, the Virginia State Board of Elections delayed certification of Virginia’s election results to provide additional time to the Richmond voter registrar’s office, which is dealing with a COVID-19 outbreak.
Beyond the obvious health implications, this also has national security implications. The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency previously warned that foreign actors and cybercriminal could exploit the time required to certify and announce election results by disseminating disinformation of problems intended to convince the public of the election’s illegitimacy. And if critical members of an elections team become ill, that could result in less experienced workers performing tasks they’re not as familiar with, which could lead to more errors and greater susceptibility to intentional and unintentional threats.
If the coronavirus weren’t enough for these election workers to manage on top of the painstaking work of administering our country’s elections, election officials have also been subjected to numerous personal threats during the 2020 Election. Following Election Day, election officials in several closely contested states indicated that they were worried about the safety of their workers amid threats and gatherings of protestors—including armed protesters—outside of vote tabulation centers, drawn by baseless claims of widespread fraud. In response, many election offices bolstered their security. While such threats do not appear to have impacted the counting of votes for the 2020 election, there’s no place for such behavior in a democracy society and it’s unclear what long-term effects these actions could have on election administrators, poll workers and/or voters. Retaining top election officials and recruiting sufficient numbers of poll workers in many parts of the country was already a challenge before the 2020 presidential election. Will these trained professionals opt to leave the industry for safer positions or merely retire? We don’t know for certain. However, this isn’t merely a theoretical question. For example, as of September 2020, more than a dozen counties in Pennsylvania had already seen election directors or deputy directors leave within the past year.
Finally, the viral circulation of false election stories on social media has taken a toll on many election workers. For example, one Georgia poll worker recently had to go into hiding after a video was widely shared on Twitter that claimed to show him crumpling up an absentee ballot. In actuality, the poll worker was discarding paper instructions, not a ballot, which would have been much larger than the paper seen in the video. Yet the worker decided to stay with friends because he no longer felt safe at home after social media users harassed him and released his personal information, doxing him.
Since 2016, election officials have been given more support and services to tackle physical and cyber threats to their election infrastructure. But our protection can’t stop there. As the United States continues confronting concerted and sophisticated operations aimed at disrupting its elections, let’s be sure that our election workers feel safe too. They are the front-line troops in the battle to secure our elections from adversaries.
(David Levine is the elections integrity fellow at the Alliance for Securing Democracy with the German Marshall Fund of the United States.)
EAC Clearinghouse 2020 Awards Information
The U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) invites submissions for its fifth annual national Clearinghouse Awards. The Clearinghouse Awards, also referred to as the “Clearies,” honor the enterprising spirit and hard work of election officials across the country. In the challenging circumstances created by the COVID-19 crisis, the Clearies offer the opportunity to recognize the resourcefulness of officials who adjusted their efforts to account for the ever-evolving pandemic. This year, the EAC is also pleased to offer a new category distinguishing cybersecurity and technology initiatives that improve election security of voting systems and strengthen U.S. elections.
The EAC will present awards in the categories of:
- Improving Accessibility for Voters with Disabilities,
- Outstanding Innovations in Elections,
- Best Practices in Recruiting, Retaining, and Training Poll Workers,
- Creative and Original “I Voted” Stickers, and
- Outstanding Innovation in Election Cybersecurity and Technology.
Jurisdictions of all sizes are encouraged to submit their work. Entries must be received by Friday, January 8, 2021. Submissions will be judged on innovation, sustainability, outreach, cost-effectiveness, replicability, and the generation of positive results.
“The 2020 Clearie Awards will help recognize the innovation and hard work of election officials across the nation during an extremely well-run general election with record turnout,” said EAC Chairman Ben Hovland. “Election officials did an amazing job this fall as they navigated unprecedented health concerns due to COVID-19, a substantial increase in early and mail or absentee voting, and poll worker shortages. The best practices developed from 2020 will be highly valuable for future elections. The EAC Commissioners look forward to honoring these hard-working public servants who do so much to serve voters and further our democracy.”
The 2020 Clearies will build on the successes of past years, encouraging innovations in election administration and publicizing achievements across the elections community. Under the Help America Vote Act of 2002 (HAVA), the EAC is charged with serving as a clearinghouse for election administration information. The Clearies and the efforts they celebrate play an important role in helping the EAC fulfill this mission.
The 2019 winners of the Clearie Awards can be found here.
More information on submission guidelines can be found here. All submissions should be sent to the EAC at email@example.com.
Election News This Week
Threats to Democracy: Threats against elections officials and vendors from those unhappy with the elections results continued unbated this week finally forcing a spokesperson for the White House to condemn the threats. In an impassioned exchange with reporters, Gabriel Sterling, voting implementation officer for the Georgia secretary of state called on the president to put an end to his rhetoric which is subsequently ginning up his supporters. “It’s all gone too far. All of it,” a visibly agitated Sterling told reporters. “It has to stop. Mr. President, you have not condemned these actions or this language. Senators, you have not condemned this language or these actions. This has to stop! We need you to step up and if you’re going to take a position of leadership, show some.” A campaign attorney for the president suggested that recently fired CISA head Chris Krebs should be, “…drawn and quartered. Taken out at dawn and shot.” Speaking with NBC, Krebs hinted that he may pursue legal action. “It’s certainly more dangerous language, more dangerous behavior,” Krebs responded. “And the way I look at it is that we are a nation of laws, and I plan to take advantage of those laws. I’ve got an exceptional team of lawyers that win in court, and I think they’re probably going to be busy.” A Gwinnett County, Georgia employee was followed from the county elections office on Tuesday by a man conducting a Twitter livestream, who believed the worker was moving computers in violation of a court order. The “computers” were desk phones, according to a Lawrenceville Police Department report. In Vermont, the secretary of state’s office has received threats against its elections team, with messages from an unnamed individual saying workers who oversaw the 2020 election process should be executed by firing squad. Amber McReynolds, CEO of Vote at Home said that she has received several threats mostly through social media. White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany condemned threats against election workers. “We condemn any threats against anyone, there’s no place for violence against anyone,” McEnany said.
Voter Fraud Allegations: U.S. Attorney General William Barr said this week that Justice Department has uncovered no evidence of widespread voter fraud that would tip the results of the presidential election. “To date, we have not seen fraud on a scale that could have affected a different outcome in the election,” Barr told the Associated Press. According to the AP, Barr specifically singled out one theory peddled by Trump and his allies that vote tabulation machines had been tampered with in a way to skew the election towards President-elect Joe Biden. “There’s been one assertion that would be systemic fraud and that would be the claim that machines were programmed essentially to skew the election results. And the DHS and DOJ have looked into that, and so far, we haven’t seen anything to substantiate that,” Barr said.
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton says that Harris County failed to follow Texas Election Code when it created an independent office of election administration. The letter, addressed to Harris County Attorney Vince Ryan on Nov. 25, concludes the appointment of Isabel Longoria as the county’s first election administrator is “unlawful and null and void.” County commissioners met in executive session Tuesday with representatives of the Harris County Attorney’s Office, then declined to take any further action, making a lawsuit all but certain. Commissioner Rodney Ellis, a Democrat, told Houston Public Media he was proud of the work the county had done in advancing what he called necessary election reforms. Ellis said that the previous arrangement of election and voter registrar powers held by elected officials was a relic of the Jim Crow era, and noted that well over 100 Texas counties have already created independent election administrators to take over those duties. “I think that the general’s pronouncement that the Harris County Office of Election Administrator does not exist and calling Ms. Longoria’s appointment void over administrative technicalities is just another blatant attempt to continue that assault on Texas voters,” Ellis said.
Personnel News: William Gardner has been appointed to his 23rd term as New Hampshire Secretary of State. Shenna Bellows has been tapped to serve as the next Maine secretary of state. Hannah Black, the county Legislature’s minority leader, will replace Elizabeth Soto as the Dutchess County, New York Democratic elections commissioner. Andrew Jones has resigned as the Clackamas County, Oregon elections manager. Kathryn Nealy is retiring as the Gregg County, Texas elections administrator after 15 years on the job. After 24 years and seven presidential elections, McLennan County, Texas Elections Administrator Kathy Van Wolfe is stepping down. President-elect Joe Biden has named Alejandro Mayorkas as his Homeland Security secretary. Katherine Clark is the incoming Santa Fe County, New Mexico clerk. Gabriella Cázares-Kelly is the Pima County, Arizona recorder-elect. Robert Brady has been fired at the Floyd County, Georgia chief clerk of elections. Angela Mantle is resigning as director of the Newton County, Georgia Board of Elections and Registration after more than decade and a a half with the elections office, effective Dec. 4. G. Jeremiah “Jerry” Ryan has been nominated to serve as the new Democratic elections commissioner in Fulton County, New York. Michael Scarpello has been named the new Dallas County, Texas elections chief.
District of Columbia: The Council of the District of Columbia Judiciary Committee has advanced a bill would require that initiatives and referenda be written in “plain language” that voters can understand, a direct response to concerns raised with Initiative 77, a tipped-wage ballot measure approved by voters in 2018 and then repealed by the council later that same year. The bill would also make permanent the use of vote centers in lieu of traditional polling places for elections, and require that a polling place be established at the D.C. Jail so that inmates can vote.
Georgia: A group of Republican state lawmakers are calling for the General Assembly to hold a special session ahead of the Jan. 5, 2021 runoff elections for U.S. Senate to consider changes to Georgia’s voter ID laws. Gov. Brian Kemp (R) has not said whether he would convene the Legislature before the regular session begins on Jan. 11. According to the Newnan Times-Herald, if a special session is convened, lawmakers would consider creating a notary or photo ID requirement for voting by mail and hold committee hearings on “any evidence of voter fraud,” the lawmakers said in a release.
Massachusetts: Gov. Charlie Baker on Tuesday filed a bill to let the city of Newton use mail-in, early and expanded absentee voting next year. The governor’s bill, filed at the request of Mayor Ruthanne Fuller and the Newton City Council, would permit the city to use the voting options for a special election to be held in January or February. In a letter to lawmakers, Baker said the bill extends the voting provisions used in this month’s statewide election to a special election needed to fill two vacancies on the city council, and “permits Newton voters to avoid the risks of COVID-19 transmission that could be associated with in-person voting.” Baker’s bill also states that “any eligible voter may vote early in-person for any special municipal election held on or after January 1, 2021 and before March 31, 2021 in the city of Newton.” Under the bill, the voting period for in-person early voting shall run from “the sixth business day before the special election until the close of business on the business day preceding the business day before the election.”
Michigan: The state House approved a series of bills this week that would provide a greater level of confidentiality for survivors of domestic and sexual violence. The bills seek to ensure victims that crimes can vote. Michigan voter registration records are open to the public, which includes addresses of voters. Participants would be able to use their program ID in the state’s Qualified Voter File in order to protect their location from being accessed by their perpetrator.
New Hampshire: Legislators are working on a number of election-related bills in advance of the upcoming session. Newly elected state representative and former State Supreme Court Chief Justice Robert Lynn is drafting legislation that would introduce provisional ballots, which are used in other states when there are questions about a voter’s eligibility. The student vote will face renewed scrutiny as Rep. Al Baldasaro, R-Londonderry, plans to file legislation that would give in-state tuition to out-of-state college students who register and vote in New Hampshire. Less splashy proposed changes include requiring town and city clerks to make the list of voters who’ve requested, been mailed or returned absentee ballots available electronically.
New Jersey: State Sen. Vin Gopal (D-Long Branch) will introduce bills to quicken New Jersey’s counting of mail-in ballots. One of the planned bills would require New Jersey’s State Department to create a grant program to fund improvements for county election boards. That money could go to high-speed ballot counting machines. Gopal’s other bill would create a vote-by-mail task force meant to spot and fix deficiencies in the state’s counting process. “Our main goal is to ensure each county has the technology they need to provide safe, secure, and efficient vote-by-mail counting methods,” Gopal said. “Establishing funding for these counties is a positive step towards making sure each board of elections is well equipped to handle vote-by-mail ballots in the years to come if a voter chooses to use that method.”
Oregon: In her proposed 2021-2023 budget Gov. Kate Brown (D) is proposing several elections-related reforms. Those include: Allow ballots to be postmarked up to Election Day and still be counted. Currently, there is a cut-off date several days in advance of the election, after which Oregonians are told to bring ballots to drop boxes or elections offices to ensure that they will be counted. Institute same-day voter registration, which is already in place in nearly two dozen other states. Currently, the cut-off date is 21 days before an election. Pay for more ballot box infrastructure statewide. Expand its “motor voter” program, which automatically registers voters when they visit the DMV. Under Brown’s proposal, other state agencies would also be able to process voter registrations.
Pennsylvania: A bicameral legislative committee Monday rejected a Republican-backed effort to audit the general election, but that didn’t stop a “very disappointed” state Rep. Seth Grove, who championed the idea, from releasing a report on the election just hours later. During a meeting of the bipartisan Legislative Budget and Finance Committee, state Rep. Jake Wheatley Jr., an Allegheny County Democrat, called a possible legislative audit a “wasted effort” because the Pennsylvania Department of State is already conducting one. “There are other ways to validate our election result,” he said during the meeting of the committee’s officers as they discussed House Resolution 1100, which was passed last week along mostly party lines. Wheatley, the committee’s treasurer, and committee vice chairman state Sen. Jim Brewster, another Allegheny Democrat, voted against doing an audit while committee chairman state Sen. Bob Mensch, a Montgomery County Republican, voted for it.
Nearly three dozen Republican state lawmakers are asking Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf to use his constitutional authority to call the General Assembly back into immediate session to address their concerns about the 2020 presidential election. In a letter dated Wednesday, the group of conservative GOP lawmakers led by Rep. Daryl Metcalfe, R-Butler County, listed 15 questions they say need to be answered ”to help restore our citizens’ faith in the electoral process.” Among them are issues related to ballot dropboxes, ballot handling, voting machines and more. “The facts are clear: Pennsylvania had a secure election,” said Wolf’s spokeswoman Lyndsay Kensinger. “Pennsylvanians voted, state and federal judges have rejected the reckless accusations, the U.S. Attorney General has found claims of widespread fraud baseless, and the representatives must move forward. Spreading lies and misinformation is irresponsible. Pennsylvanians deserve better from their elected officials.”
Texas: Six Republican state lawmakers have pre-filed companion bills in the state Senate and House to codify legal opinions issued by the Texas Attorney General’s Office and Texas Supreme Court related to election procedure. Sens. Paul Bettencourt of Houston, Brain Birdwell of Granbury, Brandon Creighton of Conroe, Bob Hall of Rockwall, and Kel Seliger of Lubbock, filed SB 208 in the state Senate. State Rep. Valoree Swanson, R-Houston, filed HB 25 in the House. The bills state that unless otherwise authorized by Texas Election Code, “an officer or employee of this state or of a political subdivision of this state may not distribute an official application form for an early voting ballot to a person.” The Texas Tribune has closer look at some of the legislation that has been filed in response to the 2020 election.
A bill filed by state Rep. Michelle Beckley, D-Carrollton, would allow Denton County residents to vote at any polling location on Election Day — a convenience that is not available today. “The issue is that currently, in order to be a vote center county, the equipment you use must be all-electronic,” Denton County Elections Administrator Frank Phillips said in an email. “Paper-based counties are not allowed to participate in the program. It’s a simple matter of changing a few words in the Election Code and bring it in line with modern technology.” Beckley’s House Bill 661 appears to do just that, providing that the secretary of state “shall elect to participate in the program each county that uses direct recording electronic voting machines, ballot marking devices or hand-marked scannable paper ballots that are printed and scanned at the polling place or any other type of voting system equipment.”
Utah: Legislators are planning on introducing several pieces of elections-related legislation. Rep. Mike Winder, R-West Valley City, and Sen. Curt Bramble, R-Provo, are sponsoring a bill that would move Utah to “ranked choice voting” for primary elections in the state. Sen. Derek Kitchen, D-Salt Lake City, plans to run a bill that would have Utah join a multi-state compact that would award its Electoral College votes to the winner of the national popular vote in a presidential contest. Currently, Utah awards its six electoral votes to the candidate who wins the state. House Minority Leader Brian King, D-Salt Lake City, is planning to introduce a bill to allow ballots to be postmarked on Election Day.
Alaska: The Alaskan Independence Party, its chairman and two Anchorage residents are suing the state of Alaska to overturn Ballot Measure 2, a sweeping election reform initiative that would install ranked-choice voting in Alaska’s general elections. Their lawsuit, filed Tuesday, claims that the measure would violate the plaintiffs’ rights “to free political association, free speech, right to petition, right to due process” and other rights guaranteed by the Alaska and U.S. constitutions. Filed against the state of Alaska and the Alaska Division of Elections, the lawsuit requests that the measure be nullified, that it not be used in future elections, and for “costs, damages, and attorney fees as may be appropriate.” If plaintiffs win, Alaska would keep its existing elections system.
Arizona: Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Randall Warner has granted a request from the leader of the state Republican Party to inspect a sampling of Arizona ballots for irregularities to determine if any were improperly counted. But Warner capped at 200 the number of ballots Arizona GOP Chair Kelli Ward and her team can examine, arguing the limited sample should be “enough to let us know if there’s a red flag” when he reviews the results at trial Thursday. Ward’s challenge relies on a state law that allows voters to dispute election results if they suspect misconduct by election officials, illegal votes or an inaccurate count. Without evidence, Ward’s lawsuit questions the signature verification process used to authenticate mail-in ballots, as well as the duplication process election officials use to count ballots that tabulation machines couldn’t read.
Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Margaret Mahoney tossed out a lawsuit last week claiming that the county denied one voter the right to cast her ballot and failed to properly process another voter’s ballot, dismissing the last election-related case pending in Arizona. Mahoney did not elaborate on her reasoning for throwing out the case at the end of the hearing but said she would issue an order in writing.
Supporters of President Trump filed suit in federal court this week in their latest bid to throw out the certified popular vote results that awarded Arizona’s 11 electors to Joe Biden. The lawsuit alleges “widespread ballot fraud,” due in part to Dominion Voting Systems machines used in Maricopa County, which they assert were designed purposely to take votes away from Trump. Attorney Sidney Powell specifically blames that on Eric Coomer, an executive with the company, and “his visceral and public rage against the current U.S. president.” She said it is part of a criminal conspiracy. The lawsuit, filed on behalf of Arizona GOP Chairwoman Kelli Ward, among others, also claims poll watchers were unable to adequately monitor that the signatures on envelopes of mail-in ballots were verified. It refers to “biased and partisan Maricopa County poll referees.”
Georgia: U.S. District Court Judge Timothy Batten Sr. said an election-fraud lawsuit brought by allies of President Donald Trump was backed by “precious little proof,” but went on to issue a restraining order aimed at blocking three counties from making any changes to their voting machines as he considers whether to permit a forensic examination of those systems, according to court records. According to Politico, the hearing was held via Zoom and not announced in advance on the court’s docket or accessible to the press or public, but it was transcribed by a court reporter who provided the transcript to POLITICO on Monday evening. The transcript shows that Batten repeatedly wavered on whether to grant any relief to the Republican plaintiffs in the case, before settling on the narrow relief limited to three counties.
A former lawyer for President Donald Trump’s campaign and some supporters filed a lawsuit against the state of Georgia, citing massive election fraud, multiple violations of Georgia laws and multiple constitutional violations, and asking elections officials to overturn the results in the state. The 104-page civil suit was filed on Wednesday, specifically naming Gov. Brian Kemp, Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and several other state election officials. In the lawsuit, former campaign lawyer Sidney Powell claimed there was widespread voter and ballot fraud, that voting machines were rigged to change votes from Trump to Biden and that ballots were mishandled, among other things. The suit seeks an emergency order instructing the state to decertify the results of the general election and declare Trump the winner in Georgia.
Voting rights groups filed a federal lawsuit this week that accuses the Georgia secretary of state’s office of improperly removing nearly 200,000 people from the state’s voter registration list last year. The lawsuit says the state removed tens of thousands of voters from the list because it believed they had moved away when, in fact, they had not. It also challenges a “use it or lose it” provision in state law that allows Georgia to purge voters who do not cast ballots for many years. That allowed the state to remove tens of thousands more voters, the lawsuit says. The lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court in Atlanta by the Black Voters Matter Fund, the Transformative Justice Coalition and the Rainbow Push Coalition.
Samuel Scott has filed a civil rights lawsuit against the Chatham County board of elections saying that he was denied the right to work as a poll worker for a felony conviction that was overturned. In 1987, Scott was sentenced to life in prison for rape and kidnapping. After 15 years in prison, he was exonerated by DNA evidence and released in 2002. He’s been a legal Georgia voter since 2006. Scott applied to be a poll worker and never received any correspondence from the BOE until his attorneys eventually got a response. “We had to write a letter to them, and ask why he had been turned down, and they wrote us back, simply, that his prior felony conviction stopped him from being a poll worker,” William Claiborne told reporters. He says the board claimed to have no written policy to back up their denial of Scott. That’s why he and his client want a court to step in. “If you’re going to take the step to deny someone their constitutional or their fundamental rights, then you need to have a very clear policy, and that policy has to pass strict scrutiny,” the attorney said.
Illinois: The La Salle County Republican Central Committee challenged the race for La Salle County state’s attorney and state representative, won by Democrats Todd Martin and Lance Yednock, respectively. Mail-in votes tabulated late Nov. 3 abruptly swung the races away from incumbent state’s attorney Karen Donnelly and Yednock challenger Travis Breeden, both Republicans. At a hearing last week, Judge Robert Marsaglia learned the results already were certified and he continued the hearing to this week. Marsaglia instructed County Clerk Lori Bongartz to maintain a flash drive containing the mail-in votes as well as any companion records.
Michigan: A conservative legal group has asked the Michigan Supreme Court to take custody of all Nov. 3 election materials to give the Michigan Legislature time to audit the results, investigate all claims of ballot irregularities and fraud, and “finish its constitutionally-mandated work to pick Michigan’s electors.” The lawsuit filed Thursday seeking the collection of ballots, pollbooks and ballot boxes also asks the court to stop the Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson and the Board of State Canvassers from giving final certification to the state’s election results until a special master can be appointed to review alleged ballot irregularities and the legality of absentee ballots in Wayne County.
Six Republicans — three who would be Electoral College electors for President Donald Trump and three local GOP officials — filed the suit in federal court last week, two days after the Board of State Canvassers certified Biden’s 154,000-vote victory in Michigan. The suit asks a federal judge to overturn President-elect Joe Biden’s win in the state based on a bevy of conspiracy theories and claims contradicted by election experts. suit relies heavily on speculation and claims that a Wayne County judge previously labeled “not credible” in a separate legal action. “Relief sought is the elimination of the mail ballots from counting in the 2020 election,” the 75-page suit says. “Alternatively, the electors for the State of Michigan should be disqualified from counting toward the 2020 election. “Alternatively, the electors of the State of Michigan should be directed to vote for President Donald Trump.”
The Michigan Supreme Court denied an appeal from poll challengers seeking an immediate halt to the certification of Wayne County results, ruling the request should not be reviewed by the high court. The 6-1 opinion was released Monday, nearly a week after the Wayne County’s certification was completed and a little more than an hour after the Board of State Canvassers certified the Nov. 3 results of Michigan’s 83 counties. The certification cemented President-elect Joe Biden’s 154,000 vote victory in Michigan. The Costantino suit, which originated in Wayne County Circuit Court, was one referenced frequently by President Donald Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani in a press conference last week as proof of fraud in Michigan’s election.
A group of Black voters in Detroit have announced they are suing President Trump and his campaign, saying the targeted effort to overturn the election repeats one of the “worst abuses in our nation’s history” by attempting to disenfranchise Black voters. The lawsuit specifically takes issue with the campaign’s effort to overturn the results of the election in Michigan by blocking the certification of results in Wayne County – home to Detroit – and attempting to “intimidate” and “coerce” state and local officials into replacing electors. “Central to this strategy is disenfranchising voters in predominately Black cities,” the suit alleges. “Repeating false claims of voter fraud, which have been thoroughly debunked, Defendants are pressuring state and local officials in Michigan not to count votes from Wayne County, Michigan (where Detroit is the county seat), and thereby disenfranchise hundreds of thousands of voters.”
President Donald Trump’s campaign has resurrected a Michigan voter fraud lawsuit with a new appeal, recycling old allegations of problems at the TCF Center – where Detroit’s absentee ballots were being counted. Trump’s team filed the appeal at 11:21 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 30. The case would have been dismissed if the appropriate paperwork wasn’t filed by midnight, officials said. Michigan Court of Claims Judge Cynthia Stephens ruled against Trump on Nov. 5 in the lawsuit targeting Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson. Trump’s campaign attempted to appeal later that week, but didn’t submit the correct paperwork. It had 21 more days to fix the “defective” submission to the Michigan Court of Appeals, otherwise the case would be thrown out. One of the handful of reasons Trump’s campaign lost the court battle is because the remedy sought – to stop counting the votes until certain measures could be implemented – wasn’t possible since all votes had already been counted. But Trump’s campaign claims there’s still time to halt the process since the Electoral College doesn’t meet until Dec. 14. “The conduct of the general election in Wayne County was a disaster,” the campaign says in the appeal . “The Wayne County board of county canvassers found that more than seventy-one percent of the precincts did not balance. More than seventy-one percent!”
Minnesota: The ACLU of Minnesota has appealed the dismissal of a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the state’s ban on voting by convicted felons who are still on probation. The suit was filed a year ago in Ramsey County district court after the state Legislature failed to act on bills that would have restored voting rights when a convicted person is released from custody. An estimated 53,000 people in Minnesota are out of prison but still under supervised release and are not allowed to vote. In asking the appeals court to overturn Judge Laura Nelson in Schroeder v. Simon, the ACLU restates its claim that voting is a fundamental right and that the state has not stated a rational reason for denying that right to people who have been released from incarceration. It also makes a claim that it violates the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
Nevada: Judge Elizabeth Gonzalez in the Eighth Judicial Court denied a preliminary injunction that would prevent Clark County from moving forward on its plan to hold a special election in District C. The injunction, if approved would help stop a special election in the district where Democrat Ross Miller was, at last count, the winner, by 10 votes. During the county commission’s canvassing of the vote, the Clark County registrar said that he could not determine the identified 139 discrepancies in the district. Those typically are common election errors and therefore, the county could not be certain Miller really won, given the razor-thin margin of victory. Another court hearing is set for Friday, Dec. 4.
Clark County District Court Judge Joe Hardy Jr. denied, on procedural grounds, the effort by GOP candidate April Becker to force a re-vote in the race won by incumbent state Senate Majority Leader Nicole Cannizzaro. Hardy noted that Cannizzaro wasn’t a named party in Becker’s court filing against county Registrar of Voters Joe Gloria over his handling of the election, and that the case is actually a contest-of-election action. County lawmakers signed off on a canvass of the election on Nov. 16, after Gloria reported 936 “discrepancies” had been found among the more than 974,000 votes counted countywide. The registrar said the results in only the closest race — a commission seat — might have been affected.
New Jersey: Assignment Judge Julio Mendez ordered a recount in the freeholder at-large race in Atlantic County because of the extreme closeness of the results, but he did not determine the size or scope of it. Mendez will rule on how the recount will proceed after another hearing at 1:30 p.m. Monday, he said, in order to give lawyers in the case time to develop their cases on what size sampling they would accept. “I am not inclined to order a hand recount of every ballot at this point,” Mendez said of the more than 143,000 mostly paper ballots cast countywide Nov. 3. With the vast majority of votes cast by mail and provisional ballots, he said it would be overwhelming for the Atlantic County Board of Elections staff and costly for the county to do a hand recount of so many ballots.
New York: Supreme Court Justice Scott DelConte ordered elections officials to preserve records showing how they calculated results in an extremely close congressional race in central New York after two counties reported errors or changes in vote tallies over the holiday weekend. According to The Associated Press, Republican Claudia Tenney said Monday she had a 13-vote lead over Democratic incumbent U.S. Rep. Anthony Brindisi after one county adjusted its tabulation. In a letter to the court on Sunday, a lawyer for Brindisi’s campaign told DelConte he learned that Herkimer County had discovered a transcription error that, when fixed, netted Tenney an additional 35 votes and Brindisi an additional 10. In addition to Herkimer County’s error, Madison County also adjusted its vote tally, prompting DelConte on Monday to order all of the counties involved to “preserve and secure” all written and digital records related to vote counting, and not to make any alterations or changes in worksheets, spreadsheets or other tallying records.
North Carolina: a three-judge panel from the federal 4th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that Republican lawmakers didn’t act with racist intentions when they passed a 2018 voter ID law. The legislature had lost the case at trial in late 2019, which had the effect of blocking any voter ID requirements in North Carolina for the 2020 elections. But the Appeals Court ruled that the trial judge was too harsh on the legislature in her ruling last year and didn’t focus enough on what was actually in the new law. However, the ruling doesn’t automatically mean North Carolina will have voter ID in the future. This case could still be appealed further in the federal court system. And an attorney for the main challenger in the case, the North Carolina NAACP, said in a press release Wednesday the group is considering doing just that.
Pennsylvania: Westmoreland County Judge Harry Smail ruled that only 46 of 250 provisional ballots cast in the Nov. 3 general election should be counted while the remaining 204 should be tossed. Smail made the ruling that the 46 ballots should be counted after voters testified to the county’s board of elections that they had signed a poll book at their polling places but did not vote using the computerized voting machines.
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has denied a lawsuit filed by U.S. Rep. Mike Kelly and congressional candidate Sean Parnell that sought to declare universal mail-in voting unconstitutional in the state and deny the votes of the majority of Pennsylvanians who voted by mail in the Nov. 3 election. The Court, five Democrats and two Republicans ruled unanimously in an unsigned ruling over the holiday weekend. Kelly and the others involved in his suit attempted to “play a dangerous game at the expense of every Pennsylvania voter,” state Supreme Court Justice David Wecht, a Democrat, wrote in a concurring statement filed along with the Supreme Court’s order. In tossing Kelly’s suit, the state Supreme Court said Kelly and the other petitioners waited too long to challenge the 2019 state law that authorized universal, no-excuses mail-in voting in Pennsylvania — an option that millions of voters chose to use rather than voting in person during the coronavirus pandemic. Kelly and Parnell say they plan to appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court.
The U.S. Third Circuit Court has rejected the Trump campaign’s appeal of a federal lawsuit filed in Pennsylvania that challenged the outcome of the 2020 elections, denying the request with a blistering opinion authored by a Trump-appointed judge declaring: “Voters, not lawyers, choose the President.” “Free, fair elections are the lifeblood of our democracy,” said the unanimous opinion from a three-judge panel, which was signed by Judge Stephanos Bibas. “Charges of unfairness are serious. But calling an election unfair does not make it so. Charges require specific allegations and then proof. We have neither here.” “Voters, not lawyers, choose the President,” the court writes. “Ballots, not briefs, decide elections.”
Texas: This week, the American Civil Liberties Union of Texas filed a petition to appeal the sentence of Crystal Mason who was sentenced to five years in prison for casting a provisional ballot while still on probation. Three justices on the Court of Appeals for the Second District of Texas denied Mason’s first appeal in March, although it agreed she did not know she was ineligible to vote. “The fact that she did not know she was legally ineligible to vote was irrelevant to her prosecution,” Justice Wade Birdwell wrote in the court’s opinion. “The State needed only to prove that she voted while knowing of the existence of the condition that made her ineligible.” Now the ACLU will try to take the case — which ACLU legal director Andre Segura called, “one of the most important voting rights cases in modern Texas history” — through the next appeals process. “I’m more energized than ever before and I refuse to be afraid,” Mason, who is from Rendon, said in an ACLU press release. “I thought I was performing my civic duty and followed the election process by filling out a provisional ballot. By trying to criminalize my actions, Texas has shown me the power of my voice. I will use my voice to educate and empower others who are fighting for their right to vote.”
North Carolina businessman Fred Eshelman, founder of Eshelman Ventures LLC, is suing True the Vote Inc., after he donated $2.5 million to a Houston-based group promising to “investigate, litigate and expose suspected illegal balloting fraud” in the 2020 Presidential Election is now being sued by one of its own donors. The suit filed in Houston federal court says True the Vote claimed it would be filing lawsuits in swing states, collecting complaints and pursuing “sophisticated data modeling and statistical analysis to identify potential illegal or fraudulent balloting.” But Eshelman said he never received any updates about their efforts, despite “regularly and repeatedly” requesting information — instead, he says, he got “vague responses, platitudes, and empty promises.” Eshelman ultimately asked for his money back.
Missouri City will file a lawsuit against Fort Bend County for what the city is calling “another mistake” in an already “tumultuous election season,” according to a Dec. 2 press release from the city. In the release, Missouri City said the lawsuit stems from “disenfranchising citizens” by not allowing all Missouri City residents the ability to vote early for the Dec. 12 runoff election at all three county-run polling locations, something the city claims the county previously confirmed with officials. Instead, Missouri City voters who live in Harris County can only cast early ballots at one location: the Missouri City Community Center, located at 1522 Texas Parkway. Missouri City voters who live in Fort Bend County, however, can vote at any of the three early-voting locations: the Community Center, the Quail Valley Fund office and Stafford City Hall. John Oldham, Fort Bend County’s elections administrator, said there was a miscommunication between his office and the city regarding early-voting locations. Oldham added for previous runoff elections involving both Harris and Fort Bend County voters, the county assigns Harris County voters one early-voting location, and this election is no different.
Wisconsin: A new lawsuit filed with the Wisconsin Supreme Court asks justices to throw out the results of the Nov. 3 election. The attorney bringing the suit alleges results are “tainted” by the illegal use of ballot drop boxes throughout the state. The suit is asking the Wisconsin Supreme Court to stop the certification of election results from Nov. 3 that have President-elect Joe Biden ahead of President Donald Trump by just more than 20,000 votes. An injunction is needed, argues Karen Mueller, because the Wisconsin Elections Commission encouraged local elections officials to use drop boxes to collect absentee ballots without having the rulemaking authority to do so.
President Donald J. Trump sued Wisconsin elections officials. in a last-ditch effort to reclaim a state he lost by about 20,700 votes. The Republican president filed his suit against Democratic Gov. Tony Evers a day after the governor and the head of the state Elections Commission certified Joe Biden had won the state’s 10 Electoral College votes. The lawsuit challenges 221,323 absentee ballots cast in Dane and Milwaukee counties, alleging election officials broke the law by continuing the longstanding practice of early voting, allowing voters to label themselves indefinitely confined without further inspection, allowed clerks to fill in missing information on ballots, and allowed poll workers to collect ballots in Madison parks. The campaign is challenging: 170,140 ballots cast early; 28,395 ballots cast by voters who claimed to be indefinitely confined; 17,271 ballots collected at “Democracy in the Park” events; and 5,517 ballots for which clerks filled in missing information
Opinions This Week
National Opinions: A great election | Chris Krebs, II | Disenfranchised voters | Accepting results | U.S. Supreme Court | Transgender voters | Voter fraud allegations, II, III, IV | Vendors, II | Voter suppression| Democracy, II | Social media | Election litigation, II | Election security, II | Voting system | Election reform | GOP officials | Accessibility
Alabama: Election reform
Arkansas: Voting Rights Act
California: Ex-felon voting rights
Hawaii: Election workers
Idaho: Successful election
Kansas: Election workers
Louisiana: Voting Rights Act
Maryland: Ranked choice voting
Massachusetts: Jungle primaries
Missouri: Election workers
Nebraska: Early voting
Nevada: Court challenges
New Jersey: Ballot counting
Ohio: Election reform
Oklahoma: Election legislation
South Carolina: Ballot counting
Texas: Youth vote
Vermont: Unsung heroes
Wisconsin: Poll workers
Elections GeoSummit: Each year, the Elections GeoSummit brings together the nation’s leaders in elections management and geographic information systems (GIS) to share leading-edge findings and craft best practices to enhance election systems. When: Dec. 10, 1pm-5pm. Where: Online.
The 2020 Voting Experience and Goals for Reform: Following an unprecedented year of uncertainty, adaptation, and innovation in voting 2020, the Bipartisan Policy Center will host its fourth post-presidential election cycle event bringing together election administrators, policymakers, academics, advocates, and campaigns to examine the voting experience. We will discuss the impact of election administration reforms on improving the voting experience over four years ago as well as securing the voting process. Topics to be covered include: the shifts needed for voting during a pandemic; the rise of voting by mail, the use of technology in the election ecosystem, and how it can be secured; the future of funding elections in America; how changes in election laws and litigation impacted the election; how improved data collection and analysis can further improve the administration of elections. This event is sponsored by Democracy Fund and Carnegie Corporation of New York. More information will be forthcoming. When: Dec. 15, 11am-5pm Eastern. Where: Online
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Job Postings This Week
electionlineWeekly publishes election administration job postings each week as a free service to our readers. To have your job listed in the newsletter, please send a copy of the job description, including a web link to firstname.lastname@example.org. Job postings must be received by 5pm on Wednesday in order to appear in the Thursday newsletter. Listings will run for three weeks or till the deadline listed in the posting.
Certification Project Manager, Hart InterCIvic— The Certification Project Manager manages state and federal certification projects of our Hardware and Software products, under the direction of the Sr. Director of Product Management. The Certification Project Manager must be able to exercise sound judgment and interact with regulatory authorities in a professional manner, particularly in high-pressure situations. Essential Duties and Responsibilities (Other duties may be assigned): Submit state/federal certification application materials; Plan for and coordinate logistics for onsite state/federal certification activities; Lead onsite state/federal certification activities; Provide follow up to state/federal certification activities. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Customer Success Manager, Dominion Voting Systems, Denver— The Customer Success Manager role started on a simple promise of transforming customer engagement from ‘reactive’ to ‘proactive’. Our CSM’s know that when our elections customers purchase Dominion Voting products that this is only the start of a meaningful exchange between Dominion Voting and our customers. Our CSM’s build value over time by balancing customer benefits and company profits. As the CSM, you will be the first voice of the customer and you will be responsible for the customer’s overall success, as defined by the customer. You will be successful in this role if you have superb people leadership skills, customer empathy, elections knowledge and experience, Dominion Voting product knowledge, and excellent project management skills. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Executive Director, Colorado County Clerks Association — The Colorado County Clerks Association is a not for profit 501 c (6) professional association that comprises the 63 elected county clerk and recorders. Governance plays an important role in determining how a professional association functions. The CCCA is no exception. Association Executive Board members work hard to maintain individual county offices, conduct high profile elections, and work in an environment of budget cuts and escalating costs. In addition to these workloads members then take on additional responsibilities by volunteering to work as board members, and committee chairs for the good of the state association. The Executive Director position was established nearly 10 years ago to administer and support the association vision, mission, and goals of the Colorado Clerks. The CCCA seeks a contract Executive Director with diverse non-profit management, governance, conference planning, and communications experience. The Executive Director reports to the 10-member CCCA Executive Board. The Board is elected by the association membership. The duties and management of selected other functions are delegated to the Executive Director by the CCCA Bylaws and under the direction of the President of the Board. Salary: $75,000. Deadline: December 4. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
IT Security Analyst, North Carolina State Board of Elections— The Information Technology Security Analyst is responsible for the monitoring and review of agency security systems and associated data, and ensuring that the configuration of agency systems, applications and networks are in compliance with agency security policies. This position requires a technical background, with problem solving, critical thinking, documentation skills, and the ability to communicate complex topics clearly and effectively. The primary goal of this position is to provide security support, monitoring of security solutions, logging of security events and support additional security systems and solutions on a day to day basis. From time to time, this position is also required to identify, plan, document, execute, and report on continuous improvement activities related to security and other tasks as assigned Successful candidates will demonstrate the desire and ability to learn skills to grow into activities required for the position where the candidate does not currently possess such skills. This position will be subject to a background check. DHS carries all security clearances for SBE. This position may require the receipt and ongoing maintenance of a security clearance. Salary: $61,972.00 – $100,892. Deadline: Dec. 17. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
IT Security Engineer, North Carolina State Board of Elections— The Information Technology Security Engineer is responsible for the operation of agency security infrastructure, technical security guidance in the application of best practices, and ensuring that the configuration of agency systems, applications and networks are in compliance with agency security policies. This position requires broad technical expertise, sophisticated problem solving and critical thinking, excellent documentation skills, security experience, and the ability to communicate complex topics clearly and effectively. The primary goal of this position is to ensure the proper function of agency information security systems and solutions on a day to day basis. This position is also required to identify, plan, document, execute, and report on continuous improvement activities related to security and other tasks as assigned. Successful candidates will demonstrate the desire and ability to learn skills to grow into activities required for the position where the candidate does not currently possess such skills. This position will be subject to a background check. DHS carries all security clearances for SBE. This position may require the receipt and ongoing maintenance of a security clearance. Salary: $74,987.00 – $121,857. Deadline: 12/17. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Network Engineer, North Carolina State Board of Elections— The State Board of Elections oversees the enforcement of federal and state laws, rules, and procedures governing the conduct of elections, voter registration, and campaign finance activities in North Carolina. Primary Purpose of the Position: Serves as a key technical resource for employees and senior management in regard to network design, configuration, monitoring and debugging. He or she must be capable of handling the most complex engineering problems and projects. Eloyees receive agency requests for assistance, evaluate needs, design and prepare technical specifications, and project cost estimates for myriad network environments, equipment and systems. Salary: $74,987.00 – $121,857. Deadline: Dec. 15. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Operations Support Specialist, North Carolina State Board of Elections— The State Board of Elections oversees the enforcement of federal and state laws, rules, and procedures governing the conduct of elections, voter registration, and campaign finance activities in North Carolina. Provide operational support to Election Administration, Campaign Finance administration and other business operations. Perform a variety of general office assistant tasks in support of the agency’s administrative operations, especially public contact and providing public assistance. Answer and route incoming telephone calls in a timely manner. Answer and/or route emails in a timely and professional manner. Answer questions of a general nature, including assisting the public with locating voter registration information, polling place hours and locations, acceptable forms of voter identification, online campaign finance data, and county boards of elections contact information. Route calls and emails based on routing guidelines provided. Welcome visitors in a prompt and friendly manner. Require visitor sign-in and sign-out, provide visitor badge, contact staff when visitors arrive. Direct visitors to wait in lobby until staff member arrives to escort them. If visitors are present to attend a public meeting, then direct visitors to meeting room and/or restrooms as needed. Prepare and display signage for public meetings, directional signs, etc. as required. Assist with receiving, date-stamping, and routing incoming mail to appropriate staff as directed. Update records and databases as required, including campaign finance and certification databases and candidate filing records. Salary: $30,280.00 – $48,058. Deadline: Dec. 10. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
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