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Many Secretaries of State Are Prepared for Election Threats

All secretaries of state are keenly aware of the many threats that were made to election workers in 2020 and are preparing to deal with a repeat performance. Yesterday, the top election officials of Arizona (Adrian Fontes, D), Georgia (Brad Raffensperger, R), Michigan (Jocelyn Benson, D), and Pennsylvania (Al Schmidt, R) appeared on NBC's Meet the Press with Kristen Welker to discuss their preparedness for trouble on Election Day. Raffensperger told Welker: "We're actually in pretty good shape. The counties have done a great job of recruitment." Benson told her: "We have to also protect the people who protect democracy. And that's a lot of what we're working to do to prepare for this year." Fontes called threats against election workers "domestic terrorism." Schmidt agreed with Fontes.

In some cases, laws have been changed to provide more transparency. For example, in Georgia, officials are now allowed to prescan and preprocess mail-in ballots, so the results of mail-in ballots will be available during Election Night, instead of days later. This will largely eliminate the "red mirage," in which in-person votes on Election Day, which tend to be Republican, are later canceled by mail-in votes (typically Democratic) counted later. In any event, the election officials in these four states and many others are well aware of the challenges ahead and are dealing with them already. (V)

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