Trump’s election fraud claims ‘not possible,’ says high Kentucky elections official

The highest election official in Kentucky, who has additionally been Vice President Mike Pence’s election legal professional for the previous three years, stated Friday that it’s not potential to tug off the form of widespread fraud that President Trump repeatedly says — with out proof — is an issue.

“After I ran for this workplace final yr, I cited 22 particular instances of current election fraud convictions,” stated Kentucky Secretary of State Michael Adams, a Republican. “It does occur, but it surely doesn’t occur on a widespread foundation when it does occur. It sometimes occurs in a small city.”

“However you’re not going to see widespread fraud in a presidential or a Senate or a governor’s race. It’s simply not possible. And it hasn’t been [feasible] in 70 or 80 years,” Adams stated in an interview on “The Lengthy Sport,” a Yahoo Information podcast.

Adams is a Harvard Regulation graduate who was a senior lawyer on the Justice Division within the George W. Bush administration. He constructed a non-public observe over the previous 15 years advising main Republican purchasers on navigate the thicket of election legal guidelines, and labored to assist Republicans win elections throughout the nation. He was employed by the Republican Governors Affiliation in 2007 as its basic counsel, and over the subsequent decade suggested “candidates, PACs, situation teams, donors and political consultants, in reference to federal, state and native elections,” in accordance to his regulation agency web site.

In 2017, Pence’s PAC, the Nice America Committee, employed him for authorized and strategic recommendation concerning compliance with election regulation. The final cost to Adams’s regulation agency, Chalmers & Adams, was on June 24.  

Adams was elected final fall to Kentucky’s high election publish after working a historically conservative marketing campaign that promised to crack down on fraud and implement a voter ID regulation, which has been criticized by consultants as an answer looking for an issue. Even Adams’s description of what sort of fraud happens most continuously — by insiders on the native stage — helps the criticism of voter ID legal guidelines, since voter ID is supposed to cease voter impersonation, which occurs sometimes.

However in the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, Adams has drawn reward from Kentucky’s Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear for “placing ideology on the shelf” as they’ve labored out a plan for the Nov. three election.

Adams has pushed for Republicans to vote by mail and has sought to debunk notions that doing so will result in fraud. He instructed Nationwide Public Radio in Could that he had his “head taken off” by some Republicans for sending a postcard to each registered voter telling them acquire a mail poll for Kentucky’s June 23 main.

He additionally stated in that interview that it was “absurd” to recommend that the election can be stolen from Trump by means of voting by mail.

Kentucky Secretary of State Michael Adams. (Photo illustration: Yahoo News; photo: Office of the Kentucky Secretary of State)
Kentucky Secretary of State Michael Adams. (Photograph illustration: Yahoo Information; photograph: Workplace of the Kentucky Secretary of State)

In his interview with Yahoo Information, Adams detailed the practices that county election officers use to make sure that ballots will not be tampered with, and refuted the notion, floated by Trump and Legal professional Normal William Barr, {that a} international authorities may plant false ballots into the center of an election.

Kentucky is certainly one of 42 states, together with the District of Columbia, that tracks its mail ballots, in accordance with information compiled by the Voting Rights Lab, an advocacy group that analyzes voting legal guidelines. Like many states, Kentucky makes use of a bar code that’s generated as soon as a voter applies for and requests a mail poll.

“You may observe your poll the identical method you observe a UPS package deal or one thing. That transparency offers us within the workplace the power to trace the poll,” Adams stated.

Election officers can observe the mail poll from the second it leaves their workplace to when the voter receives it, to when it arrives again at their workplace, he stated. Voters can also observe the progress of the poll. Adams stated he’s engaged on expertise to permit monitoring of the poll’s location in actual time.

“I don’t assume it could be possible for some international nation to copy all these issues. They must have the bar code, and so they must have the signature of the voter in two places that we then evaluate in opposition to the driving force’s license database that we now have entry to,” he stated. “We use very particular sorts of papers — sure weights, sure colours. It’s very simple for the computer systems to acknowledge a fraudulent doc.”

Protesters rally outside the home of USPS Board of Governors member John M. Barger on Aug. 22 in San Marino, Calif., to decry recent Postal Service cuts by Postmaster General Louis DeJoy that could affect presidential election mail-in ballots. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
Protesters rally outdoors the house of USPS Board of Governors member John M. Barger on Aug. 22 in San Marino, Calif., to decry current Postal Service cuts by Postmaster Normal Louis DeJoy that might have an effect on presidential election mail-in ballots. (Photograph by David McNew/Getty Photos)

Adams stated his assist for voter ID hasn’t modified, however he has additionally lifted the ID requirement for the autumn if voters can’t get ID due to COVID-19.

He additionally burdened that “voter suppression is just not a delusion.” However Adams stated that whereas election fraud and voter suppression are actual, they aren’t a “day by day prevalence” or “widespread conspiracies.”

Adams didn’t say whether or not his workplace is taking any motion to trace whether or not Postal Service supply is slowing in Kentucky, however he did say that mail supply has traditionally been imperfect.

“I’m not going to bash the Postal Service, however I’ll be frank. Even earlier than the pandemic, they’d a document of not delivering all of the election mail. Each human commits error, each authorities company commits error. It’s in-built. And the query is, what number of ballots are going to get misplaced?” Adams requested. “There’s not going to be widespread stealing or lack of ballots, however you’ve all the time obtained the danger {that a} poll, like some other piece of mail, received’t arrive in time.”

“And in order that’s why, although I would like and obtained expanded absentee for these voters who want it to vote safely, I’m making an attempt additionally to cut back the demand on absentee ballots and provides individuals different choices to vote safely — simply because I don’t need to put all our eggs in that basket of the mail system,” he stated.

Protesters hold a "Save the Post Office" demonstration outside a USPS location in Los Angeles on Aug. 22. (Photo by Kyle Grillot/AFP via Getty Images)
Protesters maintain a “Save the Submit Workplace” demonstration outdoors a USPS location in Los Angeles on Aug. 22. (Photograph by Kyle Grillot/AFP through Getty Photos)

Adams stated he’s increasing using drop bins within the state and that Republican voters have been very receptive about them.

“I took lots of warmth throughout the GOP for having expanded absentee voting, and I assumed it could be a bridge too far to have bins the place individuals may simply drop this stuff off on avenue corners, however I used to be flawed,” Adams stated. “It seems that the Republicans like these higher than the Democrats do as a result of the Republicans have much less confidence within the postal system and so they’re extra prone to need to drop that and see it go into the bin.”

Adams stated certainly one of his considerations for the autumn election has to do with a scarcity of election employees.

“I’m involved about having sufficient in-person places and sufficient ballot employees to deal with the demand of in-person voting. I’m assured that we’ll be high-quality, however this isn’t simply a problem in Kentucky. I testified within the legislature final yr earlier than the pandemic that we now have a ballot employee disaster in our state. We’ve obtained 15,000 ballot employees. We have to run an election in Kentucky, and, disproportionately, [poll workers] are of their 70s and 80s,” he stated. “And my era, Gen X, hasn’t stepped as much as substitute our getting old employees. That’s not an issue only for right now. That’s an issue going ahead for this decade. And people are perpetual issues that we’re having to deal with right here and in different states.”


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