Washington AG: ‘Vote by mail is effective and secure’

Washington

Washington primary is Tuesday

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Washington’s statewide primary is Tuesday, with 36 candidates for governor on the ballot including incumbent Jay Inslee. In Clark County, voters will narrow down the candidates for county councilor.

This all comes in the shadow of President Trump claiming mail-in voting will create chaos.

“A universal mail-in ballot is a disaster. These governors are going to send out millions of ballots, they don’t even know where they’re sending them,” Trump recently said. “This is going to be the greatest election disaster in history. By the way, you guys like to talk about Russia and China and other places. They’ll be able to forge ballots.”

Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson had a simple response for that.

“President Trump is simply wrong about mail-in voting,” he said. “Despite clear evidence that vote-by-mail is effective and secure, President Trump continues to claim that mail-in voting will lead to a fraudulent election.”

In a report to Congress on the 2016 presidential election, the State of Washington said there were “two criminal prosecutions for fraudulent votes,” and “a small number of other cases in which voters potentially attempted to vote illegally…”

That report was signed by Democrat Ferguson and Washington’s Secretary of State Kim Wyman, who is a Republican.

Last week Wyman invited President Trump “to come to Washington state to see firsthand how my office and Washington’s 39 county election officials have worked diligently to build in robust security measures so people can vote safely this fall.”

She is concerned about recent budget cuts to the postal service under Trump’s recently appointed Postmaster General.

“The postal service is the linchpin to all of this working in November,” Wyman said. “We have states that see 2% of their ballots cast by absentee ballot in a regular election, and they’re going to see an increase anywhere from 20-25% to 60 or 70% of their ballots returned by mail. It’s essential that the post office is able to deal with that increased volume.”

An election expert told CBS News there are concerns about other states with less experience with vote-by-mail, rejecting ballots because people fill them out improperly, not because of widespread fraud.

Ballots for the Washington primary must be either put into a drop box by 8 p.m. Tuesday or postmarked on Tuesday.

The top 2 vote-getters advance to the November election regardless of party.

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