ICYMI: The election was very secure, actually
It's been nearly three weeks since President Trump lost his bid for re-election. Trump still hasn't conceded, though, and it's becoming more apparent with each state-level lawsuit that he believes he can sue and manipulate his way to a second term. Part of that apparatus of deceit is Trump's dedication to pushing conspiracy theories of widespread voter fraud, which are patently untrue.
In order to push back on claims of voter fraud and so-called "rigging" of the election, 59 computer science and election security experts penned a strongly-worded letter this week decrying the narrative that the U.S. election was not secure.
"Anyone asserting that a U.S. election was 'rigged' is making an extraordinary claim, one that must be supported by persuasive and verifiable evidence," the letter read. While there were some instances of malfunctioning voting machines, there's no evidence that any individual votes were miscounted or misrepresented. The letter addressed this, too: "Merely citing the existence of technical flaws does not establish that an attack occurred, much less that it altered an election outcome. It is simply speculation."
Trump and other Republican leaders' speculation actually harms democracy, observers argue. As Joseph Marks wrote for The Washington Post, security is essential to the integrity of American elections, and intelligence officials have been ringing the bell on this for years. "Now, [Trump's] finally talking about the topic, but it's only to spread conspiracy theories, hijacking fears about election hacking to serve his own political ends," Marks wrote. In other words, Trump's doubling down on election security wasn't for the benefit of country, but party — if not just solely for him.
The White House repeatedly claimed that the election would be "rigged" in Democrats' favor, with Trump insisting that point without any evidence. But "in every case of which we are aware, these claims either have been unsubstantiated or are technically incoherent," the experts wrote in their letter. "To our collective knowledge, no credible evidence has been put forth that supports a conclusion that the 2020 election outcome in any state has been altered through technical compromise."
Even Trump's own Department of Homeland Security believes that the election results are sound. "The Nov. 3 election was the most secure in American history," a press release by the department's Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency said. "While we know there are many unfounded claims and opportunities for misinformation about the process of our elections, we can assure you we have the utmost confidence in the security and integrity of our elections, and you should too. When you have questions, turn to elections officials as trusted voices as they administer elections."