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WA Secretary of State encourages ‘ride along’ with local election officials

King County Elections workers process ballots at King County Elections headquarters on Nov. 3, 2020 in Renton, Washington. (Photo by Karen Ducey/Getty Images)

Any concerns about election fraud can be remedied with a simple solution, according to Washington’s Secretary of State Kim Wyman: volunteering to assist with local elections. The process is a transparent one that welcomes participation from community members statewide.

In an interview with KIRO Radio’s Gee and Ursula Show, Wyman encouraged anyone with possible concerns about the integrity of the elections process to see it for themselves.

“I think we can allay a lot of fear by showing you all of the security and accessibility measures we have in place. I think when people see it firsthand, it can change their perception of how we do things,” she said.

Wyman referenced community members who in years past have arrived at elections headquarters with complaints about perceived election fraud. They were able to see for themselves how the chain of custody, control, and processing of ballots are carried out.

“I think a lot of voters would have that same experience if they just went in and observed. Quite frankly, election officials are always in need of extra help,” Wyman noted.

Ballots are processed throughout the state at county election headquarters. To make it all the more transparent, the operation is often live streamed, including by King County Elections here.

This is an issue that hits close to home for Wyman. Last year, her state election director was forced into hiding after threats of violence were made against U.S. election officials.

As for the Aug. 3 primary election, it’s expected to have lower levels of voter turnout compared to the 2020 elections. Regardless, Wyman welcomes the community to come and observe the level of scrutiny with which ballots are secured and counted in all elections.

Voter turnout for state’s August primary lags ahead of deadline for ballots

“If you really believe the system has problems, why don’t you go and work for an election office? Work and see it from the inside,” Wyman said. “And if there are things that need to be improved, you can make those suggestions.”

Listen to the Gee and Ursula Show weekday mornings from 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. on KIRO Radio, 97.3 FM. Subscribe to the podcast here.

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