One of the last questions asked of Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump at Monday night’s debate at Hofstra University deserves to be revisited. Moderator Lester Holt asked both candidates whether, if they lost the election, they accept the results as the “will of the voters.” Both indicated that yes, they would (although Mr. Trump agreed to support Ms. Clinton so reluctantly — it required a follow-up question from Mr. Holt — that reporters felt compelled to confirm his position afterward). In any other presidential race, a question about recognizing the will of the voters would be regarded as a softball — the answer so obvious that surely no debate prep was needed. After all, what kind of presidential nominee seeks to delegitimize the essential process that sustains the greatest democracy on earth? But these are not ordinary times. The nation’s voting system faces a very real threat from computer hackers. That much was made clear with the breach of a voter information database in Illinois this summer. Election boards across the country — including Maryland’s — were put on alert by federal authorities out of concern for potential vulnerabilities.
Such a problem deserves to be taken seriously, yet the biggest threat of all may be one not so easily addressed in the final six weeks of the campaign: What if the public loses confidence in the voting system and judges it so unreliable that voters do not believe the winner of the election is necessarily the winner at all?
… In testimony heard Tuesday by the House subcommittee that oversees information technology, it was clear that there’s much more the nation needs to do to protect election integrity — particularly by focusing on real problems like replacing outdated equipment that might be manipulated remotely (in the 14 states that went paperless, for example) and not on greatly overstated problems like people showing up at the polls claiming to be someone they are not.
Full Article: Integrity at the ballot box – Baltimore Sun.