Missouri: Secretasry of State touts integrity of 2020 election, but supports an audit | Jason Hancock/Missouri Independent
Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft is confident Missouri’s 2020 election was safe and secure. And while he has concerns about things that transpired in other states last year, he dismisses the idea that fraud cost Donald Trump the presidential election. “Under our Constitution, Joe Biden was duly elected by our presidential electors. End of story,” Ashcroft said, later adding: “I have tried to be very consistent in saying that laws were not followed in different states, but I have not seen evidence that shows that the winners were changed by that.” At the same time, Ashcroft is on board with the push for Missouri lawmakers to create a new system for post-election audits — a cause that has become the rallying cry for conspiracy theorists peddling the lie of a stolen 2020 election. Ashcroft doesn’t buy into the conspiracies, but says he supports the push for audits because they could bolster voter confidence. “When I say that I believe our election was run securely, I do,” Ashcroft said. “But I have not gone back through and done a massive audit to prove that it was done well. And that’s how you know.” He’s not ready to roll out any specific ideas, he said, but is eager to work with state lawmakers when they return to Jefferson City in January. Missouri’s chief election official throwing his support behind the push for election audits is causing heartburn for some local officials and advocates around the state who fear it may feed into the drumbeat of baseless allegations about election fraud from Trump and his allies.