Mueller report highlights need for election protection, advocates say

Washington-DC

WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — While Democrats and Republicans squabble over what comes next following the release of the Mueller report, the Center for American Progress (CAP) says Americans need to come together on one issue: election protection.

The nonprofit says the undisputed finding in the special counsel’s investigation is how deeply Russia hacked our democracy and the apparent danger to our election systems and process.

As we begin to focus on the 2020 presidential election, experts warn the threat remains and Americans need to work together to thwart these cyber attacks.

“The Mueller report just shows how big of a risk there is to our election systems,” said Morgan Finkelstein of the CAP and the Moscow Project.

Finkelstein says anyone who reads the Mueller report can agree on one thing: the Russians did a number on our democracy in 2016.

“It shows a sophisticated, well-funded and consistent effort on the part of Russia to interfere in United States elections,” she said.

Congress has so far failed to beef up election security, according to Finkelstein.

“As a result, we’re really going to need to play catchup if we want to ensure the safety of our election systems before 2020,” she said.

With attention now on the next presidential election, Congress may be poised to act. Democrats and Republicans both agree the threat on our election systems still persists.

Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Missouri, says we need to be on guard against future interference and warns that if the next attack doesn’t come from Russia, it could come from another source.

“Chinese and the North Koreans, the Iranians. We should work as we did in 2018 to see that they don’t necessarily involve themselves in ways in our election,” he explained.

“Why wouldn’t we want to protect our elections?” asked Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minnesota.

“I don’t care if you’re a Democrat, Republican or an independent, you do not want people messing around with your elections,” Klobuchar added.

The Center for American Progress says among other measures, states need to move away from electronic-only voting systems – which can be hacked – and develop a paper trail to be sure every vote counts.

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