States and feds unite on election security after ’16 clashes

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In this Sept. 20, 2018 photo, voting booths stand ready in downtown Minneapolis for the opening of early voting in Minnesota. Election officials and federal cybersecurity agents are touting improved collaboration aimed at confronting and deterring efforts to tamper with elections. Granted, the only way to go was up: In 2016 amid Russian meddling, federal […]

WASHINGTON (AP) — Election officials and federal cybersecurity agents are touting improved collaboration aimed at confronting and deterring efforts to tamper with elections.

The only way to go was up. In 2016, amid Russian meddling, federal officials first were accused of being too tight-lipped on intelligence about possible hacking into state systems and later criticized for trying to hijack control from the states.

National security officials have said that heading into the Nov. 6 midterms, they haven’t yet seen the type of large-scale infiltrations that happened in 2016. They say the real test of this new-and-improved partnership possibly won’t come until the 2020 presidential election.

States are responsible for running elections. Federal officials can offer support but have no way to compel states to change how they count ballots.

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