For anyone who cares, here are my thoughts on Joe Herring's recent addressing of election integrity concerns on KFAB. I was not at all impressed with the defense that Herring put up on behalf of his good friend Secretary of State Bob Evnen. Herring claims to call Evnen a good friend, and so it is no surprise that he would offer a strong defense of him. Evnen may be a wonderful friend to Herring, but the fact of the matter is that good people can be bad leaders. (And sometimes a person whom many perceive as "bad"--as was the case with Trump--can prove to be a good leader. Trump's first three years in office were among the best examples of leadership our country has ever seen, and there were many who simultaneously praised him as a leader while judging him as a man.)
When I am critical of those in our government, it is never a personal attack. And yet, Herring repeatedly spoke in ways which seemed to try to frame criticism of Evnen as some sort of personal attack. I believe he warned us at least a time or two not to be "adversarial" in regard to how we view the performance of Evnen in his job as our Secretary of State. And while I do agree that we should avoid attacks of a personal nature, it is entirely appropriate for every citizen of Nebraska to expect Secretary of State Evnen to do the job to which the people have entrusted him.
Herring tried to deflect criticism directed toward Evnen by saying that the concerns with our elections "goes around the Secretary of State and not through the Secretary of State." The problems do extend to the highest levels of our government, no doubt, but it is absurd to suggest that any of this does not "go through" our Secretary of State whose job it is to provide oversight over the elections in our state. It absolutely IS his job, and he should be made to answer for the contract which the State of Nebraska entered into with ES&S on behalf of the people of Nebraska. No voter in their right mind would have ever agreed to the terms set forth in that contract, and I believe that before the primary election is held in May, our elected officials--including Evnen--are going to have to address whether or not that contract violates our constitutional right to a free election. I believe it does.
Herring says that he has faith that Evnen will address the problem with our elections once he is presented the information--which Herring says he himself is compiling and plans to go over with his friend Evnen. I sure hope he has better luck than others have had, because much of the information (perhaps all of it) that is currently circulating in the presentations from the Voter Accuracy Project is information that people have been sending to Evnen for some time now. I myself have sent information to Evnen, and only once have I received a reply--which included bold lettering claiming that our ES&S machines across the state are never connected to the internet at any time. Beyond that one reply, I have received no response from Evnen regarding of the other emails I have sent that contained information of concern--some of which is referenced in the Voter Accuracy Project presentation.
Herring is perhaps unaware that many of us have already sent this information to Evnen and he has done NOTHING to investigate it. And so while Evnen may be a good friend and a nice guy, he is a terrible Secretary of State, and the people of Nebraska would be fools to reelect someone who has been so negligent when it comes to assuring us that our voting system is a secure one. But perhaps, as a friend, Herring will be able to get through to Evnen in a way that the concerned citizens of Nebraska have not. The fact of the matter is that Evnen is ALREADY aware of many of the concerns that are only now coming out in presentation form for the public. And he hasn't done a damn thing. But he should have. Herring rightly pointed out on the show what a danger it is that such doubt has been cast upon our election process, and that the doubt alone is reason enough for actions to be taken.
I was also disappointed that the interview was focused almost solely on the fraud and didn't dig into concerns that I have raised with the Voter Accuracy Project that we need to be addressing the constitutionality of the contract between ES&S and the State of Nebraska. I believe this is something that MUST be done BEFORE the primary election. I do not see how we can proceed with an election that would appear to compromise our constitutional rights.
I hope that our elected officials will do the right thing and address the concerns with our elections BEFORE the primary.