The Obama administration has gone too far in its last days before President-Elect Donald Trump is inaugurated.
The federal government has officially seized control over America’s election systems, which have always been handled by the states.
A last-minute decision by the Obama administration to designate election systems as critical infrastructure drew intense criticism from state and federal elections organizations on Monday.
U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson announced the move Friday with 30 minutes’ notice to the National Association of Secretaries of State and U.S. Election Assistance Commission, an independent bipartisan federal agency that develops voluntary voting guidelines and certifies voting systems.
Officials at both agencies are criticizing the department for what they said was a failure to work with state officials to fully answer their questions about the designation before making the change.
“We’re having trouble understanding exactly what they’re going to do, that we’re not already doing,” Connecticut Secretary of State Denise W. Merrill, who heads the national secretaries association, told The Associated Press. “States were already doing much of this (security work) themselves using very different products.”
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