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Government & Politics

Maryland Elections Board Responds to Lawmakers’ Concerns Ahead of 2020

The Maryland State Board of Elections office in Annapolis. Photo by Danielle E. Gaines.

Maryland elections officials responded last week to a concerns from congressional Democrats ahead of the 2020 election.

“The State Board of Elections has no higher priority, working with our local partners, than protecting the integrity of our elections,” Administrator Linda H. Lamone wrote to Maryland’s Democratic U.S. senators and representatives. “We have and will continue to take every appropriate action and utilize all available resources to ensure Marylanders can vote securely.”

The letter was in response to a lengthy list of concerns from Capitol Hill lawmakers about snags in 2018 – from the release of some local election results while voters were still in line elsewhere in the state, to voter registration errors at the Motor Vehicle Administration, to a Russian oligarch’s ties to Maryland’s election data system.

Lamone stressed that the elections board asked the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to conduct an assessment of state election systems, which did not find any indication that the state’s system had been compromised. The state has also increased cybersecurity reviews and disaster preparedness exercises.

The federal lawmakers also expressed concern about whether voters with disabilities in Maryland are able to vote privately using ballot-marking devices. In August, the National Federation of the Blind sued the State Board of Elections to force an end to what they call a segregated balloting system; the state’s response in federal court is not yet due.

The full letter from Lamone to federal lawmakers is at this link.

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Maryland Elections Board Responds to Lawmakers’ Concerns Ahead of 2020