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Congressman Lacy Clay

Representing the 1st District of Missouri

Clay Demands Swift Action from Ashcroft to Safeguard Missouri Voter Rolls, Election Day Operations from Foreign Tampering

July 10, 2017
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – Congressman Wm. Lacy Clay (D) Missouri is demanding that Missouri Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft identify immediate actions he intends to take to safeguard Missouri elections from foreign tampering. The Congressman’s letter to Mr. Ashcroft also denounced Missouri’s new Photo ID law.  Mr. Clay, Missouri’s senior Democrat in Congress, first warned of Russian attempts to tamper with U.S. elections early last year during hearings before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.

In his letter to Missouri Secretary of State Ashcroft, the Congressman said, in part:

“There is an urgent threat to the voting rights of millions of Missourians and the integrity of our election process, and the new Photo ID law will do nothing to address this danger.”

“While I would never accuse you of deliberately discouraging voter turnout; that is precisely what the new Voter ID law will do. Instead of making it easier to vote, Missouri is making it harder for its most vulnerable citizens.”

“As you are surely aware, actual voter impersonation does not happen in Missouri.  The real threat to democracy and the integrity of our election process is from the widespread and clearly dangerous attempts by foreign adversaries to hack, penetrate and manipulate state and local election authorities. Representatives of the Department of Homeland Security told Congress that they have verified that in 2016, Russia attempted to hack into at least 22 state and local election authorities.”

“I hereby request that you swiftly identify and report back to me what specific steps you will take within your own office and among all election authorities at the county level in Missouri to safeguard voter registration rolls, voter tabulation software and our overall electoral process from this very real danger of foreign sabotage.  Unlike the false charges of voter impersonation, which gave birth to the Photo ID law, this threat is real.”