The state’s governor and top election official both took to morning shows Wednesday to sharply dispute GOP nominee Donald Trump’s claim that the 2016 presidential elections are “rigged,” with both saying that the system of collecting and counting ballots is better than it’s ever been.
“To say that the elections are rigged and all these votes are stolen – that’s like saying we never landed on the moon,” said Ohio Gov. John Kasich on CBS “This Morning. He added that such accusations are “silly,” and “I don’t think it’s good for our democracy.”
Speaking on “Morning Joe” on MSNBC, Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted said the system in America and in Ohio “is more secure than it’s ever been.”
He said he was worried that people will lose faith in democracy because of these accusations.
“Our system is not rigged,” he said. “It works very well. We make it easy to vote and hard to cheat in Ohio and across the country and people should have confidence in it.”
Both were responding to increased allegations from Trump in recent days that the election is “rigged” and that voter fraud is rampant. Trump has made those allegations both on Twitter and at his campaign rallies.
Husted said the state has taken several steps to safeguard elections. Every county board of election is bipartisan, he said, and members of the community work at polls.The public is permitted to and invited to serve as poll observers, as long as they go through the appropriate process. The counting of the votes is public, he said, and the voting machines are not connected to the Internet.
Husted said while voter fraud does exist, the cases are minimal, and prosecuted fully. Most fraudulent votes are never counted, he said, because safeguards help to catch such votes before they’re counted.
“If there are complaints and they’re legitimate, we want to hear about them,” he said, saying his office is prepared to “investigate any claim of voter fraud or voter suppression.”
He said despite his issues with Trump’s accusations about the elections, he’ll vote for Trump because he believes Trump will “appoint people to government who better reflect my views of the world.”
Kasich, meanwhile, reiterated that he will neither vote for Trump nor Democrat Hillary Clinton.
He said he worried that Trump’s allegations will create doubt in people’s minds.
“I worry about the 25 percent of Americans who may say when the election is over that it is stolen,” Kasich said. “That is a big fat joke.”