February 18, 2020 Blog, Press Release

Top Election Official Says “Foreign Actors,” Including Russia, Attempt to Access Election System Often in Mitch McConnell’s Home State

Speaking in front of a Kentucky state legislative committee, Kentucky’s top election official testified that Russia, North Korea and others were attempting to access election systems in the Senate Majority Leader’s home state “almost every day.

Kentucky Board of Elections Executive Director Jared Dearing also said these actors, who had “bad intentions” were targeting as far down ballot as the county clerk..

The stunning revelation comes just six days after Mitch McConnell once again blocked legislation that would help protect state and local election systems, would require candidates to notify the FBI if they are offered help from foreign actors, and other important safeguards.

“It’s extremely alarming to hear that Russia and other foreign actors are already scoping out Kentucky’s election systems in order to potentially interfere in our 2020 elections. It is unacceptable that Mitch continues to stand in the way of important bipartisan legislation intended to crack down on foreign interference in our elections. Perhaps Mitch is just trying to keep all his options open for his re-election this year, but Kentucky deserves better.

“With this new information, it’s clear we need stronger laws cracking down on foreign election interference. Failure to do so is basically admitting he plans to use foreign interference as a back-up plan for his re-election,” Kentucky Democratic Party Chair Ben Self said.