Governor Stitt Establishes Task Force on Campaign Finance and Election Threats, Despite Existing Confidence in Oklahoma’s Election Integrity

KOKH - November 6, 2023 3:06 am

Governor Stitt announced he’s putting together a task force on campaign finance and election threats. He’s calling on lawmakers to pass new legislation to make sure our process isn’t tainted by what he calls “government investment and interference.”

The Governor calls Oklahoma a national leader in election integrity, but adds we may need additional clarity or legal safeguards to ensure our elections are free and equal.

But the person in charge of making sure our elections run to those standards, Paul Ziriax, has consistently said there aren’t issues.

“The notion that there is just widespread fraud of widespread problems that’s being hid from the public, that’s a bunch of bunk,” Ziriax said.

He devotes his entire career to making sure your vote counts, correctly.

“As Oklahoma’s Chief Election Official, there is not any individual in this entire state who is more committed to secure elections and to election integrity than me,” Ziriax said.

The accuracy of Oklahoma’s election system has been proven by multiple audits of multiple different races.

“They typically come out right on the money, or really really close, and the reason is those voting devices are exceptionally accurate,” Ziriax said.

Ziriax and a group of other Governor, House Speaker and Senate President Pro Tem appointees, along with a few county election board members are requested to be on the new task force.

“The Task Force represents an opportunity to show Oklahomans once again how safe and secure our elections are,” Ziriax said.

The Governor’s Executive Order lists a few areas to investigate, including identifying what makes Oklahoma a national leader in election security, looking for campaign finance loopholes or government interference in state elections, and designing a process to detect the distribution of propaganda and disinformation.

But Ziriax has some goals of his own.

“I think one of the things I want to do is make sure we educate the task force members, and as a biproduct of that the general public about how elections really work in Oklahoma, about the numerous safeguards we have in place to protect our elections, and really just try to dispel some of the rumors and false information about elections,” Ziriax said.

The Executive Order calls for a report on the Task Force’s finding on or before January 15th.

 

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