Last week, on Thursday, Secretary of State of Alabama John Merrill visited the St. Clair County Republicans at the St. Clair County Courthouse to discuss the election, the integrity of elections, and where Republicans go from here.
While Republicans are still stinging over the Presidential election results, Merrill focused on the positives, specifically where Alabama was concerned. According to Merrill, Alabama was first in the country when it came to “election integrity.” In other words, Alabama had the fewest percentage of voter fraud cases, according to the Secretary of State.
“The registrars in this state have done a great job,” Merrill said. “I think we need to remind ourselves that a successful election lies in the voter roles.”
A member of the National Committee on Election Integrity, Merrill went over five core values that go into impacting election integrity:
Election oversight should be at the state level without federal government interference.
Adhering to a standard on voter registration that ensures that “only people of your state are voting.”
Requiring voter ID: “The gold standard of voting is still in-person voting, on election day,” said Merrill, and voters should be required to provide identification.
If states allow for voting by mail, “We need to make sure there is an effective and efficient way there is to do so.”
Votes get counted in a timely fashion and follow state law. “And they don’t make up the laws as they go, which is what we saw in the 2020 cycle,” he said.
When asked about whether or not there was fraud in the 2020 Presidential election, Merrill said it was clear that something went down, and it should be obvious to everyone.
He also came out against new voter registration practices such as same-day voter registration, where you vote the same day you register.
However, Merrill stopped short of supporting claims that extremely dubious acts, such as sending votes overseas to other countries, took place. He said there is no evidence to support those extreme voter fraud claims, and that people are going to get in trouble for those allegations.
One person “in trouble for those allegations,” is lawyer Sidney Powell who appeared last year on conservative media outlets on behalf of then-President Donald Trump. Powell pushed election fraud conspiracy theories that pointed the finger at election infrastructure company Dominion Voting Systems. Dominion filed a $1.3 billion defamation lawsuit against Powell in federal court in January.
In a Monday court filing, Powell’s attorneys state she was only sharing her “opinion” and ‘no reasonable person” would believe her claims of voter fraud against Dominion.
In December 2020, former U.S. Attorney General William Barr declared the U.S. Justice Department had uncovered no evidence of widespread voter fraud that could change the outcome of the 2020 election.
Merrill concluded the meeting praising the people of the state of Alabama for their resiliency, even in times such as now. He took specific time to praise people in probate offices as well as praising District Attorney Lyle Harmon for his hard work in the community.