With the fall general election just over a month away, it bears repeating New Mexico elections are among the most fraud-proof in the nation. The Secretary of State’s Office spells out all the security measures on its website and, as we’ve noted previously, the county clerks who carry out elections in New Mexico — a mix of Republicans and Democrats — agree the system is robust, accurate and secure. New Mexico conducts pre-election certification of all voting systems/machines, as well as mandatory post-election audits after every election to double-check all counts were correct. We also use 100% paper ballots to ensure there are physical ballots that can be recounted/examined as needed.
And yet, former President Donald Trump’s persistent claim — with no evidence to back it up — that he was the rightful winner of the 2020 election continues to undermine confidence in electoral processes everywhere.
Legislative candidates who responded to a Journal questionnaire were asked to respond “yes” or “no” to “Do you believe former President Donald Trump’s claim that he was the legitimate winner of the 2020 presidential election?”
Some left the question blank. Others tried to qualify their answers. It’s not hard to figure out what’s going on here. Whether or not candidates accept that Trump lost, they don’t want to alienate his supporters. It’s a frustrating feedback loop: Candidates feed voter distrust of the system, then use that distrust to claim elections need to be more secure. We should hope any candidate is educated on the safeguards and can express specific concerns beyond a “gut feeling” — especially here where, by law, the public can watch officials certify accuracy of voting machines before an election.
We encourage voters to get informed and involved. Candidate Q&As, profiles, endorsements and more will be updated in the Journal’s Election Guide at ABQJournal.com.
This editorial first appeared in the Albuquerque Journal. It was written by members of the editorial board and is unsigned as it represents the opinion of the newspaper rather than the writers.