Each election cycle, local election officials bring on significant numbers of new employees to help carry out the elections. But given the ongoing influence of the Big Lie and the spread of election denialism, some poll workers could pose a risk to free and fair elections in the US. Recent partisan trainings have gone so far as to encourage poll workers to break local election rules and to challenge votes, even when there isn’t truly evidence to justify doing so, as they recruit workers driven by their belief in conspiracies and disinformation.  

With the 2022 midterms fast approaching, David Levine, elections integrity fellow at the German Marshall Fund’s Alliance for Securing Democracy and a former election official, is out with a new report detailing how election officials can prevent, detect, and recover from potential “rogue poll worker” threats.

“State and local election officials across the country are seeing an influx in partisans who want to become poll workers because they believe in fraud that doesn’t exist. Even if these rogue poll workers are unable alter the outcome of an election, they can cast doubt on its legitimacy, including by tampering with voting equipment or providing incorrect information to voters,” David says. “Election officials should take additional steps to vet potential poll workers and create additional safeguards to ensure the integrity of future elections—starting with the midterms this November, if possible. I explain how in my new report.”

Read How to Vet Poll Workers to Mitigate Future Election Subversion Efforts here: https://securingdemocracy.gmfus.org/vetting-poll-workers/ 

The views expressed in GMF publications and commentary are the views of the author alone.