Apr 20, 2022 - Politics

Minnesota Secretary of State candidate falsely claims office "counts the votes"

Illustration of binoculars with “I Voted Today” stickers in the lenses.

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

A leading GOP candidate for Minnesota Secretary of State is fundraising off of false claims about the role the office plays in elections.

What she's saying: In an email carrying the subject line "Don't let Socialist money count the votes," Republican Kim Crockett urged supporters to pitch in to her bid against DFL incumbent Steve Simon to help "[restore] the security of our elections."

  • "Why do we need help? Because the SoS office COUNTS the votes," the email reads.

Reality check: The Minnesota Secretary of State's Office does not "count" ballots or tabulate the results.

  • That process happens at the county level. Local election officials then report the results to the Secretary of State for publication and eventual certification.

Why it matters: False claims about election integrity threaten to further undermine trust in democracy.

The response: Crockett's campaign didn't respond to an email and phone call seeking comment on the email.

The bottom line: Crockett's pitch comes as campaigns across the country gear up for hotly contested battles over election administrator posts. Record cash is flowing into these races.

  • Recent campaign filings show Simon maintaining a roughly $500,000 cash advantage over Crockett and another GOP candidate.

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