Jul 18, 2018

Report: Few states are updating election security

Photo: Darren McCollester/Getty Images

Few states have plans for improving election security before November’s midterms elections, according to Politico’s Eric Geller, who surveyed all 50 states on how they plan to use the $380 million allocated by Congress this year to safeguard their elections.

Why it matters: Russia still poses a threat to U.S. election infrastructure, including state election boards, according to U.S. intelligence community assessments.

The big picture: The $380 million Congress has allocated is not enough to update all the voting systems. It's not doled out based on need, but based on population from the 2010 Census.

By the numbers:

  • 13 states said they intend to use their tranche of the $380 million to buy new voting machines, per Geller, and at least 22 said they don’t have plans to replace their machines before the elections.
  • That includes each of the five states that use voting machines that don’t produce any paper record of how people cast their ballots on electronic machines.
  • Almost none of the states shared detailed plans of how they plan to upgrade their elections' security, per Geller.

Where it stands: All 55 eligible states and territories have requested funds, according to the Election Assistance Commission, which is tasked with helping states secure elections. The EAC said it is planning to release the states’ budgets and plans next month.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Acting Navy head apologizes for calling fired captain "stupid"

Acting Secretary of the Navy Thomas Modly testifies on Capitol Hill in December. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

Acting Navy Secretary Thomas Modly apologized Monday for calling Capt. Brett Crozier, the ousted commander of the USS Theodore Roosevelt, "too naïve or too stupid" over his letter pleading for help following a coronavirus outbreak onboard.

The big picture: His apology came after President Trump told a news briefing earlier Monday he would "get involved" following a leak of Modly's remarks to the ship's crew on Crozier, who has since been diagnosed with coronavirus, which were obtained by CNN.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 3 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 9:30 p.m. ET: 1,346,299 — Total deaths: 74,679 — Total recoveries: 276,636Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 9:30 p.m. ET: 367,507— Total deaths: 10,908 — Total recoveries: 19,598Map.
  3. 2020 update: Wisconsin Supreme Court blocks governor's attempt to delay in-person primary voting delayed until June.
  4. States latest: West Coast states send ventilators to New York and other states with more immediate need — Data suggest coronavirus curve may be flattening in New York, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said.
  5. World update: U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson moved to intensive care as coronavirus symptoms worsen.
  6. Stocks latest: The S&P 500 closed up 7% on Monday, while the Dow rose more than 1,500 points.
  7. What should I do? Pets, moving and personal health. Answers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingQ&A: Minimizing your coronavirus risk.
  8. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it.

Subscribe to Mike Allen's Axios AM to follow our coronavirus coverage each morning from your inbox.

Former Vatican treasurer George Pell's sexual abuse convictions overturned

Cardinal George Pell at the County Court in Melbourne, Australia, in 2019. Photo: Michael Dodge/Getty Images

George Pell, the former Vatican treasurer, has won his appeal and had his child sexual abuse convictions overturned by Australia's High Court.

Why it matters: The cardinal became last year the highest-ranking Catholic Church official to go to trial and be convicted for sex abuse. But the High Court's ruling means he can be immediately released from prison, where he was serving a six-year sentence.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 1 hour ago - World