Unilaterally, Homeland Security takes jurisdiction over elections as “critical infrastructure.”
Giving any bureaucracy unilateral authority to expand the scope of its power is unwise, but doing so for Homeland Security takes a special level of stupidity.
Jeh Johnson suggested the power grab a few months ago.
It was a bad idea then and it is a bad idea now… except it is no longer merely an idea.
The Associated Press reports,
A last-minute decision by the Obama administration to designate election systems as critical infrastructure drew intense criticism from state and federal elections organizations on Monday.
U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson announced the move Friday with 30 minutes’ notice to the National Association of Secretaries of State and U.S. Election Assistance Commission, an independent bipartisan federal agency that develops voluntary voting guidelines and certifies voting systems.
Officials at both agencies are criticizing the department for what they said was a failure to work with state officials to fully answer their questions about the designation before making the change.
“We’re having trouble understanding exactly what they’re going to do, that we’re not already doing,” Connecticut Secretary of State Denise W. Merrill, who heads the national secretaries association, told The Associated Press. “States were already doing much of this (security work) themselves using very different products.”
Discussions between Homeland Security Department officials and the states about whether to designate elections systems as critical infrastructure began in August after hackers targeted the voter registration systems of ultimately more than 20 states in the months prior to the election.
A “last-minute decision”? Why the rush? Obviously, it is being done now—with merely 30 minutes’ notice given to involved agencies—in order to try to force it on the Trump Administration. I suppose the Democrats are hoping that Donald Trump won’t remember to cancel it.
So, that’s the government we live under: one that can claim authority over the states without asking their opinion or needing their consent. Supposedly Congress has the power to pass new laws, but Barack Obama can give his personal domestic army power over the Federal election on his own authority. We are supposed to be a Federation of states, but Homeland Security takes over the duties of all fifty states without needing their consent.
Christy McCormick, a commissioner for the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, said the decision potentially gives significant authority to numerous federal agencies. “We don’t know how this will work. This has not been thought out (and) the scope of what they’re speaking about is huge,” she said.
The fact that someone could impose something so slipshod on the nation tells you all you need to know about our “Constitutional republic” and “the rule of law.” They are both mostly illusions fed to the American people to give them a false sense of security.
The media is constantly claiming that Donald Trump must be limited by Congress and the Constitution. But the journalists and talking heads have no problem with Obama fastening Homeland Security onto the states’ election systems. They don’t want any limits on Obama.