Did Russians Hack Into New Jersey’s Election?
Was New Jersey’s online election information hacked by the Russians?
According to a new report by Bloomberg News, 39 states had their voting systems compromised during last year’s election.
Assemblyman Reed Gusciora, the chairman of the Assembly Regulatory Oversight and Reform and Federal Relations Committee, called the report disturbing and deeply concerning.
He said Tuesday it’s important to find out if New Jersey was one of the states that was hacked. He is calling on Gov. Chris Christie to review the situation “and assure the public the Russians did not tap into any of our computer electronic voting machines or our databases.”
Gusciora said given the fact that the FBI and the CIA has already determined that the Russians did compromise the election process last year, “we need to see on the state level whether New Jersey was affected and how we can prevent any tampering in the future.”
The report finds Russia’s meddling in the American electoral system last November was far more widespread than has been publicly revealed, and there were incursions into voter databases and software systems.
The report indicates information was provided by three people with direct knowledge of the U.S. investigation into the matter.
In response to Gusciora’s comments, Brian Murray, a spokesman for Christie, said “Homeland Security and the Division of Elections have been asked this question repeatedly and have said there is nothing to indicate there’s been any type of breach or interference.”
New Jersey has been solidly blue in presidential elections since 1988. In November, Democrat Hillary Clinton got a half million more votes than Donald Trump.
Gusciora wants to make sure there could be no interference of any kind from a foreign government in the future during any election.
“At the end of the day the voters should be confident that that vote that was registered goes to the right candidate and indeed counts,” he said.
He said as the most densely populated state in the nation sandwiched between New York and Philadelphia, it would make sense the Russians would be interested in trying to tap into the New Jersey election system.
“We need assurances that any voting system that we do have cannot be tampered or compromised and we want to make sure everyone who voted, their voting was counted properly.”
Gusciora stressed the most egregious violation “would be their ability potentially to switch votes: If one person voted for candidate A and they were able to switch it to candidate B. But they could do other mischief, like delete voter registration rolls so when a voter shows up at the polls they’ll have to go through a process to vote by provisional ballot.”