Republican Secretary of State Jon Husted of Ohio has taken extraordinary steps towards ensuring that his state’s election will be secure from tampering, including having the National Guard’s cyber protection unit at the ready.
On Nov. 5, Husted revealed that the National Guard’s cyber protection unit was testing their election systems to detect any breaches of Ohio’s computer system to ensure that no entity can tamper with results, the Associated Press reports.
Guard members are also at the ready to be activated by Republican Gov. John Kasich of Ohio should there be any violence on election day.
The FBI, U.S. Department of Homeland Security and private security experts are also working to ensure that the Ohio election results are not tampered with.
“Ohio’s election system is as secure as it’s ever been,” Husted said.
The Ohio elections chief has taken every precaution to ensure a fair and secure election turnout amid concerns from Democrats that their voters will be intimidated at polling places as well as accusations made by GOP nominee Donald Trump that the election will be rigged against him.
Husted has offered assurances to Ohio voters that every vote will have a paper trail, voting machines will be heavily monitored, and that official election observers will be deployed at polling places.
Husted added that anyone caught harassing voters at the polls will be “arrested for potential prosecution, because voter intimidation will not be tolerated.”
The Democratic Party had pushed for strict restrictions in Ohio that would have forbid unofficial observers from questioning, blocking or photographing voters within 100 feet of a polling place, Reuters reports.
On Nov. 4, a U.S. District Judge agreed to the restrictions. On Nov. 6, however, the restrictions were thrown out by a U.S. District Court of appeals. On Nov. 7, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to reinstate the restrictions, meaning that some Ohio voters may be subject to harassment on election day.
Aggregating the last four state polls released since Nov. 1, Real Clear Politics found that Trump currently leads a four-way race in Ohio by 3.5 percentage points.