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  • Writer's pictureAction Idaho

The Problems with Phil McGrane

Phil McGrane's candidacy for Secretary of State has sadly devolved into name-calling and defensiveness. Conservative national groups are worried that his election will undermine Idaho's election integrity. In response, his allies claim that Dorothy Moon is a white supremacist.

Phil McGrane supports "food truck" style roving voting. (Photo Frankie Barnhill - Boise State Public Radio)

McGrane's actions over the past several years raise concerns. Perhaps he would like to address them calmly and rationally. Perhaps he would rather just call his opponents names.

In any event, here are the reasons to be concerned about Phil McGrane being in charge of Idaho's elections.

The Zuckerbucks. McGrane took nearly a half million dollars from Mark Zuckerberg's Center for Technology and Civic Life. Across the country, Zuckerbucks were used for a targeted, private takeover of government election operations by supposedly non-partisan — but really very ideological — non-profits. In Ada County's application, McGrane asked for about $215,000. Ada was given more than double that total. McGrane wants people to believe that Zuckerbucks helped the Left everywhere in the country but in Idaho. In reality, as Action Idaho has documented, the extra money helped Democrat candidates in Ada Country roll up vote totals in absentee ballots. McGrane is either a dupe of these forces or a willing partner.

Supports roving voting. McGrane imagines voting booths will someday resemble food-trucks. Ada County established mobile polling places to make it easier for residents to cast their ballots. "We're going to be 'food truck voting,’" McGrane told the alt-newspaper Boise Weekly. "Picture a food truck, and that's a pretty good idea of what you'll experience at our new mobile voting unit." In fact, McGrane wants to divorce voting from traditional fixed voting precincts. As he says, "In the future, I anticipate that rather than having to go to your home precinct to vote on Election Day, you will be able to stop in at any voting location, much like we do with early voting now, to cast your ballot." Call it roving voting. Roving voting is inherently easy to scam. People will go to multiple voting centers. Technology is easy enough to manipulate for the results. Only the most competent, public-spirited voting workers could stop fraud in roving voting. The film 2,000 Mules shows progressive activists going from one voting station to another casting votes in the 2020 election. It happens everywhere. Imagine how much easier it would be to scam the system with roving voting. Yet McGrane wants to bring roving voting to Idaho.

Helps Kill Idaho's Election Integrity Bill. McGrane helped kill an election integrity bill in 2021. Idaho is at the margins of election integrity legislation; it has neither the traditional audit (34 states have that) nor a risk-limiting audit (15 states). Idaho now conducts a post-election audit only when a recount is required (Idaho Code §34-2313). The proposal would have granted the Idaho Secretary of State power to order an audit two days after a primary or general election. This would have given the Secretary of State the option to be in charge of ensuring election transparency. McGrane testified against it in the House State Affairs Committee. His conclusion is below.

There is nothing conservative about roving voting or farming out election financing to private groups. McGrane's proposals muddy the waters. Conservatives want to have trust in the integrity of the elections. McGrane's response: Dorothy Moon supports rapists. Sad!

See also:

Phil McGrane Dances with Zuckerbucks

Zuckerbucks Buy a Tax Break

DC Blog Sees McGrane as a Threat to Election Integrity

McGrane Ignores Skeptical Voters concerned about Vicious Attack Ads


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