Watch CBS News

Pennsylvania Gov. Josh Shapiro creates election security task force

Shapiro creates election security task force in Pennsylvania
Shapiro creates election security task force in Pennsylvania 02:38

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro is creating a task force dedicated to detecting and dealing with election threats. 

Shapiro is meeting with law enforcement agencies, civil defense officials and election administrators to combat threats with the looming presidential election.

The Election Threats Task Force's job is to make sure 2024 doesn't become 2020, a contentious vote where threats and a lack of support caused poll workers and election officials to leave their jobs. Secretary of State Al Schmidt will steer the task force.

"I was thrilled to see the governor's task force come to be and of course under the leadership of Pennsylvania Secretary of State Al Schmidt. He's the perfect person for that job. Having been targeted himself, he really understands what we are asking our election officials to do," said Lauren Cristella, CEO of the Committee of Seventy. 

Cristella believes the task force will help ease the election process this year. The task force's mission is to come up with strategies to tackle voter intimidation, misinformation and general threats to the election process. 

"People have questions, and some of that comes from knowing how that works. So certainly, the Committee of Seventy is preparing videos explaining what happens after you use one of those drop boxes or put your mail-in ballot in the mail, then what? It's a black box for a lot of people," Cristella said. 

The governor said in a statement, "We take our responsibility as stewards of our Democracy seriously.'

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Pennsylvania State Police, Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency and Pennsylvania National Guard are all part of the task force.

"There are no silos," Cristella said. "They are pulling together officials from across the government ... to come together to have a comprehensive plan on what to do if threats arise."

The governor also created a fact-checking webpage.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.