When Vice President Joe Biden sat at a table with President Obama and was briefed by the intelligence agency heads about Russian interference into the 2016 presidential elections and the possibility that one campaign may have been involved, he said “if this is true, it’s treason.” Now, he intends to do something about it.
Free and fair elections are at the heart of liberal democracy. That’s why I’ve joined @AndersFoghr and Michael Chertoff to launch the Transatlantic Commission for Election Integrity—to fight back against Russia and those who would meddle in our elections. https://t.co/t8DI6sESnv
— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) May 12, 2018
Joining a group that includes former Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen, former U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff, and former President of Mexico Felipe Calderon, Biden will become part of an effort to prevent further attacks against democratic elections.
Biden, Rasmussen join: “More than 20 elections in North America and Europe over the next two years will provide ‘’fertile ground’’ for interference like that seen during the U.S.” https://t.co/uLAWTIOuD4
— Maryse Ducheine (@maryseducheine) May 12, 2018
A press release from Alliance of Democracies quoted Rasmussen, who said:
‘With 20 potentially pivotal elections in the democratic world ahead of the next US Presidential election, we cannot afford to stand by while our open and free societies are turned against us by cyber hacks, misinformation campaigns and other strategies that seek to alter the outcome of our elections. This is a transatlantic challenge and it needs transatlantic solutions.’
ICYMI: #PBC's leader @JoeBiden & Sr Dir @mikercarpenter are supporting the new Transatlantic Commission on Election Integrity to better defend against malign influences, especially led by Russia, that seek to undermine liberal democracies and elections. https://t.co/JNEOfXXWf5
— Penn Biden Center (@PennBiden) May 11, 2018
While Biden has expressed regret over the failure of the Obama administration to warn American voters ahead of the elections that the interference had been discovered, he’s also explained the rationale that went into the decision to refrain from making public statements at the time.
‘Can you imagine if the president called a press conference in October, with this fella, Bannon, and company, and said, “Tell you what: Russians are trying to interfere in our elections and we have to do something about it.” What do you think would have happened? Would things have gotten better, or would it further look like we were trying to delegitimize the electoral process, because of our opponent?’
Since that time is long past and November’s mid-term elections are just months away, Biden is now lending his help in the efforts to keep elections free and fair. Trump can continue to refuse to acknowledge that his campaign was helped along by a malicious foreign actor, but that doesn’t mean he can do it without being challenged.
Featured image via Getty/NurPhoto