Post-recount federal commission in disarray

AP file photo

A federal commission created to restore confidence in elections in the aftermath of the disputed 2000 presidential race has no commissioners, an executive director job that’s been vacant since last year and has lacked a quorum to conduct business for almost two years, Roll Call reports.

The Election Assistance Commission was created 10 years ago as part of a wider effort to “support state-level election procedures in the aftermath of the contested 2000 presidential election,” Roll Callreported.

“It’s a national embarrassment that this agency, whose only mission is to provide information, doesn’t have a single commissioner,” Rick Hasen, an election law expert at the University of California, Irvine, told Roll Call.

The EAC was given more than $3 billion to distribute to the states in an attempt to improve election administration. Its other responsibilities include developing voluntary voting-system guidelines and acting as a repository for “effective election processes,” Roll Call reported.

A spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., accused Republicans of subverting the commission, saying, “during a close election year, it is regrettable that Republicans have worked to cripple the EAC.”

Republicans passed a bill last year that would have eliminated the commission, but Reid declared it dead in the Senate.

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