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Washington's Kim Wyman accepts election security job under Biden administration

caption: Washington Secretary of State Kim Wyman, December 2017.
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Washington Secretary of State Kim Wyman, December 2017.

Washington Secretary of State Kim Wyman has accepted a leadership position under the Biden Administration to oversee election security at the federal level.

CNN first reported that the Biden administration was expected to appoint Wyman, 59, to a leadership role involving election security. On Tuesday morning, Washington's Secretary of State office confirmed the news that she will accept a job as "Senior Election Security Lead for the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), the nation's lead for cyber, infrastructure, and election security."

In her new federal role, Wyman will be a liaison to the states on election security.

“When I began working in elections 28 years ago, I resolved to work toward a system where every eligible person in our state had the opportunity to register, vote, and have their ballot counted fairly and accurately. In the past six years, my focus expanded to ensure our elections remained safe from foreign adversaries. During my tenure as a state and county elections administrator, Washington expanded vote-by-mail elections statewide, installed nearly 500 ballot drop boxes, implemented same-day and automatic voter registration, enabled 16- and 17-year-olds to pre-register to vote, and more. This growth in access was coupled with partnerships that improved election security, from creating the VoteWA system that connects election officials in real-time to ensure election accountability, to establishing the first-of-its-kind Elections Security Operations Center. We also integrated statewide cybersecurity training, testing, and tabletop exercise programs in partnership with the Department of Homeland Security, CISA, the FBI, and the Washington National Guard. All of these enhancements, in addition to the tireless work from county election officials, have helped our elections gain national renown," Wyman said in a statement.

Read Wyman's full statement here.

Wyman's resignation will take effect November 19. Governor Jay Inslee will then appoint someone to step into the secretary of state role until the next general election in November 2022.

Wyman has been Washington's secretary of state since 2013. She was elected to a third term last November. She is the only Republican to hold a statewide position on the West Coast, the Associated Press reports.

RELATED: Washington's Republican Secretary of State may quit the GOP

From 2018 to 2020 Matt Masterson led election security efforts at the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency within the Department of Homeland Security. Today he’s a non-resident fellow at Stanford University. In an interview with Northwest News Network, Masterson praised Secretary Kim Wyman as his potential successor in that role.

“There is not a better person out there to take over and lead the election security team toward 2022 and 2024.”

Masterson cited Wyman’s experience with state and local elections and her work with federal officials leading up to the 2020 election. As a Republican secretary of state, Wyman has defended the integrity of elections – and especially vote-by-mail – against false allegations of widespread fraud by former President Trump and his supporters.

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