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Questions for county clerk-recorder candidates 

I read with interest a recent article in New Times regarding the office of county clerk-recorder ("Creator of SLO County redistricting map questioned local election's 'validity,' sought ballot and voter records," April 7).

Richard Patten—whose redistricting map earned the support of a majority of the SLO County Board of Supervisors last year—is alleging local election fraud in the 2021 recall election against Gov. Gavin Newsom.

According to the article, Patten lamented, without providing evidence, that "blatant examples of election infractions" were found in SLO County, which put the recall election's "validity in question."

Second District Supervisor Bruce Gibson was quoted as saying, "Patten seems to be pretty clearly pushing the Big Lie trying to undermine confidence in our election process."

Fourth District Supervisor Lynn Compton had a more nuanced approach, one that perhaps supports the Big Lie: "Do I think there are issues out there? Yeah, I do," she said. "There are people that are concerned about it. We have to listen to all concerns."

Here are my questions to candidates for county clerk-recorder:

1. How should we address concerns that there was local election fraud in the 2021 recall election against Newsom?

2. How should we address allegations that there was massive election fraud in the 2020 presidential election and that Donald Trump actually won that election?

3. Do you believe that vote-by-mail is a secure way to conduct elections?

I look forward to your considered response.

Malcolm McEwen

Morro Bay

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