On Thursday evening, the Texas Secretary of State’s office announced it is conducting a “full and comprehensive forensic audit” of the 2020 general election in four Texas counties.
The full statement read:
Under existing Texas laws, the Secretary of State has the authority to conduct a full and comprehensive forensic audit of any election and has already begun the process in Texas’ two largest Democrat counties and two largest Republican counties—Dallas, Harris, Tarrant, and Collin—for the 2020 election. We anticipate the Legislature will provide funds for this purpose.
It’s not yet clear what the announced forensic audit will entail.
Recently enacted election integrity legislation Senate Bill 1 doesn’t take effect until December 2 so is not the source of the audit authority cited in the statement.
The largely ceremonial Secretary of State position is currently vacant, but election-related matters are handled by the SOS Elections Director Keith Ingram.
Ingram said last month his office is committed to transparency in election processes.
Also on Thursday, former President Donald Trump called on Gov. Greg Abbott to add an audit of the 2020 election to his legislative agenda, but the Secretary of State’s announcement appears to make that unnecessary.