Can Russia’s Vladimir Putin determine who wins the presidential election in the United States? The truth is, no one in the US government can answer that question. We know that Russian hackers, almost certainly working for the Kremlin, have not only hacked into computer systems belonging to the Democratic Party, they have also hacked into the election system in several states. How many states’ election systems have been breached, and does the Russian government have the ability to change the election results in those states? No one in the United States can give a definite answer to that question.
Donald Trump has repeatedly stated that if he loses the election, it will due to widespread fraud. The opposite may be true. If Donald Trump wins the election, it may be because his buddy Vladimir Putin has ordered his hackers to make sure that the election results appear to favor Donald Trump.
You may have noticed that emails that are harmful to Hillary Clinton continue to be released by sites like WikiLeaks. The United States government says that the emails were obtained by hackers under Russian government control. There are no claims of hackers having made similar break-ins to Republican Party computers.
The Russians have also attempted to hack into voter records in several states including the State of Arizona where I live. Apparently the Russians were able to obtain voter registration information from several of those states My voter information and perhaps yours probably reside on a hard drive in Moscow. That is frightening enough, but the real danger lies in a Russian hack into our election systems during and after voting to change the result. Putin and the Russian media have made no secret of their desire to see Donald Trump elected president. In some states, changing a few percent of the votes from Clinton to Trump would be enough to make Donald Trump appear to have won the election.
The worries about the security of our elections extends well beyond the present Russian attempt to undermine it. If the Russian government can hack into and perhaps influence the United States elections this year, during the next presidential election in four years, many countries may have that ability. Having Vladimir Putin decide who will be the next president of the United States is alarming enough. It is even more frightening to contemplate North Korea and China with that ability.