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WASHINGTON — Days before the first votes of the 2020 presidential election… secretaries of state from around the country convened in Washington for their annual conference to discuss one of their biggest concerns.

After Russian interference in the 2016 election… polls from the Associated Press, NPR, PBS, and others… show many Americans are concerned about vote security…

But Arkansas Secretary of State John Thurston says he and his counterparts are optimistic.

“We believe that this will probably be the most secure elections that we’ve ever had.”

Thurston says the confidence comes from new voting equipment in his… and many other… states.

But other worries remain… like how vulnerable online voter registration rolls could be to hackers.

“If anything does come up, we have that communication chain in place so we can address anything quickly.”

Republicans and Democrats in Congress remain divided over what should be done to protect the country’s elections.

“As far as the states go, I think we really appreciate it when the federal government stays out of a lot of how we run elections.”

But secretaries of state do welcome federal funding.

Congress appropriated hundreds of millions of dollars last month for election security efforts.

While states figure out how to match the funds and what to spend them on…

Thurston says with the ballot secure… it’s up to the voters.

“Come out to vote. It’s your right. It’s your duty.”