Host of Fox News Primetime Trey Gowdy ended the show Thursday with a bombshell question: “Who do we trust in our everyday lives?”
The former congressman had suggested during the Fox program that as Americans consider how to make future elections more secure, they should look at how to put trustworthy people in charge of counting votes.
After asking people to imagine a wooden box that holds the votes that will decide the leader of the free world, Gowdy said, “Who do we trust as a people to count the votes and give us the truth?”
“So who do we trust?”
According to Fox, Gowdy went down the list of people who may be considered trustworthy, starting with politicians and then moving to reporters, judges, prosecutors, business leaders, and clergy. “So who do we trust?” he pressed.
“We all know people we would trust to [count votes honestly],” the former congressman answered. “We know people of character and integrity, they would be trusted to do the right thing no matter what. Those people are not famous, they’re just honest, and maybe that’s the answer.”
Gowdy also challenged his audience to think deeply about trust and the people they know who would be honest even if the truth ran counter to what they wanted to happen.
That kind of honesty is called integrity, and while it may be rarer than the dodo bird in Washington, D.C., most of us know people who we are far more certain have the integrity to count votes truthfully than the politicians currently in office.
People over politics
“The American people are better than what we see, hear, and read,” Gowdy said Thursday, as Fox reported.
“Maybe we do trust each other more than we let on,” he added. “There are people we trust. The challenge is getting the people we trust the most to be in positions where trust is needed the most.”
It almost seems too easy: if all the election officials are honest, the election itself will also be honest. In addition, changes at the local level are more difficult to detect and subvert than more wide-ranging operations.
A focus on community-level reform could also only help overall trust in election results. Currently, more than half of Republicans think former President Donald Trump got shafted in the last election, and part of that is because of numerous reports suggesting that local officials acted unfairly or dishonestly.
Fixing the personal integrity problem of election officials would be a good first step toward a more honest and trustworthy system — one that Americans can actually feel confident in.