Chairman Dush, Senate State Government Committee Vote to Confirm Al Schmidt as Secretary of the Commonwealth

Advances Bill to Improve Commonwealth’s Ability to Identify, Remove Ineligible Voters

HARRISBURG – Fulfilling the constitutional responsibility of fully vetting executive branch nominees, today, Chairman Cris Dush (R-25) and members of the PA Senate State Government Committee voted by a near unanimous, bipartisan margin of 10-1 to confirm Al Schmidt as Secretary of the Commonwealth.

“Today’s voting meeting is about securing future elections, not disputing the past,” said Chairman Dush.  “Mr. Secretary, at the conclusion of the last hearing, you asked this committee to consider your own credentials and trustworthiness when voting, rather than hold you accountable for the actions of prior administrations. That’s a fair request. However, I want to point out that in this position you will inherit all the problems of the past, and under your watch will be assuming accountability and responsibility to try and fix them.”

Dush, a prominent voice for reforming and modernizing Pennsylvania’s election code by restoring integrity, trust and transparency, again received affirmative answers from Schmidt on needed legislation, he has introduced or supported in the Senate, such as bolstering the security of mail-in ballots and establishing regular inspections for PA voting machines.

Schmidt’s confirmation now goes to the full Senate for consideration.  The full confirmation voting meeting can be viewed here.

Later in the day, Dush called up Senate Bill 125 for consideration, which would improve the Secretary of the Commonwealth’s ability to work with other states to identify ineligible voters and refer them for removal at the county level.

Advanced to the full Senate by a vote of 7-4, Dush’s legislation seeks to address concerns, specifically expressed by Schmidt during his first confirmation hearing, that counties are not able to make effective use of information identifying ineligible voters.

“This legislation will allow the Commonwealth to tap into additional resources such as the Social Security Administration death database and the national change of address database to effectively identify voters who may be ineligible to vote in state elections,” said Dush. “Pennsylvania is more than capable of cleaning its own voter rolls without sharing data with third party groups. Senate Bill 125 will enable us to do just that.” 

CONTACT:  Ty McCauslin, Communications Director at 717-787-7084 or

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