As people begin to vote in the August primary, Republican-led efforts are underway statewide to recruit people to watch drop boxes — a continued effect of Donald Trump’s “Big Lie.” Washington State Democratic Party Chair Tina Podlodowski issued the following statement Tuesday calling for the Washington State Republican Party to disavow any drop-box surveillance efforts by its local party organizations and other far-right groups:

“Washington’s election system is not only fair and accessible, but also secure. This is textbook voter intimidation, and it needs to be called out as such by the Washington State Republican Party, especially when its own local party organization is guilty of placing signs outside drop boxes warning the area is under surveillance to scare people — and it is scary. But drop boxes remain a safe place to deposit a completed ballot, that hasn’t changed.

“The ‘Big Lie’ is just that, a big lie, and Republicans are actively working to undermine democracy nationwide and cast doubt on any results they find unfavorable under the guise of election ‘integrity.’ Time and again, they fail to provide any real proof of fraud. It needs to end.

“The Washington State Republican Party must rebuke any and all drop-box surveillance efforts. Democracy only thrives when people vote, and Democrats will not allow voter suppression or intimidation tactics to stand — it’s time the GOP joined us in that endeavor.”

The Washington State Democratic Party’s Voter Protection hotline is live at 206-309-VOTE (8683), and ready to assist anyone with questions. People also are encouraged to contact their county auditor or the Secretary of State’s office to address any voting concerns.