A senior Department of Homeland Security official told Fox News former Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency Director Chris Krebs was "out of his lane" when speaking about voter fraud and the integrity of the election in CISA statements and on the agency's "rumor control" website.
President Trump fired Krebs in a tweet Tuesday, saying a CISA statement released last week calling the 2020 election "the most secure in history" was "highly inaccurate."
The firing has drawn attacks from Trump critics like House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Md., who said, "It is alarming and yet unsurprising that President Trump fired Director Krebs after he affirmed that there was no fraud in the 2020 election – a truth that President Trump refuses to accept."
The CISA statement asserted that "there is no evidence that any voting system deleted or lost votes, changed votes, or was in any way compromised."
While CISA was successful in preventing election interference via a cyberattack on election infrastructure during the 2020 election, the DHS official told Fox News that election fraud is different than election interference, and outside the scope of CISA’s authorities.
“CISA does not have firsthand information on allegations of voting fraud or investigate such claims, responsibility for which lies with State and local authorities and the Department of Justice,” according to the DHS official, “Allegations of voter fraud are being adjudicated through the court system.”
The DHS official called the phrase “or was in any way compromised” too broad.
“CISA is responsible for infrastructure and cybersecurity, not the voting system, which would include mail-in ballots and all kinds of other matters which are clearly outside of their equity,” said the DHS official.
There are also some entries on CISA’s Rumor Control web page which seem specifically aimed at instances of voter fraud allegations, which are outside of CISA’s responsibilities, according to the DHS official.
For example, CISA published the following fact-check: "Reality: In some circumstances, elections officials are permitted to 'duplicate' or otherwise further mark cast ballots to ensure they can be properly counted."
"Rumor: Witnessing election officials marking ballots means that fraudulent voting is taking place," the fact-check page continues.
Krebs seemed to respond to the criticism in a tweet.
"Rumor Control: I never claimed there wasn’t fraud in the election, [because] that’s not CISA’s job - it’s a law enforcement matter," Krebs wrote on Twitter on Wednesday. "We did provide info on measures elec officials use to prevent and detect dead voters, [though]. Don’t buy it. And think 2x before sharing."
Fox News' inquiry to Krebs was not returned at the time of publication.