Voting Machine Faults Spark Fears of Chaos in Shut-Fought Midterm Elections

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Voting Machine Faults Spark Fears of Chaos in Shut-Fought Midterm Elections

Voting machine errors reported in Texas and Georgia have raised considerations that the outcomes of two of the U.S.’s most tightly fought midterm elections might be thrown into chaos.

Politico reported Monday that civil rights teams and voters in each states have filed complaints that paperless voting machines have deleted votes for Democratic candidates or flipped them to Republican votes.

“This machine drawback is actually threatening to name into query the complete election in Texas,” Beth Stevens, voting rights authorized director for the Texas Civil Rights Challenge informed the outlet.

Voting Machine Faults Spark Fears of Chaos in Close-Fought Midterm Elections Michael Santifer casts his vote by way of an digital voting machine on November 4, 2008 in Fort Value, Texas. Getty Pictures

However its not the simply the risk posed by hackers that is obtained specialists and voting rights teams involved. 

Georgia is one in every of 5 U.S. states that use voting machines with none auditable paper trails, whereas Texas is among the eight different states that use paperless voting machines in some however not all counties. 

Specialists have lengthy warned that such machines are insecure and produce election outcomes that may’t be audited—as there isn’t a solution to show if a vote solid was not the vote meant.

In October, the Texas secretary of state’s workplace mentioned that some voters had reported Hart eSlate machines—utilized in about 30 % of Texas counties—had flipped their straight-ticket picks to the opposite get together.

Sam Taylor, spokesman for the workplace of Secretary of State Rolando Pablos, denied that machines had been malfunctioning, telling the Related Press the “issues being reported are a results of person error.”

Republican Senator Ted Cruz is locked in a decent race with Democratic nominee Beto O’Rourke within the state, with polls final week exhibiting his slender lead over his rival diminishing.

The Mercury News reviews {that a} small variety of comparable complaints have emerged in Georgia, the place Republican gubernatorial candidate Brian Kemp has resisted calls to switch the state’s Diebold AccuVote TS voting machines, and rejected Division of Homeland Safety help to safe voting machines within the wake of the 2016 election.

In November, a lawsuit which sought to compel the state to switch its voting machines fell brief, with Choose Amy Tratenberg of the U.S. District Courtroom for Georgia ruling that there was not sufficient time to introduce a paper poll system earlier than the midterms, however agreeing with the plaintiffs that the machines may wind up altering poll counts.

Although unattainable to know what number of votes might be affected by the voting machine faults, warnings of issues with the machines are longstanding.

In 2016 the Brennan Middle for Justice warned that machines had been flipping votes due to their reliance on outdated software program. 

“With democracy at stake, Congress ought to present strong assist to the federal Electoral Help Fee so it could possibly provide the required assets for states and localities to have voting techniques which are correct, environment friendly, and inexpensive,” the middle wrote in a report, renewing requires machines to get replaced. 

Source from newsweek

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