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National Issues

All Four Major E-Voting Machines Flip Votes in Early Voting PDF  | Print |  Email
By Warren Stewart, VoteTrustUSA   
November 05, 2006

Early voting in five states showed that voters' choice are being flipped to the opposite candidate on all four major e-voting machines — Diebold TSx, Sequoia Edge, ES&S iVotronic, and Hart InterCivic eSlate.


Three counties in Texas report vote-flipping on the Diebold and ES&S machines. Three counties in Florida report vote-flipping on the ES&S and Sequoia machines. One county in Illinois, on the Sequioa Edge, and one county in Arkansas, on the ES&S iVotronic.
In some cases, when the voter selects one candidate, the machine shows an opponent is selected instead.


A South Florida voter reports:

"When I touched the one [button] for the Democratic vote, that button disappeared and the vote went to the Republican."
And from Illinois:
"Corrine Stoker pushed the button for one candidate, but her voting machine showed she voted for the opponent."
In other cases, the votes are reported wrong on the review screen. From Texas:
"El Paso County Attorney José Rodríguez said 16 people complained Friday that a vote cast on their touch-screen ballot was the wrong vote when they reviewed their ballots."
And from Florida:
"He touched the screen for gubernatorial candidate Jim Davis, a Democrat, but the review screen repeatedly registered the Republican, Charlie Crist."

Douglas Jones, a computer scientist at the University of Iowa, says he's heard similar stories from voters in several states, including one computer scientist in South Carolina who said that his attempts to vote for one candidate on the iVotronic were repeatedly changed to an opposing candidate by the time he got to the voter verification screen."


Officials normally explain the vote-flipping as calibration errors — touches on the screen are simply registering incorrectly They point to the 15-step process that poll workers can do to re-calibrate the screen.


But vote-flipping on the eSlate can't be explained as a calibration error, since the eSlate doesn't have a touch screen. Voters use physical dials and buttons to move the highlight on the screen and make their selections.

A professor at Murray State University in Murray, Kentucky (Calloway County) used the eSlate in early voting and reports that his straight-party votes were switched to the opposite party in contested races:

"I tried to vote a straight ticket, but when I checked the final page, which summarizes one's vote, I noticed that I had voted for some of the candidates of the other party. I went to the first screen again and ticked the straight ticket box for the Democratic party, and, again, I found that for all of the contested races the Republican boxes were ticked.
"I had to go through individually to tick the Democratic boxes. I'm not a Democrat, and I don't suspect vast right-wing some conspiracy. I'm just telling those of you who will be voting soon to check the summarizing page carefully, regardless of your voting preferences."
UPDATE Now the ES&S iVotronics in Sarasota County Florida aren't flipping, just deleting votes from the summary screen. Several people from different polling places report that their votes for Jennings (Dem candidate for 13 Cong Dist) don't appear on the review screen. They have to go back and vote for her again. 
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