Go to Original
Pennsylvania Sued Over Electronic Voting Machines
By Patrick Walters
The Associated Press
Tuesday 15 August 2006
Philadelphia - Voter advocates filed a lawsuit Tuesday seeking to stop Pennsylvania
counties from using "paperless" electronic voting machines, saying
that such systems leave no paper record that could be used in the event of a
recount, audit or other problem.
The suit asks the state's Commonwealth Court to decertify machines used in
58 of Pennsylvania's 67 counties. The other counties use optical scanning systems,
in which voters fill in bubbles on paper forms that are counted in scanning
machines; the plaintiffs say such systems should be in use statewide.
"Whatever the initial promise may have been for electronic voting, we
now know ... that they are simply not ready for prime time," said Lowell
Finley, an attorney with the nonprofit group Voter Action, which has been involved
in similar suits nationwide.
The lawsuit alleges that certifying paperless electronic voting machines violates
the state's election code and constitution.
A similar lawsuit helped force New Mexico to use optical scan ballots earlier
this year, Finley said. Other suits involving paper-based voting systems have
been filed in Arizona, Colorado and California.
State officials say the voting machines in use have been carefully scrutinized,
and that new electronic voting machines performed well for the most part in
the May primary. Residents in all but one county cast ballots using either electronic
touch-screens or optical-scan systems for the first time.
The systems have been certified and can reconstruct votes based on computer
images, said Leslie Amoros, a spokeswoman for the Department of State.
The plaintiffs, however, claim votes have been lost several times because of
computer malfunctions, including in Allegheny and Centre counties during the
May primary and in Berks County in May 2005. Other problems could be going undetected,
Jump to today's Truthout Features:
(In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. t r u t h o u t has no affiliation whatsoever with the originator of this article nor is t r u t h o u t endorsed or sponsored by the originator.)
"Go to Original" links are provided as a convenience to our readers and allow for verification of authenticity. However, as originating pages are often updated by their originating host sites, the versions posted on TO may not match the versions our readers view when clicking the "Go to Original" links.