Voting is a precious commodity in a democracy, but with all the stories of Russian interference in our elections, just how safe is your vote?
If you are living and voting in Georgia, the answer is not very. The Peach State is one of only five still utilizing outdated, unverified Diebold voting machines. The following video illustrates the ease in which these machines are altered with a simple virus placed on a memory card that goes undetected in the system. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HBqGzgxcfAk
The machines are designed with no paper trail or even a verification of your vote after it is cast. The current system cannot be verified, audited or recounted. The 2002 documentary “Hacking Democracy” goes into more depth, calling into question every election where the machines were used. The film is available on You Tube: https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=hacking+democracy+full+movie
These same machines were the subject of a lawsuit filed in May asking Secretary Brian Kemp to use only paper ballots for the June 20th Special Election for the Congressional 6th District to preserve the integrity of the election. The case was dismissed since early voting had already begun by the time the suit was heard. Note that Secretary of State Brian Kemp had repeatedly not responded earlier to inquiries, thus pushing the filing date of the lawsuit back. The June 20th election was held with a final tally Karen Handel 51.78% - Jon Ossoff 48.22%. The data below reflects the only auditable numbers available which were the paper mail-in ballots, calling into question why the final tally had such different results.
Osoff won 28,146 verifiable mail-in ballots by a 64%-36% margin
Ossoff won the verifiable provisional ballots by a 70-30% margin
Ossoff won early voting 51%-49% despite getting 10% less votes than on April 18 when he ran against 17 opponents
Ossoff got a lower percentage of votes on June 20th in Fulton and Dekalb than he did when he ran against 17 opponents on April 18th
40 precincts have 60 point total swings between mail-in and Election Day vote (Ex: Ossoff mail-in 65-35%, Handel Election Day 65-35%)
Based on these discrepancies and the unverifiable voting machines, a group of Georgians filed a lawsuit challenging the runoff results. This suit Curling vs Kemp is supported by the Coalition of Good Governance and is based on official misconduct and irregularities deemed sufficient enough to compromise the system and place un-auditable results in doubt. And before anyone thinks it is just sour grapes from the Democrats, note that the filers include Republicans and a Conservative Party principle.
These are truly people who are fighting for the integrity of the vote.
Other issues included Georgia’s Center for Election System’s public website security breach of massive files of voter information, details for programming the system, passwords and election databases which were exposed to the public from August 2016 through March 1, 2017. Letters were sent to Secretary of State Brian Kemp demanding answers and asking for verification of the systems. Kemp also turned down federal money offered to update and verify systems after the Russian election hacking concerns.
Data from the lawsuit cites that the machines have not been officially verified the entire seven years he has been in office, although the law lists that as a requirement. Just prior to the primary, April 15, 2017, early voting check-in books which can be connected via Internet to the voting registration working database was stolen from the pick-up of a poll worker. Plus the machines are old. Are you utilizing any other personal technology dating back to 2002?
There are numerous other issues in the lawsuit detailing problems with memory cards, blank votes being cast and the system is also being compromised by use of memory cards and flash drives exposed to the internet. The lawsuit seeks to turn around officials’ policy of promoting unverifiable elections on unreliable equipment, unfit for use. In short, throw out the old system.
After watching the demo and most certainly the documentary “Hacking Democracy” I was outraged, especially since I had worked so hard to get Jon Ossoff into office. It left me wondering how many other elections might have been compromised when exit polls and early voting show fuzzy math. But I have to go back to the knowledge I have regarding this time in consciousness as things are exposed and uncovered. If you look at the news, scandals pop up daily. The lawsuit has been filed, the issues defined, now we let democracy unfold. But my advice to you in the near future, vote paper ballot absentee.