Zody to Lawson: Replace voting machines with systems that generate paper trail

On Friday, Indiana Democratic Party Chairman John Zody called on Secretary of State Connie Lawson to replace voting systems that do not generate a paper trial before the 2018 election. In a press conference, Zody highlighted how the ability to audit results strengthens Hoosiers’ confidence in election outcomes.

“This isn’t a Republican or Democrat thing, this is about securing the vote and the integrity of our elections,” said Zody. “We can’t wait any longer. It’s time we do everything we can to safeguard this election and that’s why I’m calling on Secretary Lawson to replace these machines now.”

Indiana is just one of 13 states without a paper ballot backup for all its voting systems. In about 60 percent of counties, voters use touch screens to record votes, which do not generate the type of post-election audit that election security experts recommend. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen has called the inability to audit election results a “national security concern”. On September 8, 2017, Virginia moved to replace machines with auditable systems ahead of their 2017 gubernatorial election and got it done. Zody believed Secretary Lawson’s decision to delay pursuing the replacement of voting machines that do not generate a paper trail was misguided.

“Secretary Lawson missed opportunities to request state funding to get this done in 2017 and 2018,” said Zody. “Replacing voting machines after an election is like putting your seatbelt on after a car wreck, it won’t be much help.”

Democratic candidate for Secretary of State Jim Harper reiterated the importance of a paper trail.

“The Secretary’s failure to secure our voting machines this year is indefensible. A voter-verified paper trail is the most important step we can take to secure our machines, and the Secretary should have long-taken action to ensure a paper trail heading into important elections this year.”

The General Election is November 6, 2018 and early voting begins October 10.
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