Let's Ditch the Voting Machines - Granite Grok

Let’s Ditch the Voting Machines

Accuvote OS ballot counter votng machine

The audit into the irregularities that occurred last year in the Windham November 3rd election is over.  Although the official audit report isn’t expected for over a month, we do know the preliminary conclusion of the team of auditors. 

They say that so far no intentional fraud was uncovered by their audit.  (They still have to digest some of the information.)

They have concluded that a borrowed machine used to fold and mail the absentee ballots folded them in the wrong place, causing the voting machines to “read” the fold as a vote for a candidate.  This error gave some votes to Democratic candidate Kristie St. Laurent in the NH Representatives race when the voters “under voted” which means they didn’t vote for the maximum allowable candidates (in this Windham race, four).


We’d like to thank Jenn Watson for this Op-Ed. If you have an Op-Ed or LTE
you would like us to consider please submit it to Skip@GraniteGrok.com or Steve@GraniteGrok.com.


It also deprived some Republican candidates of votes intended for them when residents did vote for all four Republicans. It interpreted the fold on Ms. St. Laurent’s name as a fifth vote, creating an “overvote.” This resulted in a high percentage of legitimate Republican votes being tossed out.

Windham’s high percentage of overvotes is not an isolated problem. Similar patterns can be observed in other communities.  Take Laconia.  There is a high percentage of “blanks” in the NH Reps race here as well.

In Laconia “Blanks” is a general category that includes actual blanks (undervotes) plus overvotes that were thrown out.  In Laconia, it constitutes a range of 16.3%-22.5% of all of the votes in that race depending on the ward.  So about one-fifth of the votes in the NH House race didn’t count.  This seems to me to be enough to call for an audit in Laconia and any NH communities that use these voting machines and have similar results. There are a lot.

There’s more, though, that the audit has exposed.  During the audit, all of the ballots were scanned through all four of Windham’s machines and not one machine agreed with another.  All were different.  ALL.  While the differences vary and aren’t as large as the original discrepancy, this still does not inspire confidence in the reliability of the machines.

While I doubt we’ve heard the last about the Windham audit, it has so far revealed at least one thing: the AccuVote voting machines should be scrapped and we should revert back to hand-counting our votes.

When votes are hand-counted, several people are involved in checking and rechecking the votes. During an election tabulated by a machine, no one checks to verify that the machine counts are accurate.

Perhaps NH election officials several decades ago felt they needed help counting votes and

consequently adopted the machines.  Now that we’ve seen how inaccurate our voting machines can be, I predict there will be no trouble getting volunteers to count ballots.

Let’s ditch the machines. After all, NH citizens deserve to have their votes count.

Speaking of getting information to see what happened in YOUR town…

Using RSA 91-A to Get Public Information

On May 29th Nick Moseder held a Livestream with CanCon, Spyder (IT expert Joshua Merritt, I believe), Professor David Clements, Tom Murray, Ken Eyring, and two of the three auditors who came to Pembroke, NH to supervise and conduct the Windham audit.  Moseder gave Philip Stark and Harri Hursti the opportunity to defend themselves against challenges by observers that this was anything but a fair audit.  While a lot of interesting material was covered during this Livestream, one side thing caught my attention.  Spyder suggested that citizens check to see if their city or town received money from the Center for Tech and Civic Life.  This was the organization that Zuckerberg funneled $350,000,000 into to “fortify” the 2020 election.

So I looked them up.  Yikes!  Sixty-four New Hampshire cities and towns received grants from this leftist organization, including my city of Laconia.  I wanted to know how much Laconia received, who had authorized it, and what it was used for.

Just the week before I had used RSA 91-A for the first time in order to get a look at the voting machine tabulator tapes with Laconia’s voting tallies.  RSA 91-A is the Right-To-Know statute that gives citizens access to public information that might not otherwise be released but to which the public can and should have access.  I modeled my letter after an RSA 91-A request that I think was filed on behalf of the citizens of Windham. It was incredibly easy. I sent the following email to my city clerk:

Cheryl Hebert, City Clerk
City of Laconia
45 Beacon Street E
Laconia, NH 03246

Re:  Ascertaining the dollar amount of the grant given to the City of Laconia by the Center for Tech and Civic Life and how it was spent.

Dear Ms. Hebert:

Pursuant to New Hampshire’s Right to Know Law  (RSA. 91-A), I am requesting, within 5 business days, information regarding the grant given to the City of Laconia by the Center for Tech and Civic Life.  Please let me know the amount of the grant, who approved the grant, and how the funds were spent.

Thank you for your attention to this matter.

Sincerely,

Jennifer Watson

I received a prompt response:

“We received $7,761. The Grant was approved by the City Council and was spent on Elections Payroll expenses.”

At this point, I don’t know how this grant impacted our election in Laconia, but this is important information to have.  Going forward Laconia citizens can petition our city council never to accept money from the Center for Tech and Civic Life again.  Without a Right-To-Know request, we would have had no idea that Laconia had received $7,761 from this organization.

RSA 91-A is a powerful tool.  It’s easy to use and can give us extremely helpful information.  We sometimes forget that our government officials are supposed to represent and serve us the people.  RSA 91-A helps put citizens back in the driver’s seat and reminds those who work in government that they are public servants who serve at the pleasure of the citizens. Public information should be that–public–and our government needs to know that we are watching.

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If you live in one of the towns or cities listed below, I suggest you send an RSA 91-A request to your city or town clerk.  Find out how much your city or town received from The Center for Tech and Civic Life, who authorized it, and how it was used. 

Allenstown, Auburn, Barrington, Berlin, Bethlehem, Boscawen, Bow, Candia, Charlestown, Claremont, Conway, Danville, Derry, Dorchester, Dover, Dublin, Dubarton, Ellsworth, Exeter, Franconia, Freemont, Groton, Hampstead, Hampton Falls, Hill, Hooksett, Jackson, Keene, Kingston, Laconia, Lebanon, Lisbon, Litchfield, Londonderry, Loudon, Lyman, Manchester, Marlborough, Meredith, Merrimack, Milford, Mont Vernon, Moultonborough, Nashua, New Boston, New Durham, New Hampton, New Ipswich, Newmarket, Newton, North Hampton, Northfield, Northumberland, Nottingham, randolph, Salem, Sanbornton, Springfield, Thornton, Tuftonboro, Troy, Webster, Wentworth, and Whitefield.

 

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