Despite expressing confidence in the reliability of electronic poll books, the Davidson County Election Commission on Thursday stuck with its decision not to use the devices in the November election. The poll books, which recently replaced paper poll books in 60 of the county’s 160 voting precincts, have been at the center of criticism the past few weeks because some voters received the wrong ballots during the Aug. 2 primary. The commission had planned to use the new poll books in all 160 precincts for the Nov. 6 general election. Last week, four of the five commission members voted to revert to the paper poll books for all precincts. However, Commissioner Steve Abernathy wanted the commission to revisit the issue.
He reiterated that the software error present during the August primary has been resolved and that using the electronic poll books — which, like the paper versions, are used to verify voter information — would greatly reduce the amount of time voters spent at the polls.
“Based on that data I have seen so far from the electronic poll book locations, it appears that the primary ballots in Nashville were processed with better than 99.8 percent accuracy,” Abernathy said. “I challenge any other government agency or department to match that level of performance.”