It’s Nov. 6, 2018. Election Day. More than 100,000 Delaware voters have already cast their ballots with just one hour until polls close when suddenly the state’s election system goes down. Software experts are able to quickly restore it, but it’s too late: All the votes have been wiped out. The system failure has invalidated votes all across the state, and now the integrity of the election is at stake. While unlikely, this scenario is possible, and it’s a big part of the reason why advocacy groups are urging state officials to fund the purchase of new voting machines. Delaware has about 1,600 Danaher ELECTronic 1242 voting machines, purchased in 1995. Those machines were state of the art 22 years ago, but they’re now outdated and, according to some, in desperate need of replacement. “We need a voting system that inspires public trust,” said Jennifer Hill.
Delaware voters soon will cast their ballots on new voting machines. But exactly when – and what those machines will look like – remains to be seen. A state task force created last year to study the issue is still debating what bells and whistles the new voting machines should feature – four months after it was supposed to make a final recommendation to the Delaware General Assembly. … First deployed in 1996, Delaware’s 1,600 voting machines are among the oldest in the nation and have outlived their expected lifespan, creating a growing list of potential problems. The computer operating system used to create electronic ballots, for instance, is no longer supported by Microsoft, meaning security updates are no longer available. The outdated equipment also precludes the General Assembly from adopting the kind of no-excuse early voting currently used by 34 other states. And Delaware is now one of five states using voting machines that never let voters see a paper copy of their ballot to ensure its accuracy.
Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has repeatedly raised the specter of a “rigged election,” and it appears he is not alone. A recent poll by the University of Delaware found that residents are concerned about the integrity of the voting process: 66 percent of the 900 respondents said they were either somewhat or very concerned about voter fraud; 61 percent are worried about the election “being rigged,” and 75 percent are worried about hackers breaking into the computers of state election systems. “If Americans don’t trust our electoral process, where are we?” said State Elections Commissioner Elaine Manlove. “I don’t like to see people in positions of authority saying these things that undermine what we’re trying to do.” She and other state election officials maintain there are numerous safeguards are in place.
Pennsylvania: Aging voting machines could be ‘nightmare scenario’ in the event of a disputed election | Los Angeles Times
On election day, voters in Pennsylvania will be touching the lighted buttons on electronic vote counters that were once seen as the solution to messy paper ballots. But in the event of a disputed election, this battleground state — one of the few that relies almost entirely on computerized voting, with no paper backup — could end up creating a far bigger mess. Stored in a locked warehouse near downtown Harrisburg, the 1980s-era voting machines used by Dauphin County look like discarded washing machines lined up in rows. When unfolded and powered up, the gray metal boxes become the familiar voting booth, complete with a curtain for privacy. Much may rest on the reliability and security of these aging machines after an unprecedentedly combative presidential campaign that is ending with Donald Trump warning repeatedly of a “rigged election” and his refusal at Wednesday’s debate to commit to accepting the results on Nov. 8. … But computer experts says the old electronic voting machines have a hidden flaw that worries them in the event of a very close election. The machines do not produce a paper ballot or receipt, leaving nothing to be recounted if the election outcome were in doubt, such as in 2000, when the nation awaited anxiously for Florida to reexamine those hanging chads.
Philadelphia officials are focused on getting new voting machines to replace the original crop of electronic machines, now more than a decade old. But a bit of bureaucracy may hinder the purchase. The mayor’s new budget sets aside $22 million for new voting machines, with the hope to having them in place for the May 2017 primary. At a city council budget hearing this past week, Chief Information Officer Adel Ebeid said the current machines are past their useful life.
US Virgin Islands: Ballot review halted after group calls police to report ‘tampering’ | Virgin Islands Daily News
Tensions between Board of Elections officials and a group of former candidates who maintain that the last General Election was fraudulent have escalated, involving a call to the police, invoking a moratorium on the review of elections records and resulting in the cancellation of a Joint Board of Elections meeting that was scheduled for today. For almost two weeks, a group of unsuccessful candidates and members of the group Virgin Islands United for Social Justice and Accountability have pored over tally sheets at the St. Thomas Board of Elections office. Animosity between them and the Elections System staff and board members has risen to the degree that Joint Elections Board Chairwoman Alecia Wells characterizes the group’s behavior as bizarre and Elections staff say they are being unduly harassed by the residents.
Pennsylvania: Breaking a sweat may save Bucks County some bucks – but what about the voting machines? | The Intelligencer
Remember those stifling hot days back in July, when the air conditioning was turned off in some Bucks County-owned buildings for a few hours in the late afternoon? Turns out the move might save taxpayers some money. Commissioner Chairman Charley Martin said at Wednesday’s commissioners meeting that the county hit two of the five peak days recorded by power companies and “we’ll get some revenue back. So that’s a good thing.”
… Commissioner Diane Marseglia voted against spending $171,000 for a warranty extension and software license fee for the county’s Danaher electronic voting machines. “Are we ever getting out of this contract?” she asked.
Martin, who was the top vote-getter in the Nov. 8 election in which Republicans held their board majority, quickly responded, “Look at the great results we got for the last election, commissioner. We’re happy to use these machines.” Most in the room enjoyed a laugh.
Pennsylvania: Machine problems plague Interboro primary elections (Delaware County) – delcotimes.com
“Until we find out the results of that one machine, I’d rather not comment,” said Kaelin, last night.
In Tuesday’s primary, a voting machine malfunction left a cliff hanger in Glenolden which may not be resolved until sometime today at the earliest, according to officials. Eight candidates were competing for four four year seats on Interboro School Board.