Pima Democratic Party E-Voting Investigation
Pima Democratic Party - Results of E-Voting Investigation
Pima County Democratic Party (PCDP)
For Immediate Release July 25, 2003
Local Democratic Party Releases Results of Investigation into Voting Flaws
The Pima County Democratic Party (PCDP) today made public the results of a three-month investigation into Pima County’s vote counting procedures and safeguards.
“The results of this study are absolutely shocking. The intention of the procedures and safeguards in place with our voting systems are entirely inadequate to protect our vote from being tampered with by anyone with computer knowledge,” said Paul Eckerstrom, PCDP Chairman.
Back in the beginning of 2003, Chairman Eckerstrom commissioned a PCDP Committee on Computerized and Electronic Vote Counting Procedures and Safeguards. The committee investigated a compilation of data on voting problems in the last two elections nationwide, and a host of secrecy and conflict of interest issues related to ownership and operation of the major companies making vote counting machines and software.
“Once the national press brought to light the voting flaws with the Diebold Inc. system, it seemed we needed to take a serious look at how we are accountable to the people’s vote here in Pima County,” he said. The committee’s complete report is available to the public online at:
It concludes that although no evidence of problems with any vote counts in Pima county were uncovered, there remains vulnerabilities within the system that make it subject to potential significant manipulation. Committee Chair, Gordon Mustain goes on to explain, “one of the more significant findings was that there exists hidden back door access, erasable audit trails and a built in capability to keep one set of public books and two sets of hidden books of vote totals. Simply put, anyone with the right pass-code can go into our voting totals and change the results. That is an unacceptable risk to the integrity of the vote counting process.”
The report does makes several recommendations about methods to improve the system, from limited hand counting in random precincts in every election, to establishing a baseline against which to compare the machine count or even legislation enabling candidates to request hand recounts at their campaign’s expense.
“The PCDP is committed to ensuring the integrity of our vote here in Pima County. We plan on educating our voters, elected officials and both local and national press about these major voting flaws. And if we need to take legal action to repair those flaws, we’re ready to do just that,” Eckerstrom concluded.
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