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Washington Voter-Verified Paper Record Bill

For Immediate Release

Washington Citizens Unite to Pass Voter-Verified Paper Record Bill

Port Ludlow, WA. May 4, 2005. VotersUnite.Org is very happy to announce the end of a successful and long fought campaign to help ensure accurate and verifiable elections in the state of Washington. Yesterday, May 3, Governor Christine Gregoire signed ESSB-5395 into law. This bill guarantees a voter verified paper ballot on all electronic voting machines used in the state. It also requires an audit of 4% of those machines.

Some citizens, like Linda Franz and Marian Beddill of Whatcom Fair Voting and Citizens for Voting Integrity – Washington, have been working on this issue for over three years. This new law is a credit to their perseverance and dedication to open and fair elections. Linda has traveled from the far north in the state to Olympia many times to testify before legislative committees. Marian has worked diligently with other groups to ensure that when it was time to make phone calls or send email, the help was there.

"If it hadn't been for the hard work and dedication to open and fair elections shown by a small group of voters in the far north of the state we never would have gotten this bill written, let alone passed and signed by the Governor," said John Gideon of VotersUnite.Org ( http://www.votersunite.org)and Vote Trust USA ( http://www.votetrustusa.org). John has been lobbying legislators for over a year, also making long trips to Olympia, and writing letters repeatedly since the beginning of this session.

Once the bill was introduced, Citizens for Voting Integrity - Washington, Whatcom Fair Voting, VotersUnite.Org, and many other concerned voters from many Washington counties joined forces to let their legislators know that they expected verifiable elections in Washington.

VotersUnite.Org also thanks VerifiedVoting.org ( http://www.verifiedvoting.org) who stepped up and alerted their volunteers to the need to make phone calls when the last push was needed to get the bill out of the state House.

The text of the bill is here: http://www.leg.wa.gov/pub/billinfo/2005-06/Htm/Bills/Senate%20Passed%20Legislature/5395-S.PL.htm

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Contacts: John Gideon jgideon@votersunite.org Ellen Theisen ellen@votersunite.org

www.votersunite.org and www.votetrustusa.org

VotersUnite! is a national non-partisan organization dedicated to fair and accurate elections. It focuses on distributing well-researched information to elections officials, elected officials, the media, and the public; as well as providing activists with information they need to work toward transparent elections in their communities.


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