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Electronic Voting Machine Maker Responds

Earlier this afternoon, we reported about a warning letter from a county clerk in Michigan about electronic voting machines that improperly tabulated votes during testing. The manufacturer of the M-100 machines, Election Systems & Software, issued the following response to our queries:

The letter from Oakland County Clerk Ruth Johnson to the EAC [federal Elections Assistance Commission] dated Oct. 24, 2008 misrepresents the issues surrounding the ES&S M100 machines. After being alerted of the issue, ES&S responded by sending technicians to review the situation firsthand. This investigation uncovered several procedural errors committed by the county townships during their Logic and Accuracy (L&A) pre-election testing process that led to inconsistent test results.

These errors centered on ballots that were mismarked during L&A testing, and machine sensitivity settings. The M100 machines were performing correctly. When the procedural errors were corrected, the M100 produced 100% accurate test results. This is an example of why it is so important to follow pre-election best practices, and this is the reason for running L&A testing prior to any election.

Furthermore, ES&S has kept both the State of Michigan and the EAC informed of our investigation and findings.

Meanwhile, the Detroit Free Press is reporting that the Michigan ACLU says it has fielded “thousands of complaints.” The newspaper says that polling places across metro Detroit are being plagued by “long lines and some voting machine malfunctions.”

For more stories from around the Web on voting issues, see our VoteWatch. We’re updating it all day.

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