An audit reveals that a number of Californians voted on Diebold machines that were not properly certified by either the state or the feds. The company owns up to procedural errors, while state officials seethe.
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SACRAMENTO — An audit of Diebold voting machines in California has revealed that the company installed uncertified software in all 17 counties that use its electronic voting equipment.
While 14 counties used software that had been qualified by federal authorities but not certified by state authorities, three counties, including Los Angeles, used software that had never been certified by the state or qualified by federal authorities for use in any election.
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Diebold admitted wrongdoing at a meeting of the state's Voting Systems Panel, or VSP, Tuesday and said it was making changes to its procedures for upgrading its systems.
But Secretary of State Kevin Shelley, who made an unprecedented appearance before the VSP, said he was disturbed by the company's actions and would not rule out the possibility of de-certifying the machines in California.
“The core of our American democracy is the right to vote,” Shelley said. “Implicit in that right is the notion that that vote be private, that vote be secure, and that vote be counted as it was intended when it was cast by the voter. And I think what we're encountering is a pivotal moment in our democracy where all of that is being called into question.”
State undersecretary and panel chairman Mark Kyle said the VSP needed additional information before it decides whether Diebold should be sanctioned for violating state election code. But he noted that because of the widespread nature of the uncertified installations the “concern is greater now than it was a month ago.” A decision is expected next month [Privacy Digest]