One day before the US midterm elections, companies that produce electronic voting machines in the country face skepticism from the Republican Party base, especially among supporters of former President Donald Trump. According to the Reuters news agency, protests against electronic voting machines in the states of Nevada, Arizona, Pennsylvania, South Dakota and Minnesota have succeeded locally in getting authorities to institute hand-counting. as a check of the automated tabulation of companies such as Dominion and ES&S.
In one Nevada county, Dominion ballot boxes with touch screens were unanimously rejected by members of the electoral commission. With the measure, the company no longer earns more than US$70 thousand (R$254 thousand) annually from the county in maintenance and other services. Targeted by Trump campaign fraud allegations in 2020, she declined to comment on her financial health over the past two years or give details of her response to current discrediting campaigns, but told Reuters who has been actively involved in “refuting dangerous lies spread against us.”
Trump himself claimed on Twitter, days later. the November vote 2020, that Dominion had “deleted” some votes and “converted” others into votes for Biden. The company has started eight defamation lawsuits against allies of the former president and conservative publications. In a Delaware court, he is asking Fox News to pay $1.6 billion in damages. for allegedly false claims about Dominion’s technology.
Fox countered that the lawsuit would be an outrageous attempt to stop its journalism. The trial is scheduled for April 2023. Another Dominion strategy was to hire as a consultant a former Republican governor of Nevada, Robert List, who has been the public face of the company in meetings with the public. He says he is a Trump supporter and comments that his defeat “was not the fault of the machines”.
The ES&S company said that it did not lose customers because of the protests and declared that “the jurisdictions continue to seek reliable support for their elections”. Despite their reluctance to comment on their financial situation, corporate data firm PrivCo reported that Dominion and ES&S increased their profits by 2021. The companies make public demonstrations and claim that they are not controlled by foreigners and that their machines do not access the internet, two of the points repeated in rumors.
The dispute against the “electronic systems of voting” involves campaigns by candidates for governor or secretary of state in Arizona, Michigan, Nevada, and Pennsylvania. Election officials report being the target of hundreds of messages containing threats. Activists who believe President Joe Biden’s victory was fraudulent have already been caught trying to gain access to voting equipment in or more security incidents since the elections of 2020.
Last Thursday (3), a man from Colorado, in the American Midwest, was arrested under suspected of trying to defraud an electronic voting machine with a pendrive with a USB port. Richard Patton, 31, is registered as a Democratic party voter. The attempt would have taken place last June, in the party’s primaries. Local officials told the Associated Press that the incident did not change results and that election data was not accessed. The machines trigger a mechanism that makes them inoperable when manipulation is attempted, as happened in this case. It was the first arrest under a new state law that made the punishment more severe and expanded the scope of the definition of “adulteration.”
In the state of Louisiana, a law of 2021 created a voting systems commission to assess suspicions against electronic voting machines and automatic tabulation systems. The law also banned a type of electronic voting machine that does not print an auditable receipt. In this state, one of the main influences is the Trumpist businessman Mike Lindell, from the pillow and mattress company MyPillow. He wants the state to remove all machines from the electoral process and go back to using paper ballots only. In response, Dominion launched a public relations campaign in Louisiana valued at US$100 million. .2 million).
In the midterm elections this week, 435 representatives will be elected, the totality of one of the houses of parliament, and a third of 100 senators, in addition to the governors of 34 of the 50 American states. According to
Verified Voting, an organization that monitors electoral technologies, 70% of American voters live in places that use paper ballots at the polls. These ballots are counted by electronic readers or, in rare cases, are counted by hand. A quarter of Americans vote on machines that physically mark the vote on paper ballots, which are auditable receipts. Votes in electronic voting machines comparable to Brazilian ones are only 7% of the total. They may or may not issue auditable receipts.