Jennifer Cohn @jennycohn1 Election security advocate & writer; attorney; Contributor @WhoWhatWhy, @NYRDaily #HandMarkedPaperBallots #ProtectOurVotes May. 02, 2019 2 min read

"[T]here is no universal definition of 'paper ballot,' which has enabled vendors & their surrogates to characterize machine-marked paper printouts from hackable ballot marking devices (BMDs) as 'paper ballots.'" Only #HandMarkedPaperBallots are safe!  1/

2/ You must specify HAND marked paper ballots or we will be stuck with machine-marked barcoded summary cards—that vendors have convinced EVERYONE to call “paper ballots”—from hackable ballot marking devices and Hybrids (BMD/scanner combination in a single unit).

3/ Corrupt election officials like Brian Kemp and Kris Kobach insist on barcoded summary cards from hackable ballot marking devices (rather than #HandMarkedPaperBallots) which is itself a bright red flag IMHO. 


5/ You want to see some CREDENTIALS backing up the call for #HandMarkedPaperBallots? I assume Professor Andrew Appel (Computer Science Professor and election expert, Princeton University)—who was featured in Politico in 2016–will do. 

6/ How about @VerifiedVoting? It took them a while, but they recommend #HandMarkedPaperBallots as a primary voting system as well (not the machine-marked kind with barcodes).

7/ How about UC Berkeley Professor @PhilipBStark who INVENTED Risk Limiting Audits, the only type of post-election manual audit endorsed by @CommonCause, @VerifiedVoting, @LWV, and the American Statistical Association? 

8/ How about Professor Richard DeMillo of Georgia Tech?

9/ Stark, DeMillo, & Appel co-wrote this paper titled “Ballot Marking Devices cannot assure the will of voters.” BMDs are the machines that generate the machine-marked barcoded summary cards—so-called “paper ballots”—that I keep warning about! 

10/ This is NOT that difficult of a concept. So why won’t politicians like @KamalaHarris and @AmyKlobuchar warn the public about the dangers of BMDs and machine-marked barcoded paper printouts?

11/ Why do so many intelligent people (including on Twitter) still fail to distinguish between #HandMarkedPaperBallots and the machine-marked barcoded kind from hackable ballot marking devices and Hybrids?

12/ We have A LOT of people to educate and FAST. Please help amplify the importance of #HandMarkedPaperBallots. Thank you.

13/ This issue is urgent bc jurisdictions throughout the US are buying NEW hackable BMDs & Hybrids as a primary voting system, when they should instead use #HandMarkedPaperBallots (counted manually in public or on scanners w/ robust manual audits & a secure chain of custody).

14/ We should be scaling BACK our use of hackable electronics (using scanners at most). Instead, many jurisdictions are scaling up, using machines not only to count paper ballots but also, inexplicably, to MARK them. It’s making our elections less secure!

15/ BTW, #HandMarkedPaperBallots are necessary but not sufficient to secure our elections. If officials insist on counting them on hackable scanners, they must then: (a) conduct robust manual audits for every race; & (b) maintain a transparent chain of custody.

16/ In addition, if officials insist on using hackable scanners to count the #HandMarkedPaperBallots, the vendors must tell us under oath where they installed the remote access software & cellular modems and REMOVE THEM before 2020! Thread.

17/ If officials refuse to do these things or think they are too much trouble, then they must not use any electronics at all and must instead publicly hand count the #HandMarkedPaperBallots. We cannot risk a hacked election in 2020. We just can’t. #ProtectOurVotes

You can follow @jennycohn1.


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