Denise Weeks’ Testimony – West Hartford

Denise Weeks, Co-Founder CTVotersCount.org testified at the West Harford hearing <testimony>

Excerpts:

What is most alarming to me is the prevailing belief among registrars of voters and poll workers that machine counts are more reliable than hand counts, that the recent audits demonstrate that machines are more reliable and the conclusion by many that hand counted audits and recounts should be abandoned or replaced by machine audits and recounts.

My experience compels me to argue against these conclusions.

Computers are programmed by people and are every bit as prone to human error as hand counts.

Voting systems must also be private in order to avoid vote selling and voter intimidation, which is why no receipt can be issued. The only valid receipt in our voting system is the voter verified paper ballot that remains behind, and the only way to insure against programming error or fraud is to hand count the ballot.

I believe the greatest threat to the integrity of our voting systems comes from their susceptibility to fraud. And here I am not talking about collusion or wrong-doing by poll worker, though that is certainly possible.

The greatest exposure comes from the fact that our voting systems are coded in secret by a vendor and the software is proprietary and not open to examination. This creates opportunity to rig elections in ways that would elude testing. Indeed computing experts studying the vulnerability of computers have acknowledged numerous ways to alter the vote and elude detection

Replacing the hand count with a machine count for audit and/or recounts is a bad idea. It removes the only safeguard we have against programming errors and fraud of the type I described.

Following the hearing she also supplied additional testimony based on another speaker challenging her testimony <read> <read>

Darlene Burrell, the registrar from Suffield questioned the veracity of my testimony by asking rhetorically if I had any proof to back up my statements about our voting systems’ vulnerability to fraud.

I submit the attached report authored by computer scientists, including Dr. Alexander Shvartsman, at the Voting Technology Research Center at the University of Connecticut, in support of my testimony. For your convenience, I have taken the liberty of underscoring the sections that illustrate key conclusions of the report that support my testimony.

The Connecticut Citizen Post Election Audit Report, previously submit to the committee, contains information to support my testimony on discrepancies.

I hope the committee will hold registrars to the same standard when it comes to their claims that the machines performed flawlessly.

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