A Pennsylvania county, which made headlines after voting machines failed to display Republican ballots during a primary election last week, voted on Tuesday to request a top prosecutor further investigate the mishap.
Luzerne County’s 11-member council voted to ask the district attorney’s office to look into a May 18 controversy where all ballots appeared as Democratic on a series of machines from Dominion Voting Systems, a company marred by dubious election fraud claims in the aftermath of the 2020 presidential election, according to the Times Leader. One member, Linda McClosky Houck, was absent at the time of voting.
Councilman Walter Griffith, who proposed the resolution, claimed that many GOP and independent voters were “disenfranchised and concerned about the integrity of the election process” when some left polling places agitated. The resolution, as described by the local news outlet, requests the district attorney look into Dominion’s practices and procedures as well as the election board’s actions in overseeing and maintaining the security of election equipment.
A motion to depose County Manager David Pedri was brought, though it did not come to a vote.
District Attorney Sam Sanguedolce said his office is willing to look into any possible criminal conduct that took place. “Without integrity in our elections, the public cannot trust the remainder of our democratic process,” he said.
The Washington Examiner reached out to Dominion for comment.
On May 18, Luzerne County voters, regardless of their party affiliation, saw a ballot only labeled for the Democratic primary on the first screen, leading to confusion. Ballots for GOP voters would show as Republican when printed, even though they appeared to be Democratic on the screen. The election authority granted voters the ability to file a provisional or emergency ballot.
Nicole Nollette, executive vice president of operations at Dominion, blamed the mishap on “human error” during a two-hour special meeting on Monday, breaking with County Director of Elections Bob Morgan, who said last week a “coding error” was to blame.
“Dominion deeply regrets the confusion this error caused,” Nollette said.
The Board of Elections in Luzerne County, located in northeast Pennsylvania, said every vote was counted correctly, according to a local outlet. But Republicans, in particular, raised concerns about the integrity of the election.
Morgan insisted any problems with the primary election were unintentional.
“Nobody did that intentionally,” Morgan said. “The moment we found out what the impact was, we immediately sought to give advice to the public, and it is our desire to never have that happen again.”
Earlier in the week, Luzerne officials faced another problem after the WBRE 28/WYOU 22 Eyewitness News I-Team found voting machines unattended in a public walkway inside the Terrace Plaza mall. Voters quickly raised questions, harboring skepticism about machine errors.
“I don’t think they should be in the middle of the mall area. I told them where the room is over there to keep them secure. But we watch them,” mall manager Laura Gruene told PA Homepage.
Morgan said he felt the voting machines should not have been in an area so easily accessible to the public but noted retrieving 900 machines around the county can take several days.
“Anything that could be tampered with, such as memory cards, were removed. There are no ballots inside. These basically are empty shells. We will contact our mover to get them picked up,” he said.
Author: Jake Dima
Source: Washington Examiner: Pennsylvania county votes for district attorney investigation after voting machine mislabeling error