Collier Supervisor of Elections hosts “Accuracy Test” on voting machines for August primaries

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COLLIER COUNTY, Fla. — The first step to ensure Collier County is prepared for the upcoming August 23rd primary election is completed.

“We have many roles and responsibilities, and our first one for an election, that kicks off an election, is the public logic and accuracy test,” said Jennifer Edwards, the Supervisor of Elections for Collier County.

Each election year, as per Florida State Law, the Collier County Supervisor of Elections tests voting machines.

The event, open to the public and media, showcases the steps taken to ensure accuracy and maintain a standard of election integrity.

“Our goal is to increase and improve confidence in the election process,” said Edwards.

Voting machines are chosen at random and run through a predetermined ballot. If the machine passes, it is certified to begin tallying the early mail in ballots that have already been received.

“We keep hearing those words, election integrity. I have been doing this for 22 years now, and my integrity has not waned,” said Edwards.

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Numerous Collier County residents came out for the test, which was held inside the warehouse at the Collier County Supervisor of Elections.

“I think this is really important. In today’s environment, in today’s climate, the fact that our Supervisor of Elections and Florida law requires that the Supervisor open the logic and accuracy test to the public, all the canvassing board meetings – it shows they are very transparent,” said Diane Preston Moore, the President of the League of Women Voters of Collier County – a voter advocacy group that specializes in involvement and awareness.

A number of voter advocates from Moore’s group joined her to view the test in real-time, verifying the integrity with their own eyes.

“If more people actually knew what was happening at the Supervisor of Elections HQ, I think it really increases the confidence that the votes being cast are being counted and that your vote matters,” said Moore.

However, others were in attendance because they currently question the integrity of the election process, and wanted to learn more information about what the test entails – citing concerns over the 2020 election and its results.

“I’ve been skeptical of electronic voting machines ever since 2000 after the hanging chad incident (this reference refers to the 2000 U.S. presidential election, in which numerous Florida voters used ballots that required hole punches, or chads. In situations where a card was partially punched, or a hanging chad, the vote was nullified. This led to both a recount of Florida votes statewide and the rapid recall of hole punched ballots in the United States).

I’m here to learn more about the process, to learn more about how our votes are counted, and that they’re counted correctly,” said Dan Cook, the Founder of the Patriot Project – a grassroots political organization based here in SWFL.

Cook said he prepared a list of questions for the Supervisor of Elections following the accuracy test.

“Can they (the voting machines) be hacked? What assurances is the Supervisor of Elections giving to us so that they cannot be hacked? That they cannot transfer the data to nefarious entities,” said Cook.

The Supervisor of Elections, as required by law, has an open door policy to its meetings, which Cook encourages all to attend whether they are for or against the machines.

“We are advocating for people to absolutely come out and vote for the candidates that you are supporting, and get involved in the process,” said Cook.

The machines that have passed the test will begin counting early mail-in ballots as soon as July 27. The mid-term primary for both parties is set for August 23rd.

Tags: collier countycollier county supervisor of electionsSWFLvoting machines

 

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