SC voting machines not set to zero before voting started

Presscue
Sunday January 20, 2008

The voting machines in Horry County, South Carolina were not reset to zero before the first voters came to cast their ballots, the state's Election Commission admitted today.

The Commission stated that the technicians perform a "clear and test" procedure on all machines prior to the machines accepting votes, but in this case, it was not carried out before people arrived at the precincts to vote.

"This resets the test votes recorded on the machine to zero," a press release by the Commission read. "Without performing this measure, the voting system will not allow machines to be opened for voting on election day."

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But the Commission blamed the delay on human error, even though Election Systems & Software voting machines used in South Carolina were decertified by the California Secretary of State last year, after the company refused to provide information necessary to review the voting systems, as required by state law.

"Some voters cast paper ballots today in 15-20 precincts because voting machines were not ready to accept votes," the Commission stated. "This issue was due to a human error in preparing the machines for the primary.

The 2008 Primary season has been wracked by allegations of vote fraud stemming from the use of unreliable and easily hackable voting machines belonging to Diebold and ES&S and other vendors.

New Hampshire was forced to carry out a state-wide manual recount after discrepancies emerged between hand counted and machine counted votes.

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