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More on Those Voting Machines in Ohio

By Mary Pat Flaherty
The voting machine wars in Ohio continue.

Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner is assuring voters in the battleground state that November's tally will be accurate even as she asserts -- in court filings Wednesday -- that there is a problem with the touch screen machines that will be used in half of the state's 88 counties.

Premier Election Solutions, formerly Diebold, said in May that its machines had some problems tabulating votes. But the company has contended in court filings that it had fulfilled its contract to deliver an electronic system.

During the May primary, Brunner said officials in Butler County, north of Cincinnati, realized that 150 votes were dropped when they were being transferred from memory cards. When Brunner looked into it, she found that the software problem had come up in 11 counties. No vote was lost, she said, because local officials had caught the discrepancies.

Voters "should not be alarmed," Brunner said in an interview today, because the state will develop and pass on to counties ways to detect and resolve the problem.

Premier investigated the Butler County incident and said in May that the problem could have been caused by the interaction between its software and an anti-virus software.

Calls to a Premier spokesman were not returned today.

Brunner, saying the machines were delivered with the antivirus software in place, is seeking punitive damages from the company. She has advocated converting Ohio to paper balloting, arguing that it is more reliable, but was rebuffed by the state legislature.

By Washington Post Editors  |  August 7, 2008; 7:44 PM ET
Categories:  Battlegrounds  
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