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Cheh To Ask Court To Weigh In On Election Debacle

D.C. Council member Mary M. Cheh is trying to get Superior Court to force Sequoia Voting Systems to adhere to the council's subpoena power. She is expected to file a motion in court tomorrow with the assistance of pro bono counsel Jenner & Block.

As chairman of special investigative committee, Cheh served the California-based company with a subpoena to get more information about how thousands of phantom votes appeared in initial tallies of the District primary in September.

The company runs the District's elections systems.

The company and an internal panel at the Board of Election and Ethics found human error and glitches to be contributing factors to the phantom votes but could not pinpoint the problem.

According to a press release issued by Cheh's office today, "The subpoena, originally served on September 18, 2008 requires Sequoia Voting Systems to provide certain information to the Special Committee, most significantly, voting machines source code. Source code is the computer language that allows voting machines to operate."

"Sequoia's source code is critical to our investigation," Cheh said in the release. "We can't move forward without it. The Special Committee has spoken to all of the people who ran the election, now we need to look at the software that administered it."

This item has been updated since first posted.

By Nikita R Stewart  |  April 22, 2009; 3:28 PM ET
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