Candidates Are in the Best Position to Protect Their Election; Send This Letter to Insist They Do So

6 mins read
Photo credit: Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism via Creative Commons

Dear ____________ (candidate)

As an election security advocate, I want to make you’re aware of some important points about the computer systems that will count your votes so that you can help protect your own election from errors and malfeasance. Both voters and candidates deserve to have their votes counted accurately, yet only candidates can initiate key protocols to validate results. I want you to be prepared to stand up for the voters of our community if necessary!

  1. Computer-tallied election results are essentially unverified. Only about half the states audit Federal elections. In many states, primary results are not audited at all. Only 17 states audit absentee (vote-by-mail) ballots, further risking the accuracy of 2020 results.
  2. Computer voting systems are legally protected from independent inspection because they are corporate property. Voters, candidates, and even election officials cannot see how these systems count.
  3. There is a recurrent pattern of electronic counting anomalies. In the following elections, a preponderance of evidence indicates deliberate theft. (Note: Theft is difficult to prove because conclusive proof, e.g. electronic files or ballots, is often missing or unavailable.)

Arizona, 2006: Pima County illegally altered the programming on memory cards controlling precinct ballot scanners, causing the scanners to print false results. Central count database files containing election results were also illegally altered. Court filing (see especially p. 54).

Tennessee, 2015: In Shelby county, 40% of votes from Black precincts in Memphis were not counted. Other precincts were counted at 100%.

Georgia, 2018: 127,000 votes in the Lt. Governor race were missing from ballots cast by voters in Black precincts. The high drop-off rate for Lt. Governor was not observed in other precincts. Amicus Brief: substantial evidence of computer anomalies.

  1. I urge you to
    • Ensure all ballots are counted even if you are projected to lose.
    • VERIFY results to the extent allowed by law. Use recount/audit protocols, insist on hand-counts over machine counts, and do not concede before challenges resolve. 
    • Familiarize yourself with the red flags that often precede stolen elections, so that you can respond quickly if necessary. AUDIT Elections USA, an experienced election security litigator, lists red flags in its candidate guide.
    • Consider enlisting volunteers to photograph poll tapes and audit ballot images generated by digital ballot scanners. Scrutineers trains volunteers to protect elections in their jurisdictions.
    • Advocate for expanding robust manual audits of absentee/mail ballots. 

Please see the next page for more information.

Thank you,

[your name]

Further reading & references: 

Florida, 2012: Palm Beach County municipal elections were incorrectly tabulated by ballot scanners causing the wrong candidates to be declared the winners.

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