State to replace voting machines by 2020

Kumar Simms, South Hills Writer

2020 elections are coming up soon enough and, with them, the deadline to replace voting machinery in Pennsylvania.
In April, Governor Tom Wolf gave districts a due date of 2020 to upgrade to ballot machines that will actually leave a paper trail.
“We have a rush to 2020,” said State Sen. Bob Mensch, R-Montgomery.
Pennsylvania is one of 13 states where a most or all voter’s use machines that store ballots electronically without printed tallies or another paper-based back-up system. Such a system would enable officials to confirm that votes registered correctly.
Throughout the United States, districts began moving away from paper ballots after the Help America Vote Act of 2002 urged substitution of punch-card voting machines with Direct Recording Electronic, or DRE, systems.
Improved voting systems will be set up in all Pennsylvania districts before the finish of year 2020.
In brief, this is likely to build the ballot machines up to twenty first century benchmarks of security, analysis capacity and versatility.
As well as enabling voters to confirm their decisions before casting their votes.
Around 57 percent of the voters in Pennsylvania, including Philadelphians, are entering their tallies on machines that are dated and unsecured.
Moreover, they don’t give a paper record of each vote to protect against cheating.
Undoubtedly, fears about vulnerabilities in the voting structure, in any case, are swinging attention to a strikingly low-tech alternative – paper vote.
“The current voting equipment in counties works and can be audited. But new voting machines with paper ballots or voter-verifiable paper backup will improve auditability and augment security.” said Pennsylvania Secretary of State Robert Torres.
Centrally, Pennsylvania’s top election authorities are warning that neglecting to update its estimated 25,000 voting devices by next year’s elections, could leave the state as the only one without voter-verifiable paper systems.
Consequently, the state will use almost $14 million in government assets to introduce voter valid paper record voting machines.
Especially, at a time of national concern over foreign interference in U.S. elections, high significance is placed on adopting systems with auditable paper backups by 2020′s presidential elections.