The Girl Scouts should be counting our votes. – Lulin Simpson
During the public comment segment of the Sandoval County Commission Regular Meeting on Sept. 28, several residents expressed deep concern for the integrity of voting machines and voting in general.
This has been an issue at nearly every regular meeting so far this year.
“We want to do the right thing and undo the wrong. Our goals are to get rid of the drop box system, require voter ID and the removal of electronic tabulators,” said John Veltri.
He and several fellow detractors are taking this issue to the New Mexico State Legislature. They want the commissioners to support them.
According to the Secretary of State’s website, electronic voting has been around since the ’70s and was initially started to cut costs and speed up the response time of votes. Final results are statistically and historically delayed with paper ballot methods. It also showed that voter turnout increased when electronic voting was introduced.
Electronic voting is also used in the House of Representatives at both state and national levels.
But all these benefits are a moot point for Veltry and his group. The integrity of voting is threatened, they say, because the machines used here in Sandoval are supposedly not certified.
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, after the 2000 presidential election and the 2002 Help America Vote Act (HAVA), most election jurisdictions in the country replaced older mechanical lever voting machines and punch card voting systems with one of two kinds of systems: Direct Recording Electronic (DRE) voting machines or optical scan paper ballot systems. A few small jurisdictions hand count paper ballots as well.
They also say that 25 states require testing by a federally accredited laboratory including New Mexico. All systems are tested at the state level and then purchased by local jurisdictions.
However, several of the speakers at the general meeting claimed that this has not happened for the systems in Sandoval County.
“We are not going away. We realized we are living under a fascist regime. It is time for a dialogue between you and us. Shame on all of you who have sold us out. We are tired of being played. I loved watching the Girl Scouts, I was one myself, but the Girl Scouts should be counting our votes and if you get rid of dominion you can pay for the Girl Scouts,” Lulin Simpson said, referring to the Girl Scouts who presented the flags at the start of the meeting.