Alabama Supreme Court blocks order to preserve digital voting records

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Following an eleventh-hour order instructing voting officers in Alabama to maintain the digital ballots generated in Tuesday’s controversial Senate election, the state’s Supreme Courtroom has issued a keep to dam that call.

The order to protect the information was issued by the Montgomery County Circuit Courtroom on Monday afternoon — lower than 24 hours earlier than voting was set to start — and the keep that can successfully nullify that order was issued late Monday night time.

“All counties using digital poll scanners within the Dec. 12, 2017 election are hereby ordered to set their voting machines to avoid wasting all processed pictures with the intention to protect all digital poll pictures,” the Montgomery County order said.

Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill and Alabama state election administrator Ed Packard are named as defendants within the swimsuit, which was introduced earlier than the Montgomery County courtroom by 4 Alabama voters. Initially filed on Thursday of final week, it cited the state-level election system hacking that the Division of Homeland Safety notified 21 states together with Alabama of this September in arguing that the state ought to maintain onto the digital file of votes for at the least six months fairly than destroy them.

As is usually the case, state election practices are a bit complicated. As AL.com experiences, the state is required to maintain the paper ballots which can be digitized to tabulate the vote. Priscilla Duncan, the lawyer who represented the 4 Alabama voters named within the case, argued that whereas these paper ballots are stored for 22 months, “the paper ballots aren’t actually what’s counted” and solely an unlikely state-wide recount would seek the advice of the paper ballots.

In accordance with AL.com, “at four:32 p.m. Monday, attorneys for Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill and Ed Packard, the state administrator of elections, filed an ’emergency movement to remain’ that order, which the state Supreme Courtroom granted minutes after Merrill and Packard’s movement was filed.”

The swimsuit arguing that the information ought to be saved just isn’t itself a sign of suspicion across the integrity of Alabama’s elections or proof of any type of foul play. Nonetheless, relating to the very uneven election safety measures in U.S. elections, extra information are by no means a foul factor.

A full listening to for the case is about for December 21, however the state has a inexperienced gentle to proceed destroying its digital voting information till that point.

Featured Picture: Joe Raedle / Getty Photographs/Getty Photographs

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