Georgia Secretary of State and gubernatorial candidate Brian Kemp confirmed that Georgia’s voting system is accurate and secure after a recent test performed by his office in November.
“As provided under Georgia law, I responded to a request made by ten electors to conduct an examination of Georgia’s current voting equipment to test its accuracy and security,” Kemp said in a statement. “After a thorough examination, the team’s recommendation is that the system is accurate and safe for continued use. I am confident that the current system, which is tested by experts for every election, continues to properly capture and reflect all voters’ choices.”
The test was conducted over a three-day period on November 27, 2017 in Muscogee County, November 28, in Richmond County, and November 29, in Bibb County. Kemp says these counties were selected for geographic diversity, varying population size, and the fact that they were not conducting or preparing to conduct any elections at the time.
The process involved a mock election with randomly selected votes on randomly selected equipment. The voting equipment operated in “election mode” using a Global Election Management System database created from the same equipment which produces the databases for actual Georgia elections. There was an exact and perfect reporting of all votes cast on all tested devices. Based on these results, the examination team found that the voting system could be safely and accurately used.
However, Kemp says he remains a supporter of a new voting system with a verifiable paper trail.
“To further increase resiliency and update an aging system, I completely support moving to a new system with a voter verifiable paper trail,” said Kemp. “My office is on the record that Georgia should aim to have that system in place by the 2020 election cycle. We took the first steps toward this goal with last year’s successful pilot project in Conyers, and that is why I have also formed a bipartisan commission tasked with analyzing the existing options and costs for a new voting system. I look forward to presenting our findings to the General Assembly and Georgia’s next Secretary of State in 2019.”
Kemp is a candidate for governor and faces five other republican challengers in the May 22 primary election.