Today United States District Court Judge Amy Totenberg issued a preliminary injunction in Curling v. Raffensperger preventing the state of Georgia from continuing to use its insecure paperless voting machines in elections after 2019. The lawsuit challenged the state’s use of the Accuvote TS voting machine. The court found that the paperless voting systems which have been used for almost two decades in Georgia were too vulnerable to hacking and manipulation to ensure a fair election and their use should be discontinued. Additionally, the court made note of serious security flaws in Georgia’s voter registration database and electronic poll book systems and ordered that the state adopt important failsafes to protect voters. These include paper backups of electronic poll books at each precinct, the development of plans and procedures for dealing with errors in the voter registration database, and the adoption of clear directions on the use of provisional ballots.
Common Cause filed a friend of the court brief in the case and today’s ruling builds on the relief obtained in a recent case Common Cause Georgia v. Raffensperger.
“This is a huge victory for Georgians, for the integrity of our elections and for election security champion Donna Curling and the plaintiffs in that case,” said Sara Henderson, Executive Director of Common Cause Georgia. “All Georgia voters will benefit from the reforms mandated by the Court. The reforms are long overdue.”
In addition to the many problems voters encountered trying to vote on the decades-old paperless voting machines, Georgia elections have also been fraught by faulty voter rolls as a number of voters who had voted in previous elections found their names and data had been suddenly deleted or their addresses had been changed. Common Cause, represented by the Brennan Center for Justice, sued the state to bring forward better cyber security practices and voter protections. Common Cause Georgia v. Raffensperger was settled recently when the state agreed to make significant concessions.