Court clarifies that voting must be able to continue uninterupted if voting machines fail, declines to prescribe amount required

In an amicus brief filed in the long-running Curling v. Raffensperger lawsuit, Common Cause asked United States District Judge Amy Totenberg to require paper ballots equal to 40% of registered voters at each polling site. That number was based on projections of ballot usage during peak voting times, so voters would be able to vote at their polling place even in cases of voting system failures lasting three hours.

In a decision issued tonight, Judge Totenberg declined to require a specific number of paper ballots.

Statement of Common Cause Georgia Executive Director Aunna Dennis


We are disappointed that the Court did not grant the relief we requested – namely that the state be required to provide emergency/provisional  paper ballots in the amount of 40% of registered voters on Election Day.  It’s clear that the demand for these ballots will be extremely high in this election and will far exceed the statutory minimum of 10%.

The Court did clarify that there should be enough emergency ballots provided  “so that voting may continue uninterrupted if emergency circumstances render the electronic ballot markers or printers unusable”.

We will be working constructively with the local election officials to ensure that on Election Day, no voter is denied the right to vote because of  failure to prepare the materials necessary.

Read tonight’s ruling here.