Despite multiple security mishaps, Secretary of State Brian Kemp has no interest in receiving help from the feds to make sure our state’s electronic voting system is safe.
I can’t say this any better than Tom Baxter, over at Saporta Report:
You might think that after being forced under the pressure of a law suit to admit that his office had allowed the personal information of more than 600,000 Georgia voters to be hacked, Secretary of State Brian Kemp would have been more receptive when the Department of Homeland Security offered to inspect the state’s electronic voting system for bugs and possible entryways for hackers.
Yes, the same Brian Kemp that accidentally leaked the records of every single registered Georgia voter. The same Brian Kemp that lost over 40,000 voter registrations — almost exclusively for low-income people of color, who were registering for the first time.
Zeynep Tufekci, a security expert out of the University of North Carolina, identified several deficits in Georgia’s electronic voting system. Georgia’s voting machines run on Windows 2000 software, on hardware that is over a decade old. They also provide no paper trail of the votes, making it harder to verify that votes are being accurately recorded.
Tufekci says, “The worry is, in a lot of states that are critical to the election — swing states — they don’t even have a paper trail that you can audit with. That’s really worrisome given how crucial elections are.”
The Department of Homeland Security offered to do security checks for states after it was revealed that Russian hackers accessed emails, important files, voicemails and other important content from the Democratic National Committee — content that has subsequently showed up on WikiLeaks, much to the embarrassment of the DNC.
Kemp believes the security concerns are nothing more than an attempt by the federal government to take over the election process, telling Nextgov, “The question remains whether the federal government will subvert the Constitution to achieve the goal of federalizing elections under the guise of security.”
The conservative blog-o-sphere is alight with allegations that this “could allow the government to determine the outcome of elections by literally having their hands in the voting machines.” The Department of Homeland Security is not exactly a bastion of bleeding heart liberals desperate to keep Democrats in power.
However, the DNC hack just brought to light what some academics have been warning for decades — hacking electronic voting machines is just too easy because of lax and outdated security protocols and old equipments.
Kemp has a history of leadership failure, impacting literally every voter in Georgia. Other than blindly finding every opportunity to take an obstinately anti-federal government stance, I am not sure what’s to be gained by refusing a security inspection for a system still running Windows 2000.