Electronic voting machines (DREs)

Also on Dec. 14, the Congressional Research Service (CRS) released a study on the direct recording electronic voting machine, or DRE. Most voting systems in the U.S. use computers in some way, CRS reports, and the most computerized is the DRE where votes are recorded directly onto computer memory devices. DREs have been used since the early 1990s but concerns about their security and reliability sharply increased from 2003 because of two factors: (1) DREs provide the only voting system that meets the requirements of the Help America Vote Act of 2002 (HAVA, PL 107-252, PDF, 212KB, 66p., from GPO) to permit the disabled to vote, and (2) potential security problems were publicized. CRS feels there has been confusion about what the problems of DREs are, and this confusion can lead to misperceptions of the issues and the options to resolve them. Closely linked with the use of DREs is the voter-verified paper audit trail (VVPAT), and this study addresses both.

For earlier FR posts on electronic voting, see here, here, and here.

The Direct Recording Electronic Voting Machine (DRE) Controversy: FAQs and Misperceptions, CRS report, RL 33190
(available in PDF, 96KB, 20p., from Open CRS)

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