Report: Judge, Georgia Asst. AG appear to defend Dominion Voting Systems in hearing

by WorldTribune Staff, December 21, 2021

During a hearing on a petition to ban the future use in the state of Georgia of the Dominion Democracy Suite 5.5 system, the judge and the state’s assistant attorney general appeared to side with Dominion Voting Systems, a report said.

Voters Organized for Trusted Election Results (VOTERGA) and state Rep. Philip Singleton filed a petition against the state to permanently ban the Dominion Democracy Suite 5.5 system that was used in the contested 2020 election.

Petitioners in Georgia seek to ban future use in the state of the Dominion Democracy Suite 5.5 system.

The petition stated that the system is unverifiable to the elector because it accumulates electors’ choices hidden in a Quick Response (QR) code that violates Georgia law.

That finding was also made on Oct. 11, 2020 in a U.S. District Court order in the case Curling v. Raffensperger.

Under Georgia law voting systems must:

“…print an elector verifiable paper ballot” [O.C.G.A. § 21-2-2(7.1]);

“…produce paper ballots which are marked with the elector’s choices in a format readable by the elector” [O.C.G.A. § 21-2-300(a)(2])

Judge Amy Totenberg found in the Curling case: “Plaintiffs and other voters who wish to vote in-person are required to vote on a system that does none of those things.”

On Dec. 15, Fulton County Superior Court Judge Kimberly Esmond Adams held a hearing on the state’s motion to dismiss the earlier ruling, the The Georgia Record reported.

Assistant Attorney General Charlene McGowan argued on behalf of the state to dismiss the complaint “on grounds of sovereign immunity, laches and inadequate requested declaratory relief,” the report said.

The Georgia Record contended that “all three of the arguments are based on the false claim that Petitioners want to challenge the original purchase of the system. In reality, the complaint simply seeks to ban the system from future use. Thus, there are no legitimate grounds to dismiss the case.”

When the Petitioner’s attorney, Todd Harding, presented his response, Judge Adams “interrupted him 8 times in 4 minutes with questions not relevant to the purpose of the hearing which was to consider the merits of the motion to dismiss,” the report said.

The Georgia Record report included a video (see below) in which it says at least a dozen “false statements” were made by McGowan:

02:10 False Statement #1

“Petitioners… asked the court to enjoin the state’s electronic voting equipment that was selected by the General Assembly…”

The General Assembly did not select voting equipment in HB316, the Secretary of State selected the specific, current voting system.

02:20 False Statement #2

“and replace the system with hand marked paper ballots”

The VoterGA petition asks the court to ban the system, it does not advocate for any specific replacement.

02:25 False Statement #3

“Not only that, it is contrary to Georgia law.”

The petition conforms to Georgia law that requires the system to “print an elector verifiable paper ballot” that is “…marked with elector’s choices in a format readable by the elector.”

05:40 False Statement #4

“Their complaint really comes down to the fact that the machine–readable code also exists on the paper ballots.”

The petition does not complain that the machine-readable code exists on the paper, only that it contains voter choices that cannot be verified according to Georgia law.

05:45 False Statement #5

“This is their entire argument. This is what the case is about.”

The Petitioner’s “entire argument” is not related to the existence of the QR code but the illegality of the QR code containing voter choices as determined by the U.S. District Court.

06:30 False Statement #6

“The only sensible reading of the election code is there has to be some sort of machine readable coding on the paper ballot.”

The election code does not require machine-readable coding on any ballot.

06:40 False Statement #7

“The scanner has to read some sort of code.”

A voting system scanner does not have to read some sort of QR code to tabulate votes. Two of the four voting systems proposed for Georgia use digital mark sense techniques for tabulation.

07:25 False Statement #8

“The legislation really requires the use of a QR code.”

The HB316 enabling legislation for Ballot Marking Devices does not require the use of a QR code.

07:30 False Statement #9

“…there has to be a code that can be read by the scanners.”

An electronic system of voting does not require a coding system because the scanner can use optical or digital character recognition to determine voter choices.

07:50 False Statement #10

“This is an unfounded concern because when the paper ballot is scanned by the scanner it then produces an audit report.”

The voter’s concern is legitimate because the voter has no access to the scanning “audit report” and thus it cannot provide a voter with any sense of security.

09:45 False Statement #11

“…The Georgia system does comply with every relevant aspect of the election code.”

The U.S. District Court already found that the Georgia system does not comply with two separate code sections of Georgia law: O.C.G.A. § 21-2-2(7.1), O.C.G.A. § 21-2-300(a)(2)

10:35 False Statement #12

“…There is no legal basis for any court to order counties to use paper ballots…”

The Petitioners’ complaint seeks no mandatory remedy for hand marked paper ballots or other alternatives, it only seeks to ban the existing system that was found to be illegal.

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