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Audit shows ballot counting devices performed accurately during state's 2022 primary

picture of legs inside of voting booth in Newfields
Dan Tuohy
/
NHPR
Voters in Newfields cast their ballots during the 2022 primary election.

A review of the electronic ballot counting machines used in two towns during Tuesday’s primary election has come back clean.

The New Hampshire Secretary of State’s office performed an audit of AccuVote machines used in Hopkinton and Laconia Ward 1, finding the machine tallies matched a hand count as well as a different model of ballot counting device.

[Click here to read the audit results]

The audit was mandated under a bipartisan bill passed this year, SB366, aimed at increasing confidence in the accuracy of the AccuVote, the only machine approved to count ballots in New Hampshire. Some supporters of former President Donald Trump have claimed without evidence that the machines are vulnerable to inaccuracies or malware.

In Laconia, the machine count and the partial hand count performed on Thursday by a bipartisan committee were in perfect unison. In Hopkinton, the tallies were off by three votes out of more than 1,300 due to ballots jamming in the machine, according to a note in the audit results released Friday.

Following the general election in November, the secretary of state’s office will conduct an audit on machines in four randomly selected towns. The office says the ballot reviewing methods used by auditors this week will be replicated.

Since the 2020 election, residents in towns across the state have been asked to weigh in on if they want to continue using AccuVote machines after opponents of the machines have gathered enough signatures to get the question on municipal ballots. In town after town, voters have reaffirmed their faith in the machines, which do not connect to the internet and have been in use for years in the state.

Todd started as a news correspondent with NHPR in 2009. He spent nearly a decade in the non-profit world, working with international development agencies and anti-poverty groups. He holds a master’s degree in public administration from Columbia University.
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