All of Georgia’s electronic voting machines are being replaced before the March 24 presidential primary. The new voting system uses touchscreens, printed-out paper ballots and ballot scanners. Step 1 Voters check in at their precincts with an iPad that scans their driver’s license or another form of photo ID. Then voters can use their finger to sign-in on the screen. Step 2 A 21.5-inch touchscreen displays candidates and referendums. Voters make their choices on the touchscreen, called a ballot marking device, which, includes accessibility options such as enlarged text and headphones. Step 3 Next to the touchscreen, an HP printer produces a paper ballot. The ballot includes a text listing of voters’ choices along with a bar code that can be read by an optical scanning machine. Voters can review their choices and request a new ballot if needed. Step 4 The ballot is inserted into the scanner for vote tabulation. Ballots are accepted whether they’re face-up or face-down, forward or backward. The scanning machine displays a message saying “ballot successfully cast,” and the ballot is stored in a locked box that can later be opened for recounts or audits. Mark Niesse Georgia Government Reporter The Atlanta Journal-Constitution 404-526-2848 Twitter: @markniesse

How Georgia’s new voting machines work

All of Georgia's electronic voting machines are being replaced with a new voting system before the March 24 presidential primary.

The new voting equipment prints out paper ballots, providing a way to check electronic results after years of complaints of alleged voting irregularities and security issues.

Georgia was the first state in the nation to switch to all electronic voting machines in 2002. 

The new voting system uses touchscreens, printed-out paper ballots and ballot scanners. Here’s how they work. 

1. Check-in

09/16/2019 -- Atlanta, Georgia -- Voters check in at their precincts with an iPad that scans their driver's license or other form of photo ID when using the new Georgia voting machines at the James H. "Sloppy" Floyd building in Atlanta, Monday, September 16, 2019. (Alyssa Pointer/alyssa.pointer@ajc.com)
Photo: Alyssa Pointer

Voters check in at their precincts with an iPad that scans their driver’s license or another form of photo ID. Then voters can use their fingers to sign in on the screen.

2. Vote

09/16/2019 -- Atlanta, Georgia -- The new Georgia voting machine at the James H. "Sloppy" Floyd building in Atlanta, Monday, September 16, 2019. A 21.5-inch touchscreen displays a ballot that voters can use to make their choices for candidates. The touchscreen, called a ballot marking device, includes accessibility options such as enlarged text and a brail touchpad. (Alyssa Pointer/alyssa.pointer@ajc.com)
Photo: Alyssa Pointer

A 21.5-inch touchscreen displays candidates and referendums. Voters make their choices on the touchscreen, called a ballot marking device, which includes accessibility options such as enlarged text and headphones.

3. Review choices

09/16/2019 -- Atlanta, Georgia --An informative box is displayed ballot making box before a voter can print their ballot at the James H. "Sloppy" Floyd building in Atlanta, Monday, September 16, 2019. Chris Harvey, director of elections division for the Georgia Secretary of State, and Scott Tucker, customer relations manger for Dominion Voting, gave a demonstration of the new Georgia voting machines. (Alyssa Pointer/alyssa.pointer@ajc.com)
Photo: Alyssa Pointer

Voters can choose to review the candidates they selected on the screen or print out their ballot 

4. Print ballot

09/16/2019 -- Atlanta, Georgia -- Breanna Thomas, Election liaison for the Georgia Secretary of State, uses the new Georgia voting machines at the James H. "Sloppy" Floyd building in Atlanta, Monday, September 16, 2019. (Alyssa Pointer/alyssa.pointer@ajc.com)
Photo: Alyssa Pointer

Next to the touchscreen, a printer produces a paper ballot.  

5. Check printed ballot

09/16/2019 -- Atlanta, Georgia -- Breanna Thomas, Election liaison for the Georgia Secretary of State, looks over her ballot after using the new Georgia voting machine at the James H. "Sloppy" Floyd building in Atlanta, Monday, September 16, 2019. Next to the touchscreen, an HP printer creates a paper ballot. The ballot includes a text listing of voters' choices along with a bar code that can be read by an optical scanning machine. Voters can review their choices for accuracy and request a new ballot if needed. (Alyssa Pointer/alyssa.pointer@ajc.com)
Photo: Alyssa Pointer

The ballot includes a text listing of voters’ choices along with a bar code that can be read by an optical scanning machine. Voters can review their choices and request a new ballot if needed.

6. Scan 

09/16/2019 -- Atlanta, Georgia -- Chris Harvey, director of elections division for the Georgia Secretary of State, shows off the new Georgia voting machines during a demonstration at the James H. "Sloppy" Floyd building in Atlanta, Monday, September 16, 2019. (Alyssa Pointer/alyssa.pointer@ajc.com)
Photo: Alyssa Pointer

The ballot is inserted into the scanner for vote tabulation. Ballots will be accepted whether they're face-up or face-down, forward or backward. The scanner is position on top of a black ballot box that can later be unlocked for recounts or audits.

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More election and voting issues coverage

>> Related: Georgia’s new $107M voting system certified for use in elections

>> Related: Georgia ranks high in voter cancellations and new registrations

>> Related: New Georgia voting system will be tested in 6 counties in November

>> Related: Georgia buys new voting machines for 2020 presidential election

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