New voting computers are being rolled out to all in-person Georgia voters in the state’s June 9 primary, adding a paper ballot to elections for the first time in 18 years.
The voting equipment uses touchscreens that are similar to what voters are familiar with.
But unlike Georgia’s previous voting system the touchscreens don’t store votes. Instead, they’re connected to printers that create paper paper ballots, providing a way to check electronic results after years of complaints of alleged voting irregularities and security issues.
Voters will have the opportunity to check their printed-out paper ballots before depositing them into ballot scanners. Then ballots will be preserved in locked ballot boxes.
Here’s how the voting system works:
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.
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
Voters can choose to review the candidates they selected on the screen or print out their ballot
4. Print ballot
Next to the touchscreen, a printer produces a paper ballot.
5. Check printed 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.
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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