Last year, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams was barely edged out by longtime Republican politician Brian Kemp, who worked for the state of Georgia as its secretary of state and its chief elections official.
Even though Abrams brought home the W, she and her political friends publicly claimed that Kemp’s party suppressed people belonging to minorities from voting, among other allegations.
Kemp and company have consistently shot down even the most remote possibility of that cluster of allegations being true.
Such controversy in Georgia’s gubernatorial race has prompted computer security experts, advocates of democratic governments that operate with integrity, and even a statewide commission of relevant experts to peer into the potential flaws that Georgia’s old, rusty election system possesses.
Criticisms of Georgia’s statewide voting infrastructure have been floating around since 2002
Georgia has done away with paper ballots for nearly 20 years. While electronic voting systems sound far more secure than their papyrus-based counterparts, they’re actually quite vulnerable to being tainted by mission-minded cybercriminals.
Currently, no vote checks, confirmations, or audits can be conducted on votes cast throughout the state of Georgia. Paper-ballot voting systems have the benefit of being able to be audited, not to mention being able to recount votes in case elections are too close or counted incorrectly.
Lawsuits have been filed against the state of Georgia regarding its insecure electronic voting system
Supported by Ms. Abrams, the nonprofit organization Fair Fight Action submitted a lawsuit contesting the outcome of the 2018 gubernatorial race in the state of Georgia. Filed shortly after the election ended in mid-November, the case is still going through the motions that all cases filed in courts of law go through.
Back in September, United States District Court Judge Amy Totenberg entered an opinion on the status of Georgia’s voting system, sharing that “a mounting tide of evidence” points to its statewide polling network being highly susceptible to outside attacks and other major issues that undermine that democratic process. Totenberg chose not to force Georgia to return to using paper ballots in the 2018 midterm elections because they were just a few months away at the time, though she is pushing for Georgia to revamp its system before the next election cycle.
The members of Secure, Accessible, and Fair Elections, a committee dedicated to overhauling the existing outdated system that was created by Kemp, believe the state can choose a reliable alternative before 2020 rolls around.