Video has emerged from Illinois of a “calibration error” that causes voting machines to switch votes from Republican to Democrat. The video, posted on YouTube, purportedly shows voting machines in the public library in Moline, IL registering votes as Democrat when the Republican is clearly the intended choice.
Several voters in Rock Island County have already claimed publicly about similar problems with local voting machines in early voting. One local voter, Christina Kirk, told local NBC News affiliate KWQC 6 last week: “When I went to cast my vote and touch the screen for my Republican candidate, the Democrat candidate was the one that would pop up with my x, even though I pressed the Republican candidate.”
The YouTube footage is the first visual report of the alleged problem with the voting machines. The error appears to occur when the voter’s finger is slightly off center in the Republican box, which appears below the Democrat box. It is apparently still possible to vote for the Republican candidate, and it is possible for a vigilant voter to correct the mistake and vote again, but a voter in a hurry might easily register a mistaken vote for the Democrat by mistake and fail to notice. The problem seems to recur throughout the ticket of races. (No test involving a voter trying to choose the Democratic candidate and selecting the Republican instead is shown.)
Former Rep. Bobby Schilling, who is running for his former seat in a district redrawn by Democrats after 2010, has held a press conference to tell reporters he that has heard many similar complaints throughout the county. The complaints mirror those of voters in Cook County, on the other side of the state, where GOP state representative candidate Jim Moynihan tried to vote for himself and the machine cast his vote for his opponent.
The Cook County Clerk’s office told non-profit monitor Illinois Watchdog that the voting machine experienced a “calibration error” that “improperly assigned” Moynihan’s vote. A similar calibration error seems to be at issue in Rock Island County. Schilling claimed last week to have received “17 calls of people saying the exact same thing.”
Senior Editor-at-Large Joel B. Pollak edits Breitbart California and is the author of the new ebook, Wacko Birds: The Fall (and Rise) of the Tea Party, available for Amazon Kindle.
Follow Joel on Twitter: @joelpollak