Vote 2020. Red, white, and blue voting pin in 2020 with Vote text. 3d render.

Were voting machines in Georgia seized and tampered with?

As President Donald Trump and his supporters struggle to hold on to power through unproven claims of voter fraud, Georgia officials are once again debunking a firestorm of social media rumors.

The Georgia Secretary of State’s Office said Monday there is no truth to allegations circulating in social media that voting machines in Ware County had been seized or that they somehow revealed tampering.

“This is another of the falsehoods being pedaled by conspiracy advocates trying to convince the gullible of why the presidential election didn’t turnout as they’d hoped,” said Walter Jones, the office’s communications manager for voter education and a conservative former journalist. “No voting machines have been seized. No one has unearthed evidence of ‘vote flipping’ because it didn’t happen. And no one has discovered some secret algorithm for altering the election outcome because that’s nonsense.”

A statewide hand recount as part of a post-election audit resulted in a difference of 37 additional votes for the president in Ware County. That totals 0.26 percent, well below the average 1% to 2% variation demonstrated by academic research when comparing the accuracy of manual counts compared to machine counts because of normal human error.

According to the secretary of state’s office, the small vote change is evidence of humans being less precise than machines at counting. Allegations that the small difference somehow proves the machines flipped votes is irresponsible and reckless, Jones said.

According to Jones, the results of the hand recount statewide would have showed a consistent variation similar to the one in Ware County if there had been a secret algorithm. Instead, the hand recount showed the machine totals substantially reflected the plain text printed on the ballots.

Ware County Election Supervisor Carlos Nelson pooh-poohed the conspiracy theory as instead a “human-error tabulation issue.”

“I can tell you this is — I don’t want to cuss — this is a darned lie. Our vote machines are secure. There’s no vote-flips,” he told Politico on Monday.

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