The following is a statement from Pamela Smith, President and CEO of Verified Voting, in support of Mississippi’s passage of new paper ballot legislation. The Mississippi Voting Modernization Act, signed by the governor on April 19, requires the use of voting systems that produce voter-verifiable paper ballots starting in 2024 and establishes a grant program to support counties in purchasing new voting systems. For additional media inquiries, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
PHILADELPHIA (April 25, 2022) — “With the passage of legislation that requires paper ballots, Mississippi has taken a critical step toward more secure and verifiable elections. Paper ballots bolster election security because they let voters verify that their votes are recorded correctly, and they can be audited after the election to confirm accurate counts. Paper ballots can also be fully recounted if needed in cases of close races, tabulation error or election interference,” said Pamela Smith, President and CEO of Verified Voting.
Mississippi is one of just six states that currently use direct-recording electronic voting machines (DREs) without paper ballots for all in-person voters in some or all counties. Three of the other states already have hard deadlines to replace those machines, and one more state is on course to do the same. With this new legislation in Mississippi, that leaves just one state, New Jersey, without a clear plan to replace its paperless DREs.
Verified Voting advocates for the use of paper ballots, preferably marked by hand with the option of ballot marking devices for those who need or prefer them, in conjunction with post-election audits to give voters justified confidence their votes are being counted as cast. More information on the importance of paper ballots and post-election audits can be found on Verified Voting’s website.