Local clerks are publicly testing voting machines, so you can understand how they work

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Posted at 9:16 PM, Jul 21, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-21 22:06:26-04

BYRON TOWNSHIP, Mich. — It’s not Byron Township Clerk Peggy Sattler’s first public test of election equipment, but with some continuing to cast doubt on the security of the November election there are certainly more eyeballs on the process, this go-around.

“It has been a little frustrating because we did spend quite a few months before the election trying to educate the voters on how transparent everything is, and that there are checks and balances,” Sattler said of those making unsubstantiated election fraud claims. “Then the November election came along, and then we were right back in again trying to explain this.”

Those checks and balances were all part of Wednesday’s public “logic and accuracy test,” performed at each jurisdiction in Kent County ahead of the Aug. 3 election.

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The test allows local clerks and election officials to give members of the public a close look at how votes are processed, secured and sent in the tabulator machines. They also show how they are tipped off to any potential discrepancies or issues with the ballot.

For people like Grandville resident Nick Brock, it’s shedding new light on the whole process.

“I didn't have a fear that something nefarious or wrong was happening. However, it really made me examine like, 'Okay, how does my vote actually go through this process?'” Brock said of election security concerns in the wake of the November election.

He’s now watched two public accuracy tests of the voting equipment and thinks anyone with concerns should see the tests for themselves.

“I think it would help a lot for people to really see with their eyes what's happening, to hear what's going on from the clerks, and maybe that will help those who are kind of in the middle one way or the other, kind of jump over that threshold and say, 'Okay, we can trust our vote' in Kent County or Ottawa County or wherever within the state of Michigan,” Brock added.

If you are interested in viewing the process, there are a few more tests scheduled to close out the month of July.

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