RALEIGH, N.C. (WBTV) — The North Carolina chapter of the NAACP issued a statement Monday night raising questions after a number of voters reported irregularities on touch screen voting machines across the state.
“The North Carolina NAACP has now received reports from NC NAACP membership in at least 5 counties that, in some instances, electronic voting machines may be malfunctioning and improperly identifying a voters’ selected choice as a choice for a different candidate,” a press release from the organization read. “Voters report that they have experienced this problem voting on ballot items that include, but are not limited to, the Presidential ballot.”
The release stated that in all reported cases voters corrected their ballots after noticing the problem.
A spokesman for the North Carolina State Board of Elections (NCSBE) said the agency had received multiple reports of irregularities involving touch screen voting machines by late Monday afternoon, but had not been able to substantiate any of them.
Patrick Gannon, the NCSBE spokesman, said voters are encouraged to raise their hand and flag an election official as soon as they encounter a problem voting.
Poll workers have been instructed to immediately stop the voting and take the machine out of service if they see a problem that cannot be corrected, Gannon said. Election officials also have special tools to help people cast their ballots using a touch screen that are available upon request.
Gannon also recommended voters review their ballot using the on-screen summary tool at the end of their voting session. Each vote is also tracked manually on paper underneath glass on the tough-screen voting machine; that can also be used to confirm your vote was cast for the intended candidate.
On Your Side Investigates received multiple calls from people who said they had heard about voting irregularities in Mecklenburg, Rowan and Buncombe counties but was unable to substantiate any of the claims.
According to the NCSBE, Rowan County doesn’t use electronic voting machines.
In response to the reported voting irregularities, the NAACP sent a letter to state voting officials Monday night asking new signage be placed in polling locations reminding voters to confirm their ballot selections and to also make paper ballots available for those who request them.
“In every election, there are cases where electronic machinery has problems,” the NAACP statement read. “We ask the State Board to alert voters immediately of what efforts are being made to remove or fix malfunctioning machines.”
Gannon said each voting machine is recalibrated every day and the machines are certified by NCSBE inspectors.