Thank you for visiting VoteAllegheny's website.

VoteAllegheny is a group of volunteers committed to ensuring that the citizens of the County of Allegheny, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, may participate in safe, reliable, accessible, recountable, voter-verifiable elections. Based on years of collective research, we offer ourselves as a citizens' advisory resource for documented information concerning voting machines and systems, dissemination of knowledge and presentation of seminars on voting and voting systems. We actively seek to forestall any chance of voting fraud or disenfranchisement, and work toward fair and free elections for all.

VoteAllegheny is proud to work with other organizations and citizen groups in Pennsylvania and as a part of VotePA.

Latest Issue: SB 563 - Please Vote NO!

Pennsylvania Senate Bill 563, introduced by Senator Stefano (who introduced a similar bill two years ago, which was substantially the same - but for one word - as a bill introduced two years prior to that), would provide "electronic voting" for our military and overseas personnel. VoteAllegheny's position is once again strongly opposed to any voters casting ballots "electronically," for many reasons, and we say the same thing as we said about the prior two bills.

Details: "military and overseas" voters include not only soldiers in trenches, but also embassy workers, NGO workers, teachers abroad, and others who would be voting from overseas. Again, this bill as its predecessors does not say whether the Commonwealth would receive the ballots or each county would receive them. It does not say how they would be received. It is in Appropriations, but if the counties are to pay for it, the Appropriations Committee may feel there is "no cost," and that the Internet is free. Notably, this new bill not only thinks such a thing can be implemented, but that it can be implemented 60 days following passage of the bill! It also has a deadline for implementation (which could be a conflict) of January 1, 2019, which seems to indicate that they expect the bill to move fast and the counties to move faster.

Worse than all of that, it creates a new definition, potentially setting a very dangerous precedent: where in 2015 it defined "Military-overseas ballot" as "An electronic ballot," the 2017 version defines "Military-overseas ballot" as "An electronic submission of a paper ballot."

We opposed the previous SB 976 in 2013, and were disappointed to see its reincarnation as SB 1052 of 2015. We are now intensely aggrieved and disappointed to see SB 563, especially to see cosponsors with whom we spoke the previous two times, and whose staff seemed to comprehend the many reasons we are opposed to this sort of bill. Haven't the senators noticed that the Internet has gotten less secure? Don't they remember that the last time they failed to provide a way for the counties to pay for this and a way to make it secure?

Don't they remember that the Voting Technology in Pennsylvania Committee of the Joint State Government Commission is due to issue a report about voting security in Pennsylvania very soon, which may well cover this matter, and certainly ought to at least mention it?

Remember, just before the 2015 bill was submitted, the good folks of Kentucky passed a bill denying this, as their election officials did not have a "secure" way to handle implementing the unfunded Commonwealth mandate for the counties. Honorable Senators of Pennsylvania, just vote "no"!

More information is here.

Everything we said before still obtains. This is not a gift to our troops in the trenches, it is an open invitation to the hackers of the world. Our press release of October 24, 2017, is here. Our old press release of December 21, 2015, is here. We will be issuing more.

Another Recent Issue: Referendum and Legislation

Click here for our special page and links regarding legislation some VoteAllegheny members have worked on drafting, which we encourage Allegheny County Council to pass.

Our Press Release dated August 10, 2017, is here.

Our Press Release dated August 5, 2017, is here. Our Press Release dated July 30, 2017, is here. Our Press Release dated July 17, 2017, is here.

Prior issue: Recount

Click here for our special page and links regarding recount of 2016 election.

Why should we scrutinize the voting machines we use in three-quarters of the counties in Pennsylvania?

Let’s count the reasons.

There is an intentional backdoor built in to the ES&S iVotronics, referred to as the Factory Test PEB, which lets someone override the software in the machine at will, leaving no trace.

Clint Curtis, of Florida, was asked to write a hack to shift votes on any electronic voting machines, undetectedly, to Republicans, as he testified.

Dan Rather did an expose on the manufacture of ES&S voting machines, in a third-world country, and the quality control used: shaking them and listening to the rattle.

Bob Ney, who introduced the Help America Vote Act, which set aside $4 billion for new machines, somehow made certain that his friends the Urosevich brothers – one brother the CEO of Diebold Voting Systems (now named Premier) and the other brother the CEO of ES&S Voting Systems – got the lion’s share of that money. The brothers were reportedly highly partisan in their politics, even while running private voting system companies. Bob Ney went to jail in the Abramoff scandal.

Some entrepreneurs made new voting systems to respond to the rolling standards and deadlines of the Help America Vote Act, but next to no one bought their systems, no matter how good, open, accessible, lightweight, inexpensive to operate, recountable, secure, or logically better. Allegheny County’s Executive at the time said that he wouldn’t want to buy from a new company, he wanted to buy the old technology being jerry-rigged by the older companies, even though they run old Windows, operate on Commodore 64 style systems, or have miserably slow and cumbersome accessibility for the vision-impaired.

Many computer professionals have shown that the machines are riggable. Ed Felten has a YouTube video in which he hacks the Diebold in mere minutes, undetectably, and the software added then deletes itself after changing the votes.

Alex Halderman, of the University of Michigan, has shown the foibles of many brands of machine (and also of Internet voting, quite graphically). Harri Hursti, Greg Palast, Robert F. Kennedy Jr., Barbara Simons, and others have hacked and have written about the foibles of the machines. Stephen Spoonamore has at least eight hours of YouTube testimony about these machines.

Mark Wolosik says that the software verification that only Allegheny County does is “proof” that they have not been hacked. But the verification is only that the hash of the program running matches the hash of the program we bought with the machines. It doesn’t say that the program works right! We have never known whether the programming works right! After the software verification, they send the machines back to ES&S to be rebuilt, and who knows what software they are installing! Additionally, for Mark to refer to the software verification as a “forensic audit,” as he did in December 2016, is quite incorrect. None of us knows what the software is doing. Period.

Venango County, Pennsylvania, had a forensic audit. (One report is on our site under Documentation - Current.) Essentially it proved that a forensic audit doesn’t show anything but that the software doesn’t necessarily work the way it is supposed to work.

The voting machines passed the extremely poor federal “certifications,” which are similar to Underwriters Laboratories’ certifications in that the machine maker pays the bill and we don't get the details. We do not know the software running, nor whether it counts accurately or reliably, because the software is proprietary. Maybe it was or maybe it was not changed in this election, but the evidence either way is that the machines are badly made.

Then the voting machines passed the state “certifications,” which in Pennsylvania only verify that they can do what Pennsylvania law requires, such as straight-party ballots. Actually, some of our state statutes were overlooked, or the Secretary of State issued memoranda that we were to overlook certain statutes in passing certain systems, or we could redefine what the statutes were calling for.

Speaking of certifications, attorney and professor Michael Shamos was a contractor for the Secretary of State in 2005-2006, certifying the voting systems for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. He is now testifying in court cases as a computer scientist that the machines are perfectly fine. He of course has a vested interest in saying nothing against the machines. We know of - and we have among our members - some computer scientists who would be able to testify objectively, but they would not serve the purposes of the government in protecting their own interests.

Much of this is touched upon within the pages of this site, and within the external links we have posted.

There is plenty of evidence that we should not trust any votes cast upon these unrecountable machines, in Pennsylvania and anywhere else. Don’t let them tell you otherwise.

This is a link to information on our Citizen to Voter to Elector: Pathway and Issues Chart.

This is a link directly to the Chart.