New Florida bill proposes hand-counting ballots for elections

A Florida lawmaker, State Representative Berny Jacques, has proposed a bill to remove technology from the ballot counting process and allow hand-counting of ballots at election precincts. This proposal is in response to claims of widespread voter fraud related to voting machines in the wake of the 2020 election. Jacques’ bill would also prevent the use of voting machines with hardware or software designed, owned, or licensed by foreign corporations.

While some believe that hand-counting ballots at the precinct level in a controlled setting may be a more accurate way of tabulating votes, others, like Hillsborough County Supervisor of Elections Craig Latimer, believe it is impractical, especially for large counties.

The non-partisan organization Verified Voting has also expressed concerns about the expansion of hand counting, stating that it could have a negative impact on accuracy and cause a slow-down in reporting election results, ultimately undermining public confidence.

Despite these concerns, hand counts are already required in Florida when race results are extremely tight.

The proposal will be taken up when the legislative session begins next month. In Florida, voting machines are tested before and after elections for accuracy and security.

Overall, the debate over the use of voting technology versus hand-counting ballots reflects ongoing discussions about election integrity and the best methods for ensuring accurate and transparent electoral processes.

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