Judge Orders Paper-Based Georgia Elections For 2020 Onward

Aug 19, 2019

Federal Judge Amy Totenberg has ruled Georgia will use its outdated voting machines for one more election.  Then, it’s time for a change. 

Georgia is currently one of five states that relies on electronic voting machines, but officials are currently working to implement a new $107 million ballot-marking device system that includes touchscreen machines with a printed paper ballot component.

A lawsuit filed in 2017 says the current touchscreen direct-recording electronic (DRE) voting system is outdated, flawed, and insecure. The ultimate goal of the legal challenge is to move Georgia to hand-marked paper ballots, though Totenberg has denied that request for the last two years.

After the 2019 election cycle, the judge ruled DREs cannot be used. If the state does not implement its new voting system in time for the March 24, 2020 presidential primary election, Totenberg ordered the state to have a backup plan of hand-marked paper ballots ready to go. 


A new complaint filed last week also challenges the use of the ballot-marking devices, arguing they contain the same vulnerabilities that may be present in the current outdated system.