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A Review of Voting Machines in South Carolina
March 2013

REPORT (PDF)    SUMMARY (PDF)

The former President Pro Tempore of the South Carolina Senate requested a review of the voting machines used in South Carolina. He was concerned about the reliability of the machines and the lack of paper trail to confirm voting results. Our audit objectives were to:

  • Evaluate the voting machines currently in use in South Carolina and identify issues or concerns with the current system.
  • Determine if the training provided to election officials is adequate and appropriate.
  • Determine alternatives to the current voting machines and identify issues or concerns with those systems.

The State Election Commission (SEC) is the state’s chief election agency, and is responsible for overseeing election processes in the state. The SEC provides oversight to county and municipal elections officials which includes assistance, training, and providing voter registration and election materials. In 2004 and 2005, the SEC purchased Election Systems & Software (ES&S) iVotronic voting machines that South Carolina currently uses for its statewide voting system. The iVotronic is a direct-recording electronic (DRE) machine that does not produce a voter-verified paper audit trail (VVPAT). Using federal and state funds, the SEC purchased 9,393 iVotronic touch screen voting machines totaling $28,132,035 and 2,005 ADA-approved iVotronic machines for a total of $6,405,975.