Primary votes might have ‘flipped’ |

Primary votes might have ‘flipped’

Patrick Parkinson, Of the Record staff

A local election activist says she is concerned that errors made Tuesday by poll workers and touch-screen voting machines could impact voter registration rolls.

"In at least one polling location in Summit County, poll workers [allowed] any unaffiliated voters [to] vote in the Republican primary without first taking the required step to fill out a registration form to register in the Republican Party," said Parkite Kathy Dopp, director of Utah Counts Votes, in a prepared statement.

Some voters in Salt Lake County, who are not affiliated with a political party, were denied "the right of unaffiliated voters to vote in the Democratic primary," according to Dopp.

"Unfortunately Utah election officials’ recent practice of keeping virtually all election records secret from the public, makes it difficult or impossible to investigate the extent of any incidences [of] ballot programming error, electronic ballot box stuffing, incorrect voter registration roll records, the frequency of vote-flipping, or vote miscount here in Utah," Dopp claims.

"Vote-flipping" occurs when a voter selects a candidate on a touch-screen device, but the electronic device marks a different candidate, Dopp explained.

Dopp frequently criticizes the Diebold electronic-voting machines used Tuesday in Summit County.

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Vote-flipping can occur when the machines are not properly calibrated or maintained, according to Dopp.

"As election officials are unlikely to report these problems to the press, and poll workers are often afraid to speak about them, I would expect that there are many more such problems occurring [in] Utah than I have heard about," she claims.