Re: “Here’s how Jerry Brown can help protect vulnerable people, voting integrity and local control” (Editorials, Sept. 28) and “Brown should help ensure election integrity by signing this bill” (Another View, Sept. 30): With recent news of Russian scanning of state technology websites, this is not the time to reduce California’s manual 1 percent audit practice, which is designed to detect errors or manipulations in vote-counting software.
Assembly Bill 840 would invalidate a recent San Diego County court ruling (Lutz v. Vu) that all vote-by-mail ballots must be subject to inclusion in the 1 percent post-election manual tally, a ruling which confirms current practice of many California counties, including Inyo, Santa Clara and San Francisco.
If Gov. Jerry Brown signs AB 840 into law, election officials will likely reduce the number of ballots included in the 1 percent manual tally to include only those counted on Election Night, excluding many vote-by-mail and all provisional ballots from potential audit, and signaling to would-be attackers to target such ballots, knowing they likely will not be checked.
The Sacramento Bee’s editorial board recommended that Brown veto AB 840; we strongly agree.
Kammi Foote, Inyo County Registrar of Voters
Kim Alexander, California Voter Foundation
Barbara Simons, Verified Voting