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Okla. uses paper ballots: Safer or old-fashioned?

Posted: 12:27 PM, Nov 05, 2018
Updated: 2018-11-05 13:53:01-05

ROGERS COUNTY -- Oklahoma's general election is a day away and counties are getting ready for the rush of voters.

Precinct inspectors are picking up all of the supplies they need from the county election board, including paper ballots.

Oklahoma uses pens and paper to cast votes.

Several states, like Texas, Florida and Georgia, have done away with paper ballots. They have turned to Direct Recording Electronic Systems. Voters make their selections on a computer screen and it is recorded directly into the computer's memory.

Some think Oklahoma is behind the times using paper ballots.

Julie Dermody, secretary of the Rogers County Election Board, said she believes it is one of the best systems in the entire country and voters can rest easy knowing the integrity of their vote is secure.

"All you need is for some sort of electronic glitch," Dermody said of the DRE systems. "You could have somebody try to hack it. Our is just not possible. Ours are never hooked up to the Internet."

The machines in Oklahoma have something inside similar to a flash drive that keeps a tally of the votes. When the polls are closed, Dermody said the drive from each machine is hooked up to a secure line to the state and the results are fed back that way.

Dermody said the paper ballots also allow the state to go back and recount votes if there are any questions.

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