|Contact: Mary Tiffany||For Immediate Release
August 8, 2007
The Republican Party of Iowa will host the Iowa Straw Poll on August 11, however, the voting procedure will be conducted with the assistance and oversight of the Story County Auditor's Office with assistance from the State Auditor's Office.
"Voting at the Iowa Straw Poll will follow procedures unique to this event," stated Chuck Laudner, Executive Director of the Republican Party of Iowa. "You will need to prove your Iowa residency during the credentialing process. This means you will need to display an Iowa driver's license, military ID, student ID, or other legitimate form of photo identification."
Only upon being successfully credentialed will the Straw Poll voter be given a paper ballot to cast their vote. An electronic scan of the photo ID will verify its authenticity and prevent multiple voting attempts. All Iowa residents who will be 18 years old on or before November 4, 2008, will be eligible to be credentialed and vote upon successful completion of that process.
Officials with the Republican Party of Iowa believe all official elections in Iowa should require every voter show a photo ID to vote. "It is unacceptable to engage in a voting process open to fraud," Laudner stated. "There should be no more important tenant in any election than one person, one vote." He went on to say only liberals oppose requiring showing a photo ID before voting. "Intentional fraud and illegal voting can mean the difference between victory and defeat in many elections," he said. "The steps we are requiring before ballots are cast at the Straw Poll are the minimum we believe should be used in each election in this state."
Voters at the Straw Poll will dip their thumb in purple ink to indicate they have cast their ballot. "We recognize the great privilege of voting by tipping our hat to the Iraqi people who cast their first votes in a free and democratic election," Laudner explained. "Iowans will be just as proud to display their inked thumb as the newly liberated Iraqi people were."
Voting begins at 10:00 a.m. and continues until 6:00 p.m. when the voting areas are shut down. Voting machines provided by the Story County Auditor will be used. These are the same machines used for every official election held in Story County. The machines will be positioned on the concourse level of Hilton Coliseum, Scheman Building, and CY Stephens auditorium. Votes will be tallied by the State Auditor's Office and results will be announced by emcee.
Elections Security Policy
Story County, Iowa
A written security policy is required due to the implementation of the Federal Help America Vote Act (HAVA), and corresponding amendments to the Iowa Administrative Code. This policy is to include plans to protect election equipment and data from unauthorized access, document certain aspects of the election process, and describe methods to preserve the integrity of the election. Election misconduct in the first degree is a Class "D" felony under Iowa law.
Voting System Security
Hardware: Story County has chosen to use a blended election equipment system to fully comply with HAVA. The hardware is rented from Diebold Election System for one year. Each voter will have the choice of one of the following pieces of equipment for each election:
1. Accu vote Optical Scan (OSx) tabulator with paper ballot
2. Accu voteTouch Screen (TSx) direct recording equipment with the Accu View Printer Module (AVPM) which enables voters to review a printed version representing their voting choices.
Equipment certified for Federal elections use as of 2006 is locked within the Story County Administration Building. Entry is granted with Auditor's Office level 1 authority key access (on file with Story County Facilities Management).
Such equipment is individually stored on shelves or in boxes for maximum protection from damage. Components for each piece of equipment are stored as recommended by manufacturer. For example: APVM unit is stored separately from TSx; keypad and headphones are stored within TSx unit. Each unit is insured by the Story County property insurance policy (on file in Story County Board of Supervisors' office).
Software: Story County shall own and operate the necessary software and equipment to program locally all elections. The Global Election Management System (GEMS) computer is used to prepare ballots and voting equipment programs, and to compile and report election results. The GEMS shall not be used for any other function. The GEMS computer is not and shall not be linked to the Story County network or to the Internet. Access to the GEMS computer is limited to the Story County Auditor, Assistant Auditor, Deputy Auditors, and designated election staff member(s). Access requires two passwords. Password content is at the user's discretion. Story County uses a UPS power back-up for the GEMS computer. In the event of unexpected power loss, the system shuts down appropriately.
Memory Cards: Each piece of voting equipment requires a memory card, a removable device containing data files programmed to define each election. Each memory card includes a serial number printed on a visible permanent label. Story County owns the memory cards, and election staff handles the programming of each card used in an election. Two staff members are present during the programming for verification and election log maintenance. Security for the memory cards includes perpetual inventory, with the inventory records containing:
The date each memory card was acquired
Each use of the card in an election
Each maintenance activity, such as changing the battery
Any problems or errors detected while using the memory card during its life
Record, reason, and date of removal from inventory
Story County programs each memory card on the GEMS computer. The memory cards are stored in a binder with pockets specific to each card. The binder(s) are kept locked in the Auditor's vault, which has level 2 authority key access (on file with Story County Facilities Management). The memory cards are removed from storage as necessary for an election; and prepared, logged, and sealed into a voting device. The seal is tamper-evident. If transport of a memory card outside of the Auditor's office is necessary, the memory card(s) are enclosed in a container or envelope with a tamper-evident seal. The election log for the memory cards records the following:
Serial number of card
Precinct or polling location assignment
Programmer(s), date, time
Machine number, installed by, date, time
The election log is maintained on file in the Auditor's office for the duration of election documentation as required by Iowa law.
Story County shall adhere to IAC 721 22.39-22.51 for testing the direct recording electronic and the optical scan voting equipment. This includes preelection testing and public testing. On each election night, Story County transmits results electronically from the precincts to a series of modems dedicated to elections. Each location shall have the phone line connection verified prior to each election. The election results will be transmitted after the precinct election officials have produced a printed report of the election results. All officials shall sign the printed report.
Story County shall place in each precinct/polling location a registered Democrat and a registered Republican as Co-Chairpersons of the precinct election official team. One of the two chairpersons shall be responsible for the equipment once received from the Auditor. The chairperson shall verify the number of ballots received, the seal number on the ballot bag, the seal number on the memory cards locked into each piece of election equipment, the seal number on the paper roll canister which contains a paper version that enables voters to review their voting choices cast on the Touch Screen equipment. This verification is signed by the chairperson prior to election day as the equipment is received from the Auditor. This same verification takes place by the Auditor or designated staff as the equipment is returned once the polls have closed on election day. This verification record and receipt is maintained on file in the Auditor's office for the duration of election documentation as required by Iowa law. All seals are tamper-evident. All election officials take an oath of office prior to the election, and receive a copy of the election security policy.
The chairpeople are required to work at the polling location for all hours of election day. The Auditor shall hire the remainder of the officials as equally balanced in political affiliation as possible, and may approve half-day work shifts as compliant with Iowa law.