20 counties sign up for vote system

Twenty counties have signed up to obtain the new touch-screen voting machine system, according to the secretary of state’s office.

Counties have until Aug. 19 to notify the secretary of state’s office of whether they will be part of state’s purchase of about 5,000 voting machines from Diebold Election Systems.

No counties had opted out of the statewide program by Friday, according to David Blount, spokesman for Secretary of State Eric Clark.
Counties that have joined in the program as of late last week are Alcorn, Amite, Attala, Choctaw, Clay, Covington, Itawamba, Kemper, Leake, Lincoln, Newton, Quitman, Smith, Sunflower, Tallahatchie, Tishomingo, Wayne, Webster, Winston and Yazoo.

Clark is trying to ease concerns some have about the company he selected and counter a public relations effort by rivals to sell their systems to the counties.

“Once they learn about the machines and what’s fiscally responsible for the counties, they’re choosing to be a part of the state procurement,” Blount said about the counties.

Clarion Ledger
8/8/5