Braynard on Louisiana SB 221: “Is this a joke to you?”

View a PDF version of this press release here.

LAA Executive Director Matt Braynard released the following statement on Louisiana’s Senate Bill 221.

We initially were very hopeful about Senate Bill 221 opening the door for the State of Louisiana to make the right choice on spending over $100 million of taxpayer money on voting equipment. However, the latest version of the bill replaces any meaningful substance it might have had with a puppet show that assumes the citizens of the state are too stupid to understand what the legislation does. Specifically:

  1. The legislation creates a Voting Specification Committee and a Voting System Proposal Evaluation Committee. Despite expending a lot of detail on who will serve on these committees, their recommendations only carry the weight of suggestions that the Secretary of State can ignore. A previous version of this legislation made their recommendations binding.

And while creating these committees in the first place is a massive punt on important decisions from the elected leaders to an unelected panel, that panel is now the modern equivalent to the old Soviet show trials: meaningless displays which the (Secretary of) State will ignore.

  1. The bill calls on the SOS to hire experts to examine voting equipment to confirm it meets the specifications the SOS determines. Earlier legislation required these experts to be “independent,” but now the legislation only requires that they be “certified” by the SOS with no specification on what that certification entails, opening the door for “certification” to be entirely subjective.
  1. It pretends to prohibit a foreign power from having an ownership of a voting machine vendor. However, it still allows a foreign government to own up to a quarter of a voting equipment vendor and allows a wholly owned foreign company to win a contract. The restriction on foreign government ownership is also effectively meaningless because foreign government equity and control of a foreign company is easy to obscure. The only solution is requiring a voting equipment vendor to be 100% American owned.
  1. Despite the provisions to limit access to voting machines during an election, the exceptions listed are so broad such that almost any access to the machines could be justified under those exceptions. Further, since the state does not have access to the software code or hardware schematics, it has no way of confirming any of this.

You can bet the legislators are patting each other on the back, congratulating each other for doing such a great job “solving” this issue. But this is all a fraud meant to get angry patriots in the Pelican State to shut up and leave them alone.

And it’s up to the citizens of the state to let the legislature know what they think of this charade.

I also encourage everyone to review LAA’s FAQ on Black Box Voting versus Open Source Voting.

The directory of LA House members can be found here: https://house.louisiana.gov/H_Reps/H_Reps_FullInfo

The State Senate director can be found here: https://senate.la.gov/Officers.

LAA’s FAQ on Black Box versus Open Source can be found here: https://www.lookaheadamerica.org/blackbox.