United States District Court Judge Paul S. Diamond upheld the use of the Election Systems & Software (ES&S) ExpressVote XL throughout the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and called legal challenges against the machine “baseless and irrational.”
“The Commonwealth and the City have expended considerable resources to demonstrate that Dr. Stein has based her Motion on absolutely nothing,” the judge said. “There is no credible evidence even suggesting that the EAC and Pennsylvania have certified machines that can be ‘hacked.’”
Federal Judge’s Ruling Confirms ExpressVote XL Meets All Pennsylvania Guidelines for Certification
Michigan Professor Alex Halderman’s Claims Described as “Fantasy” by Judge
OMAHA, Nebr. – April 30, 2020 – In a ruling yesterday, United States District Court Judge Paul S. Diamond upheld the use of the Election Systems & Software (ES&S) ExpressVote XL® throughout the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and called legal challenges against the machine “baseless and irrational.” The legal challenge was put forward by Jill Stein, and with testimony by her only “expert” witness, Professor Alex Halderman of the University of Michigan.
The U.S. District Court’s ruling on the ExpressVote XL universal voting machine confirms it meets all state department guidelines for use in Pennsylvania’s elections. In addition, the ExpressVote XL has successfully undergone rigorous testing by the federal Election Assistance Commission and state-level authorities and has been certified for use by both entities.
In his ruling, Judge Diamond soundly dismissed testimony for the plaintiffs, stating their witness brought no evidence the machine could be hacked and that their testimony lacked credibility. Judge Diamond went on to describe Halderman’s claims as a “fantasy.” The judge further stated that the paper ballots produced by the ExpressVote XL are both voter-verifiable and fully auditable, noting, “The machine is reliable and easy to use.”
Judge Diamond’s ruling condemned Stein’s witness. “Her [Stein’s] only witness was computer expert, J. Alex Halderman, PhD, whose ill-considered theories formed the basis of both Stein’s original Complaint and the instant Motion to Enforce. I largely discredit Halderman’s testimony…” the judge wrote. He also stated, “In sum, there is no truth in Dr. Halderman’s ‘hacking’ testimony,” and “Halderman’s testimony was neither credible nor helpful. Throughout, he acted more as an advocate than an ‘expert.’ Halderman repeatedly tried to avoid answering questions when the truthful response might not help Stein. He routinely offered opinions without factual basis…” The judge continued, “Halderman could not credibly explain how Pennsylvania’s XL machines, with all their safeguards and security features, could be subject to tampering or the introduction of malware.”
“The Commonwealth and the City have expended considerable resources to demonstrate that Dr. Stein has based her Motion on absolutely nothing,” the judge said. “There is no credible evidence even suggesting that the EAC and Pennsylvania have certified machines that can be ‘hacked.’ Yet, Dr. Halderman’s daft theories, promoted by Dr. Stein, will undoubtedly shake the belief of some in their government because Stein has convinced them that voting integrity is at risk in Pennsylvania. That is certainly the most unfortunate consequence of Stein’s pointless Motion.”
“In Pennsylvania, the ExpressVote XL has been certified and re-certified with the same results – meeting and exceeding the highest standards for security, accuracy and accessibility,” said Tom Burt, President and CEO of ES&S. “We work with many people in the academic community who are highly competent, well-intentioned and earnest in trying to make the elections infrastructure better. Unfortunately, that is not the case here.”
In addition to the federal judge’s recent ruling, the PA Department of State (DOS) indicated in a Sept. 3, 2019 report that claims made by individuals who said the machines did not meet state guidelines were unfounded. The DOS, along with its security specialists, performed a reexamination and tested security analysis and evaluation, functional testing and documentation review. After the November 2019 election, the ExpressVote XL also underwent post-election audits with successful results.