Source of Election Chaos Identified: Two Little Changes Made to Ballot Printers

Anyone who already had suspicions about the legitimacy of the 2020 election outcome will not be thrilled to hear about some of the issues plaguing the 2022 midterms.

One such notable snafu occurred in the state of Arizona, which is embroiled in a lengthy tabulation process that has exasperated voters.

A new report from Votebeat has shed a bit of light on the “how” of the voting issues plaguing Arizona.

Simply put, the printer settings had been input incorrectly for the voting machines in question.

Election Department representative Megan Gilbertson told Votebeat that the “media weight” for ballots was set to “heavy, as recommended.” That is, apparently, the correct setting.

The media weight of the receipts and ballot envelopes was, however, set to a lighter setting.

So the printers were not able to heat the ballots enough for the toner to stick, according to reporter Jen Fifield.

While the problem itself was simple, the discovery and fix took some time.

By about 7 a.m. Tuesday, Maricopa County had seen enough issues that it called on technicians from Runbeck Elections Services, which had provided at least some of the printers.

Maricopa County Board of Supervisors Chairman Bill Gates said the solution was discovered by 1 p.m. and had largely been administered by 4 p.m.

The Western Journal reported on some of the irregularities happening in Anthem, Arizona, a GOP stronghold.

One Western Journal employee who had gone to vote at the above Anthem location reported that when he finally got through the long line, it took five attempts for the tabulator to accept his ballot.

From all indications, it appears that this was an honest mistake, but there are still quite a few unanswered questions that will need to be addressed at some point.

These settings didn’t appear to cause any issues, or at least not this widespread, for the primary election or for early voters. Why did this error occur on the literal day of midterm voting?

Votebeat reported that printers are tested before voting begins. Why didn’t the alleged testing catch any of these issues?

At the end of the day, this falls on the Board of Supervisors and Gates. They will eventually have to answer these questions, and anyone concerned with election integrity will certainly be listening with attentive ears.