2WTK: How is Your Vote Protected?

Rigged Election? How Your Vote Is Safe

GREENSBORO, N.C. --  Twenty-two days until Election Day but in North Carolina, the early votes start coming in in just three days.

Early voting starts Thursday - the day after the final presidential debate. On the Campaign trail, one candidate has questioned if the election will be fair

"The election is being rigged by corrupt media pushing false allegations and outright lies in an effort to elect Hillary Clinton president," said Donald Trump, Republican Presidential candidate. On Twitter, Trump also said the election might be rigged at polling places across the country.

Hillary Clinton shot back a tweet saying, "This election will have record turnout, because voters see through Trump's shameful attempts to undermine it just weeks before it happens."

Clinton's campaign also released a statement that said in part, "Campaigns should be hard-fought and elections hard-won, but what is fundamental about the American electoral system is that it is free, fair and open to the people."

2 Wants to Know - how is your vote protected?

There are 165 precincts in Guilford County and on Election Day, 1,400 people will be working to make sure everything goes smoothly. That's from poll workers who check off your name at the precinct to the director of elections who is one of the only people who have access to the internal workings of the voting machines.

"We've got a great staff, great poll workers who are doing their best to do their civic duty. We have tested these machines. We will audit these machines, there is no one from the outside that is having an effect on these machines," said Charlie Collicutt, Director, Guilford County Board of Elections.

Poll workers are selected every two years. County political parties will nominate people to the board of elections and the board will appoint the workers. Depending on if they're working early voting or election day, poll workers get 2 to 4 hours of training. The training includes everything from how to check in a voter to what to do if there is an address problem.

"Then we have other people who work in the polls that are kind of like a regional manager type situation and they have been given high level training as well. They know policy very well and then we have board of election staff and we are overseeing the entire operation," said Collicutt.

If a poll worker sees something suspicious, they can alert their precinct director or the elections office. There's another set of eyes in the precincts and that's poll watchers. Each political party can have 3 watchers in each precinct to monitor what's going on.

Guilford County voters cast their ballots on machines which are not connected to the internet. Those votes are stored on a cartridge that's uploaded to a machine to count the results.

Only the elections director and a few staff members can access those cartridges and again, nothing is connected to the internet.
 

Copyright 2016 WFMY


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