EAC Voting Machine Guideline Effort Yields Tech, Quorum Questions

The Association for Computing Machinery asked the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) to adopt policy that disallows internet connections to voting equipment. In other comments submitted to EAC in a solicitation for voluntary guidelines for voting systems, other parties said they don’t believe EAC’s updated guidelines will be able to keep up with technological changes.

EAC Chairwoman Christy McCormick has said that the new Voluntary Voting System Guidelines (VVSG) prohibit internet connectivity to voting machines, which prompted Senate Rules Committee Democrat Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., to seek a correction from the commission. At a Senate Rules Committee hearing last week, Sen. Klobuchar questioned that declaration and said she worried the guidelines can’t keep up tech advancements and good cybersecurity practices.

Separately, state officials worry about the EAC not having a quorum, which would leave the commission unable to act and approve technical updates to the new VVSG. Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate asked for immediate action by the commission to avoid not having a full quorum. The EAC is expected to vote later this year on a document that will guide the VVSG 2.0 development.

The quorum issue is only the most recent hiccup in a series of bumps in the road for the EAC this year. The organization lost a top tech expert in Ryan Macias earlier this month, which left Colorado voting security expert Jerome Lovato as the lone employee working full-time on assessing voting machines based on Federal standards.

The final day to submit comments on principles and guidelines for the Voluntary Voting System Guidelines 2.0 is today.

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