ACLU-NJ Demands End to Voting Machine Gag Order

June 10, 2008

NEWARK - The American Civil Liberties Union of New Jersey, New Jersey Press Association, North Jersey Media Group and New Jersey Foundation for Open Government today submitted a friend-of-the-court brief to the NJ Superior Court, seeking reversal of an order that silences experts from discussing future findings about the state's Sequoia voting machines even if concealing their findings could compromise the integrity of elections.

In May, the court agreed to let investigators examine the machines. But the court prohibited those experts from discussing their findings until the case is finished, including through appeals, even if they believe there are errors or the system can be hacked.

"If the flaws in voting machines are under wraps until this case is over, the November election will have come and gone long before we'll know whether our votes were accurately counted," said Lawrence Lustberg of Gibbons PC, who, along with Avidan Cover of Gibbons PC, wrote the brief on behalf of the ACLU-NJ. "Our state has the responsibility to uphold our constitutional right to vote, and the public has the right to know when that right is threatened."

The ACLU-NJ does not object to the portion of the court order that keeps Sequoia's proprietary information - the unique design of its machines - confidential.

The lawsuit, Gusciora v. Codey, filed by Rutgers Constitutional Litigation Clinic, stemmed from the fact that the current electronic voting systems cannot be adequately certified or examined, as demanded by New Jersey law.

Earlier this month, the ACLU-NJ and League of Women Voters of New Jersey released a report on voting rights documenting the biggest problems during the February presidential primary, and voting machine errors were some of the most prevalent and serious problems.

More Information

Category: Elections & Voting

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