- Election Systems & Software
Election Systems & Software (ES&S) is an American company that provides
votingservices. It was founded in 1979as American Information Systems Inc. (AIS), it merged with Business Records Corp. the following year and changed its name to ES&S.
ES&S is a subsidiary of
McCarthy GroupInc., which is jointly held by the holding firm and the Omaha World-Herald Co., the publisher of Nebraska's largest newspaper.Fact|date=April 2007 As of 2007 it was the largest manufacturer of voting machines in the United States, claiming customers in 1,700 localities. As of 2007 it had approximately 350 employees; 2005 revenues were $117 million. Anita Kumar, [http://www.sptimes.com/2007/05/27/State/Top_vote_machine_make.shtml "Top vote-machine maker also tops complaint list: Vendor discounts woes, blames poll workers"] , "St. Petersburg Times", May 27, 2005 ]
Election issues and problems
Chuck Hagelwas CEO of the company until shortly before his election in November 1996 to the United States Senatefrom Nebraska. The election was conducted almost exclusively on equipment provided by his former company.Fact|date=June 2007
ES&S was one of the top four providers of voting companies used in the November 2004 election; the other three were Diebold Election Systems (now
Premier Election Solutions), Sequoia Voting Systemsand Hart InterCivic.
The U.S. primary elections of March 2006 revealed an overextension of ES&S's resources when multiple counties across the nation found poor quality control (faulty memory cards), reported poor service, and problems with election preparation.Fact|date=April 2007 Following harsh criticism of Diebold, ES&S has become the second major electronic voting vendor (after Diebold) to see lawsuits and criminal charges rising out of their failure to provide adequate service under their contracts.Fact|date=June 2007
After the November 2006 elections, Indiana launched an inquiry into poor service by the company, settling when it agreed to pay $750,000. West Virginia filed a formal complaint against the company with federal officials. Arkansas put together a panel to investigate. The company denied any major trouble with its machines, attributing problems to errors made by poll workers.
On August 3, 2007, California Secretary of state
Debra Bowenwithdrew approval of the ES&S InkaVote Plus optical scan voting systemafter a "top-to-bottom review" of the voting machines certified for use in California in March 2007. [cite web
title = Rescission and Withdrawal of Approval of the Election Systems and Software InkaVote Plus Precinct Ballot Counting System, Version 2.1, as Approved on April 21, 2006
publisher = California Secretary of State
date = 2007-08-03
url = http://www.sos.ca.gov/elections/voting_systems/ess_rescission_withdrawal.pdf
accessdate = 2007-08-15 ]
* [http://www.essvote.com/HTML/home.html ES&S Website]
* [http://votingmachines.procon.org/viewsource.asp?ID=939 ProCon's ES&S Profile]
* [http://www.votersunite.org/info/ES&Sinthenews.pdf List of malfunctions and miscounts by ES&S voting machines]
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