Legislators Agree that Statute Changes for Election Security are Imperative, Citing Many of Their Own Concerns

by Jennifer Williams

Despite the continual cry of “conspiracy theory” and “fear-mongering” from anyone who refuses to admit there may be some problems with election security, most Kansas legislators listened with an open mind during last week’s two-day Special Committee on Elections.

The event began on Thursday with a presentation of election laws and processes by the Kansas Legislative Research Department, followed by a review of the litigation status of challenged election laws by the Office of the Revisor of Statutes.

There was also a presentation by the Opportunity Solutions Project regarding agency involvement in voter registration and legal issues, citing concerns regarding third-party organizations involved in voter registration that, according to the presenters, have a tendency to favor the registration of Democrats.

The group also included a document titled “An Election Scandal in Kansas” that explained an arrangement between Governor Laura Kelly, Democrats, Loud Light and the ACLU to use Kansas government databases to target individuals for voter registration drives. They reference “Bidenbucks” and call them more dangerous than “Zuckerbucks.”

On Thursday afternoon, Election Director Bryan Caskey and the Secretary of State’s General Counsel, Clay Barker, also gave presentations.

Although Caskey admitted to concerns of security in some areas, they continued to provide the same narrative that their office does a good job and the elections are secure.

Election Director, Bryan Caskey, did claim that the Johnson County, Kansas election office made a mistake when mailing out over 400,000 pre-filled ballot requests with voter name, address, and birthdate. He stated that the process was legal, but he believes they should not have done that because voters should individually request a ballot on their own instead of the County sending mass mailings for requests. Johnson County also did this in 2020.

One can see from the chart below, that the red column – advance by mail ballots – more than tripled from the 2018 to 2020 General election; therefore, critics believe it is imperative that the State and Counties do everything possible to ensure there is no nefarious activity or “ballot stuffing” in this method of voting.

Johnson County Election Director, Fred Sherman, defended his unilateral decision to spend over $60,000 for the mailings, sent without the authorization or approval of the Johnson County Board of Commissioners, claiming that he expected a high turnout for the election and the mail-in ballots were necessary in order to avoid long lines on election day.

Critics claim that the Johnson County election office’s job is to provide polling locations to accommodate all registered voters in the County and that Sherman’s justification for the mass-mail-in-ballot-requests is an admittance of incompetency in his ability to perform his job as required.

At a time when voter confidence in the system is low, and concerns about ballot stuffing are high, sending out 418,000 pre-filed ballot requests that could be intercepted by those with a nefarious agenda was not received well. In fact, critics perceived it as being a step in the wrong direction that not only hurt voter confidence but possibly violated privacy laws and created identity theft concerns.

During Friday’s session, Former State Representative, Keith Esau, addressed the 3-day grace period for mail-in ballots, stating that he had originally supported this method because, at the time, they were told that the ballots would always have a postmark on them or a bar code that could be deciphered, but what they’ve seen is the barcode is not able to be deciphered and the chances of a postmark are even more remote than they were at that time.

He cited testimony from the day before, where a County could not count any ballots that came in afterward because none of them had a postmark.

He claimed they originally believed the 3-day rule would help the military, but they have since gone to a secure electronic method, with the help of a poll worker, for those ballots.

That combined with moving the ballot request deadline up a few days in order to provide enough time to return them, leads him to conclude that there is no problem with people returning the mail ballot, even via the mail, for it to be received by election day.

Esau cited the reason for removing this 3-day period is also a way to increase confidence in voting, “We have people who do not like seeing the counts change radically after the election night.”

“In Johnson County, every day we’re seeing hundreds of ballots being added, and it just makes people nervous that somebody was stuffing a ballot someplace . . . Returning it to the close of polls on the election day makes it secure for everyone . . . My urging is to remove this 3-day grace period and return to something so we have a standard of all ballots to be in the hands of election workers on election night so that we know all of the ballots that we are counting at that point.”

On Friday, the committee also heard from experts and grassroots individuals who stated they have devoted the past 3 years to researching, studying, and learning from people across the country regarding what happened in 2020 and what needs to be done to secure our elections so it never happens again.

Mark Cook, an IT expert involved in cyber security forensics, gave an extensive presentation on the internal problems with the software programming of the election machines.

“Once you see it, you cannot unsee it,” he said. Since his discovery, Mark has uprooted his life in order to help everyone see the dire situation the country is in regarding the voting machines.

“We have an ecosystem elections. It’s not just about the computers. It is about the entire thing, from the voter registration databases, the voter validation systems, the tabulator systems, and the reporting systems, all in. Basically what we have here is we have systems that are set up in a way that a bad actor or a series of bad actors could take massive advantage of the people without the people realizing it, including our election officials – without them realizing it, without some Secretaries of State maybe realizing it. It is set up in a way to be manipulated by sophisticated bad actors. The US Election System is the most high-value target in the world. There are a lot of people who want to manipulate it, and they have the means to do so.”

He then went on to explain how.

His condensed presentation was packed full of information that is imperative in understanding how the entire process from registration to voting works. Due to time constraints, only an overview was given. An additional presentation was also given after the official meeting and can be viewed here.

Mark confirmed that corporations are controlling our elections, “which is incredibly dangerous because corporations do not have the best interest of the citizens in mind. In order to satisfy the needs of a decentralized government, you must have a decentralized election system.”

Cook’s presentation showed that 93.5% of Kansas counties use electronic poll books, which he claims is a security risk because they can be hacked. He gave an example of Dallas County, Texas whose election judges watched at closing time of the election as the number of checked-in voters started increasing on its own; yet no one was physically checking in. The location also kept paper check-in logs. When the two systems were compared, they found thousands of extra fraudulent entries injected into the electronic poll books that were not physically checked in on their paper logs.

Upon further investigation, several other Texas counties also reported the same occurrence, as did many other states. He urged Kansas to look into their poll books. He said the vendor for the software would not disclose where the database was stored. They claimed it was confidential and undisclosed in another county in another state.

Mark also proved how the internal hardware of the machines do have wireless cards for wi-fi access – even if they are not physically connected to the internet. “These companies don’t want you to look under the hood. They won’t let you look under the hood,” he said when referring to the election offices’ inability to open the voting machines to check for these hackable access points.

“This is not a Democrat or Republican thing. This is not a Trump thing. These are very smart people who understand the complexity of these systems, when the citizens who rely on them for their freedom do not understand them. These smart people can run circles around you and you don’t know that it’s happening.”

As a forensic expert, he showed a direct example of Dominion software that he was involved in investigating where he discovered there were sophisticated back-end doors used in the system. Mark said that the Secretary of State Office would have no way of knowing what is going on inside the machines.

He claimed bad actors could be controlling our elections, and no one would ever know due to the sophisticated back-door programming he discovered that allowed those with access to “flip the votes” between candidates by changing only one number in the system – which he showed how to do, and the room saw the votes flipped from Trump to Biden.

To which he exclaimed, “We absolutely can flip the votes of an election with software built in by the vendor, and you guys are using this software in your state. Did you know that? Do your election officials know that? We’re being lied to. We’re all being lied to. You don’t have to do it from here. You can also do it remotely. You can even do it with a flash drive.”

Mark plugged in a flash drive and showed the second back door of the system that would allow the flash drive to take over, like a keyboard, and start making commands to change the results. Upon checking the results, the screen showed the votes were flipped again, just by plugging in a flash drive.

This hits close to home for Kansans, who saw the election results flip when a flash drive was plugged in during a 2022 Cherokee County election.

With the flash drive still plugged in, he had everyone in the room use their wi-fi on their phones to see the wireless access point the flash drive was creating called “wireless backdoor.”

“So not only is this device a keyboard emulator, it’s also a wireless access point. So someone in the parking lot right now could get in here and make changes to this voting system,” Cook explained.

“You can manipulate elections outside the County level, outside the State level, and no one would ever know,” he said. “And not to mention, the way to manipulate things using the electronic poll books, the voter registration system, early voting, and mail-in voting. You can manipulate the entire election system, outside of the tabulation equipment, up above the State level even, almost having complete control of them using mail-in ballots, early voting, and electronic poll books. That’s all it takes, and I want to take time to show you how it’s done so you are aware because your eyes need to be open so you understand what’s going on. We don’t have an opportunity in this country to miss this because we will never be able to go back.”

Senator Faust-Goudeau asked for Mark’s recommendation regarding electronic poll books versus the handwritten book, citing memories of how it was done years ago, stating, “I really think that technology and moving up to the 21st century, we have created some of our own problems with technology.”

Mark replied, “Ideally, if you want to solve this problem, and I have looked at this complex system and I’ve tried every which way to solve it. I have looked at pros and cons of everything. Absolutely we have to go back to the precinct level. We have to go back to paper poll books, and we need to make sure the citizens are able to be a part of the entire process and see the entire process. That is the only way you stop bad actors, and you’re never going to stop all of them. But what you want to do is you want to reduce your attack surface to as small as possible so you can manage it. Right now we have an attack surface that’s as big as the planet, and there’s no way anyone can keep track of it.”

Representative Proctor questioned Mr. Cook, stating that Cook had said some pretty shocking things about Dominion and he asked if Mark knew how many counties in the state actually use Dominion. As Mark began to answer, Proctor continued, “I’ll tell you. The answer is 12.”

“Yeah, and here’s why that’s important,” replied Mark. “The same companies that tested and certified Dominion also tested and certified every other system that you use in the state. And if they missed this on Dominion, what did they miss on the other systems is what I want to know. Plus this information about one of these back doors has been in existence since 2014 and you guys don’t know it.”

“This isn’t where I’m going,” interrupted Proctor, who tried to turn it into a partisan issue by claiming that all 12 of those counties have Republican house seats.

“To me, this is not a party thing,” replied Cook. “It’s a transparency thing. That’s all.”

Proctor continued to argue with Cook by asking if he knew which Presidential candidate won in all of those counties. Cook continued, “None of that matters to me. All that matters to me is that the citizens have control of their election.”

“It’s Donald Trump,” Proctor retorted. “So I’ll get to my question. Why would somebody go to all the trouble to hack the software in all 12 of these counties . . ”

“I’m not saying they hacked them in all 12 of those counties,” interjected Cook.

“Let me finish my question, sir,” continued Proctor. “Why would anybody go to the trouble of hacking all these systems in 12 different counties if the result is not to break the super majority of the Republicans of the state that the Democrat party has spent millions of dollars trying to break every election?”

“What makes you think they did that, ” asked Cook.

“I’m sorry,” replied a confused Proctor. “You just gave a whole presentation and told us that . . . “

“No, I didn’t tell you anything about 12 counties. What makes you think in those 12 counties that they manipulated things?” asked Cook.

“Because those are the only 12 counties that use Dominion and you just showed us how Dominion can be hacked,” answered Proctor.

“I think you missed the point,” continued Cook. “The point is that these companies are lying to us and the people that are testing and certifying these systems are doing so without actually testing them properly, and we are all being lied to. The citizens do not have control of or access to or enough transparency in their own elections. That’s the problem. Now I don’t know where there is manipulation. The fact is there could be easy manipulation that occurs . . . I would hope that you would be more concerned about the fact that these systems are incredibly vulnerable and easy to manipulate, that the vendors may actually be lying to us. And these testing labs and certification labs may also be lying to us. Look into that. That’s what I would want to look into.”

“You’re missing my point,” argued Proctor. “You just gave a whole presentation about how Dominion can be hacked, and my question is the same question I had for Dr. Frank last year, ‘Why would somebody go to all that trouble if they’re not actually going to flip any elections?’ They didn’t flip any elections.”

“When you create a system to be able to manipulate it, sometimes you don’t manipulate it in some areas to fool people that are ignorant,” replied Cook.

It sounds like that strategy is working for some people in Kansas.

Rep. Proctor has continually taken to social media in support of the Secretary of State’s narrative that Kansas has fair and safe elections and even called one of Friday’s speakers, Clint Curtis, a charlatan.

This came after Proctor stated in the meetings, “As the chair of the House elections committee, what I’ve tried to do in my first year is to create a platform where we’re going to have a calm, civil discussion. Nobody’s going to call anybody conspiracy theorists, nobody’s going to call anybody a denier, denier. We’re going to all get our chance to speak and have our thoughts on this topic heard, and the reason is because we are in a crisis in this country, and it’s a crisis of voter confidence.”

*Note: Donald Trump’s filing was already addressed in Thursday’s meeting, and Clay Barker of the Secretary of State’s office said it was because Kansas was one of the easiest states to file in. He mentioned nothing about election security in regards to Donald Trump’s filing. That was an inaccurate correlation by Proctor.

*Note: It was reported by multiple people across counties that the Value them Both recount illegally used ballot images and not the original paper ballot, even though the person requesting the recount specifically requested paper ballots in writing. That recount discovered 54 votes different from the original canvas, or 50 times the legal limit allowed for discrepancies.

As discussed in the conversation above on the Monday after the hearings, the Kansas GOP has experienced tension on the election security issue.

One group in the party wants to look at the anomalies and the reports from both within and outside the state, while the other group praises “leadership” for keeping Kansas’ elections secure.

Many times it’s the “never-Trump” Republicans who claim safe and secure elections, which leads many grassroots party members feeling that “the establishment” is covering for their friends in office.

Users on social media sites continually share this political cartoon by Tim McCabe that shows their inherent distrust in the government, specifically, those involved in the election process.

However, within that group, it’s those with direct experience or knowledge in the elections who are touting their security.

Perhaps their direct experiences in the process are preventing them from seeing the forest for the trees, as it appeared during the testimonies when both Waggoner and Proctor struggled to believe computer programming experts that there may be things going on below the surface that their own eyes could not detect.

As the old quote says, “It’s easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled.”

It’s as if a sort of cognitive dissonance, similar to what was seen with COVID, is preventing their minds from believing that they could have been fooled by a bad actor in a system that they had trusted in and defended.

Proctor could not understand Cook’s presentation because he appeared to process the information as if since the 12 Kansas elections were not compromised, since Trump won those Republican counties, no systems could have been compromised.

The fallacy in this thinking is that had those 12 Presidential races turned Democrat, it would have been a blatant sign of fraud that could not have been ignored; thereby, opening the door to election investigations. Just because they can cheat doesn’t mean they always will. The devil is strategic.

The Committee also heard from a citizen, Thad Snider, regarding election integrity, remote ballot drop boxes, and ballot harvesting. His presentation can be heard beginning here and the powerpoint can be found here.

Snider told the committee that he is not getting paid for this, he is not running for office, nor does he have anything to gain from the past 3 years that he has devoted to the cause of investigating election security. He just wants fair elections.

Snider began his testimony by reminding the Committee that, “The counties don’t program their elections. We abdicated that to third-party, for-profit contractors, and as you saw in Cherokee County, that can lead to problems. As Mr. Caskey intimated yesterday, that beat all systems that we had in place to test these machines prior to and after their use. It wasn’t until we used the paper ballot that they actually found the discrepancies in the vote total. So the security measures that we have in place now are not robust enough to catch what just happened in Cherokee County in 2022 where the votes flipped.”

Snider pointed out that the drop boxes have never actually been approved by statute, and most of the drop boxes in Johnson County were actually paid for by the CTCL (Facebook/Meta) money (Zuckerbucks) that the County received for the 2020 election.

He went on to address absentee ballots with KSA 25-1124(a) “the ballot envelope shall be mailed or otherwise transmitted to the county election officer.”

“That’s not happening. The ballots are NOT being transmitted by the voter. They are being transmitted by either 3rd party ballot harvesters or by partisan election workers whom we cannot monitor and who are not required to keep a valid chain of custody. There are no laws governing chain of custody right now, just rules and regs.”

Snider went on to show the contract for the money commonly known as “Zuckerbucks” and asked, “Why are we taking money from a third party to buy these things?”

He continued by citing the HAVA election laws that Kansas is bound to by Statute, and he gave examples of how Kansas is not following the law regarding the required certified aspects of the system, including:

  • uncertified electronic poll books
  • ballot-on-demand printing of non-certified ballots
  • thumb drives, like what flipped the vote in Cherokee County
  • software, such as Konnech’s PollChief, which was running Johnson County’s election management system for 7 years and was infiltrated by the Chinese Communist Party. The IP address was determined to be going back to China, giving those third-party contractors in China super administrator privileges to all PollChief clients.
  • Security cameras

Snider addressed that Johnson County admitted to the claims that they were using Konnech’s PollChief and have since removed it from the County.

“That means the Chinese Communist Party was running the elections in Johnson County for 7 years,” claimed Snider. “It was PollWorker and asset management. So they knew the exact machines, the serial numbers. They knew which election workers were probably favorable, which ones weren’t, so they could flag them in the system to determine which ones would get called to work and which ones wouldn’t. That’s a phenomenal power. And if they’re in the election management system cloud, the Microsoft Azure Cloud, then they’re in our entire system. You’re talking about a nation-state that just had a backdoor wide open that they could walk through. What else were they doing during that time period? And nobody’s taking that seriously, and that’s super alarming to me because that is a national security issue and it’s demonstrably true. It’s a big part of what Sheriff Hayden is trying to get to the bottom of in Johnson County, but he can’t even look at the election material that he needs to for his investigation because he’s not allowed to.”

Snider continued explaining problems with not having a valid chain of custody for drop boxes, and he gave examples of the chain of custody logs that did not have the signatures required by law.

“Somebody said yesterday that we need to trust the election workers. No, we don’t. We have no obligation to trust the government. The burden of proof falls on you to prove that what you’re doing is correct. We do not have a faith-based system here. You have to make sure that it’s demonstrably true that everything you’re saying and doing is what you’re saying and doing. We the people have an inherent distrust for government. We just do. So we’re not going to take your word for it. We’re not going to take the election workers’ word for it,” he stated, and then cited a Connecticut election clerk caught on camera two weeks ago stuffing ballot boxes.

Snider submitted a best practices for chain of custody document that he urged all legislators to review when considering new laws, and he showed an example from KCTV-5 from the first day of the 2020 elections when the drop boxes were first being utilized. The news report stated that there had been just over 8,000 votes cast thus far in the State, according to the Secretary of State’s office. One drop box was so heavy that it broke. According to Snider, one box holds 1,800 ballots, so approximately 22% of the votes cast to that point from the entire state came from that one box in Johnson County.

He stated that the KCTV-5 reporter asked the election director of that election, Connie Schmidt, who was responsible for monitoring the drop boxes, and she claimed it was the sheriff. The sheriff’s office was asked by the reporter and they stated they were not monitoring it. When the reporter asked Connie Schmidt again, she claimed a private security company was monitoring it. According to Snider, the truth was that there was no one monitoring it.

Snider filed a Kansas Open Records Act request to see the security video but he was not allowed to because the County cited that it violated their water, power, and cybersecurity standards.

In addition to drop boxes, Snider expressed concerns with mail-in ballots in the US Postal System, citing an article regarding 15 million mail ballots that disappeared in the 2020 election.

He cited the statistic that in 2020, the US Presidential election had 155 million votes cast out of 168 million registered voters, for a voter turnout of an unheard-of 92%.

He also showed emails regarding Wichita receiving a pallet of Johnson County ballets and witnesses reporting multiple US mail trucks exchanging ballots with a black SUV in the Blue Moose parking lot in Johnson County.

Concerns of proven postal theft were also mentioned with an article in the Federalist, citing examples of stolen apartment complex keys and increased mail theft with decreased prosecution of mail theft.

ES&S and the Doniphan and McPherson County election offices also illegally sent absentee ballots early and then changed the date to cover their tracks.

Snider reiterated the fact that it’s not a partisan issue, but an American issue, stating 45% of Democrats and 68% of all voters feel there was cheating in the 2020 election.

“What happened in Cherokee County, that was never investigated. The company who programmed that election, one of the owners of that company has been nominated to be a judge by Laura Kelly twice. Do you find that to be a conflict of interest?” asked Snider.

Snider made many recommendations to the Committee regarding election security efforts that can be made to ensure Kansas does in fact have safe and secure elections. They include:

  • Reform Kansas Open Records Act (KORA)
  • Allow the cast vote record to be seen in real-time
  • Allow the voters to elect the election directors instead of appointing them
  • Paper voting (no machines)
  • No precincts larger than 1,000 people
  • You can only vote in your precinct
  • No electronic poll books (unnecessary if above is implemented)
  • Precincts report all results at the same time
  • Voting DAY, not voting month (No Post-Election Day votes count)
  • Make voting DAY a state holiday
  • No drop boxes
  • Absentee ballots only for indefinitely confined persons and military
  • Every absentee ballot must be notarized and returned by the
    voter to the election office where a photo ID must be presented
  • Post a copy of all chain-of-custody documents, ballots, absentee ballot envelope images, ballot images, cast-vote records, system log files, ballot definition files and any other election-related
    materials online immediately after the conclusion of the count for
    public verification of results prior to canvass and certification
  • Mandatory felony designation and 10-year sentencing for any Election Crimes.

In questions and comments from the legislators after Mr. Snider’s presentation, Rep. Proctor thanked Thad for shining light on the ballot image audit issue earlier this year. He stated, “It helped get the consensus up here so that we can go to paper ballots on all audits. . . You shined light on it. We’ll make it explicit. So there’s no room for interruption. We’re going to use the paper ballots. I appreciate you shining light on that. “

Snider corrected Proctor by reminding him that it was already the law and the Secretary of State’s office and some counties were not following it.

Snider’s 2022 affidavit on the post-election certification using ballot images was filed with the Johnson County Board of County Commissioners, the Secretary of State, the Attorney General, and the Johnson County Sheriff.

Even the Value Them Both constitutional amendment recount was specifically ordered by the requester to use paper ballots, yet reports by multiple counties claimed ballot images were used instead. The requester was charged approximately $113,000 for the recount of the original paper ballots; yet, that money was lost when the digital ballot images were used instead. They have tried to get the counties to repeat the recount using the original ballots as their request specified and their bond paid for. Even with the digital images, the recount discovered 54 votes different from the original canvas, or approximately 50 times the legal limit allowed for discrepancies.

To date, both concerns have been ignored, yet constituents have suggested Secretary of State Scott Schwab be impeached for not only his blatant disregard for the existing statute KSA 25-3009 that clearly states paper ballots are to be used but also for his allowing county election clerks to unlawfully use digital images.

Proctor went on to say that he agreed with many of Snider’s concerns about absentee ballots and drop boxes. “If I was king for a day, election day would be election day.”

Representative Howerton asked for more information regarding Snider’s recommendation on no mail-in ballots and agreed, “that the post office is just a tragedy right now.”

Representative Brandon Woodard had taken to social media to reiterate the conspiracy theory label he was promoting the day before on social media.

Woodard was not physically present during Friday’s hearing and attended remotely, but he continued his earlier sentiment that he believed, as Snider stated, that they needed to “listen to the experts and not those that are invested in the outcome” and it was his opinion, that aside from the Secretary of States office, that they had not heard from any election experts other than the State.

With the Beyonce concert the next day, and Woodard listening in from home, it was unclear whether Woodard was preoccupied again with his priorities on Beyonce instead of his State work, as he claimed on social media the day he bought tickets, or if he actually heard the credentials of experts speaking on Friday morning.

Source: https://www.kcur.org/arts-life/2023-09-30/beyonce-kansas-city-renaissance-tour-tickets-cost

Either Woodard did not hear the speakers’ credentials, or he chose to ignore them because, prior to the lunch break on Friday morning, Greg Shuey, who urged the Committee to return to paper ballots because no computer is safe, gave his credentials as a retired Air Force Officer, with degrees in Space Physics, Astrogeophysics, Biomechanical Engineering, Business Administration, and Military Political Science. He was the Air Force Director of Engineering for the Space Shuttle Program responsible for computer cyber-physical security. He’s owned two overseas and three software companies.

“As you are aware, Election integrity is a flash topic that quickly raises emotions,” said Shuey. “Our purpose today is to bring you real facts regarding the identified problems that currently exist and which jeopardize the most important and perhaps most sacred right we have, that is our vote. It’s a constant mantra that our elections are secure and without serious irregularities, much less, fraud. And anyone who dares to say otherwise is attacked and countered with the claims that they have no proof of election problems. Let me suggest some historic facts to challenge those who declare such overconfidence in our election process and deny the possibility that they may be wrong, as some of our research suggests.”

Shuey went on to give examples of two black holes that collided and merged in 2015, creating 2 of the biggest shock waves ever felt to man that were so big they vibrated everything in the universe.

“The fact that you didn’t know about them or didn’t feel them does not mean that they did not occur. They were recorded by multiple scientific research centers around the world as facts,” stated Shuey. “Before Magellan, people believed the world was flat. Before Copernicus, they believed the earth was the center of the universe, and even when Copernicus proposed a mathematical heliocentric model of the solar system in 1543, it was Galileo in 1610 who proved it to be true. Why did it take 67 years for people to see the truth? Because they were uninformed and were easily led by those who declared themselves to be the authority to profess the truth based on superstitions, or at best, bad science. . . Merely by declaring election machines are perfectly safe, in the absence of forensic investigation proving such, does not make them so. Nor does disregarding actual investigations that prove the machines can flip, delete, or add votes. Since contractual requirements of machine companies prohibit any investigation whatsoever of what is inside the machines, how they operate, or what is the machine code that is used in the election process, there is no credible way and certainly no scientific way one can unequivocally state that the machines are safe to use. We are therefore forced to trust the word of those who want to ensure that machines are used in our election process, and they are trusting the word of the suppliers who want to sell them.”

Shuey claimed his three guests were “the true experts, who are highly-credentialed individuals, knowledgeable in the technologies involved in computer software and malware and data processing transmission, especially as it pertains to election machines.”

His first guest was Bernie Ryder, a software designer, responsible for developing major systems for the Secretary of the Army and corporations like IBM, Hewlett Packard, Martin Marietta, Sun Microsystems, and six major airlines whose main point was that it’s very easy to infiltrate and change voting outcomes from the machines.

His second guest, Clinton Curtis, whom Representative Proctor called a charlatan on social media, was introduced by Mr. Shuey as “an attorney, computer programmer, ex-NASA employee with intimate knowledge of how malware can and has been used to flip elections. He frequently presents and testifies about the ability to corrupt elections with voting machines without detection. He’s consulted with government officials in Italy, Germany, and the Netherlands on the vulnerabilities and insecurity of election machines. All three of which have eliminated voting machines and gone to paper ballots only.”

Mr. Curtis wrote the code for the original voting machine in 2000. His testimony shares more of his experiences with those machines.

His third guest was Mark Cook, as mentioned earlier. His presentation begins here.

Woodard’s comments appeared to be more of a smear tactic as he thanked Thad Snider for being there and for sharing new information that he’d never heard before but went on to state, “You’re telling us to listen to experts, but you’re asking us also to listen to you, where a court order in 2022 said that ‘the plaintiffs’ temporary restraining order motion is long on suspicion contingency and hypothesis but short on facts and identifiable harm.’ So my question to you is why we should listen to you instead of the experts?”

Snider addressed the accusation by explaining that he is not an attorney and that he filed that case with 5 other individuals pro se, and it was their first time filing in a Federal court.

“The temporary restraining order that we filed was after we found out that Konnech was in our largest election management system. So while the judge may have ruled that, do we still have Konnech in Johnson County? No. . . So while that particular ruling said we were short on facts, the truth is, Konnech was in our system and Johnson County has since removed it.”

Snider went on to explain the difficulties in getting an attorney to represent anyone on the issues. Although he met many who believed all of their claims, they would not take on the case because “they’re terrified the BAR would come over them.”

Woodard had no reply except to continue to character assassin Snider as not being an expert and repeating that the State needed to leave it to the experts. He did not elaborate on how he would have learned about the new information submitted by Snider and others, that he thanked Snider for presenting and claimed he had never heard in committee before, if the legislators only listened to those within the system.

However, incomplete instructions by Woodard are not uncommon. Woodard was the same representative who, earlier in the 2023 session, made a motion to amend a budget proviso by Representative Carrie Barth for a moratorium on any new renewable projects until the State fully studied their environmental and health effects on the land, humans, and animals. When probed by the chairman regarding more information on which part of the item Woodard wanted to amend, his response was a confused, “I don’t know.”

Evidently, Woodard’s special interest “renewable” campaign contributors had not explained their amendment request clearly enough for Woodard to be informed on the issue.

It was clear his sources also did not explain the positive final outcome of Snider’s legal case when he tried to use the ruling to smear Snider’s credibility. Otherwise, Woodard would have recognized, like the other members of the committee, that the election concerns have created a whole new type of experts in a variety of topics outside of the typical government systems, and they all need to work together in the best interest of the State of Kansas, the United States of America, and freedom for all.

For more information, the public is encouraged to read the testimony and watch the videos for day 1 and day 2.

This is not a partisan issue nor a blind support for the narrative given to the public by their preferred candidates and/or friends in staff positions.

A republic is not free or a republic without fair elections. Voter confidence is imperative if we expect the people to continue participating. As Representative Pat Proctor pointed out, many doors he’s been knocking on this year had residents claiming they are not voting because the system is rigged.

“That is an essential threat to our democracy,” Proctor said.

art by Tim McCabe

That’s the temperature in the room regarding elections, and it’s not getting any more secure without those in a position to make a change, setting aside their biased views, taking a step back, looking at it with a new set of lenses, and listening to the experiences of those with information outside of the state-run system.

Most members of the special committee on elections seemed not only willing to look deeper, citing their own concerns, but they agreed that fair elections are imperative and promised to continue the discussion to implement changes, although they claimed it’s an involved process and won’t happen immediately.

In the closing discussion, Representative Tom Sawyer began by stating the Cherokee County thing really disturbed him. “You know we didn’t have any audits before 2018. That’s when we first passed the statute requiring post-election audits. I think we really ought to look at increasing the audits. I think that would help a lot. As was pointed out, if they hadn’t picked that race, who knows, we may not have ever known about that. . . I’m interested in the transparency. You know, in Kansas, we have always been very secretive on the election stuff. Even in the legislature when we have contested races, we generally end up getting the stuff we need, but it isn’t always easy to get that information. . . I think the more transparent we can be, the better for the process.”

Rep. Sawyer also liked the idea of being able to verify votes after they’re cast so a person can confirm their ballot was counted. He supported the idea of election day as a state holiday because the polling places and workers would be available since buildings would be closed and available to be used for polling and people would be off work to help with the elections.

Representative Pat Proctor said it was a very educational couple of days and they could have used another day. “I would have loved to hear some folks who disagreed with these folks and I would have loved to have vendors for election equipment come in.” He continued with his aforementioned comments on calm, civil discussions without namecalling, his sentiments on voter distrust, and said, “I just ask people to understand that we are your representatives and we are concerned, and we are working on this.”

Senator Tim Shallenburger agreed with the remarks of Representative Sawyer. “I’m pretty cynical. I know once you’ve been elected and you sit up here at this side of the table, we become defensive, but they’re right (pointing to the crowd). I have watched people harvest ballots. I’ve watched candidates fill ballots out, at a restaurant one time. . . He’d gone to a nursing home, got a list of names, requested the absentee ballot, got the absentee ballots, sat at the restaurant filling them out, then going to take them and give them to the County Clerk. I live in Cherokee County where a county commissioner who had done a wonderful job got beat on election night. I called her on the phone and said ‘Myra, what happened? You need to ask for a recount.’ She said, ‘No, if they don’t want me, I’m not going to ask for a recount.’ So if they hadn’t picked that election, we’d have a different county commissioner today. I don’t think it’s deliberate in most cases. I think most election people are honest. I think we try to do the right thing, but we can’t be so defensive that we refuse to change. I think we should have paper ballots everywhere.”

Representative Paul Waggoner was online. In earlier comments, he disagreed with the possibility of cheating because he stated his wife is an election worker and he doesn’t understand how the audits wouldn’t catch the machines flipping votes. He encouraged members of the committee to get better informed by becoming poll workers so they really understand the system better and the inherent checks and balances that are in place. “I hear things being said that I know my county election leadership certainly cringes because a lot of it’s predicated on misunderstandings of where the actual security is built into the system.”

He continued with ideas of better training for signature verification and even paying people a $100,000 prize to try to game the system to find the weaknesses. “Because you hear a lot of, sort of, outlandish in my book, allegations being made. Have people show us that they can do it and put up some money to do something like that.” (Earlier, presenter Thad Snider gave an example of a person doing just this, requesting a ballot with a false driver’s license to see if he could do it, and the person did receive a ballot. The requester immediately reported it to the proper authorities. This was discussed between Waggoner and Snider during the presentation, but Waggoner did not seem to believe that it happened. Page 12 of the powerpoint shows the email chain in the County regarding the matter.)

Representative Howerton thanked attendees for their passion and stated she is very concerned about elections as well. She referenced a conversation she had with the Secretary of State’s office about fraud reporting where she discovered there is basically no process to follow-up on any fraud reporting and no tracking on that process. She is working on legislation to create a citizen oversight board to oversee fraud reporting and tracking to make sure fraud reports are being investigated and followed up on because right now “we don’t know anything.” She also believes expanding the number of audits from the current 1% would be very good to hopefully eventually 100%.

Senator Kloos stated on Thursday, “We’ve got to fix this so we can bring back the legitimacy so that both sides of the party, or maybe you’re independent, it doesn’t matter, so people can feel that the election is secure and that it is safe. . . It’s just as easy to say, ‘Well, we don’t have the money or we don’t have this.’ Then we need to find the money. Then we need to do something to get it because public opinion is what matters right now, and honestly, I don’t want to go to a fourth session and work on election laws again. I want to see this stuff fixed!”

He continued on Friday stating his hopes for more frequent special post-audits besides the annual one “because they couldn’t even give us a time when the last one was done.”

“If they’ve ever been done,” interjected Senator Mike Thompson, chairman of the Committee.

Senator Kloos went on to echo the sentiments of Representative Sawyer in requesting another day of hearings, specifically closed-door so they can “ask the hard questions, because I’m sitting here and I’m hearing more from constituents on all these security issues, and here I’m a sitting Senator and I haven’t even been briefed on what the protocol is, what the security is. I haven’t had the privilege to really ask these questions and I’m on the election committee. That doesn’t paint a good picture. So I think we need to call them in and give us a good brief and let us ask the questions so when we have people showing up, we know what the heck we’re talking about.”

Senator Shallenburger mentioned getting a copy of the consent agreement entered into by the Governor that was referenced on Thursday (by the group Woodard called conspiracy theorists.)

Senator Mike Thompson answered that he has legal staff working on a letter requesting that agreement because he has a laundry list of 8-9 things that he wants to know about it, including:

  • Documentation of the agreement
  • How much money was sent, if any
  • To which agencies it went to
  • How that money was spent
  • Whether it was spent totally on voter registration or something else
  • Anything the rest of the committee would like to add

Representative Michael Dodson thanked everyone for attending both days stating, “For those of us who have been invested for some time, I have big worries about our ability to trust in our government and to trust in the institutions and the mechanisms that make those work. So I think we’re all very serious about sorting this out. Unfortunately, we’ve been going through this about 18 months, and it’s not getting any better. Every time you turn on the tv, or every time you turn on social media, there’s something else. So getting to the bottom of what we need to do, I think has two components.”

He went on to say, “You have to have processes that are written down. You have to have processes that are down at the County level certainly, that then can be documented properly when somebody comes in to do an audit. The other one is the technical issue. Before we decide on voting machines, which is going to be a very serious step, we’re going to have to figure out how to get to the bottom of this technology. The technology that was explained today and somewhat yesterday is down at the coding level. So you have to ask yourself, who would be doing this and who would gain, and then how do we combat that? If there’s no methodology to get it pretty close to right, then we’ve got to figure out how we get around it. And we have to realize too that nothing we do is ever going to be perfect. Times will change, we’ll move on, and somebody will find another way. So vigilance is something that we’ve got to practice all the time. So I thank you for appearing today, with a little bit of emotion which is probably appropriate, letting us know where you have found fault, so that we can work on some of these issues over time. . . This is not going to be done overnight because we’re going to have to figure this out and try to get it right.”

As Rep. Dodson said, there was emotion in the room, from a grassroots group who have spent years trying to get past the stigma of not being an expert in order to get in front of those with the ability to make a difference.

Senator Mike Thompson demonstrated exemplary leadership in balancing the involvement of the constituents with the decorum of a meeting that needed to proceed on a tight schedule. He put together a slate of voices that needed to be heard by their representatives, and he packed a lot of valuable information into two days of meetings.

Representatives Mike Thompson and those on the Election Committee who value the voice of their constituents are necessary for saving this great country with freedom and representation for all. Their efforts are appreciated.

Read the two days of testimonies and watch day 1 and day 2 of the meetings to understand some of the concerns heard by the committee. This is a non-partisan issue that affects everyone.


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