Press Conference: Nonpartisan Colorado Voters to Challenge Secretary of State Gessler's Proposed Relaxation of County Security Rules for Discredited Electronic Voting Machines

Date: 12.07.11
Time: 10:00 a.m. - 10:45 a.m.
Location: Law Offices of Wheeler Trigg O'Donnell LLP, Downtown Denver
Sponsored By: Wheeler Trigg O'Donnell LLP

Speaker: Matthew E. Johnson
Phone: 303.244.1864

Attorneys Paul Hultin and Matthew Johnson of the Denver-based civil litigation law firm Wheeler Trigg O'Donnell LLP (WTO) represent a nonpartisan group of Colorado voters who are challenging amendments proposed by Secretary of State Scott Gessler (Gessler) to Colorado's Election Rule 43.  On December 7th, the attorneys and concerned voters will brief media on a hearing scheduled for Thursday, December 8th, where Gessler will receive comments on proposed changes to mandatory county security rules for use of discredited Direct Recording Electronic voting machines (DREs). The proposed amendments, if adopted, will compromise the security and integrity of Colorado elections.

WTO attorneys Paul Hultin and Matt Johnson are representing, pro bono, the nonpartisan group of Colorado voters who are challenging proposed amendments to county security requirements for DREs (Election Rule 43). Election Rule 43 was first adopted pursuant to Court Order in Conroy v. Dennis, a 2006 pro bono case that a WTO trial team led by Hultin tried and won in Denver District Court in 2006. The case drew national attention as the first successful challenge to the certification and use of notoriously insecure and unreliable DREs. 

In Conroy, WTO established that the Secretary of State had not complied with its own regulations and procedures for testing and certifying the security and reliability of  DREs that were proven to be easily subject to tampering. The trial court ordered that stringent county security measures be adopted to protect the integrity of the 2006 election. These security measures were adopted and became Election rule 43. The proposed amendments to Rule 43 would compromise the carefully drawn and rigorous security, monitoring, reporting and recordkeeping requirements that have been in effect for the last five years to protect the fairness and integrity of Colorado's elections.  

Colorado and its counties were rushed into purchasing the dubiously insecure DRE electronic voting systems in the mistaken belief that they were required by the Help America Vote Act (HAVA) of 2002, which Congress passed to restore voter confidence after the Florida fiasco in the 2000 presidential election and to provide independent and private voting for the disabled. Unfortunately, DREs have been repeatedly proven to be insecure and easily compromised by hacking [see links to related articles below].  

Because the DREs have a history of operational problems and cannot provide reliable ballot recounts in a contested election, the systems continue to be challenged by computer scientists, engineers, and policy makers across the United States. With a hotly contested presidential election predicted in 2012, now is not the time to relax security rules for these widely discredited electronic voting systems.

"Researchers Hack Voting Machines for $26"

The New Jersey Voting Machine Hacking and the AVC Advantage DRE Voting Machine

"8th Grade Education and $10 Part: All You Need To Hack These Voting Booths"

Media please pre-register with Connie Proulx,, 303-244-1919.

Telephone participation is available – number and access code provided upon request.