GAO to investigate election complaints
(CNN) -- The U.S. Government Accountability Office plans to investigate
complaints of several systemic problems with this month's elections, a
group of Democratic lawmakers said Tuesday.
comes in response to two letters written by lawmakers to the GAO which
address numerous media reports of irregularities in the 2004 vote and
call for those to be reviewed.
The GAO said it will not
investigate every charge listed by the Democrats, but will examine "the
security and accuracy of voting technologies, distribution and
allocation of voting machines and counting of provisional ballots."
spokeswoman for one of the lawmakers requesting an investigation, Rep.
John Conyers Jr. of Michigan, said the goal is not to overturn the
election results, but rather to improve the mechanics of the voting
"We are hopeful that GAO's nonpartisan and expert
analysis will get to the bottom of the flaws uncovered in the 2004
election," said a statement released by Conyers and five other members
As part of the inquiry, the group said it will
provide copies of specific incident reports received in their offices
regarding the election, including more than 57,000 complaints provided
to the House Judiciary Committee.
Those reports include
allegations of computer and voting machine problems that added votes to
totals, as well as malfunctions that resulted in votes being thrown out.
are literally receiving additional reports every minute," said a
November 5 letter from lawmakers to the GAO. "The essence of democracy
is the confidence of the electorate in the accuracy of voting methods
and the fairness of voting procedures.
"In 2000, that confidence suffered terribly, and we fear that such a blow to our democracy may have occurred in 2004."
lawmakers in addition to Conyers were Reps. Jerrold Nadler, Louise
Slaughter and Gregory Meeks of New York; Robert Wexler of Florida;
Robert Scott of Virginia; Melvin Watt of North Carolina; Rush Holt of
New Jersey; John Olver of Massachusetts; Bob Filner, George Miller and
Barbara Lee of California; and Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin.