Some Cowley County voters leary of voting machines

Voting sign (Photo: KSN/John Asebes)
Voting sign (Photo: KSN/John Asebes)

COWLEY COUNTY, Kan. (KSNW) – Election offices throughout Kansas are reporting larger than expected early voting numbers, and in one county there’s an increase in the request for paper ballots. Those voters, located Cowley County, fear election fraud this year.

KSN talked with voters there Friday and asked whether they’re using electronic or paper ballots, and why. Some said they weren’t concerned with the method of casting their votes, but others said they don’t trust voting machines so they’re asking for paper ballots.

As the voters come into the Cowley County election office to get their Ballots, officials there are noting more people leaning toward using paper.

“We have had more than we have in the past,” said Karen Madison with the Cowley County Election Office.

In the 2014 election, 29 people used paper ballots in Cowley County. So far, in the first week voting in the 2016 election, more than 90 people have asked for paper ballots.

“Some of them just aren’t sure about using the electronic equipment and then some of them, we have had more this year,  that have said they have heard different things on the media that make them worry about the machine and stuff,” said Madison. “That it is not going to tally their vote the way they are casting it.”

One of those who requested a paper ballot was Will Upton.

“I voted with a paper ballot, the reason being is, I don’t know that I quite trust the digital ballot system,” said Upton. “I don’t know that either one is going to be totally accurate but I am hoping the paper ballot works a better.”

However, not all voters feel that way.

“t really doesn’t matter to me which one,” said Rowena Corder.

Meanwhile, election officials are working to reassure all voters that all ballots are safe and accurate.

“I do all the programming here I am confident that as much as we test and re-test, that all of our programming here is counting just they way that it should,” said Madison.

Madison said there’s no concern about running out of paper ballots since her office can always print more.