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E-voting problems cause loss of votes, claims report

Electronic voting machine problems caused more than 4,500 votes to be lost in one North Carolina county during the US election,...

Electronic voting machine problems caused more than 4,500 votes to be lost in one North Carolina county during...

the US election, and gave US President George Bush more than 3,800 extra votes in an Ohio county, according to reports by the Associated Press.

In North Carolina's Carteret County, apparent confusion over the storage capacity of UniLect e-voting machines caused the county to lose 4,530 votes, according to a report by the Associated Press.

County officials apparently believed the model of e-voting machine they were using held 10,500 votes, but that model of the machines held only 3,005 votes.

The 4,530 votes lost cannot be recovered, according to an Associated Press story.

UniLect owner and president Jack Gerbel was not immediately available for comment, however, the county Board of Elections said an investigation by the North Carolina State Board of Elections is continuing.

In the Ohio incident, a glitch in e-voting machines made by Election Systems & Software (ES&S) caused Bush to receive an extra 3,893 votes, more than five times the votes actually cast in the precinct in question.

Unofficial results in Franklin County had Bush receiving 4,258 votes to Democrat John Kerry's 260 votes the precinct. Elections records showed that only 638 voters cast ballots in that precinct, according to the Associated Press.

Bush beat Democratic challenger John Kerry by about 136,000 votes in Ohio, according to unofficial results.

Neither a county elections official nor an ES&S spokesman were immediately available to comment.

Grant Gross writes for IDG News Service

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