Supporters of GOP presidential candidate Ron Paul served state officials, including Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr., with a complaint Wednesday as part of a national effort seeking to require paper ballots in the upcoming presidential elections.
"What we expect them to do is to get rid of the machines," said Paul supporter Wally McCormick, claiming that there are problems with the electronic voting machines used in Utah and other states.
The complaint stems from a lawsuit last month in a New York federal district court that was amended recently to include all 50 states. The lawsuit calls for elections in 2008 and thereafter to rely exclusively on paper ballots that are hand-marked and hand-counted.
Lt. Gov. Gary Herbert's chief of staff, Joe Demma, said independent polls have found that nearly all Utah voters are satisfied with the electronic voting machines put in place last year. Paper balloting is "an archaic form of voting," Demma said.
But McCormick said that's the only way to guarantee every vote counts. "We know better," he said. "Who knows where it's going to be a problem? What we're saying is we don't want there to be any chance of a problem."The next election in Utah is Feb. 5, 2008 the state's presidential primary. Paul is among the nine Republicans who will appear on Utah's GOP primary ballot. Utah Democrats will also have nine presidential contenders to choose from in the primary.