Per our blog report yesterday on anticipated problems with electronic voting machines in Pulaski County and other counties throughout the state, Republican secretary of state candidate Jim Lagrone says in a press release that the blame rests with the current secretary of state, Charlie Daniels.
“All I’ve heard Daniels talk about lately is how important it is to get the dome fixed. It appears he thinks fixing the Capitol dome is more important than fixing the voting machines, and all the accompanying problems, for the upcoming election,” said Lagrone. ...
“Daniels should not have signed a contract with ESS (Election Systems & Software) if the company could not deliver the machines,” emphasizes Lagrone. “The Secretary of State made this deal with ESS, he should be held accountable for getting these machines here in time to train workers and meet the compliance issues. Instead he traveling the state talking about how proud he is of the renovations he’s completed on the Capitol.
“As serious as this problem is,” says Lagrone, “it’s just the tip of the iceberg. Once these machines are up and running, what most people don’t know is that each and every county in Arkansas will be responsible for the long-term maintenance and upkeep of these machines. This may not seem like a big problem but consider this, with the cost of fuel skyrocketing out of control, where do you think a county is going to choose to spend its money – on fuel to keep county road crews operational, or on fixing and maintaining voting machines?”
Concludes Lagrone, “When you’re the Secretary of State in Arkansas, the ‘buck stops here’ when it comes to elections. This constitutional officer’s main job is to make sure our elections run smoothly, accurately and according to law. It’s clear the person who now holds that office is more interested in the aesthetics of our state house than making sure our elections run smoothly.”