New voting machines put to the test in Montgomery County

After more than 20 years of electronic push button voting machines, Montgomery County residents cast their votes using a new voting system.

It features a hard marked machine read paper ballot. Using a process familiar to anyone who has taken a standardized test in school, a voter marks in small printed circles.

The circles are next to candidates' names. The voter then takes the completed ballot to an electronic scanner a few steps away. The scanner records the votes and secures the paper ballot. The advantage of the new system is it produces a paper trail that could be used if there is a recount in a race.

In Conshohocken, voter impressions varied.

"I think it was pretty simple, just filling in the little circles," said Kevin Dwyer.

But he noted he thought it took a little longer than the previous push button system.

Todd Stokley said he thought it took a lot more time. He said he preferred the old system where he could "press the button and be in and out."

Voter Joe Miller liked the new system. He feels the speed of the push button voting machine allowed for more chance of making an error when casting a vote.

"It's more deliberative," said Miller.

Philadelphia hopes to have a new voting system by the general election in November. On Tuesday, it still used it 3,500 push-button machines.

Various glitches were reported. Ward 2 Division 19 in South Philadelphia used paper ballots for the first 90 minutes until the electronic voting machines were fixed.

In the first ward division two, there was a social media report of a voting machine that had to be replaced after it did not appear to record a vote cast for a City Council incumbent. As of late Tuesday afternoon, an election official said the claim was being investigated.

Tuesday morning, polls in Roxborough Division 3 did not open on time, one because of a machine issue, two because poll workers with critical material were late to the polls.
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