The Truth Doesn't Need a Lawyer.
Minnehaha, Lincoln and Pennington counties hired outside attorneys to hide voter records – with taxpayer money.
In January of 2022, a group of citizens started a public records request campaign for information related to county elections. The records requests were for public information such as drop box surveillance videos, absentee ballot envelopes, Zuckerbucks (Center for Technology and Civic Life) grants, surety bonds, ES&S contracts, ES&S tabulating machine audit logs, and Cast Vote Records (CVR’s) from the ES&S tabulating machines used in every county in South Dakota.
Cast Vote Records Exist in South Dakota
ALL ES&S tabulating machines produce CVR’s. They are by very definition of the machine ® a central scanner and tabulator that simultaneously scans the front and back of a paper ballot and/or vote summary card in any of four orientations for conversion of voter selection marks to electronic CVRs. (U.S. Election Assistance Commission Certificate of Conformance ES&S EVS 22.214.171.124.)
All election equipment must be EAC certified for use in the state of South Dakota. By the very certification standards, the existence of CVRs is specifically stated as a tool for auditing results. Yet, when we requested the cast vote records from the 2020 election and the June 7, 2022 primary election, our election officials denied their existence.
Counties Deny CVRs
Virtually every county in South Dakota sent back denial letters stating the cast vote records do not exist, therefore they could not provide them to us. Whether or not our elected officials have knowledge of what CVR’s are, or have the knowledge to produce them, does not determine their existence.
The denials were appealed to the Board of Hearing Examiners, who in turn, parroted the same talking points of the county officials without providing a hearing to produce evidence of such records, and denied the appeal. On September 2, 2022 the South Dakota Freedom Caucus hosted a meeting in Pierre to address the topic of the Cast Vote Records. After hearing from auditor after auditor stating CVR’s do not exist, the well informed citizens proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that cast vote records do exist.
We also revealed that two counties had indeed provided the cast vote records from their election data flash drives. It was inherently evident that our elected officials do not have proper education or knowledge of the very machines they are running our elections with. Therefore, the citizens had no choice other than to file a law suit for the records that rightfully belong to the taxpayers.
Taxpayers Foot the Bill for Outside Attorneys
Two lawsuits have been filed against Minnehaha, Lincoln and Pennington Counties for denial of public records, and other offenses of the law. Despite having multiple full time attorneys in the County States Attorney office for each county, Pennington and Minnehaha County contracted legal services with Lisa Hanson Marso, of Boyce Law Firm in Sioux Falls, who also happens to be the president of the State Bar Association.
Lincoln County, after having the Records Preservation Order reinstated by the judge, then contracted outside legal services with Cadwell, Sanford, Deibert & Garry LLP, of Sioux Falls. Rather than working with the citizens that pay their salaries, the county officials decided to spend our taxpayer dollars to hire outside legal counsel to fight our public records requests with our own money.
We believe this is yet another act by our government to suppress our rights, to silence our voices, and a gross misuse of county funds. Without our knowledge, our rights were contracted away by the State, which gave complete control of our elections to Elections Systems & Software (ES&S); a voting machine company from Omaha, Nebraska.
ES&S has a long history of election fraud, security problems, false advertising, pay for play schemes, has undisclosed ownership, and more. Visit this document for 40 pages of ES&S corruption. https://www.sdcanvassing.com/ _files/ugd/ 944eb0_cc3c93817bbc4c59bfd470a66a14a562.pdf.
If you agree with government transparency, the right of the citizens to oversee their elections, and producing an audit trail to the tabulating machines, please join us in using your voices to remind the county auditors, commissioners, and state’s attorneys that they work for us. Help us fight for our right to public information. They need to hear from all of us. Use your voice to fight for freedom today!
Lincoln County, SD - County Commission: https://lincolncountysd.org/208/County-Commission
Minnehaha County, SD - County Commission:
Pennington County, SD - County Commission: