Election Process – Chain-of-Custody

The goal for all Election Authorities should be “Easy to vote, but hard to cheat.”  How do the proposed new equipment and the Election Authority’s processes achieve this goal? This blog covers what we’ve recently learned about the “process.”

I Recently, I submitted a FOIA (freedom of information Act) requesting a copy of their Documented process for Provisional ballots. A friend had submitted a FOIA about vote-by-mail processing.  What we found out is that the DuPage Election Division has

  • NO Documented procedures for how provisional ballots are determined to be counted or not.
  • No chain-of-custody documents for provisional ballots
  • No chain-of-custody documents for Vote-by-Mail ballots
  • Prior to the law changing in 2020, vote-by-Mail procedures had nothing about ballot security
  • When asked for procedures for how vote-by-mail was actually handled for the 2020 general election (remember hastily passed law changes in the summer of 2020 due to Covid), NO procedures were provided.

With no Chain-of-custody documentation or procedures, how can the election authority demonstrate that no extra ballots were counted, or submitted ballots tampered with? 

1. As a voter, please, if at all possible vote on election-day, in person.  You place your ballot in the tabulator and they are all counted prior to leaving the building that night. It is the most secure way to vote.

2. We need to pressure the DuPage County election authority to DOCUMENT their procedures, to include tamper-proof chain of custody documentation, and  and to accept public feedback on their processes. 

We need to be able to “Tust, but verify.”

What I requested ad in brackets [what I received]

1.      A copy of the written procedures including pages from judge training materials, for when provisional ballots are issued, and how to handle them.  [pdf provide]

2.      Sample screen shots of any displays on the electronic poll books that instruct an election judge to issue a provisional ballot. [none provided]

3.      A copy of procedures for how provisional ballots are determined to be counted or not. [none provided]

4.      A picture of the provisional ballot envelope (front and back) [pdf provided]

5.      A copy of the provisional ballot form & instructions. [pdf provided]

6.      A copy of the chain-of-custody documents for provisional ballots. [None provided – implying that it does NOT exist]

7.      A count per township per polling-place / early-voting-location of how many provisional ballots were issued for the Nov. 3, 2020 election. [none provided – implying that there is no form to be  filled out by judges indicating how many]

8.      A count per township/precinct of the number of Provisional ballots that were good (vote counted) and [none provided – I find it hard to believe that they don’t have a database containing who vored – and by what method.  This should be an easy query]

9.      A count per township/precinct of the number that were not good (vote not counted) [none provided]

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