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- Footage showed electronic pollbooks adding voter check-ins after the polls closed, an issue caused by a download delay in the software, according to Dallas County. It isn’t evidence of fraud.
A video clip that has spread widely on social media focuses on a screen as people chatter in the background. Among the remarks that can be heard:
"I’m 1,089 now."
"What’s your total?"
"Mine jumped from 300 to 920."
"What does that mean?
"That means they are literally rigging this election."
An Instagram post sharing the video offered its own analysis in the caption: "Footage reveals that poll pads in Dallas were caught adding hundreds of voters in real time as the poll was being closed. It has to be this way! Think about it, this time, the fraud is so undeniably obvious. It happened in every state, in every county."
This post was flagged as part of Facebook’s efforts to combat false news and misinformation on its News Feed. (Read more about our partnership with Meta, which owns Facebook and Instagram.)
We reached out to the Dallas County Elections Department and the agency referred us to its website, where it addressed the rumor on Nov. 13. The electronic pollbook shown in the video clip was one of thousands that was loaded with Dallas County’s list of 1.4 million registered voters and then shipped to early voting locations and Election Day vote centers, the department said in the statement.
The pollbooks, from Election Systems & Software and certified by the Texas secretary state, were used to check in voters before they cast their ballots. After a voter successfully checks in, the transaction is recorded locally on the pollbook and uploaded to a central server hosted by Elections Services & Software. The central server then downloads that transaction to all the other pollbooks in the system.
But, the county said, downloading those transactions to all pollbooks in the system was apparently delayed on Election Day as more than 200,000 voters checked in. After the polls closed and no more check-ins were being uploaded to the server, downloads "appeared to have sped up significantly," the county said. "Poll workers at many locations noticed the increased speed and continued downloads on their e-pollbooks after the close of the polls and reported those transactions to Dallas County and other entities."
The county consulted with the software company, which sent a statement that said the activity was "normal" and "expected" after the close of polls.
"Pollbook transactions will continue to update until all data is accurately reflected," the statement said. "As long as pollbooks are communicating with the central server, voter data will continue to sync."
The county also noted that during election canvassing, the number of voters who received ballots from the pollbooks is compared with the number of ballots tallied and any discrepancies between the two are investigated.
"Dallas County’s e-pollbooks functioned accurately, but slowly, and correctly recorded the number of voters who were issued ballots on Election Day," the county said on its site. "Dallas County’s final canvass documents will guarantee that the e-pollbooks were accurate by comparing the number of voters who were issued ballots on the e-pollbooks with the number of ballots tallied, and if there are any discrepancies, they will be explained."
We rate claims that voters were fraudulently added to pollbooks in Dallas after the polls closed False.
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