On June 2, 2021, the Wisconsin Elections Commission (“Commission”) approved the Dominion Voting Systems Democracy Suite 5.5-C and 5.5-CS voting systems for sale and use in the State of Wisconsin. No electronic voting equipment may be offered for sale or implemented in Wisconsin unless first approved and certified by the Elections Commission.
Democracy Suite 5.5-C is a federally tested, and EAC certified, paper based, digital scan voting system powered by the Democracy Suite software platform. Democracy Suite 5.5-CS is a federally tested, paper based, digital scan voting system powered by the Democracy Suite software platform, which includes wireless modem capabilities for the transmission of unofficial election results to the county on election night. The systems consist of seven major components:
- Election Management System (EMS) server.
- EMS client workstation (Windows 10 powered desktop and/or laptop computer).
- ImageCast Evolution, a polling place scanner and tabulator, which also meets ADA compliance requirements as a ballot marking device.
- ImageCast X Ballot Marking Device, an Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliant vote capture device for polling place use.
- ImageCast X Direct Record Electronic voting device, an ADA compliant vote capture device for polling place use.
- ImageCast Precinct 2, a polling place scanner and tabulator.
- ImageCast Central, a high-speed scanner and tabulator for use in central count locations.
As part of the certification, the Commission commonly adds certain conditions to which the vendor must adhere in order to maintain approval in Wisconsin. While several of the certification conditions were standard for every voting system, there were some worth noting that are specific to Democracy Suite 5.5-C and 5.5-CS. See below for representative examples.
- Any municipality using a ballot marking device (BMD) approved as part of Democracy Suite 5.5-C and 5.5-CS, must include ballots marked by that device as part of the pre-audited group of ballots used to conduct its pre-election logic and accuracy voting equipment test, under Wis. Stat. § 5.84(1). This includes ballots marked by the ImageCast Evolution tabulator BMD function, ImageCast X DRE, or the ImageCast X BMD. While the inclusion of ballots marked by a device in the pre-election logic and accuracy test has always been a best practice recommendation, the Commission specifically required those ballots be included when Democracy Suite 5.5-C and 5.5-CS is used at an election.
- Clerks and election inspectors shall ensure that external modems are secured prior to, during, and after every election, with proper chain of custody documentation utilized.
- Election inspectors must continue to check both the write-in bin and main ballot bin for validly cast write-in votes after the close of polls in each election, and not rely upon the optional write-in report.
- Any absentee ballot returned by the tabulation equipment with an overvote or crossover vote notification must be reviewed by election inspectors prior to being overridden or remade. If necessary, ballots must be remade pursuant to approved procedures listed in the Election Day and Election Administration manuals.
- Any absentee ballot returned that has been marked with red ink by the voter must be remade by election inspectors prior to any attempt at processing on the tabulation equipment.
- ICE X BMD and DRE be programmed to present only one contest per page.
- Voter ballot activation cards used as part of the ICE X BMD or DRE be reprogrammed after each use and set to expire after one hour.
- Automatically return marked ballots to the voter for physical review prior to casting when marked using the ICE tabulator BMD function.
- The ImageCast X ballot marking device has been certified for hand counting only and ballots marked using this equipment cannot be counted using any of the tabulation equipment certified as part of this system.
A full list of conditions included in the Democracy Suite 5.5-C and 5.5-CS certification, as well as detailed WEC testing information, can be found in the attached Commission memorandum.
For additional information regarding this voting system, please refer to the attached Commission memorandum, certification letter, and U.S. Election Assistance Commission certificate. If you have any questions, please contact the Help Desk at @email or (608) 261-2028. Thank you.