BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) — Louisiana lawmakers and election officials are making their final recommendation of what they want election voting machines to look like.

The Voting Systems Commission has been investigating the needs and wants of the public for months as the state works to replace decades old DRE voting machines. T

There has been a push to replace the machines that have been in service since the early 2000s but public trust in the process has been thin. Now with calls of fraud, there is nervousness around the machines.

“A lot of questions are being asked about the possible manipulation of voting machines with regards to those types of systems that include barcodes or QR codes,” Secretary of State Kyle Ardoin said.

There has been controversy over the state’s current systems through Dominion with concerns over potential vulnerabilities that had come to light last year.

“I sent a letter knowing about the vulnerabilities asking Dominion to bring in employees, whatever they needed to come in and inspect these machines, open them up and show what the vulnerabilities potentially were. The CEO of the company tells me to go to a testing lab,” Ardoin said.

Louisiana did not use the system that had potential vulnerabilities so it was protected against the issue. The frustration from the Secretary comes from the company not directly alerting the state to the issue.

Vendors did a show and tell for officials earlier this week to see how their systems work. The commission is leaning towards machines that tabulate handwritten ballots and have multiple archival checkpoints in the process. They also want the machines to be easily auditable.

“There has to be some component of constantly improving our system, addressing problems. You know, we could be buying equipment that’s not yet VSG 2.0 certified with the expectation that the vendors that we’re working with are going to be working towards that,” Sen. Sharon Hewitt said.

Hours of public testimony took place, including a visit from famed Mike Lindell.

The commission heard many false claims of election fraud, but a common theme was a call for paper ballots. There was extended debate between commission members over the options they will be recommending. Some members said they would not support an option without hand-marked ballots. Another commissioner said the options in front of them are not accessible enough for disabled voters.

Each machine has different archiving abilities and security measures in place. Once the recommendation is made, the Secretary of State’s office will begin the RFP process that has more public hearings.

These are the options discussed, the ones with a * are the ones approved by the commission:

Category 1: Marking of Ballots

● Hand-marked paper ballots*

● Ballot marking device*

Category 2: Tabulation of Ballot

● Hand counting of ballots

● Scanned tabulation *

Category 3: Printing of Ballots

● Pre-printed ballots (hand-marked paper ballots)

● Ballots on demand (hand-marked paper ballots)*

● Full-faced ballot (ballot marking device)*

● Ballot summary (ballot marking device)*

Category 4: Accessible Voting Option

● Variety of options, must be in compliance with ADA, HAVA, and other appropriate federal and state laws*