Flashback: HBO's John Oliver called electronic voting machines 'completely insane' in 2019

Long before electronic voting machines emerged as a piece of the controversy surrounding the 2020 elections, liberals made it clear that they suspected them every bit as much as President Donald Trump does now.

In the aftermath of the election in which presumptive potential President-elect Joe Biden has been declared the winner, allegations have been flying from Trump and his campaign that voting machines made by Dominion Voting Systems can be manipulated.

The unproven claims are part of a campaign battle that has included allegations there has been voter fraud in states that include Arizona, Nevada, Georgia, Michigan and Wisconsin, as well as Pennsylvania.

Despite multiple anecdotal claims of voting irregularities, proof has yet to surface that there was a widespread effort to distort the voting process in such as way that would have impacted the final results of the presidential election.

In November 2019, liberal HBO host John Oliver ripped into electronic voting machines on his show, "Last Week Tonight." A video of his diatribe was posted on YouTube.

Oliver's ire was directed against Direct Recording Electronic voting machines, which leave no paper trail.

“They are very bad. If something goes wrong with one of them, you would basically never know, because you can’t audit the results. And things have gone wrong,” he said, citing a New Jersey case in which  a husband and wife running for seats on a local Democratic committee "were in the unusual position of actually knowing that that was a mistake.”

During the video clip, Ernest and Cynthia Zirkle told their story.

“I knew 33 of the people that voted for us, and we lost 33 to 10, and I knew that that wasn’t the case,” said Cynthia Zirkle.

“We started calling people that we thought we knew voted for us, because it was just in this district of this township, and we know everybody in this district,” added Ernest Zirkle.

To set things right, Cynthia Zirkle had “literally went around and got signed affidavits from people saying that they had voted for her," Oliver said.

“The fact is, unless you happen to personally know everyone who votes for you on a paperless DRE machine, there is no way to verify the results,” he said. “It’s a pretty good case against them, which makes it, frankly, completely insane that New Jersey not only still uses them, but plans to keep using them for the 2020 election.”

“And it’s not just New Jersey, in 2016, 20 percent of voters voted on paperless DREs, and an estimated 12 percent will use them in 2020, meaning 16 million Americans, spread out across all these states, are set to be voting on machines that pretty much everyone agrees are deeply, deeply flawed. And if they malfunction, there could be no way of knowing, which is absolutely terrifying," he said.

No Trump fan, Oliver then cited the president.

"What we have to do here is obvious, it’s so obvious, in fact, even this guy understands it," he said, showing a clip of Trump talking about the importance of a paper voting trail.

“He’s right. That’s it. He’s just all the way, completely right,” said Oliver.

Similar concerns the next month led four Democrats  -- Sens. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota and Ron Wyden of Oregon and Rep. Mark Pocan of Wisconsin -- to vent their collective spleens to equity funds with interests in Dominion and two other companies, Hart InterCivic Inc. and Election Systems & Software.

Copies of the letters can be viewed on Warren’s website.

They wrote: “In 2018 alone ‘voters in South Carolina [were] reporting machines that switched their votes after they’d inputted them, scanners [were] rejecting paper ballots in Missouri, and busted machines [were] causing long lines in Indiana.’ In addition, researchers recently uncovered previously undisclosed vulnerabilities in ‘nearly three dozen backend election systems in 10 states.’

"And, just this year, after the Democratic candidate’s electronic tally showed he received an improbable 164 votes out of 55,000 cast in a Pennsylvania state judicial election in 2019, the county’s Republican Chairwoman said, ‘[n]othing went right on Election Day. Everything went wrong. That’s a problem.’ These problems threaten the integrity of our elections and demonstrate the importance of election systems."

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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