Here’s what’s going on. Before the election there were fears that election results might be hacked. Now, after the election computer scientists are looking at election results with some concern and are asking for a hand-count of votes in some states.
Most people don’t know that ballots are not actually counted by people. Instead, where there are ballots at all, they are run through tabulators that electronically report their results to computers that electronically report their results to central computers. In these situations, the actual ballots are rarely hand-counted to make sure that the machines reported the correct results.
Many places use voting machines that report their results to computers that report their results. Many of these machines now have paper rolls that can be checked to see if the machines reported the correct results. But it is rarely done. Some of these voting machines don’t even have any way to verify that they are reporting the correct results, so people have no way to know who really won elections.
How did it get to be “normal” that actual, verifiable ballots are not actually counted, yet we trust the reported results? Instead of publicly counting ballots, we rely on results reported by computer tabulators. It is the computer scientists who have been and are telling us that we should not rely on the results from computers without verifying them by hand. (See, for example, Verified Voting.)
One would think that reports of hackers probing election systems before the election might bring some pressure on election officials to actually count ballots after the election instead of relying on election system computers.
We saw how actually counting the real ballots in Florida in 2000 showed that the results could be quite different from what was reported by computers.
Now after the election scientists telling us there is reason to suspect the results in key states that swung the Electoral College. Our system has enough tension right now with the FBI interference, the massive voter suppression, Trump’s lies and smears and the rest of what has happened and is happening.
Hillary Clinton owes it to us and the country, and to Donald Trump should he really be the president-elect, to ask for a hand recount that clears this question up so the voters can trust the integrity of the results.