Oregon Judge Dismisses Fringe Voting Machines Lawsuits

WASHINGTON, D.C. — On Monday, Feb. 6, a federal judge in Oregon dismissed three fringe lawsuits, which were consolidated and brought by conspiratorial right-wing voters against Oregon election officials that challenged the state’s use of electronic voting machines. In their complaints filed in 2022, the plaintiffs argued that the voting machines used in the 2020 election were not properly accredited and this deprived voters of their ability to know that their votes were “accurately counted.” The plaintiffs claimed to present “unambiguous evidence” of “foreign interference” by citing Terpsichore Maras, “a trained Cryptolinguist” who claimed that the machines were “vulnerable to BLACK BOX antics and backdoors due to hardware changes that can go undetected” and attested that there is a “‘trapdoor’ mechanism available to alter votes via algorithms,” among other allegations. In addition, the complaints promulgated the “Big Lie,” with one alleging that the “methods by which elections at the local, state, and Federal levels in Oregon were conducted 2020, and are being conducted in 2022, cannot be shown to provide the fair Elections.” Last week, a federal judge dismissed these claims, finding that the plaintiffs did not have standing to bring the challenges and that “the harms, if any, that Plaintiffs have alleged are conjectural or hypothetical, not actual or imminent.”

In the order dismissing the consolidated case with prejudice (meaning the plaintiffs cannot re-file their lawsuits), the court found that even “if Plaintiffs were to have standing, their claims would fail as a matter of law.” The judge rejected the plaintiffs’ argument that Oregon’s voting machines are not properly accredited, finding that the challenged voting machines are accredited by the U.S. Election Assistance Commission and this accreditation has not been revoked by the commission. The judge concluded by stating that “even accepting Plaintiffs’ facts as true, any claims stemming from alleged unaccreditation fail as a matter of law and must be dismissed.” This lawsuit is part of a growing trend of fringe lawsuits filed in 2022 largely rooted in conspiracy theories and the “Big Lie.” In a victory for Oregon voters and democracy writ large, a judge dismissed these unfounded claims. 

Read the opinion here.

Learn more about the case here.