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Dominion confirms Clinton Foundation donation, Pelosi staffer tie but disputes other claims

Dominion Voting Systems is rebutting assorted claims of partisan bias and voting manipulation in the 2020 election, including rumors of a secret U.S. military raid on purported servers in Germany and ownership interests and other influence in the firm by prominent Democratic families.

Updated: November 17, 2020 - 12:05pm

Election tech company Dominion Voting Systems is rebutting assorted claims of partisan bias and voting manipulation in the 2020 election, including rumors of a secret U.S. military raid on purported servers in Germany and ownership interests and other influence in the firm by prominent Democratic families. At the same time, Dominion has confirmed reports it made a donation to the Clinton Foundation and hired a former Nancy Pelosi staffer as a lobbyist.

Dominion has been at the center of a firestorm since Nov. 3, when its election management software, which is widely used across the country, led to an unofficial initial vote count misreporting Joe Biden as beating President Trump in Michigan's Antrim County when, according to election officials, the county clerk neglected to update software used to collect voting data from electronic tabulators. 

In a lengthy, wide-ranging series of statements on its homepage, Dominion is rejecting claims made in the media and online by critics skeptical of the presidential results who fear that the firm is biased toward Democrats, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.). 

Although Dominion did acknowledge that it made a philanthropic donation to a Clinton Global Initiative meeting in 2014, it also stated that the firm "has no company ownership relationships with any member of the Pelosi family, the Feinstein family, or the Clinton Global Initiative, Smartmatic, Scytl, or any ties to Venezuela." 

Dominion also linked to a Nov. 10 Associated Press report downplaying reports of ties between the election technology firm and prominent Democrats. While acknowledging that it is true that former Pelosi Chief of Staff Nadeam Elshami "is part of a lobbying team representing Dominion, according to public disclosures," the AP dismissed any partisan significance in that connection, noting "that team also includes Brian Wild, who counts Republicans such as former House Speaker John Boehner and former Vice President Dick Cheney among his past bosses."

Dominion also swatted down any claims of "raids" on Dominion servers by the U.S. military, saying that the company does not have servers in Germany.

Allegations against the company could escalate, given claims by an attorney on the Trump campaign election integrity legal team that forthcoming evidence shows the presidential vote count was manipulated using technology from Dominion, a claim the firm soundly rejects.

Attorney Sidney Powell alleged in media interviews that Dominion was used to obtain a "rigged" outcome for Biden over Trump.

Appearing Sunday on Sinclair's "America This Week with Eric Bolling," Powell said her team had uncovered "mathematical alterations to the votes."

"It's a feature of the system that was designed with a backdoor, so that people could watch, in real time, and calculate with an algorithm how many votes they needed to change to make the result they wanted to create," Powell told Bolling. "It's incredibly disturbing, and we will hopefully have evidence of it before the end of the week that we can produce publicly." 

Powell, who has been lead counsel in more than 500 appeals in the Fifth Circuit, also represented Michael Flynn, Trump's former national security advisor, who won a powerful legal victory earlier this year when the U.S. Justice Department recommended a federal judge reverse Flynn's conviction and drop criminal charges, a stunning reversal in a case that became a powerful symbol of FBI misconduct in the Russia investigation. The government said revelations from evidence withheld from the court for years warranted the dramatic recommendation.

In its statements on its homepage, Dominion rejected the substance of Powell's claims without naming her. 

"Dominion Voting Systems categorically denies false assertions about vote switching issues with our voting systems," the homepage stated. "No credible reports or evidence of any software issues exist. Dominion equipment is used by county and state officials to tabulate ballots. Human errors related to reporting tabulated results have arisen in a few counties, including some using Dominion equipment, but appropriate procedural actions were made by the county to address these errors ... prior to the canvass process."

Democratic leaders of Congress warned last year in a series of letters that election technology companies such as Dominion Voting Systems were "prone to security problems," a result of them having purportedly "long skimped on security in favor of convenience."

The allegations were detailed in a series of letters sent in December 2019 by Democratic Sens. Elizabeth Warren, Ron Wyden and Amy Klobuchar, along with Democratic Rep. Mark Pocan.

Dominion Voting Systems President and CEO John Poulos testified in January of this year about election security issues before the House Administration Committee. "The voting systems that we produce provide high assurance that election outcomes are accurately and reliably tallied," Poulos said in his written testimony. "All Dominion systems fully-support independent, third-party audits, and reviews of election data."


 


Poulos said Dominion has annual, mandatory background checks and cybersecurity awareness training for all employees and has adopted multiple layers of protection "spanning user endpoints, network and systems infrastructure and cloud systems, along with multi-factor 2 authentication. We conduct continuous vulnerability scanning on our company network and utilize third-party services for threat hunting and breach detection." 

Poulos also testified that his Dominion staff "actively engage" with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and "other trusted, third-party advisors to enhance and maintain our physical and cyber security posture."

Dominion also works closely with federal, state and local government partners, Poulos testified, to conduct coordinated emergency drills, tabletop exercises and routine information-sharing as a member of the DHS Sector Coordinating Council for Election Infrastructure.

"Through these efforts, Dominion has refined our company's situational awareness and strengthened our procedures for handling incidents and emergencies," Poulos said.

A Homeland Security webpage called "Rumor Control," created by DHS' Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) after the November election, rejected as "rumor" the claim that "a bad actor could change election results without detection."

"The systems and processes used by election officials to tabulate votes and certify official results are protected by various safeguards that help ensure the accuracy of election results," the DHS. These safeguards include measures that help ensure tabulation systems function as intended, protect against malicious software, and enable the identification and correction of any irregularities."

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joint statement by the federal Election Infrastructure Government Coordinating Council (GCC) that includes CISA stated, "There is no evidence that any voting system deleted or lost votes, changed votes, or was in any way compromised." 

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