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Legislators find no clear answer after discussion on new regulations for voting systems

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BATON ROUGE- After an hours-long hearing Wednesday, Secretary of State Kyle Ardoin will write new rules about how you can cast a vote.

The commission decided that Ardoin should make both electronic and paper ballots an option at the polls.

"Just because its paper, don't think we won't have issues," Rep. Sam Jenkins said.

Jenkins pointed out the months-long decision in the Bush v. Gore election. Other members were dead-set on more issues coming from electronic systems.

"I can't support anything that does not include a hand-marked ballot," commission member Michael Lunsford said.

Among those adding his voice, conservative activist Mike Lindell, who is perhaps best known for his "My Pillow" company.

"Nobody in this country can trust computers anymore, we can't. The 2020 election was the most important because it opened up our eyes to this" Lindell said.

Voters at the meeting asked to get rid of computerized systems after the last presidential election and unfounded claims the election was rigged. There's no evidence to support it was. Some argue hand-counted votes would be more reliable.

"Any machine can be hacked. My company, any company, credit cards gets hacked all the time," Lindell said.

Clerks and registrar's of voters from different parishes spoke out against the stone-age system of paper ballots. Many saying they can't get enough volunteers to count the votes among other issues.

"Humidity can cause paper ballots to swell and stick together or even can cause printer issues," an official from East Baton Rouge said.

Members also voted to recommend votes are not counted by hand. It may take a few months for Ardoin to write up the regulations. The next step will be for the nine companies that were there Wednesday to come back, and present how they can meet those new rules.

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