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In 2020, voters with disabilities turned out in force in one of the most consequential elections in U.S. history. According to data compiled by the U.S. Census Bureau, nearly 62 percent of disabled voters cast a ballot in the November 2020 election, compared with just about 56 percent of disabled voters who participated in the 2016 presidential election. 2020's high turnout is demonstrative of disabled voters' unwavering resolve to make their voices heard and to fully participate in American democracy. While all voters—regardless of disability status—experienced difficulties in registering to vote and casting ballots last year due to the coronavirus pandemic, disabled voters faced particularly significant challenges. This report examines the barriers disabled voters face when participating in elections and proposes solutions for improving the voting experience and encouraging voter participation.
To understand risks to our election systems and plan for the future, it is necessary to identify existing vulnerabilities in election infrastructure so we can properly assess where resources should be allocated and establish preventative measures and strategies. Only through understanding the terrain can the nation rise to the challenge of preventing voting machine malfunction and defending America's elections from adversarial attempts to undermine our election infrastructure. In August 2017, the Center for American Progress released a report entitled "9 Solutions for Securing America's Elections," laying out nine vulnerabilities in election infrastructure and solutions to help improve election security in time for the 2018 and 2020 elections.15 This report builds on that analysis to provide an overview of election security and preparedness in each state, looking specifically at state requirements and practices related to:Minimum cybersecurity standards for voter registration systemsVoter-verified paper ballotsPost-election audits that test election resultsBallot accounting and reconciliationReturn of voted paper absentee ballotsVoting machine certification requirementsPre-election logic and accuracy testingThis report provides an overview of state compliance with baseline standards to protect their elections from hacking and machine malfunction. Some experts may contend that additional standards, beyond those mentioned here, should be required of states to improve election security. The chief purpose of this report