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Documentary: [S]election Code

[S]election Code is a documentary produced by Mike Lindell, written by Matthew Thayer and Lara Logan, and directed by Matthew Thayer.

The film outlines the experience of Tina Peters, Elections Clerk and Recorder for Mesa County, Colorado, as she encounters “irregularities” in the voting machines.

The film very briefly, at just over 10 minutes, rehashes some history regarding voting machines. They were first used in 1892 in New York but did not gain more popularity until the 1910s and 1920s. Since the 1980s, experts have warned about its lack of security. This included Clinton Curtis who in 2000 wrote code to demonstrate hacking and vote-rigging.

[S]election Code

Even though there is no reason for vote-counting software to be particularly sophisticated, it is considered “proprietary software” and the source code therefore may not be inspected.

Although Peters saw problems regarding the election across the country, she initially thought that there were no problems in Mesa County. However, in the city council elections of April 2021, at least one of the candidates knew who had won (and the margins) 30 minutes before she knew and published the results. This obviously alarmed her.

The onsite installation of a “Trusted Build”, basically a software update for the Dominion machines, may involve deletions. The clerk is obliged to preserve all election records for 25 months. Therefore, backups of existing systems are required which the Secretary of State’s office did request. However, according to Peters, they refused her request for the county’s IT department to do so.

Also, for the sake of transparency, visitors are allowed to be present for said installation to observe and to ask questions. But the Secretary of State’s office did not permit visitors and certainly not to ask questions about the “disinformation being pushed about the election”.

There was some intrigue regarding the consultant Gerald Wood’s ID card with Peters accused of using it to access the system but this is not clearly explained.

Peters expressed her concerns about the lack of transparency publicly. She was asked by Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold to recant those statements. Peters refused and was branded a criminal. Subsequently, in November 2021, her home was raided by federal agents.

Peters did make backups of the voting system and then had them analyzed. The findings were released in three reports to the public, commonly referred to as “Mesa Reports”. It was found, amongst other things, that twenty-nine thousand records were altered. There were also databases created as part of the scanning and counting process that changed the count. The authentications attached to the images of the ballot were also missing.

On balance, the film has good production and is edited well. The last 20 minutes of the film are probably the most interesting. Like many documentaries, there are moments when it, perhaps excessively, tries to appeal to the emotions of the audience. The feelings of those who suffer injustice, such as Peters, should never be dismissed, but the documentary need not play on that. The screen time can be better used.

And on that note, there can always be more specifics but, at a runtime of approximately one hour, brevity is presumably the intent and probably for those who have not been following these events—in other words, to “awaken the masses”. But if that is the intent, then some details can be better explained with more specifics.

[S]election Code is available at


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