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Diebold Voting Machine Company Changes Name to Improve Image


Aired 4/19/09

(Editor's note: this story aired the day after Pundits Called to Review Diebold Over Lingering Ethical Questions .)

Diebold Elections Systems, the company that sold San Diego County $30 million-worth of touch-screen voting machines, has changed its name. The company hopes to create a fresh image for its electronic voting business, after political gaffs and technical problems sullied its image. KPBS reporter Alison St John has more.

“Premier Election Solutions ” is the new name for the Diebold subsidiary that makes electronic voting machines. Its technology was decertified by California’s Secretary of State, and the company’s political impartiality was compromised when CEO Walden Odell promised in 2003 to deliver Ohio to Bush.

“Premier” spokesman Chris Riggall says that reputation has followed the company ever since.

Riggall: It was a mistake and really led, I think, to some important changes.

Riggall says Premier Election Solutions has its own management team and board of directors, though it remains a subsidiary of Diebold. He says the company is working with the Secretary of State’s office to tighten up security vulnerabilities in the hopes that thousands of touch screen machines now in storage can be used in future elections.

Alison St John, KPBS News.


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