Stand up for the facts!

Misinformation isn't going away just because it's a new year. Support trusted, factual information with a tax deductible contribution to PolitiFact.

More Info

I would like to contribute

Jody Hice
stated on December 4, 2020 in a tweet:
A forensics examination of a Ware County, Ga., Dominion Voting Systems machine found votes were switched from Donald Trump to Joe Biden.
true false
Noah Y. Kim
By Noah Y. Kim December 9, 2020

Dominion Voting Machines didn’t switch 37 votes to Biden in Ware County, Georgia

If Your Time is short

• Election officials said that the 37-vote difference between the initial count and a hand recount resulted from human error, not a flaw in Dominion software. 

• A forensic audit conducted by the Georgia Secretary of State’s office on a random sampling of Dominion Voting Machines found no evidence that machines had been tampered. ​

Dominion Voting Systems, which makes election software and hardware, has been at the center of baseless claims of voter fraud in the aftermath of the 2020 election.

U.S. Rep. Jody Hice, R-Ga., amplified one of these claims in a Dec. 4 tweet.

"Yesterday we learned a forensics examination of a Ware County, GA #DominionVotingSystems machine found votes were switched from @realDonaldTrump to @JoeBiden," he tweeted. "This is one machine in one county in one state. Did this happen elsewhere? We need to know! EXAMINE ALL THE MACHINES!"

Hice’s claim misleads on several fronts. He seems to be referring to the results of a hand recount in Ware County, which changed by 37 votes from the initial vote total.

State election officials told us that the small difference between the initial count and the recount resulted from human error, not a failure of Dominion software. 

A spokesperson for Hice’s office didn’t respond to a request for comment.

Ware County Supervisor of Elections Carlos Nelson explained that the error occurred while a worker tabulated ballots. Absentee ballots are digitally scanned in batches of 100. If a scanning machine detects a ballot with a rip or a tear, the machine stops, forcing election workers to reject the batch, fix the torn ballot, and then resubmit the 100-vote batch for tabulation.

In this case, the worker accidentally submitted the same batch twice after a flawed ballot stopped the machine, once before the ballot was fixed and once after it was fixed.

Featured Fact-check

According to Nelson, Ware County election officials caught the error in an internal audit and quickly updated the result. The corrected numbers were affirmed during an electronic recount that the Trump campaign requested in Georgia. 

"The system worked as it was intended to work," said Nelson. "We reported the error right after the election, updated all the numbers, and there was no issue for three weeks until the narrative changed."

Gabriel Sterling, a top Georgia election official, mirrored Nelson’s claims, calling Hice’s tweet "flat-out misinformation" in a tweet. 

Hice’s claim appears to have originated in a Dec. 3 press release put out by the advocacy group Voter GA, which claims, without evidence, that the 37-vote-difference resulted from a Dominion Voting Machine, which "flipped" votes from Trump to Biden. 

The press release compares the discrepancy in the Ware County vote totals to Antrim County, Mich., where a clerk incorrectly tallied votes a day after the election. The mistake was quickly corrected, and there is no evidence that Antrim County’s inaccurate vote count was caused by Dominion technology. 

It’s unclear what forensic examination Hice was referencing. The Georgia Secretary of State’s office did conduct a forensic audit on a random sampling of Dominion voting machines, but that audit found "no signs of cyber attacks or election hacking" and "no evidence of the machines being tampered."

Nelson said that he and his office had no trouble with Dominion technology and that numbers tabulated by those machines were "spot on." 

Trump won about 70% of the votes in Ware County.

Our ruling

Hice said "a forensics examination" of a Ware County, Ga., Dominion Voting Systems machine found switched from Trump to Biden.

The 37-vote difference that election officials caught resulted from human error, not a flaw in Dominion software. 

A forensic audit conducted by the Georgia Secretary of State’s office on a random sampling of Dominion voting machines found "no signs of cyber attacks or election hacking" and "no evidence of the machines being tampered." 

We rate this claim False. ​

Our Sources

CNN, Trump campaign requests Georgia recount that's unlikely to change his loss in the state, Nov. 22, 2020

Gabriel Sterling, Tweet, Dec. 6, 2020

Georgia Secretary of State’s Office, Secretary Raffensperger announces completion of voting machine audit using forensic techniques: No sign of foul play

Interview with Carlos Nelson, Ware County Elections Supervisor, Dec. 9, 2020

PolitiFact, Inaccurate early vote count in one Michigan county was a human error, not a failure of the software, Nov. 18, 2020

Rep. Jody Hice, Tweet, Dec. 4, 2020

Voter GA, Dominion system flips Georgia Trump votes to Biden state orders counties to certify Dominion results anyway, Dec. 3, 2020

Ware County election data

Browse the Truth-O-Meter

More by Noah Y. Kim

Dominion Voting Machines didn’t switch 37 votes to Biden in Ware County, Georgia

Support independent fact-checking.
Become a member!

In a world of wild talk and fake news, help us stand up for the facts.

Sign me up