Problems reported with ballot machines in Houston-area, elsewhere in Texas

Cordell Josea went to vote on Tuesday and just before submitting his ballot, he noticed something was wrong.

"I was at the ballot and I selected a straight Democratic ticket and I was just getting ready to cast my ballot, press the red button, but I happened to glance over at the screen and I saw that Ted Cruz was selected as my Senator," says Josea.

Fort Bend and Harris County election administrators say they have noticed this case also, although not very often.

John Oldham, administrator for Fort Bend County, says he also remembered it happening back during the 2016 presidential election and even called to complain to the Texas Secretary of State.

"Whatever you choose, if you choose Republican, the outcome is likely that you deselect Ted Cruz, if you chose the Democratic party, it’s likely that you would change that to Cruz because that’s the first contest that’s a very first thing on that second page,” says Oldham. What he says to look out for is going too fast and pressing the enter button while turning the dial at the same time.

"It’s doing exactly what you told the machine to do," describes Harris County Clerk Stan Stanart. "It’s remembering every button pushed, every spin of the dial that you’ve told it to do. Just take your time”,

Advice from the experts who operate the machines includes using one hand to use it, take your time with it and double check your ballot at the end. If you're still experiencing problems, you can always ask a poll worker for help.

"It upset me because the state of Texas is a big state," adds Josea. "We have elections all the time and since you’re telling me you knew about the issue there is no excuse."

The Texas Secretary of State's office released the following statement:

The Hart eSlate machines are not malfunctioning, the problems being reported are a result of user error – usually voters hitting a button or using the selection wheel before the screen is finished rendering. The Texas Secretary of State’s office has already trained election officials across the state at our annual election law seminars, instructed election administrators to post additional signage in multiple languages, required county officials to keep a detailed, meticulous log of any malfunctioning machines, and remove any machines that are malfunctioning. We will continue to educate Texas voters using existing resources and urge all Texans casting a ballot to take their time, slow down, and carefully review their ballot before casting one.