Election Assistance Commission

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The U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) was created by the Help America Vote Act of 2002 and "charged with administering voluntary guidelines for election requirements under HAVA, maintaining a clearinghouse of information regarding election administration procedures including testing and certification of election equipment, and administering the Election Assistance and Help America Vote Programs," according to the EAC's April 27, 2004 press release. The EAC, made up of four members chosen by party leaders and confirmed by the U.S. Senate, held its inaugural meeting on March 23, 2004.

The EAC is also in charge of disbursing $2.7 billion in grants to U.S. states and territories to "upgrade election equipment." On May 5, 2004, the EAC will hold its first public meeting "to receive information on the use, security and reliability of electronic voting devices." Five "distinct and diverse panels of witnesses" will testify at the meeting, including "a Technology Panel, Vendor Panel, Election Administrator Panel, Research Panel and Advocacy Organization Panel."

Commission members

According to The Washington Post, EAC commissioners make about $134,000 a year.

Former Chairman of the EAC was DeForest Soaries Jr, a Baptist minister, and a Republican who was former New Jersey Secretary of State under then-Gov. Christine Todd Whitman, who claimed that critics are blowing problems with electronic voting machines out of proportion (as quoted by The Washington Post on February 17, 2004: "We have some flaws, but the truth is that the error rates are very small, with all technologies. Legislators are proposing solutions to a problem that doesn't exist. They're talking about 'What if?' scenarios.") pdf

"We're a very diverse commission," Soaries told The Washington Post. "We have a Hispanic lawyer, an Italian administrator, an African American executive and a Baptist preacher."

Contact information

U.S. Eelection Assistance Commission
1225 New York Ave. NW - Suite 1100
Washington, DC 20005
Web: http://www.eac.gov/

Resources and articles

Related SourceWatch articles


  1. News Release: "Personnel Announcement," Office of the White House Press Secretary, June 12, 2007.
  2. News Release: "Nominations Sent to the Senate," Office of the White House Press Secretary, June 13, 2007.

External articles