Early voting set to start in NC; election officials dismiss "rigged" elections

Trump claims election is rigged, officials ensure votes are secure

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Ten early voting sites will open Thursday in Mecklenburg County as voting for the general elections ramp up.

As voters prepare to cast their ballots, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump continue to repeat his claims that the election is "rigged."

The Director of elections in Mecklenburg County said when it comes to the ballot - the voting machines are activated by poll workers and they know exactly who is on the machine and who is voting.

Michael Dickerson said the machine records the vote. He said election workers test and pre-test the voting machines.

"We do all of that and then after the election my state board tells me okay now you're going to do a sample audit to authenticate what you just reported," said Michael Dickerson.

And, Dickerson added there's no chance hackers can change votes.

"We're not plugged into the internet," he said. "This equipment is something we program, we set up, and we never network it to the internet. It's never brought into the internet. It's never downloaded to the internet. It is downloaded to its own software here which is a stand alone computer."

Dickerson said "this state has a lot of things in play when it comes to security and making sure everything is recording votes properly."

Some skeptical Trump supporters have vowed to go to polling places to monitor voting.

"Remember if you're going to look at a polling place, you want to go inside and look – that's a credentialed process in North Carolina where the party committee has to assign two people to that particular place and they have to have that list authorized by our office here so that we can send that out to our people and they know who is allowed to be in that voting location," Dickerson said. "So you can't just walk into a voting location and say I'm going to stand around and watch things. You can do that to vote. You vote and then you leave."

One man who stopped by the election office to confirm that he is registered to vote told WBTV "I do believe in the process of the elections. Everybody has their vote. You should take the opportunity to do it," and he added, "I'm sure it could be rigged. There has been issues in the past but I don't think that's the issue with this election."

Another voter said he had doubts.

"I don't know, just gotta wait and see and hopefully you know our country does right by us and we all vote our conscious and we'll see what happens," he said. "I would say if I had to be honest – I wouldn't say I'm very confident. There's a lot of loop holes in every system, doesn't matter – whether it's the court, or whether it's education or whether it's work, business. People have a lot of ingenuity and they can figure out how to use those loop holes and figure out what they want to do so I mean everybody does it on a normal basis. It's just scary to think it could be in the highest level of government and our voting systems."

10 early voting sites will open for first week and all 22 sites will open on Thursday October 27th.