The Bedford County Election Office continues to receive questions about the use of Sharpie pens to mark ballots at polling places on Election Day. Sharpie pens were provided by our office for that purpose. The decision was made to use the Sharpie pens based on the recommendation of Dominion Voting Systems, the manufacturer of our voting equipment and state approved voting software. These pens were approved by the Pennsylvania Department of State.
Sharpie pens are safe and reliable to use on ballots and recommended due to their quick-drying ink.
Regarding potential ink bleed-through, Dominion’s systems never allow for the creation of ballots with overlapping vote bubbles between the front and back pages of a ballot. If you used a Sharpie provided at your polling place to complete your ballot, please know that your vote was accurately recorded. All votes that are cast are verified using a reconciliation process to ensure with 100 percent accuracy that each voter’s ballot counts.