Fact Check: Have Senior Democrats Raised Concerns About the Smartmatic Voting Software, as Trump's Lawyer Claims?

A lawyer representing President Donald Trump in his legal battle challenging the outcome of the presidential election recently said that some congressional Democrats raised concerns in the past about the trustworthiness of election software used in several states.

Election officials use Dominion Voting Systems in 28 states, including several key battleground states. Members of Trump's legal team have alleged that the company uses voting software that can be controlled by operators overseas to "steal" elections, much as they alleged the election was stolen from Trump.

The Claim

Rudy Giuliani and Sidney Powell, both members of Trump's legal team, spoke with Fox News' Maria Bartiromo on Sunday to discuss allegations that voting software used in this election contributed to widespread voter fraud.

In separate interviews, Giuliani and Powell alleged that the voting software Smartmatic changed millions of votes initially cast for Trump to give President-elect Joe Biden a lead in several swing states.

Giuliani told Bartiromo that Dominion "sends everything" to Smartmatic, a company that he said has close ties to Venezuela and China.

"This Dominion company is a radical left company," Giuliani said. "One of the people there is a big supporter of Antifa and has written horrible things about the president for the last three or four years. And the software that they use is done by a company called Smartmatic."

Giuliani also wrote in a tweet posted one day earlier that Dominion was operating as a front for Smartmatic.

"Did you know a foreign company,DOMINION,was counting our vote in Michigan, Arizona and Georgia and other states," he tweeted. "But it was a front for SMARTMATIC, who was really doing the computing."

Did you know a foreign company,DOMINION,was counting our vote in Michigan, Arizona and Georgia and other states.

But it was a front for SMARTMATIC, who was really doing the computing.

Look up SMARTMATIC and tweet me what you think?

It will all come out.

— Rudy W. Giuliani (@RudyGiuliani) November 14, 2020

Powell told Bartiromo that she was "livid" because past complaints about the software have been largely ignored.

"I can't tell you how livid I am with our government for not paying attention to complaints, even brought by Democrats—Caroline Maloney, Elizabeth Warren, Amy Klobuchar—over the last several years in written letters with expert reports and some documentation of how corrupt this (Smartmatic) software is, and nobody in our government has paid any attention to it," Powell said.

She then suggested that the Central Intelligence Agency might be using the software "for its own benefit."

Rudy Giuliani
Rudy Giuliani, a lawyer for President Donald Trump, speaks to the media at a press conference held in the back parking lot of Four Seasons Total Landscaping on November 7, 2020, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. On Sunday, Giuliani and another attorney for Trump, Sidney Powell, spoke with Fox News' Maria Bartiromo to discuss allegations of widespread voter fraud during the 2020 election. Chris McGrath/Getty

The Facts

Allegations of widespread voter fraud in the presidential election have been widely discredited. Even so, the president, his legal team and his close advisers have continued to allege that voter fraud occurred on a monumental scale.

Attacks from Trump's team over the past week inspired Dominion, which has headquarters in Canada and the U.S., to release a statement on November 13 responding directly to some of the allegations made about the company and its software.

"Dominion has no company ownership relationships with any member of the Pelosi family, the Feinstein family, or the Clinton Global Initiative, Smartmatic, Scytl, or any ties to Venezuela," the company's statement read. "Dominion works with all political parties; our customer base and our government outreach practices reflect this nonpartisan approach."

Smartmatic, a company that was founded in Florida and is now based in London, also denied financial connections to Dominion in a post on its website.

"Smartmatic has never owned any shares or had any financial stake in Dominion Voting Systems. Smartmatic has never provided Dominion Voting Systems with any software, hardware or other technology. The two companies are competitors in the marketplace," Smartmatic's post read.

Though the Trump team's allegations have been largely debunked, Democrats have raised concerns about both companies in the past. During her discussion with Bartiromo, Powell mentioned Representative Carolyn Maloney of New York, Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren and Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar as examples of Democrats who have done so.

Warren and Klobuchar co-signed letters sent to investors of the three major voting systems used in the U.S. last December, including a Dominion investor. A letter sent to the managing directors of the private equity firm Staple Street Capital Group, LLC, which was also signed by Oregon Senator Ron Wyden and Representative Mark Pocan of Wisconsin, requested information on what the nature of the firm's financial relationship with Dominion was.

The letter drew attention to a handful of incidents during the 2018 midterm elections in which voters reported that the machines they used switched their votes, raising concerns about the machines' security and the importance of updating voting machine technology whenever possible.

Several years earlier, Maloney raised concerns about Smartmatic's purchase of a different voting machine company based in the U.S. called Sequoia Voting Systems. In a 2006 news release, Maloney identified Smartmatic as a company with "possible ties to the Venezuelan government," citing how Venezuela tapped the company to assist with a recall election in 2004.

Smartmatic later sold that U.S.-based voting machine company in 2007. The company denies that it is a Venezuelan company on its website because of its origin in Florida and its current headquarters in the U.K.

The Ruling


The letters that Warren and Klobuchar co-signed last December did raise concerns about how investors might be influencing the funding and security of Dominion, but the senators did not mention Smartmatic. While Maloney questioned Smartmatic's ties to Venezuela 14 years ago, her queries were regarding Smartmatic's purchase of Sequoia, not to any alleged ties the company had with Dominion.

False: The claim is demonstrably false. Primary source evidence proves the claim to be false.
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