National Assembly: a computer failure disrupts a vote and gives rise to a memorable session

Error 404. Tuesday, January 10, at the time of vote on the law on renewable energies, the macronist Yaël Braun-Pivet, who chairs the National Assembly, announces that the ballot is closed. The result is readable immediately – that’s the advantage with electronic voting -, except that there is something wrong… “Wait please, loose the President of the Assembly. I have a result that absolutely does not correspond to the number of people I see in front of me.”

The vote is restarted, but a new bug occurs. There is excitement in the hemicycle and Yaël Braun-Pivet invites the deputies to calm down. “Obviously, there is a technical problem, there is no point in getting upset” The administrators are trying to solve the problem and the deputy of the National Rally Philippe Gosselin takes the opportunity to speak. “When the results can be so tight, what about these technical elements? -he. I believe doubt can be allowed…” Implied: electronic voting is not reliable, if it is, we have already been fooled many times without knowing it.

Yaël Braun-Pivet, she is not discouraged and invites the deputies to vote a third time. A third vote then. And a third failure … Outcry in the bays. It’s starting to piss everyone off. The president, distraught, suspends the session, but returns a few minutes later, reassembled fully and tries to explain to MPs how to ensure that their vote is taken into account.

The return of paper ballots to the Assembly

The president therefore launches a fourth vote by attempting a small “Fingers crossed”. But when the vote returned, the music did not change. Yaël Braun-Pivet laughs yellow and admits to having “a little problem”. It’s better to laugh about it, it’s true, but you still have to do something. Then, another RN deputy, Émeric Salmon, draws the internal regulations: “it is provided for in article 66-3, in the event that the electronic equipment does not work, the vote takes place by paper ballot“, he assures.

A good old-fashioned paper newsletter is ultimately the chosen solution. And the situation is unprecedented. There had already been a breakdown in 2021, but we had voted by sitting upright. There, it is another pair of sleeves: It is necessary to print in urgency 577 bulletins, to distribute them and guess what? It’s nominative! There is a hustle and bustle in the room, everyone is looking for their bulletin and there is an impossible mess…

But, finally, three hours later, “we made it”, breathes Yaël Braun-Pivet, who is pleased that the bill dedicated to renewable energies has been adopted. Only, the evening is not over! To close the vote, the Minister for the Ecological Transition, Agnes Pannier-Runachertakes the floor and the minister literally chokes. She never managed to finish her speech and thus ends a rather memorable session…

Obviously, the technicians of the assembly are on the spot to find the origin of the breakdown. And they better find out, ’cause the same on the pension reformnot sure it’s funny…

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National Assembly: a computer failure disrupts a vote and gives rise to a memorable session

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