Sidney Powell was recently quoted as saying,

"The Dominion Voting Systems, the Smartmatic technology software, and the software that goes in other computerized voting systems here as well, not just Dominion, were created in Venezuela at the direction of Hugo Chavez" Powell declared.

Is any part of this true?

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    @WeatherVane Stay on topic please, the question does not mention anything about republicans, conservatives, democrats, etc.
    – pipe
    Commented Nov 20, 2020 at 16:45
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    Relevant answer might also note whether those voting systems were even used in the jurisdictions where the vote counts are being disputed; the linked story mentions this in passing without detailing. Commented Nov 20, 2020 at 17:24
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    @WeatherVane No, skeptics is here to discuss specific claims, not twist them into whatever the reader wants to believe they mean. Anything else is bound to fail. This question does not ask about the headline.
    – pipe
    Commented Nov 20, 2020 at 17:24
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    The link you quote comprehensively debunks the claim. Commented Nov 20, 2020 at 17:35
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    @EvanCarroll The link says that the only evidence Sidney Powell has for the claim about Hugo Chavez is "a heavily redacted affidavit from an anonymous former Venezuelan military official who saw Chavez many years ago playing around with a supposedly rigged Smartmatic machine.". That's the totality of the actual evidence. Commented Nov 20, 2020 at 17:51

1 Answer 1


It seems the root of this claim can be found in "Exhibit N" of the Lin Wood v. Raffensperger case in Georgia. "Exhibit N" is an affidavit labeled "Redacted Declaration"

The contents of it that pertain to the Venezuela/Chavez connection are as follows,

  1. Importantly, I was a direct witness to the creation and operation of an electronic voting system in a conspiracy between a company known as Smartmatic and the leaders of conspiracy with the Venezuelan government. This conspiracy specifically involved President Hugo Chavez Frias, the person in charge of the National Electoral Council named Jorge Rodriguez, and principals, representatives, and personnel from Smartmatic which included. The purpose of this conspiracy was to create and operate a voting system that could change the votes in elections from votes against persons running the Venezuelan government to votes in their favor in order to maintain control of the government.

And then again,

  1. After passage of the referendum, President Chavez instructed me to make arrangements for him to meet with Jorge Rodriguez, then President of the National Electoral Council, and three executives from Smartmatic. Among the three Smartmatic representatives were [REDACTED]. President Chavez had multiple meetings with Rodriguez and the Smartmatic team at which I was present. In the first of four meetings, Jorge Rodriguez promoted the idea to create software that would manipulate elections. Chavez was very excited and made it clear that he would provide whatever Smartmatic needed. He wanted them immediately to create a voting system which would ensure that any time anything was going to be voted on the voting system would guarantee results that Chavez wanted. Chavez offered Smartmatic many inducements, including large sums of money, for Smartmatic to create or modify the voting system so that it would guarantee Chavez would win every election cycle. Smartmatic’s team agreed to create such a system and did so.

And lastely,

  1. Chavez was most insistent that Smartmatic design the system in a way that the system could change the vote of each voter without being detected. He wanted the software itself to function in such a manner that if the voter were to place their thumb print or fingerprint on a scanner, then the thumbprint would be tied to a record of the voter’s name and identity as having voted, but that voter would not tracked to the changed vote. He made it clear that the system would have to be setup to not leave any evidence of the changed vote for a specific voter and that there would be no evidence to show and nothing to contradict that the name or the fingerprint or thumb print was going with a changed vote. Smartmatic agreed to create such a system and produced the software and hardware that accomplished that result for President Chavez.

Note this a personal abridgment of the claims with Venezuela. I suggest reading the entire affidavit if interested. The testimony of Sidney Powell does accurately reflect the description given in the affidavit.

I don't see how any of these claims can be validated without an inquiry and the government coercing the production of relevant documents. However, according to Reuters only Los Angeles County used Smartmatic software, so it seems that even if Smartmatic were some communist conspiracy it still couldn't have impacted the outcome of the presidential election.

Thanks to ff524 for his contribution of the link.

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    The fact that electronic voting systems can be hacked and manipulated is well known (as are fraudulent elections in Venezuela). But the details of how the system described here work do not even match how US voting systems work nor does this suggest anything at all about US elections (which Trump's own head of cyber security said were very secure). Sounds like the entire affidavit is irrelevant to claims about US elections.
    – matt_black
    Commented Nov 20, 2020 at 23:37
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    According to Reuters only Los Angeles County used Smartmatic software, so it seems that even if Smartmatic were some communist conspiracy it still couldn't have impacted the outcome of the presidential election.
    – Marc
    Commented Nov 21, 2020 at 1:25
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    @MarcPaul I've updated the article with your link and statement. Nice addition. Commented Nov 21, 2020 at 17:42
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    "The testimony of Sidney Powell does accurately reflect the description given in the affidavit." I don't see how - the question quoted Sidney Powell as saying that "Dominion" and unspecified "other" voting systems were created at Chavez's direction. Is there anything in the affidavit to support that?
    – ff524
    Commented Nov 22, 2020 at 4:31
  • @Giacomo1968 just imagine how much Trump have won by if Dominion voting machines weren't diminishing his massive victory. </s> Commented Dec 9, 2020 at 2:54

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