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Will electronic voting reform create new ways to steal elect

Daily newsbrief journal for June 2007, also see for a global 100-page perpetual brief and follow twitter @usdemocrats

Will electronic voting reform create new ways to steal elect

Postby admin » Sat Jan 28, 2012 1:00 pm

Will electronic voting reform create new ways to steal elections?« Thread Started on Jun 7, 2007, 6:05am » --------------------------------------------------------------------------------Will electronic voting reform create new ways to steal elections?by Steven RosenfeldJune 6, 2007read at source> ... 7/2634This week, the House is expected to pass the first-ever bill regulating electronic voting. But will the legislation unleash new election treachery in American elections? If history is a guide, political machinations will outsmart the latest efforts to bring accountability to America's newest voting machines. Recent books on how American elections have been stolen - from the founding of the country to 2004 - suggest voting machinery may change over time, but sleazy partisan tactics do not: they adapt to the newest way of counting votes. And when grassroots election integrity activists add their experience of wrestling with new electronic voting to this continuum, it seems doubtful that American elections will be cleaned up. "It is the same game," said Rebecca Mercuri, one of the country's top electronic voting experts and an opponent of the House bill. "They will just now do it electronically. The bill makes it seem like something will be done. It will cause the public to be complacent. That is very scary. People will not be watching. They will not be looking at elections." "It is not just the electronic machines. It is a pandemic in our political culture," said Tracy Campbell, a University of Kentucky historian and author of Deliver the Vote: A History of Election Fraud, an American Political Tradition 1742-2004. "I am not sure why we are so surprised by it. We cheat in baseball. We cheat on our wives. Why not cheat in elections?" (Book link: ... 682&sr=8-1) This week soon after Congress reconvenes, the House is expected to approve H.R. 811, The Voter Confidence and Increased Accessibility Act of 2007. The bill is intended to bring accountability to the newest election technology, the paperless electronic voting machines that were ushered into American elections after Florida's punch-card ballot debacle in 2000. After hanging chads became the most high-profile feature of that presidential vote count, Congress passed the Help America Vote Act, or HAVA, and appropriated $3.9 billion for states to buy a new generation of voting machines. By November 2006, one-third of the country was voting on paperless touch-screen voting machines. Once introduced, the problems with these machines became well-known. Most notably there was no way of knowing if the data put into the machines - votes - would be accurately reported at the end of the day. Moreover, academics and others discovered that the machines were poorly designed, but the software and performance problems were all-but ignored by the independent testing labs that were supposed to certify their accuracy. In numerous elections in 2002 and 2004, voters saw their choices jump between candidates; votes were lost as totals were compiled, and election officials often spent more time tallying results than they had with the voting systems they replaced. By last fall's election, the machines' performance had improved somewhat, but there were notable exceptions, such as in Sarasota, FL, where 18,000 votes vanished in a close U.S. House race. While that was publicized, grassroots activists later discovered numerous other lost votes, or undercounts, such as in Miami and Dade Counties, where one in 10 ballots did not record a vote for Florida attorney general: 70,000 votes went missing.
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