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Karmic Voting Snafu

2005-11-10 13:54:01.574477+00 by meuon 1 comments

Although I still don't trust Diebold and friends, Arnold Schwarzenegger just became the poster child of why the real issue is the PEOPLE involved in the voting technology process. Apparently, "sample names" were still in the system, including his.. So how many sample names were stuck in the system from testing? Just his or maybe 10's of thousands who voted straight Republican (or Democractic) tickets? Oops!

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#Comment Re: made: 2005-11-10 16:49:59.701773+00 by: petronius

The problems with voting in the US are not because of Diebold, they are because of the people administering the system. What's the answer? Take responsibility and become an election judge yourself. You will learn far more about the system by working a preceinct for one day than a thousand regression analyses of dubious exit poll data.

Last year I volunteered as a Republican election judge in Chicago, and at the age of 53 was by far the youngest judge in my polling place, and certainly the only one comfortable with operating the obsolete punch-card reader we still used in Illinois. We had a few poll watchers parachute in to peer at us, but they didn't doo much. We had to deal with people who moved just before the election, Chicago's staggering over-and-under vote problem (our elections include nearly 100 court judge's retention races, which nobody pays attention to but make marking the ballots very difficult), and in one case a guy who got his ballot but turned out to have Alzhiemer's disease and who wandered off before he could vote. All election boards need help, and we need it from younger, more tech savvy people.

In our primary election this March, Chicago will switch to a combination of the OCR machines and the Diebold-style touch screen. I'm glad we're trying this for the lightly attended primary, because the learning curve will be steep, both for the electorate and the officials. I encourage all us techie types to get involved in helping out your neighbors and community. Become a judge.