2012

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Basic and Bold Steps To Improve U.S. Elections

As we said for our Connecticut steps, this short list. We would be completely pleased if all of these reforms were addressed in the near term. There are many other possible and useful reforms.

Basic and Bold Steps To Improve Connecticut Elections

We offer the following short list of items for improvement without breaking the bank. Basic steps that cost little, should almost be assumed. Bold steps that could transform the system, and transcend knee-jerk half steps.

Looking forward to the Good, the Bad, or the Ugly in election reform?

There were many problems! Will we learn anything? Will be do anything? Will we help or aggravate the situation? As they say some you win, some you lose, and some are rained out. (At least Sandy did not rain this one out, but it could have been different. Next time it could be different…for better or for worse.)

Imagine this election as a National Popular Vote Agreement election. Then lots more people would be worried about NJ, both pushing for more to vote by any means possible, charging officials with not complying, and others charging all sorts of irregularities.

Were you a pollworker? – Please complete this survey

Welcome to the 2012 Election Workers Survey!

Sponsored by the Verified Voting Foundation and the Election Administration Research Center at the University of California, Berkeley

Goodbye Sandy, Goodbye Science, Goodbye Secret Voting

Like other disruptive events, storm Sandy is being used to justify very questionable emergency voting changes in New Jersey. The Lieutenant Governor of New Jersey has announced virtually unlimited fax and email voting – some would say this is the camel’s nose in the elections tent – I would say it is more like the other end of camel.

What We Worry? What Could Go Wrong On Election Day?

America’s elections are run entirely on the honor system. What could possibly go wrong?

Caltech/MIT: What has changed, what hasn’t, & what needs improvement

The Caltech/MIT Voting Technology Project has released a thorough, comprehensive, and insightful new report timed to the 2012 election. We find little to quibble with in the report. We agree with all of its recommendations.Several items with which we fully endorse were covered in this report which sometimes are missing from the discussion or often underemphasised.

The report itself is 52 pages, followed by 32 pages of opinions of others, including election officials, advocates, and vendors, some of whom disagree with some aspects of the report. Every page is worth reading. The report is not technical. It covers a wide range of issues, background, and recommendations.

CTVotersCount flip flops from “Trust but Verify” to “Verify to Trust”

There is absolutely no need to “trust” anyone if there is sufficient verification. There is also little evidence to trust our democracy to anyone. As they say power corrupts.

Now we learn that many of our votes are being counted by machines under the influence of one of the candidates and his family.

A Tale in two Courant Editorials

Where we disagree with the Courant, is that we believe ballots deserve the same level of protection as money and supplies, that the need for verification applies equally to private employees, public employees, and public officials. We are not so sure of trust part of ‘trust but verify’, we would ‘verify sufficiently to deter and trust’.

Multiple votER fraud, multiple votes, multiple elections, multiple lessons

Individual votER fraud does not happen often, when it does it seldom, if ever, amounts to enough to change a result. But here is a Rhode Island size story from Texas that provides several lessons for those concerned with votER fraud, votING fraud, and the limits of voter ID: