Common Sense: [How] Do you know if your vote counted?

Note: This is then tenth post in an occasional series on Common Sense Election Integrity, summarizing, updating, and expanding on many previous posts covering election integrity, focused on Connecticut. <next> <previous>

The Citizen Audit has just opened up our signup for the audits for the primary, which start fifteen days after the primary. The primary is August 12th, so the audits will begin Aug 27th.

Q: So, why bother signing to spend a day observing the audits?
A: To understand and the question ” [How] Do you know if your vote counted?”

The Citizen Audit’s new flag promotes the  theme Vote, Audit, Observe.  It summarizes three of the keys to approaching “knowing” if our votes are all counted and accounted for correctly.  They highlight the importance of voting, auditing the vote, and independent observation of the audits. Given the requirement of the Secret Vote to prevent successful selling, buying, or intimidating votes it is impossible for any one person to determine if their individual vote was counted accurately, yet possible collectively for independent observers to determine if everyone’s vote was counted accurately – or at least to provide some assessment of how confident we are in the reported counts and winners.

From the Citizen Audit:

Voting is the foundation of democracy. Some say it is a per-Constitutional right, to choose our government, established by the Declaration of Independence. Today voting integrity is as important as ever, and perhaps we are even more aware and concerned with voting vulnerabilities.

Vote: Citizenship is of little value if we do not vote. Not voting assures that your vote won’t count. If you value democracy, vote! If you want change, vote! If you prefer stability, vote!

Audit Connecticut has paper ballots which provide evidence to verify election results and provide confidence. Paper ballots are of little value without sufficient recounts and audits. Connecticut is one of about half of the states with post-election audits.

Observe Checking ballots by officials is insufficient. Public confidence requires public verification – transparency and direct public observation and analysis. That’s where you can participate further in authentic Democracy!

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