Testimony: Online voting and three other bills

On Friday we submitted testimony on four bills, limiting our oral testimony to the bill for online voting:

S.B. 283 Online Voting for Military Voters
S.B. 668 Training Election Officials
H.B. 6100 Voluntary Rationalization of Election Functions
H.B. 6111 Uniform Military and Overseas Voting
(links are to testimony, which have links to the bills)

The hearing was close to six and one-half hours, 11:00am – 5:30pm. I was next to the last speaker. I applaud the committee members staying and public until the end, especially the two Co-Chairs and the Senate Ranking Member – they really listened to me and the last speaker, they asked excellent questions and provided the time for complete answers. Five Registrars of Voters also stayed as well.

I also prepared written oral remarks <read>. I adjusted my actual remarks to address critical issues raised or overlooked in this hearing and the on three days before on email and fax voting.

  • That nobody in either hearing or the Tuesday press conference mentioned the free express mail service available from the USPS and FVAP (Federal Voting Assistance Program). Those unaware included election officials, military who told of snail mail being too slow, and Voting Assistance Officers (VAOs)charged by Congress with providing information to assist military voters. Here is the flyer that should have been posted around the globe <flyer>
  • Statistics show that ballots mailed through the USPS/FVAP program were almost all returned within 5-7 days.
  • I pointed out that the very same VAOs that are charged with making military members aware of the express mail program, are also charged with making computers, printers, scanners, and fax machines available for voting.
  • In Tuesday’s hearing, Representative Alexander, a recent VAO told of the process for faxing votes and his associated fears: Votes to be faxed are passed up the line through several levels from the soldier before they are faxed. Representative Alexander was concerned that some along the way might change votes, not recognizing the seriousness of the matter.
  • My concerns hearing that were: What happens to the paper ballot after it is faxed? No matter how honest and secure the process, the average soldier might suspect that his/her ballot would be seen by someone in the chain-of-command and might decide to vote in the way they thought their leaders might what.

No video of the hearings available yet. Another hearing tomorrow, Monday. I will be testifying on three more bills.


Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.