Sunday, March 05, 2006

Paper Ballots in New Mexico and Voting Fraud in Virginia

Regular readers know just how I feel about Electronic Voting machines. Our democratic process demands everyone involve respect it and take it seriously, or it's just not going to serve us as it should. Our requirement that a vote record not be personally linked to the voter really is the driver behind this. If we eliminated this requirement, which I do not recommend, we could use decades of innovation surrounding traditional banking systems for voting and have a system that is secure but scary to use.

New Mexico claims it's on the leading edge of election reform. While I think their effort to utilize human readable ballots for votes cast, I remain conserned that the counting will be all electronic. Perhaps the right auditing requirements are in place and this will prove to be a non-issue. Failing that, exit polls should shake out any counting issues. Overall, this is a much better scenario than we saw in '04.

The scenario playing out in Virginia underscores the importance of taking our civic duties seriously. For anyone that believes we don't have significant vote fraud, consider just what is at stake and how polarized the nation currently is. I want my party (Now Democrat!) to win as much as anyone else does, don't get me wrong on that score. However, I want the most solid leaders elected first and foremost. Debating various approaches to our problems and how well they might work in our best interests would be a very welcome sight indeed, given what we have seen this last few years.

Regardless of how you feel about things, tell your friends and loved ones to vote early and take their civic duty seriously. It's the only way we are going to get America back on track.


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