Sunday, August 20, 2006

Washington Post - Touch Screen Machines Stir Election Anxiety in MD.

So the governor of MD tells the election board that he no longer had confidence in its "ability to conduct fair and accurate elections in 2006".


the administrator for the state board of elections says, "I think the system is fabulous"


TrueVoteMD doesn't feel reassured, and wants a paper trail.

Deputy Election Director Goldstein says, "outlandish"!
"In my mind, if you add a paper trail, you're going to end up with a lot more questions than answers," Goldstein said. Discrepancies might arise from comparing computer tallies to hand-counted paper receipts, which could be subject to human error.

Oh, please. That's such baloney that it's an offense to the intelligence of any reasonable person. Computers aren't subject to "human error"? Plus, that's like saying, don't audit your accounting records because you might find a mistake! Personally, I look at vote counting and mentally apply the same standards that I'd apply in generally accepted accounting practices.

Who's in touch with reality here? Here's a clue: it's NOT the election board. Even they acknowledge that they'll end up going with a paper trail because it's what the people "want". Acknowledging that, how can anyone say that advocates of a paper trail are trying to "dampen turnout" and raise needless alarm? What's causing alarm is that people KNOW how bad the electronic system is, and they want to fix the problem BEFORE the upcoming elections.

AFAIC, an emergency fix could be a paper trail. In the end, I want open source and/or non-proprietary software with a paper trail that gets counted or properly audited. I know I'm not alone in feeling that is a requirement....not just something I "want".


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