Florida Atty Gen investigates voting-machine company merger: ``Florida counties are negotiating their contracts now to prepare for the 2010 elections,'' McCrea said. ``They can suffer the potential damages for dealing with a monopoly now. So intervention needs to happen now.''~ Dan McCrea, president of the Florida Voters Foundation...Hawaii may be able to use HAVA funds to pay for special elections....Maryland Governor being pressured to delay switch to paper ballot voting systems...Comment to a Tennessee newspaper: "You get a receipt when you buy a burger and fries; isn't your vote more valuable than that? Or are the people of Tennessee really content to drop their vote into a black hole and assume that there's absolute certainty that it will be counted?". The voting news might look slightly different today as we adjust the format slightly.
All this and more in today's voting news....
FL: Voting-machine firms' merger sparks Florida anti-trust probe
...Under Florida's 1980 anti-trust law, McCollum could persuade a court to levy fines against ES&S or prevent the company from operating in the state...
FL: Voting-machine merger investigated
Dec 17, 2009 - Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum is conducting an anti-trust investigation of a voting-machine company merger that would create a near-monopoly over the levers of democracy in Florida and much of the United States
HI: Federal money may fund election
HI: Salvage the special election
Dec 16, 2009 ...Cronin said one way to deal with the problem is to conduct an election by ballots to be mailed in or dropped off at central locations to reduce costs. That system was used successfully in April to conduct a special election in Windward Oahu to replace the late Barbara Marshall on the City Council.
IL: Injunction Denied
Champaign County Clerk- Judge Jones today agreed to a lot of our arguments, but in the end, disagreed with the argument that our office would suffer irreparable harm should we go forward with the election with the undervote provision in place.
MA: The debate voters deserve: Coakley vs. Brown
MD: O'Malley: Questions Raised About Voting Scanners
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) Gov. Martin O'Malley says more and more people are asking about the wisdom of changing to a new voting system with optical scans of paper ballots for upcoming elections....
MT: Voters voice concern over plan to shutter Missoula polling places
Dec 17, 2009 - Dozens of voters turned out Wednesday afternoon, most of them opposing the proposed closure of several polling places - including at the Missoula County Courthouse and on the University of Montana campus - saying the plan would hurt the democratic process...
ND: Ramsey County votes to go to one polling place, fewer precincts
Dec 16, 2009. “We expect more and more people will be participating in the Vote by Mail Program,” said County Auditor Elizabeth Fischer at the regular Ramsey County Commission meeting held Tuesday evening.
NY: Election Officials Hold Voting Machine Test Run (video available)
TN: What They Said
Comments from memphisflyer.com by Flyer Readers (about e-voting)
TN: Protection Racket
by Flyer Staff. We predicted the next step, and, lo and behold, there it was last week in Hargett's assertion — a fallback one, as it were — that "this has always been about the cost to the various counties" and that "the real question is if there are other costs required of the counties..." This was followed by this ominous declaration by Hargett: "I understand that the Senate is going to go back in January and take the necessary steps to protect the taxpayers throughout the state."
This "protection," of course, will take the form of postponing, amending, or revoking the TVCA.
electionlineWeekly--December 17, 2009 Newsletter
Director's Note: Wait...This was an OFF-YEAR?
Federal Government to Build Overseas Voting System
Dec 16th, 2009 There is some very interesting news today out of the U.S. government organization, the Federal Voting Assistance Program, which provides voting assistance to military and overseas voters. FVAP announced their intent to embark on a path to the creation of software tools to help voters abroad with obtaining ballots, specifically:
Pew Study Calculates the Real Cost of Voter Registration
Conducted with the assistance of Oregon state and local election officials, “The Real Cost of Voter Registration” is the first comprehensive analysis of its kind and provides a model for other states to estimate their expenses and establish a basis for evaluating efforts to modernize.
Federal Government Won’t Appeal Emily’s List Campaign Finance Decision
New Book on the VRA and Language Minorities
James Tucker's new book, The Battle over Bilingual Ballots: Language Minorities and Political Access Under the Voting Rights Act has been published by Ashgate
Canadians support online voting: poll
In the poll, released exclusively to CBC: Power & Politics, Canadians were asked if Elections Canada offered a safe way of voting on the internet, how likely is it that they would use it.
Voting News by Joyce McCloy.
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