Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Garland Arkansas election debacle.Problem reports for CA, NV, NJ, NV, SC

The Arkansas Times headline today? Garland County cluster#@%* Instead of 40 polling places, voters had a measly 2. The lots were so crowded police had to direct parking. The traffic caused 2 wrecks (so far)...Some GOP ballots wouldn't scan in Sacramento CA...Polls open late in San Jose CA..Some problems with eSlate voting machines in Orange Co CA but paper ballots saved the day...Some Venice CA voters disenfrachised when precinct was without poll books, voting machines, ballots...NJ Voting Machines Left Unattended, Despite Court Order...Some delays in Greeneville SC...

All this and more in today's voting news below...

Correction: Monday's article "Electoral Reforms In Victoria Will Increase Voter Participation" occurred in Australia, not Canada. (We apologize, see Intl section) http://www.thegovmonitor.com/civil_society_and_democratic_renewal/electoral-reforms-in-victoria-will-increase-voter-participation-32811.html

AR: Garland County cluster#@%*
garland-county-cluster http://is.gd/cHJEq
The mess that Garland County Election Commission made has come to full flower. A voting rights activist reports long lines and parking problems at the two — count 'em, two — polling places that the Commission decided to open for runoff voting. It closed 40 other polls to save money despite the fact that every voter in the county, where some 12,000 voted in the first primary, has three statewide races to consider.
Tapp made the poll decisions unilaterally, without a vote from the two other members of the Election Commission. I was also told he was informed in time Friday to call back the dogs on a special day of early voting Saturday meant as a makeup for the reduction in polls

AR: Polling Place Fiasco in Garland County, AR
...the bizarre decision/behavior by the Garland County Election Commissioner Charles Tapp could come into play tomorrow, depending on the reported results of the hotly contested Democratic U.S. Senate primary run-off election between incumbent Sen. Blanche Lincoln and Lt. Gov. Bill Halter

AR: Garland County, Arkansas...Democracy on a Dime causes Wrecks! (youtube)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qvc0IZF-eb0 (2 polling places instead of 40)
June 08, 2010 — Well as of this report I am told there have already been two wrecks in the parking lot, tickets issued to voters that forgot to put money in the meters and the cops are now directing the voters in and out of the parking lot..

AR: Garland County, Arkansas, Illegal Election makes Democracy on a
Dime Repression! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IszvA0gAP1Q
At 8 AM parking lot congested already

AR: Halter, Lincoln in war of words to the finish
“We certainly are concerned that Garland County, which has over 80,000 Arkansas citizens and had approximately 40 polling sites for the primary, has now been reduced down to two polling sites,” Halter told reporters today during a campaign stop in Little Rock’s River Market district.
Garland County was the most populous county Halter won on May 18. He received 44 percent of the county’s vote to Lincoln’s 40 percent.

AR: Lincoln expects her voting to go smoothly this time

AZ: US Supreme Court blocks Ariz. campaign finance law
AsUfJyd5LkaBoCRCDCQAD9G777BG1 http://is.gd/cHCdA PHOENIX — The U.S. Supreme Court derailed a key part of Arizona's campaign finance system on Tuesday by at least temporarily blocking extra money for publicly funded candidates outspent by privately financed rivals or targeted by independent groups' spending.

CA: Video: Voting Problems Arise in Venice, Some Voters Reportedly Turned Away *
Several voters in Venice this morning were either turned away or voted provisionally, reports John Wellington Ennis of Video the Vote. "At the Venice Methodist Church on Lincoln and Victoria in Venice/Mar Vista, there are two tables for two different precincts," he explained. "This morning, only one of those precinct tables was set up and serving voters, while the superintendent of the other table apparently quit and did not deliver the necessary materials — poll books, voting machines, ballots, more."

CA: Odd-sized ballots cause some Sacramento County polling concern*
Workers at a few polling places in Sacramento County hit a snag today when they tried to feed some Republican ballots into ballot-counting scanners...

The initial report came shortly before noon from Arcade Middle School in Sacramento, where a caller alerted The Bee that some of the Republican ballots cast at that precinct would not fit into the county's M100 scanner for the automated count. The scanner serves as the first round of tally, which is then backed up with a follow-up assessment of the voting data.

CA: Few glitches with eSlate voting machines * (Orange County)

There were few problems reported countywide with the eSlate machines. Some of the machines at Oak Knoll Clubhouse in Ladera Ranch went down. The problem was reported in a tweet by Gary Kephart, a Democratic candidate for State Assembly District 71.
The machines have paper ballots as a backup, so voting wasn’t interrupted, said the county’s Registrar of Voters.

CA: Scanner problems will slow Nevada County ballot count *
"It was due to human error while creating the ballot point file," Smith said. Although Smith was unsure exactly what the incorrect information was, it was enough to stop the votes from being instantly scanned at precinct polling places across the county.

“The scanners are not reading the bar coding on the ballots,” said Precinct 26 Inspector Randy Cox at the Grass Valley Veterans Memorial Building. “They'll scan them all in at the elections office tonight.”

CA: Votes on property fees not secret, court rules
California property owners who vote on local fees for services that benefit them, such as flood control and sewage systems, aren't protected by the usual secrecy requirements and must sign their ballots, the state Supreme Court ruled Monday.

CA: Schwarzenegger's Ballot REJECTED At Polling Place
(overvoted in Sen contest, video available)

CA: Ballotnator: Rise of the Voting Machines
http://www.nbclosangeles.com/news/local-beat/Ballotnator-Rise-of-the-Voting-Machines--95878769.html If at first your ballot gets rejected, cast, cast again
The sequel was better than the original for Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger at the voting booth in Los Angeles.

CA: Voting going smoothly so far in Santa Clara County *
A 59-year-old woman who said she was first in line today at Milpitas Christian School on Birchwood Lane in San Jose, said poll workers did not have a touch screen set up when she arrived to cast her votes at 7:15 a.m. and workers couldn't find the "Part B" sheets for a while, leaving her to wonder if voters filled out their forms entirely.

CA: County officials still baffled by missing voter guides (San Mateo County)

CA: L.A. Election Reform Panel Announced
http://www.free-press-release.com/news-l-a-election-reform-panel-announced-1275942994.html Councilmember José Huizar will moderate an Election Reform Forum on June 10th, from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. in City Council Chambers featuring some of the region's top experts. The focus will be on Vote By Mail (VBM), Ranked Choice Voting (RCV) and Changing Election Dates (CED).

CA: Voting Systems Audit Log Study
David Wagner University of California, Berkeley June 1, 2010
...the findings of a study commissioned by the California Secretary of State to examine voting system audit logs. In this study, I examined the audit logs produced by six voting systems approved for use in the State of California. I identifed a number of criteria for evaluating audit logs, and used voting system documentation to assess the strengths and weaknesses of these audit logs.


FL: Cost of upgrading voting machines to be more handicapped accessible in Indian River County may cost less than expected
-machines-to-be-more-in/ http://is.gd/cHCZV

IL: Voting surveillance video creates commotion

IN: Indiana Secretary of State Todd Rokita demonstrates how Vote Centers could have saved 3rd Congressional District counties over $300,000 in special election

http://www.kulr8.com/news/local/95823494.html They've consolidated poling places throughout the county .
The county used to have 50 polling places, in Tuesday's election they will only open 17 stations across the county.

NH: 2012 primary plan will keep N.H. first
http://www.boston.com/news/nation/washington/ articles/2010/06/08/2012_
primary_ plans_would_keep_nh_first/ http://is.gd/cHDs8

NJ: NJ Voting Machines Left Unattended, Despite Court Order*
http://www.freedom-to-tinker.com/blog/felten/nj-voting-machines-left-unattended-despite-court-order-0 Despite the court order, I found voting machines unattended in three of the four Princeton polling places I visited on Sunday and Monday. Here are my photos from three polling places.

NJ: Dispute to delay Camco vote total
certain conditions must be met for towns to transmit election results electronically. The opinion stemmed from a lawsuit against a voting-machine maker.

NY: Port Chester election features new system, early voting
PORT CHESTER — Village residents will start voting this week in a local election unlike any in New York.
Emerging from a 3-year-old voting rights lawsuit, Port Chester will fill all six trustee seats in the June 15 election with a new cumulative voting system.

NV: Small, printer-related glitch at Hug High poll quickly fixed; smooth check in praised* http://www.rgj.com/article/20100608/NEWS19/100608002/Small-printer-related-glitch-at-Hug-High-poll-quickly-fixed-smooth-check-in-praised
"We had a little glitch, a couple of printers didn't work," said Downey. "We were short an activator. By 7 a.m. they knew about it and by 7:30 we had the activator."

The activator allows the printer to print the ballot.

NV: Election: Sparks voter voices complaint about information on ballot *
http://www.rgj.com/article/20100608/NEWS19/100608002/1232/Dan-Burk--Washoe-voter-turnout-should-near-25-percent Update at 5:08 p.m.: Rachelle Guinan of Sparks said she spent about a half hour trying to vote at Reed High School today because the sample ballot directed voters to the wrong building.

PA: Moosic, Old Forge poll workers collected tips (it is not against the law!)
http://thetimes-tribune.com/news/moosic-old-forge-poll-workers-collected-tips-1.831547 ...Voter and political activist Rosanne LaRusso Kolberg said poll workers at the two polling places during the May 18 primary election set up the box and basket to collect tips beyond their county-paid wages. Election Day wages are $105 for inspectors, $140 for judges of elections, and lesser rates for other workers.

PA: No penalties for polling-place violation
Critz draws warning for election day visits
for-polling-place-violation http://is.gd/cHEkO

SC: Problems At Greenville County Polling Places *
http://www2.wspa.com/news/2010/jun/08/problems-at-greenville-county-polling-places-ar-317478/ ...reported problems at Gilder Creek and Riverside. He says voting is still taking place there are just less machines to do so. Technicians are being dispatched to correct the problems as quickly as possible.

Belangia also said that in the Simpsonville 3 precinct that the building wasn’t open at 7a.m. and poll workers let people cast their votes on the sidewalk, as is proper procedure by state law.

SC: Voting Begins With Some Problems * Some Experience Delays At Polls
http://www.foxcarolina.com/news/23829781/detail.html *ES&S iVotronic touchscreens)
Belangia said problems with at least 12 of the county's 700 voting machines have experienced troubles Tuesday morning. He said replacement machines were taken to some precincts. At smaller precincts, however, voters may have experienced longer lines or a bit of a wait, while machines were down.

SC: Election worker doesn't show up, delays machines from opening *
At Emerald Forest Precinct number 2, at St. Mary’s Missionary Baptist Church in Carolina Forest, the poll clerk didn't show up at the polling station in time to open this morning, according to Horry County spokesman Lisa Bourcier.
The clerk carries the responsibility of bringing in the cartridges to start and operate the voting machines.
Elections volunteers went to the clerk’s house to get the equipment to start the machines, while voters were given paper ballots during the first half hour of voting.

SC: POLL - Electronic voting problems
Did you have problems with electronic ballots on Election Day?

TX: Judge to decide Cameron County voter fraud case
The Precinct 2 Commissioner candidate alleged that mail-in ballot numbers were “blatantly discrepant” with regular in-person voting

TX: Weatherford election still under scrutiny
Losing candidates mull contesting election results
http://weatherforddemocrat.com/homepage/x1358975761/Weatherford-election-still-under-scrutiny ...In prior interviews with the Democrat, Watson and Tarbay said they believed election procedures for the May 8 election had not been conducted according to state statutes. They also raised questions about the reliability of Hart Intercivic voting machines, purchased by the county in 2005.

When questioned about the elections process by the Democrat, Parten admitted to violating a statute that requires the second of three reliability tests be done immediately before ballots are to be cast.

VA: New Voting Machines Delivered - Charlottesville

VT: City Council to Review 50 Percent Threshold in Mayoral Elections

WI: Prosecutor says voter fraud cases languished
Milwaukee police chief defends handling, says most complaints were errors

Internet Voting Watch

US: Oregon Editorial: Independents: The 3rd way
http://www.democratherald.com/news/opinion/editorial/article_3c9c4138-7264-11df-9519-001cc4c002e0.html The Independents are innovators in more than spirit. If they can make arrangements in time and raise the money for the software and the mailing of security codes, they are planning what would be the first statewide nominating election of its kind, online, in July.

India: This municipal election, you can stay at home and click to vote
http://www.dnaindia.com/india/report_this-municipal-election-you-can-stay-at-home-and-click-to-vote_1393433 Ahmedabad: Internet-savvy voters in the state are in for some good news. Voting for their chosen leaders, during the upcoming city civic body polls, is now just a click away.

Citizens United

Don't Let Corporations Gut DISCLOSE Act
pass the strongest bill possible...

advantage-of-citizens.html http://is.gd/cHCpf

Citizens United: Arizona's response
The Supreme Court’s decision in the Citizens United v. FEC case has rendered 24 state election laws unconstitutional.
The Sunlight Foundation Reporting Group has decided to report what each of these states is doing to respond to the highly-contested ruling.


Australia: (we wrongly credited Canada on Monday) Electoral Reforms In Victoria Will Increase Voter Participation
Young Victorians will be automatically enrolled to vote in Victorian elections, and unregistered voters will be able to enroll on election day, under reforms to be implemented by the Brumby Labor Government.

Philippines: House wraps up election probe hearings

He also noted that election officials initially denied the usefulness of the audit logs, but later on affirmed their value. The audit logs also contain periods where voters seemingly disappeared, and this “certainly says something.”

UK: Electoral Commission hits out at 'unacceptable' voting problems
The elections watchdog demanded ''urgent changes'' today after condemning failings that left hundreds of people unable to vote on May 6.

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