Monday, July 19, 2010

CalTech - little support for internet voting. Aspen's never ending election integrity war

"Having good elections takes public vigilance, but it shouldn't become a war." Mike LaBonte, election integrity activist...A CalTech study of Voter Opinions about Election Reform indicates: "Internet voting and voting-by-mail do not receive a great deal of support from American voters."...$10,440 in South Carolina vs. $0 in Vermont...8 States with Online Voter Registration

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

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AL: New Alabama election system to show statewide results online
http://blog.al.com/live/2010/07/new_alabama_election_system_to.html
It is expected to offer voting results, turnout information and possibly precinct-by-precinct data, all online and updated regularly through the night after polls close.

CA: June 8 election problems and solutions (Riverside County)
http://www.mydesert.com/article/20100718/OPINION01/7170345/June-8-election-problems-and-solutions See charts

CA: County to purchase better election devices (Riverside County)
County supervisors authorize equipment to avoid future election gaffes
http://www.myvalleynews.com/story/49444/ "Sixty-two percent of ballots cast in this election were by mail. That has a whole lot of implications," Supervisor John Benoit said during a 90-minute hearing on an Executive Office report detailing what went wrong during and after that election.

"It takes seven steps (to process) every single vote-by-mail ballot," said Benoit, who represents desert communities on the five-member board..

CO: The never-ending war (Aspen Colorado)
http://www.aspentimes.com/article/20100719/LETTER/100719846/1020&parentprofile=1061
Keys were left hanging from a ballot box in City Hall that collected more than 800 early voting ballots, the public software test did not work out, most of the tallying was performed by a private company using uncertified systems, voters' ballot data were collected roughly in the order voted without shuffling to preserve anonymity, corrected tally results were announced after the incorrect ones were certified, etc.

CT: Candidates Qualify For Public Financing For Primary
http://www.ctvoterscount.org/?p=3364 With a couple of close calls near the deadline, it seems that all the statewide office candidates that wanted to participate in the program have met fundraising criteria.

GA: GALEO sues state over new voter registration procedures
http://www.accessnorthga.com/detail.php?n=230839
"We do not believe Georgia has lived up to its legal obligations to protect and to ensure equitable access to all voters, including minority voters. In addition, we believe these proposed changes demonstrate the need to uphold the constitutionality of Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act in order to protect access to the polls. GALEO intends to work in a bi-partisan fashion to ensure Georgia can look at best-practices policy alternatives to protect voter access," continued Gonzalez.

FL: Riches, elections and free speech
http://www.tampabay.com/opinion/columns/article1109206.ece
The problem for candidates who are not independently wealthy is that the game is somewhat rigged. They are held to strict dollar limits from outside contributors while very rich people have a First Amendment right to freely spend their own money.

LA: Ex-police chief sentenced to service
http://www.2theadvocate.com/news/98650419.html Maurer admitted that he caused two of his deputies to provide false information on their voter registration forms indicating that they lived in the voting district when they did not, according to a news release from Letten’s New Orleans office.

MD: Maryland invalidates indepedent voters
http://thehill.com/blogs/ballot-box/other-races/109439-maryland-invalidates-indepedent-voters The state of Maryland has invalidated independent voters, forcing them to choose a political party or "unaffiliated" on their voter registration.

Letters went out last week in all of the state's 24 counties to registered voters, informing them that the "independent" party is no longer recognized under Maryland's state election laws.

ME: Our View: Electing mayor outweighs noncitizen voting
A full debate about the change in leadership is more important than other, less vital issues. http://www.pressherald.com/opinion/electing-mayor-outweighs-noncitizen-voting_2010-07-17.html

ME: Non-Citizen Voting in Portland, ME May Be on November Ballot
http://nonprofitvote.blogspot.com/2010/07/non-citizen-voting-in-portland-me-may.html

MI: Michigan absentee voters can track ballots online
http://www.detnews.com/article/20100719/METRO/7190389/1361/Michigan-absentee-voters-can-track-ballots-online


MN: Nick Coleman: Felons flipped an election? Unbelievable.http://www.startribune.com/opinion/commentary/98635764.html Many people misunderstand the felon issue, which is being distorted by those who are flogging it for political purposes. A person convicted of a felony is not permanently barred from the voting booth. As soon as he is released from parole or probation, his citizenship rights are fully restored.

NC: Should challengers pay for their runoff elections?
http://www.charlotteobserver.com/2010/07/17/1567459/should-challengers-pay-for-their.html

Now here's an interesting finding that will delight those who like a lot
of elections and those who want to save taxpayers a few bucks: According
to a new poll by Public Policy Polling, N.C. voters want to preserve
runoff elections, but they say taxpayers ought not to pay. Candidates
should underwrite the cost of runoffs.

NC: Public Policy Polling North Carolina Miscellany Poll
http://www.publicpolicypolling.com/pdf/PPP_Release_NC_708.pdf

NC: Pamlico elections board beginning to get help
http://www.newbernsj.com/news/elections-89086-state-board.html
A state elections seminar brought 260 county elections officials to New Bern Thursday and began solving a more local problem for the Pamlico County Board of Elections.
...
Officials from across the state met through noon Friday for a seminar jointly hosted by the N.C. State Board of Elections and the UNC School of Government to look at election history, law and technology.

NC: Elections investigation continues
http://www.newbernsj.com/news/elections-89052-north-board.html
The North Carolina State Board of Elections “is going to look at any unfinished business” in campaign reporting by Gov. Bev Perdue and other 2008 candidates for governor, its director said Friday in New Bern

NM: Ballot secrecy compromised in NM, other states (is that correct? See law)
http://www.wtop.com/?nid=213&sid=2004189
In precincts where only one or a handful of voters participated, it's possible to identify voters and determine who they supported by cross-checking public records _ a roster of voters who cast ballots in a precinct and the precinct-by-precinct results.

NM: 1-12-70. Reporting of vote totals by precinct; voting data maintained by
precinct.
http://www.sos.state.nm.us/pdf/ElectionLaws2009.pdf (warning big file)
B. The county clerk shall maintain voting data by precinct that includes the number of voters who voted early in-person, absentee by mail and on election day and the number of voters who voted using each type of voting system. The county clerk shall report this data to the secretary of state within sixty days following the election, and to no other person. The secretary of state shall then combine the data within a precinct to the extent necessary to protect the secrecy of each voter’s ballot in accordance with rules issued by the secretary of state before the data as processed
becomes a public record. History: Laws 2007, ch. 336, § 1.

NY: NY1 Online: New Voting Machine Opponents Sound Off (video)
http://manhattan.ny1.com/content/news_beats/politics/121822/ny1-online--new-voting-machine-opponents-sound-off/ Opponents of the state’s new election machines discuss their concerns in a panel featuring Citizens Union’s Dick Dadey, Councilwoman Gale Brewer, and two of the people suing the Board of Elections, Monifa Bandele from the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation and Larry Norden of NYU’s Brennan Center for Justice.

TN: In Brief: Woman, 69, held in voter fraud
http://www.commercialappeal.com/news/2010/jul/16/in-brief-woman-held-in-voter-fraud/
"From what I understand, what happened was she did some early voting and apparently there was a glitch and she didn't think her vote registered. She went to another voting place.

TN: Family calls voter fraud charges against Bartlett woman "ludicrous"
http://www.wmctv.com/global/story.asp?s=12822060
The DA's office offered no details about why it took four years to indict Enochs or the possible penalties.
...
He said his mother is too upset to talk about the charges and may never vote again.

TN: Half Ballots Often Cast During Early Voting
http://www.wreg.com/news/wreg-satellite-locations-story,0,2332051.story

TX: NAACP looks at runoff election (Galveston County)
http://www.galvnews.com/story/163518 David Miller, president of the Galveston chapter of the NAACP, said voters who were registered to vote in District 1 were given District 2 ballots, and some voters were told the polls were closed or the elections already had been won.

WI: Democratic voters in Wis. primary could be trouble
http://www.wsaw.com/news/headlines/98664224.html
Democratic voters in Wisconsin wanting to cause mischief for Republicans have some tantalizing possibilities to cross over and cast ballots in the upcoming primary.

WV: Legislators believe election efforts dead
http://www.journal-news.net/page/content.detail/id/540491.html?nav=5006

WV: "W.VA. LEGISLATURE FAILED TO TAKE ACTION BUT 2010 SENATE RACE STILL LIKELY" http://electionlawblog.org/archives/016464.html

Internet Voting Watch

Voter Opinions about Election Reform: Do They Support Making Voting More
Convenient?
(CalTech Survey) http://www.vote.caltech.edu/drupal/node/336 Second, we find that Internet voting and voting-by-mail do not receive a great deal of support from American voters. There was no state where Internet voting was supported by a majority of voters and there were no states that do not already have expanded vote by mail (Washington and Oregon) where expanded vote by mail had majority support.

National

What is prison-based gerrymandering
http://www.prisonpolicy.org/#s1279512000

8 States with Online Voter Registration
http://nonprofitvote.blogspot.com/2010/07/8-states-with-online-voter-registration.html
...with a state driver's license or state id to register to vote online. They are Arizona, Washington, Kansas, Oregon, Louisiana, Colorado, Utah and Indiana.

$10,440 in South Carolina vs. $0 in Vermont
http://www.opednews.com/articles/10-440-in-South-Carolina-by-gloria-bilchik-100717-276.html?show=votes ...While some states make it fairly easy to run for federal office, many seem to be making major efforts to limit participation. 2) Much of the decision-making about filing fees and formulas for nominating petitions is left to the official Democratic and Republican parties in each state

International

India: EVM saga to enter Apex Court as the Election Commission mulls closure of EVM “enquiryhttp://www.indianevm.com/blogs/?p=329 As the present chief election commissioner Navin Chawla’s term draws to a close, the ECI has once again invited V.V. Rao, petitioner who filed the Public Interest Litigation (PIL) in the Supreme Court of India in July, 2009 to demonstrate that the Indian EVMs can be tampered with.

Solomon Islands. Secretary ballot: Bought
http://www.solomonstarnews.com/viewpoint/letters-to-the-editor/7039-secretary-ballot-bought

Dear Editor - The way we vote in Solomon Islands is by secret ballot. This is to prevent bias, intimidation, and bribery.
...
Ballot papers in one of the constituencies on Malaita were bought by the winning candidate.

This is for purposes of punishing and penalizing those who have not voted for that particular MP



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