Tuesday, September 21, 2010

866-OUR-VOTE. NY fusion lawsuit, disabled access probs . AZ lawsuit update

Ruling in AZ election case...Disappearing Voters -No Penalties for Failing to Correctly Fill Out & Deliver Voter Reg.Forms...NC vote vendor does NOT want to break law..NY city disabled complain -voting places inaccessible & no ballot-marking devices..3rd party lawsuit against NY Fusion..Wisconsin Group alleges voter suppression..Why Your Toaster Works Better Than Your Voting Machine..1-866-OUR-VOTE is back..Ireland still storing 6 yr old voting machines..Vote buying mars Kenya polls..

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

AK: Write-in rules need clarification before election, not after the fact
The counting of write-in ballots for Sen. Lisa Murkowski is probably going to become controversial.

AZ: Maricopa Judge Favors Misleading Testimony of Election Officials Over Election Law: Rules Partial Victory for Electors

AZ: Tea party T-shirt headed to court
PHOENIX — A federal judge will decide whether tea party members who wear their hearts on their sleeves can wear their politics on their shirts at polling places.

CA: State online voter registration still years off
Vendors push hard to sell online voter reg

CA: Disappearing Voters -No Penalties for Failing to Correctly Fill Out and Deliver Voter Registration Forms
No. Steve Pappas has not yet managed to get his name inserted into the English language as a synonym for a clever form of massive voter fraud, but if he wins his lawsuit seeking to throw out votes in his race against Doreen Farr for 3rd District supervisor, he stands a good chance of ending up in the dictionary.
The fraud is simple: They (“oops”) forget to deliver the registration forms for a week, and they (“Oh my!”) neglect to fill out the box correctly. Under the law, these people cannot be punished.

CO: A shift in identity for Aspen Election Commission
The commission has met several times this month to establish mechanical operations meant to eliminate the complaints, including a set period for early voting and requiring that voted ballots are shuffled by election staff before voting data is compiled.

FL: Palm Beach County teachers approve $500 bonuses (internet voting problem)
Teachers were given an extra day to vote because some were unable to vote Thursday because of an Internet security access issue.

GA: Ballots Delivered Electronically to GA's Military & Overseas Voters

(Blank only, no electronic return of voted ballots.)

Guam Election Commission Violates Move Act?
http://guamnewswatch.com/201009213104/Local-News/Guam-Election-Commission-Violates-Move-Act.html GEC still hasn't received the card stock to print the ballots. The commission was told that military cargo has taken priority out of Hawaii.

IL: Illinois Votes Naked: Nude Campaign Spreads News About Changes To Absentee Voting Law (VIDEO)

One effective campaign tool? Nudity. The "Vote Naked Illinois" folks made this informative video about the changes to the state's early voting law: (Hat tip to Gapers Block for bringing this gem to our attention!)

IL: Justice Stephen Breyer Won’t Alter Special U.S. Senate Election in Illinois
On September 20, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer denied the request by U.S. Senator Roland Burris to alter the special election for U.S. Senate in Illinois.

MD: Absentee envelopes scrutinized in Worcester
Worcester County State's Attorney Joel Todd said he was "made aware" Sept. 10 of a "potential issue" with absentee ballots cast by voters in District 2. He requested the election board have staffers handle absentee ballots with surgical gloves as not to impact evidentiary value.

MN: Revamped voting procedures, meant to avoid 2008 recount hassles, begin today for general election http://ceimn.org/Minnesota_elections_recount_2008_Ritchie_Weiner_voting_Mansky

NC: E-Vote Vendors to NC: We Don't WANT to Break the Law!
http://www.bradblog.com/?p=8079 In an August 30 letter, the voting vendor warns that our voting system cannot legally tally instant runoff voting, and the vendor will not accept responsibility for an IRV related election fiasco. The letter to Gary Bartlett, Executive Director of the NC State Board of Elections, warns about the illegality of using our voting machines for this process...

NY: New voting machines slow results*
In Chemung County, a mismatch between the software designed to read the memory cards and the county’s system forced election officials there to manually enter all the results from the county’s 86 election districts, according to WETM-TV.
According to the Associated Press, flustered poll workers and machine breakdowns resulted in long lines at several voting sites across the state.

NY: Voters With Disabilities Add to Complaints About Primary Election* (video)
http://dnainfo.com/20100920/washington-heights-inwood/voters-with-disabilities-add-complaints-about-primary-election Disabled voters from all over the city complained about inaccessible voting places and no ballot-marking devices.
Problems include a lack of ramps, wheelchair-accessible doorways locked with no way to communicate to people inside, and a lack of private voting space, disability advocates say.
Of particular concern to disabled voters was a dearth of accessible ballot marking devices (BMDs), which are supposed to be available to people of all needs, including those with sight, hearing or mobility impairments. The electronic machines function like the optical scanning voting machines, but have special tools for the blind, deaf and otherwise impaired.
Voters said many places didn't have the devices, or they were unavailable, or election workers had no idea how to make them work.

NY: Minor Parties Challenge 'Fusion Voting' in NY
http://www.courthousenews.com/2010/09/21/30494.htm The Conservative Party of New York State and the Working Families Party filed a federal lawsuit against the New York State Board of Elections, claiming the practice of "fusion voting," which allows candidates to appear on the ballot multiple times for multiple parties, is robbing them of votes.

NY: Election Monitors Sought for City

Federal monitors should be dispatched to New York City to monitor the Nov. 2 election in the wake of widespread violations of voter privacy during last week's primary, a City Council member said.

OH: Partisanship, redistricting underlie high-stakes Secretary of State race
The stakes are high in this year's race for secretary of state, the winner of which will not only oversee Ohio's election system but also hold a vital seat on the five-member state Apportionment Board that will redraw legislative districts in 2011

PA: NAACP Launches online voter registration
This cutting edge campaign will add the “Upload 2 Uplift” tool that uses social media technology to allow people to register to vote online and to upload the Email addresses of family and friends who are not yet registered to its full voter empowerment campaign.

TN: Editorial: Wrong lawyer for the task
County government should be perceived as neutral on allegations being raised about the election http://www.commercialappeal.com/news/2010/sep/20/editorials-wrong-lawyer-for-the-task/

TX: Harris County now geared up for election with donated machines
news/be_harrisco_electiongear.txt http://tinyurl.com/27se5w6

WI: Group calls for investigation of alleged voter suppression plan
A liberal advocacy group wants state and federal justice officials to investigate an alleged conservative plot to purge young and minority voters from the polls before the November election.

WV: Tennant calls GOP ballot lawsuit 'frivolous'
The Republicans' filing argues the party would suffer "irreparable harm" if voters are allowed to vote a "straight ticket" in both the general election and U.S. Senate races.

Internet Voting Watch

FL: Palm Beach County teachers approve $500 bonuses
Teachers were given an extra day to vote because some were unable to vote Thursday because of an Internet security access issue.

WV: Electronic ballots available in Putnam County
WINFIELD, W.Va...Putnam County offered electronic absentee voting as part of a state pilot project for the first time in the August special vote to select U.S. Senate candidates, but time was limited and few voted online, Wood said.
We currently have a dozen or so signed up for the General Election and look forward to having more participate."

Canada: Sounding off on online voting
There are a lot of hackers who frequently break into 'secure' government and banking sites, some for fun but mostly for profit, and what greater profit would there be for those that seek power within government? Whether that be a city or a country.

Canada: E-Voting: A new electronic way to vote
(mostly poli sci, no computer scientist observations)

Russia: e-voting to be tested in Russia''s 20 regions in October
http://ibnlive.in.com/generalnewsfeed/news/evoting-to-be-tested-in-russias-20-regions-in-october/337692.html Vienna, Sept 20 (Itar-Tass) Electronic voting technology will be tested in Russia's 20 territories during upcoming regional elections,


Reminder: Tell a Friend about the Election Protection Hotline and 866OurVote.org Today! www.866OurVote.org Election Protection will again be putting together a comprehensive nationwide voter protection program for Election Day

Why Your Toaster Works Better Than Your Voting Machine
http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2010/09/why-your-toaster-works-better-than-your-voting-machine/63107/ Why are electronic voting machines so prone to problems?
The EAC should sit down with engineers to learn about the best ways to track bugs from one version of the software to the next.

Mark A. Robbins to Serve as EAC’s Next General Counsel
EAC names general counsel

Become a Sunlight Campaign Ad Monitor

In Hot Political Climate, Election Experts Want 'Voter Fraud' Watchdogs To Be Clear On Rules http://tpmmuckraker.talkingpointsmemo.com/2010/09/in_political _climate_election_experts_ want_voter_fraud_watchdogs_to_be_clear_on_the_rules.php http://tinyurl.com/2fh3uut


Afghan officials say too early to judge election
Afghan authorities said Monday it was too early to judge the validity of the country's parliamentary ballot despite observers' reports of widespread fraud in the vote that was to help consolidate its shaky democracy.

Observers want Investigation of Afghan Election
Just a few days after Afghanistan’s parliamentary elections, there is a call for an independent investigation into just what went wrong
“We have seen ballot stuffing, proxy votes, underage voting and also multiple voting. The most serious one is the ballot stuffing, out observers have observed in around 280 centers in 28 provinces where the ballot stuffing did occur.”

Vote buying mars Kenya polls

Ireland: Task force fails to curb rising costs of €55m e-voting fiasco
Almost 7,500 Dutch-made e-voting machines were bought for €51m by the Government in 2004 with a view to using them in the local and European elections that year.

However, the plan was cancelled just six weeks before polling after the Independent Commission on Electronic Voting said it was not sufficiently satisfied with the system's accuracy and secrecy.

Swedish vote ends in hung parliament

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