Thursday, October 28, 2010

E-Voting 'a hopelessly dangerous concept'. NC GOP threatens suit over vote flipping

New database on state recount & audit laws...Verified Voting new map of voting tech in US...IL Dems botch absentee early voting push..NC GOP threatens suit over touch-screen voting machines..NY voter cross fingers...SC voting machines not reliable says Computer Science Prof Dr. Duncan Buell ...NM & VA voter reg. databases bogged down...9 voting machines unattended overnight in NW Lehi,UT polls... Faith Based Voting -In many of Tuesday's closest races, states will use those same old, suspect voting machines...

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


AK: Alaska high court: Voters may see write-in list
http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5hURJWIiDP9prW4WyDT0bOpiGKELg?docId=b09ddf3b88da4ea5a4a621b8e94db93b

CO: Boulder County: 'Human error' caused ballot language mix-up*
http://www.dailycamera.com/news/ci_16445244
Issue 2B, Boulder's proposed utility tax measure, was correctly titled on the electronic ballot but contained the language for Boulder County's open space tax measure, known as County Issue 1B.

"It appears someone cut and pasted the wrong ballot content under the title," Boulder County Clerk Hillary Hall told the Camera this afternoon.
...
Three hundred and twelve voters used the faulty electronic ballots before the error was discovered Tuesday, which prompted election officials to halt all voting on the county's 12 electronic voting machines.

IL: Illinois Democrats botch absentee early voting push*
http://newsblogs.chicagotribune.com/clout_st/2010/10/illinois-democrats-botch-absentee-early-voting-push.html
Illinois Democratic Party workers started mailing applications for absentee ballots to registered voters late last week, leaving precious few days for them to be mailed back to election authorities in time to get a ballot. And many of the applications contained the wrong birthdates for the registered voters they were mailed to, leaving some of those who got them wondering if it was a scam.

NC: GOP threatens suit over touch-screen voting machines
http://www.wral.com/news/local/politics/story/8528102/
Fetzer said he wants warnings posted at the polls to alert voters of the potential problem. He also wants poll workers to retain daily printouts of vote totals to compare later with the tabulations provided by the touch-screen machines and to retain records of all complaints about the machines.

NC: N.C. GOP leader: Touchscreen voting machines have flaw that aids Dems*
http://www.newsobserver.com/2010/10/28/766257/nc-republican-party-chair-touchscreen.html

The chairman of the N.C. Republican Party alleged Thursday that a programming flaw with touchscreen voting machines used for early voting in 36 counties is causing votes intended for GOP candidates to be counted for Democrats.

Tom Fetzer, the Republican chairman, said that if the State Board of Elections does not enact a list of demands intended to remedy the problem by the end of today, the party's lawyers will be in federal court Friday morning seeking a statewide injunction.

NC: Election Workers Fired After Speaking To WITN*
http://www.witn.com/home/headlines/Craven_Co_Election_Workers_Fired_
After_Speaking_To_WITN_106132669.html http://tinyurl.com/32h7cn5
Two Craven County election workers say they were fired today, hours after speaking with WITN News about problems with touch screen voting machines.

Matthew Thomas and Maria Vincent claim they reported straight party voting problems at their early-voting site, but those problems were never addressed.

NC: Voters Question State Official About Possible Machine 'Glitch'*
http://www.wcti12.com/news/25545198/detail.html
Craven GOP Chair Chuck Tyson told the crowd that a voter phoned him to describe a machine flip-flopping his votes at a Vanceboro voting location during Wednesday's lunch hour.
The voter wasn't voting a straight-party ticket, Tyson said.
As the meeting ended, Tyson advocated a return to paper ballots.

NC: State technician demonstrates voting machine* 9ES&S iVotronic)
http://www.newbernsj.com/news/voting-91774-state-machine.html
Some remain skeptical about machine's reliability
...
“I have all the confidence in the world with the Board of Elections,” Tyson said. “I do not have confidence in this machine.”

Tyson has received calls from numerous voters who report that their intended straight-party Republican ticket votes register all Democratic votes, he said. He also has received reports of the vote flipping for only random races while other votes on the ballot are as the voter intended.

NC: Judicial ballot count changed by NC election board
http://www.wlos.com/template/inews_wire/wires.regional.nc/28165900-www.wlos.com.shtml
Elections officials have changed how votes will be counted for a seat on the North Carolina Court of Appeals being picked through an unusual voting method.

NM: Herrera's office feels heat as glitch delays voting

Computer problems disrupt early polling at sites statewide* http://www.santafenewmexican.com/localnews/Herrera-s-office-feels-heat-as-glitch-delays-voting County elections officials complained
Wednesday of problems with New Mexico's voter-registration computer system, saying it has disrupted early voting at some locations across the state and continues to delay the preparation of voter-turnout reports.

NM: Computer glitch disrupts early voting* (voter registration database)
http://www.kob.com/article/stories/S1811041.shtml?cat=500
Elections officials in Dona Ana, San Juan and Santa Fe counties say early voting was delayed at some locations Tuesday evening because poll workers weren't able to access the statewide voter registration system.

The county officials blamed the secretary of state's office for the expiration of a security certificate, which is needed for a secure online connection with the voter registration system.

NY: At the Polls, With Fingers Crossed
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/28/opinion/28thurs4.html?_r=1 The list of failures by New York City’s inept Board of Elections just keeps growing. The primary election was chaotic, with long waits and workers who had not been trained to use the new optical scanner voting machines.

PA: Ballot Controversy Stirs Up Problems* (absentee by mail applications)
http://www.wfmz.com/bucksnews/25542505/detail.html Local Republicans say the county's Board of Elections has been flooded with hundreds of false applications for absentee ballots.
...
The letters telling voters to apply for an absentee ballot were sent by a group called PA Victory 2010. And according to a petition filed by Republicans with the board of election, when the applications were returned, only two people were allowed to pick up the applications from a post office box; A volunteer working for Congressman Patrick Murphy and a Murphy campaign manager.
...
"If they had sent the mailing right to the court house we wouldn't have half this problem," said Poprik.

PA: Ballot war raging in Bucks
Absentee ballot drive, tossed ballots fuel charges in congressional race.
http://articles.mcall.com/2010-10-27/news/mc-bucks-congress-absentee-ballots-20101027_1_absentee-ballot-ballot-requests-ballot-war

SC: Voting Machines Not So Reliable
http://www2.wspa.com/news/2010/oct/27/voting-machines-not-so-reliable-ar-1019003/
South Carolina has been using the Ivotronic touch screen system for the past 6 years but Dr. Duncan Buell, a computer science professor at the University of South Carolina said the software has many flaws.

SC: Skeptics say voting machines, may not be reliable
http://www2.counton2.com/news/2010/oct/28/skeptics-say-voting-machines-may-not-be-reliable-ar-1022441/

“The bottom line is we just don’t know. Every time one of the machines is opened up by computer systems specialists they have been unhappy with what they have seen,” said Dr. Duncan Buell, a Computer Science Professor at the University of South Carolina.

TN: Editorial: Election integrity
http://www.commercialappeal.com/news/2010/oct/28/editorial-election-integrity/
Election errors necessarily call into question the current system of election management in Tennessee, where the party that holds the majority of seats in the state House and Senate also winds up with majority control of county election commissions.

TX: We've come a long way in protecting votes of Texas military personnel abroad
http://www.mysanantonio.com/opinion/weve_come_a_long_way_in_protecting_
votes_of_texas_military_personnel_abroad_105907353.html
http://tinyurl.com/36w78ev

UT: E-Voting Systems Left Unattended at UT Poll Site
County clerk misleads public about dangers of tampering...
http://www.bradblog.com/?p=8155 Nine voting machines were left unsecured in an office building overnight in northwest Lehi.

VA: Richmond registrar warns voters of possible ID scam* (tricks)
http://www2.timesdispatch.com/news/2010/oct/27/kirkgat27-ar-591355/
Warning of possible fraud, Richmond's registrar Kirk Showalter said yesterday that someone has been going door-to-door in Richmond soliciting sensitive information in the guise of registering people to vote.

VA: Slow computer system may cause problems on election day
Local registrars say the state system is running very slow.
http://www.wdbj7.com/news/wdbj7-story-election-issues-102710,0,1659189.story

WI: 12K+ Removed From State's Voter Registration List
http://wtaq.com/news/articles/2010/oct/28/12k-removed-states-voter-registration-list/
That’s after their personal information was not identical on the various government databases – and they did not respond to two requests by mail to straighten things out.

Internet Voting Watch

Canada: 'Streamlined' voting system backfires in some areas* (video available)
http://swo.ctv.ca/servlet/an/local/CTVNews/20101027/voting-system-fails-stratford-101027/20101027/?hub=SWOHome One voter says "I got along fine with it but I had to try my computer twice, and I have friends in my building that they couldn't get it to work at all."
...
Shaw says "We understand it was a company-wide situation and there was a number of municipalities that had to do the same thing Stratford did, and that was extend the voting."

The server glitch left some unable to vote, like one resident who says "My wife had just voted online, I went to vote, couldn't get in, so I never got to vote."

Canada: Technological meltdown *
http://www.cottagecountrynow.ca/opinion/letters/article/894964--technological-meltdown

HUNTSVILLE ...The system’s failings should be of concern to those who will be sitting around the council table next term. It seems two other municipalities using Intelivote — Carling and Achipelago, both north of Parry Sound — also had to extend their voting hours due to system malfunction. Under such circumstances it is difficult to tell who the clear winners are.

E-voting: How secure is it?
http://blog.verifiedvoting.org/2010/10/28/1215 More than half of all US states will allow some kind of internet voting this year. But security experts say it's a mistake
...
“The original idea was that internet voting was a fine idea, and the only question was how best to deliver this capability to the citizens of California,” recalled Jefferson...But as we studied the issue more carefully, we realized that it was a hopelessly dangerous concept.”

National

The Current State Of Voting Machines -Podcast
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=130866300
With Election Day less than a week away, NPR's Michele Norris talks to Lawrence Norden of the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University

The Faith-Based Vote. In many of Tuesday's closest races, states will use those same old, suspect voting machines. http://www.slate.com/id/2272627/pagenum/all/
As we barrel toward Election Day, Direct Recording Electronic voting systems—usually touch-screen, always entirely unverifiable—are still being used by 20 percent to 30 percent of U.S. voters.
Threats to the Vote in the 2010 Election
http://www.brennancenter.org/content/resource/voting_challenges_2010_2

Computerized Elections: Appropriate use of Technology?
http://www.trustthevote.org/computerized-elections-appropriate-use-of-technology
What we’re up to in the TTV project is developing updated and open technology for these same functions of computerized elections today, in order to help election officials increase trust, without changing the way that they want to conduct elections.

Dan Rather's New E-Voting Report "Das Vote" is Up on HDNET (Free Video)!
Might not be there for too long: http://www.hd.net/danrather.html
Transcripts: http://www.hd.net/transcript.html?air_master_id=A6682&pd=danrather

NEW SEARCHABLE DATABASE ON STATE RECOUNT AND AUDIT LAWS
http://electionupdates.caltech.edu/?p=3400 Citizens for Election Integrity Minnesota have developed a very useful tool on state laws on election audits and recounts that can be found on their web site at: http://ceimn.org/ceimn-state-recount-laws-searchable-database.

America's Voting Systems in 2010
http://www.verifiedvotingfoundation.org/ Verified Voting has released a new version of the Verifier, a map of voting technology used throughout the United States and territories, along with a statistical summary of voting technology that States will use this November.

6 biggest voter 'screw-ups' of 2010
http://theweek.com/article/index/208654/6-biggest-voter-screw-ups-of-2010
Amid reports of biased voting machines and $500 "bounties" on illegal voters, there's no shortage of election controversies this year

International

Hacker almost derailed Mandela election in South Africa
http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/10/27/sa_election_hack/
Right-wing key-puncher tried to hang on to apartheid, says new book


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