Tuesday, October 26, 2010

NV touchscreens flip votes. Internet voting security debate grows. Ontario i-vote probs

Security debate grows over Internet voting: "Nobody knows how to conduct an election that is immune to the kinds of attacks we in the security community know how to do..We can't have our election systems exposed to cyberattacks." ~ David Jefferson, computer scientist @ Lawrence Livermore Natl Lab. & VerifiedVoting.org chair...Vote flipping in Clark Co Nevada from GOP to DEM...Ontario Internet voting crashes...Scotland ditches computer voting...

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

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AK: "In Alaska Senate Race, Front-Runner Isnt' on Ballot"

AK Admits to BRAD BLOG State Has Never Before Supplied Precincts With Write-In Candidate Names http://www.bradblog.com/?p=8151

AZ: Response to voter fraud claims
AZ Secretary of State's Office says accusations are incorrect

CA: Corrected Ballots Mailed to Danville and Alamo Voters* (contest left off ballot)
http://danville.patch.com/articles/corrected-ballots-mailed-to-danville-and-alamo-voters With just one week before Election Day, corrected ballots will show up in the mailboxes of Danville and Alamo homes—the Central Contra Costa Sanitary District was left off the ballots.

CO: Ballot copying under way in Routt County* (coding error on ballots)
Four-person teams of sworn-in, paid election judges continued Monday the arduous work of hand-copying scores of ballots — filling in rectangles, one quadruple-checked vote at a time — after a coding error announced last week. The error was caused by a single, inadvertent keystroke and rendered unreadable all 5,773 ballots mailed to Routt County voters before Oct. 19.

CO: Election is for citizens, not government
ParentProfile=1061 http://tinyurl.com/2af5o94
Regardless of such punitive backlash, we should not allow our government to block election transparency and verifiability. Elections belong to us, not the government. The government ought not obtain nor withhold “secrets” about our elections

GA: Military, overseas votes get speedier
http://chronicle.augusta.com/news/government/elections/georgia-elections/2010-10-25/military-overseas-votes-get-speedier Members of the military and Georgians living abroad can expect a quicker turnaround on their absentee ballots and greater likelihood their votes will arrive in time to be counted.

IL: New law costing McLean Co., election commission
http://www.pantagraph.com/news/local/education/article_3f4d5152-e0b3-11df-a47d-001cc4c03286.html The law, effective until March 2, requires election authorities to offer grace period registration and early voting at all public universities
While the clerk's share of the cost of the ISU site program was about $4,500, Milton offset much of it by closing two off-site locations in Chenoa and Downs. That brought the net impact down to about $1,900.

MD: Errors mar most Worcester sample ballots*
SNOW HILL -- Voters opening sample ballots mailed to them by Worcester election officials may have done double-takes. The instructional ballots showed inaccurate candidate listings for County Commissioner and Board of Education elections in six out of seven districts.

NC: Minor problems, large turnout of voters in Havelock *(paper jams, data transm, more on vote flip prob w/straight-ticket voting using ES&S iVotronic w/VVPAT)
Bare said that the button for straight tickets is so close together that it is relatively easy to hit one when the intent is to hit another. As a solution, Bare passed out pencils whose eraser heads could be used to more accurately depress the intended button.

On the first day of voting Thursday, the paper jammed in two of the voting machines and that caused a slight delay.
According to Burridge, there was a slight hitch in data transmissions at one point that kept Havelock’s voting information from being sent to the main elections office. The information is simply stored until the connection is re-established.

NC: N.C. debuts new ballots for midterm elections
Ballots allow second and third choice
for_midterm_elections http://tinyurl.com/2566umu

NC: Ranking candidates for one appellate race overshadows other top NC judicial races

NV: Nevada Voters Complain Of Problems At Polls* (Sequoia AVC Edge w/VVPAT)
Voter Joyce Ferrara said when they went to vote for Republican Sharron Angle, her Democratic opponent, Sen. Harry Reid's name was already checked.

Ferrara said she wasn't alone in her voting experience. She said her husband and several others voting at the same time all had the same thing happen.
"Something's not right," Ferrara said. "One person that's a fluke. Two, that's strange. But several within a five minute period of time -- that's wrong."

Clark County Registrar of Voters Larry Lomax said there is no voter fraud, although the issues do come up because the screens are sensitive.

NY: New York City’s Board of Elections Chief Is Fired
With Election Day just a week away, the head of the city’s embattled Board of Elections was fired on Tuesday following a series of missteps with new voting machines and other procedures.

NY: Minor Parties See Threat in Ballot Quirk

PA: 600 absentee requests tossed (Bucks County)
http://www.phillyburbs.com/news/news_details/article/28/2010/october/26/600-absentee-requests-tossed-1.html Voter Registration Director Deena Dean said the number of ballot applications rejected for mismatching signatures, incorrect birthdates and other problems is substantially higher than in recent elections.

TN: Election Fracas Nearing End (Epoll book failure bipartisan problem)
There is still a report from the state election coordinator to come on the Aug. 5 Shelby County elections, but this week’s findings...confirm the controversy and criticism cuts across party lines.
“However, there are no obviously discernible demographic or voting history patterns to be found within the limited number of voters potentially affected by the EPB (electronic poll book) error.”

VA: Registrar Warns of Computer Problems One Week Before Elections*
He says if the problem isn't fixed, it could cause long lines on election day.
Angela PelleranoStaff reporter
CBS 6 news has learned voter databases in Central Virginia and across the commonwealth are malfunctioning.
"This morning we couldn't enter any [absentee ballot applications] at all. When VERIS finally started working it was incredibly slow. This has become the norm", says Haake.

Internet Voting Watch

Verified Voting: Internet Voting Information
Map of usage in US, Technologist statement, studies, articles, proposals

Donate to help Verified Voting continue the internet voting risks awareness campaign

Security debate grows over Internet voting

USA Today
A growing number of states allow military and overseas voters to cast absentee ballots by fax and e-mail, in addition to mail. Voting methods, by state:
Arizona and West Virginia will allow military and overseas voters to use the Internet on Nov. 2 with systems the states claim are safe. More than 20 other states let those voters use e-mail, which some election security experts say is just as vulnerable.

Canada: Electronic voting creates problems across eastern Ont.*

Arnprior will have to wait until Tuesday night to declare its mayor after the electronic voting system used in many places across eastern Ontario crashed Monday night.

The online and telephone voting system was used by 33 municipalities, causing several problems across the region.

Arnprior resident Debbie Laventure was one of hundreds of voters locked out of the "Intelivote" electronic voting system.

"I tried on the telephone to phone in, couldn't get through. I tried the computer; that wasn't working, so went to the library and that didn't work," Laventure told CTV Ottawa on Tuesday.
However, Arnprior wasn't the only municipality that had problems with Intelivote's electronic voting system.

In North Grenville, it crashed in the last hour of voting. In McNab/Braeside, voting was extended for another hour to account for the delay.

The company that runs the system says a hardware problem coupled with a huge spike in voter turnout was the cause of frustration on election day.

Technical glitch extends Arnprior vote 1 day


The Hill Blog: A Common Sense Solution to Defective Voting
A recent comprehensive report by the Brennan Center for Justice demonstrates that problems with voting machines in one jurisdiction will often crop up in another. To cite but one example, Ohio officials discovered that at least 1,000 votes were undercounted in nine of the state’s 44 counties in a March 2008 state primary. Little did election officials know that the identical problem with the same vendor’s machines had happened next door in Illinois four years earlier.

Efforts To Prevent Voter Fraud Draw Scrutiny

Tea Party Vow to Police Vote Fraud Is Called Scare Tactic
“Private efforts to police the polls create a real risk of vote suppression, regardless of their intent,” said Wendy R. Weiser, director of the Voting Rights and Elections Project at the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University. “People need to know that any form of discrimination, intimidation, or challenge to voters without adequate basis is illegal or improper.”

USA Today's Richard Wolf Files 5-Year Old E-Voting Piece (Or One That Sure Reads Like It) http://www.bradblog.com/?p=8149

Evil Men in Black Robes (slide show available)
Slate's judicial election campaign ad spooktacular!
Be sure to check out the slide show of the creepiest judicial election ads this cycle


India: ECI must hasten EVM reform, Congress party must support it

Scotland: Electronic voting system scrapped

A controversial system of electronic ballot counting is to be ditched for next year's Holyrood election, it has been confirmed.
Votes will instead be counted by hand following the chaos which followed the 2007 Holyrood election which saw more than 140,000 ballots spoilt.

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