Friday, November 19, 2010

'new' voting machines turn up in Buffalo. Ballot removal for Minnesota?

US Senate candidate Miller(R)wins delay on Alaska election cert...Palm Beach officials building their case for touchscreen voting, now claim its about disability access...Now That He's Been Elected, KS Sec. of State-Elect Kris Kobach Can't Find Any 'Voter Fraud'...Minnesota GOP lays groundwork to "remove" alleged phantom ballots. Ramsey County says suit should be rejected...2 'new' voting machines turn up in Buffalo 3 weeks after election..."Tabulator Troubles in New York:What actually malfunctioned? Could the glitch have effect the election result?"..Unique Challenges of Election Administration...

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

AK: U.S. District Court in Alaska Tells Joe Miller to File Case on Vote-Counting in State Court; Tells State Not to Certify Election Until State Court Rules

FL: Sarasota ‘Conduct of Election Report’ offers little elaboration on early vote glitch* The report describes the early vote failure as the result of an “intermittent signal on network port switch.” Dent told The Florida Independent the morning after the glitch that the voting site lost “connectivity” with her main office, which delayed voting by around 40 minutes. The report indicates that elections staff replaced the “network switch and network cables” to correct the problem, and offers no other information. (report at link)

FL: PB County commissioner joins elections chief in push for return to touch screens In conjunction with Bucher's announcement, County Commissioner Karen Marcus said she will lobby to have that part of the law overturned, saying that "touch screens are a better system" with "less opportunity for human error."

Bucher said she hopes to speak to the county commission in January. She wants to replace all of her equipment before the 2012 election, with touch screens if Marcus is successful and with newer optical machines if she is not.

FL: Disabilities Act might force PB County to replace all voting machines by 2016

Guam: Lawsuit Seeking to Overturn 2010 Gubernitorial Results Expected To Be Filed By End of Today

IA: District 13 Senate recount hits a snag Democrat Tod Bowman holds a 71-vote lead against Republican Andrew Naeve.
After hand-counting the absentee ballots, the Dubuque County recount board came up 11 ballots short and decided to recess until Wednesday, Nov. 24. After the board left, election officials searched through the ballots and found all 11 by 5:45 p.m., according to Tom O'Neill, deputy commissioner of elections for Dubuque County.

IN: Critic claims a voting machine shortage in suburbs*

Republican activist claims election officials were practicing voter suppression "by accident or design" by failing to provide enough electronic voting machines in suburban communities.
"I'm not blaming anybody, but it's a situation that needs to be looked at," Joe Hero said.


IN: Decision On Charlie White Charges Expected Next Month
Embattled Secretary of State-elect Charlie White may learn his fate within the next 30 days
White got into trouble when it was discovered he had voted in the primary from his ex-wife's home where he used to live, not his new home across town, 6News reported.

IN: Alleged voter fraud investigated (Jennings County, absentee ballot fraud) At the center of the challenge made by the county Republican Party is Benjamin Cook’s absentee ballot.

Cook is a 22-year-old Jennings County native and Marine stationed in California.

IN:(More)Alleged voter fraud case to police* (Jennings County,absentee ballot fraud)
County election board votes unanimously to forward evidence involving absentee ballot Before the Nov. 2 election, Benjamin Cook filed an affidavit claiming that he did not request an absentee ballot nor did he complete a ballot that was received by the county election office.
"We would like to know how many more victims are out there," Pike said. "I don't think this is the only ballot in Jennings County that was voted erroneously. I suspect there are more people that voted and didn't know it. Hopefully the state police will investigate and perhaps uncover some of these."

KS: Now That He's Been Elected, KS Sec. of State-Elect Kris Kobach Can't Find Any 'Voter Fraud' As he stated himself, Kobach's campaign was almost entirely built on the promise of putting a stop to the state's out-of-control (and also, non-existent, but ssshhh, don't tell anybody) "voter fraud" epidemic. But now that the election's over, he's having trouble identifying any actual instances of the horrible scourge he helped tricked Republican voters into believing actually existed.

ME: Commissioner race won by 2 votes in recount (overseas & military vote impact) After the recount, Johnson had 2,883 votes; her opponent, incumbent Republican Donald P. Berry Sr. of Belmont, had 2,881.
The close race has had a couple of twists. After the general election, an unofficial tally had Berry winning by five votes but when the Secretary of State’s Office added overseas and military ballots to the mix a few days later, Johnson was determined to have won by eight votes.

MN: Ramsey County says GOP suit on voter counting procedures should be rejected
Ramsey County told the Minnesota Supreme Court Friday that a suit by Repubican Tom Emmer relies on an election law that uses "obsolete language that is inconsistent with modern day election practices," and asked the court to reject the suit.

MN: ‘Phantom votes’ suit hangs over gov recount ...Because the State Canvassing Board hasn’t even certified the results, Schultz argues, Emmer’s team is jumping the gun in claiming errors in the vote tally. “Filing the order now seems way premature, and it seems pretty likely that the court will dismiss the petition,”
But even if Republicans get their wish, the math still looks extremely difficult for Emmer. Under state law, if election officials determine that there are more ballots than properly identified voters, the remedy is to randomly remove ballots until the numbers are reconciled...

MN: Lawyers look ahead in tangled Minnesota gov race

NC: Editorial: Protest - Glazier- Warner race may have political resolution. Legislature may end up deciding.

NC: “Instant” Court of Appeals decision takes a while
On Nov. 29, local election boards will take the next step and examine the second- and third-place votes for the top two contenders, Wright explained. A candidate who picks up a second- or third-place vote on a given ballot will get to add that vote to his first-place total — provided his rival is not also included as second or third...

NY: Senate update: Dems say new machines found in Buffalo* (update)
Two new voting machines were located last night in Buffalo, according to Sen.-elect Mike Gianaris, a Democratic attorney helping his party’s efforts in ballot counting.

NY: Tabulator Troubles in New York ..The fundamental issue here is whether to trust the vote count numbers, in a case where the race is very close and where the voting system malfunctioned at least once, because of a software bug later identified by the vendor. If one part of the system malfunctioned, shouldn’t we also be concerned that another part may also have malfunctioned? An error on even one of the over a 100 paper-ballot-counting devices could easily swamp the very small margin between the top two candidates.

NY: Grisanti widens lead over Thompson in state Senate race Grisanti spokesman Doug Curella said unreported votes from one or more voting machines in Erie County were discovered during a scheduled audit Thursday — and when counted, increase Grisanti’s lead to 812 votes over incumbent Antoine Thompson, D-Buffalo.

“After checking the tapes in the machines the new total includes an extra 135 votes (for Grisanti) ...” Curella said of the numbers he said weren’t reported to county elections officials when initial unofficial returns were being tracked Nov. 2.

NY: Martins Leads in Recount of New York's 7th Senate Race
Court of Appeals sets guidelines for review process.

Internet Voting Watch

Chinese Firm 'Hijacked' Data
A state-owned Chinese telecom firm "hijacked" massive volumes of Internet traffic earlier this year by redirecting it unnecessarily through servers in China, a congressionally appointed panel said Wednesday.

During an 18-minute stretch on April 8, China Telecom rerouted traffic sent to about 15% of the Internet's destinations, including branches of the U.S. armed services, the U.S. Senate and companies like Microsoft Corp., the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission said in its annual report.


Unique Challenges of Election Administration Most of the time the demanding work of election officials goes unnoticed and unacknowledged until something goes wrong or comes under the microscope in the politically charged atmosphere of a recount.

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