Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Maricopa AZ election protection suit filed. TN and WA election websites crash

Citizens file emergency suit to force Maricopa AZ Elections Dept to follow law...Florida Voters Coalition collecting observations on poll closings nxt Tues...Tennessee State Election website crashed 5 times on election day, delays Dyer Cnty results...Washington election returns crash state computers...1,100 Snohomish Cnty WA voters get ballots within hours to vote..90 yrs ago the 19th amendment was ratified, giving women the right to vote...

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

AL: Alabama expands options for military, overseas voters to comply with new law Secretary of State Beth Chapman an nounced a contract with Scytl USA that will allow for the electronic transmission of ab sentee ballots to military and overseas vot ers. The ballot request and completed ballots still have to be sent through the U.S. Postal Service.

AR: Judge: Stone County special election unauthorized Republican sheriff nominee Russ Aiken filed the suit, which claimed Gov. Mike Beebe was not authorized to call the new vote in the wake of a June 8 runoff in which the two Democratic candidates tied with 1,383 tallies each.

AZ: Emergency lawsuit filed to force Maricopa Cnty Elections Dept to follow the law to protect upcoming election results from election fraud
Election research over the last three weeks (based on the work of AUDIT AZ since 2006) discovered flagrant ILLEGAL violations of Arizona Election Laws [2]. The interlocking pattern of deliberate subversion of these security measures indicated below makes manipulation of vote counting easy, thus leaving elections vulnerable to undetectable fraud...

AZ: Institute for Justice Files Cert. Petition in Arizona Public Financing Matching Funds Case

CT: Post-Election Audit Drawing: 73 Districts 45 Municipalities Selected
Today the Secretary of the State’s Office conducted the random drawing. Members of CTVotersCount and the League of Women Voters performed the selections.

FL: Eyes on the Process - Spend an Hour Making a Difference It's a good time for the public to exercise its ownership of elections by observing poll-closing procedures next Tuesday, election-day
We will have simple instructions and a simple form you can use to collect a few important observations

FL: Fla. launches new website for election results

FL: Brevard elections supervisor fights voter fraud, debunks myths

IN: Former Roseland council member challenges jailed voter ban
A former Roseland Town Council member jailed for a misdemeanor crime has sued state and county election officials, alleging that a state law allowing cancellation of his voter registration is unconstitutional.

NC: Hopkins outlines frantic elections
There has been a contentious second primary involving two Democratic U.S. Senate candidates, the introduction of an unaffiliated candidate to the Beaufort County commissioners’ race — and now there’s the possibility of an “instant runoff” to replace N.C. Court of Appeals Judge Jim Wynn.

NY: How much money is New York City going to gain from new law counting prisoners at home?
If money is not at stake, why did 3 states pledge to count incarcerated people at home for redistricting purposes? Because those states want to ensure that legislative districts are drawn fairly, and that no district gets undue influence just because it contains a large correctional facility

OH: Voters will be contacted to correct mis-matched information the next two weeks due to non-matching data discovered during the comparison of records between the Ohio Secretary of State’s statewide voter registration database and the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles’ database.

TN: Certification of August election delayed by state * (State website crashed)
On election night, the commission would normally go to the state's election website and enter the cumulative total. However, the website crashed several times throughout the evening, leaving counties unable to enter results. Heathcott added that it is no fault of the state, because it was simply an unforeseen technical problem that had to be resolved. She noted that Dyer County had to get in line with the other 95 counties in which to receive the information.

"That's why it has taken so long to certify," said Heathcott. "In their (the state's) defense their whole system went down five times on Election Day and it has taken them awhile to be able to get this information to us.

TN: Judge lays guidelines for inquiry of election *
Democrats given limited access to voting results
A judge on Monday laid out written ground rules for Shelby County Democrats' inspection of voting equipment and records as they continued a legal challenge of how the Republican-controlled Election Commission handled the Aug. 5 vote.
On Monday afternoon, the Democratic team was seeking items including the "statement of votes cast" by precinct and candidate, the list of eligible voters from Aug. 5, and the incident report log, which would record calls about voting problems, said Interim County Trustee Regina Morrison Newman, one of the Democrats who filed the lawsuit.
Democrats filed a lawsuit Aug. 9, citing the poll book problem and alleging others, including improper tallying of votes and that at one polling location, Shiloh Baptist Church in Frayser, machines were not working when the polls opened.

TN: Litigants' Direct Inspection of Voting Results Halted Until Monday

TN: Group Calls on Sharpton for Voting Flap (Shelby County, Diebold machines)

"We believe that the smoking gun, as it relates to this election, are the machines themselves," said Greg Grant, President of the National Action Network's Memphis chapter

TN: Election Commission to meet Wednesday to discuss its mistake Rutherford County...The mistake involved not conducting early voting during one of the three Saturdays through the early voting period for at least three hours at a polling location as required by the state law.

TX: Lawmakers listening to elections complaints, but Rep. Ryan Guillen unsure how to toughen laws on mail-in ballot fraud

TX: Hidalgo County Presses Ahead With Disputed Election Texas’ top election official says it’s illegal. Local attorneys say they can’t do it. A judge ordered them to stop.

No matter; Rio Grande Valley officials are planning to go ahead and hold a special election in November to fill a seat on the Hidalgo County Commissioners' Court.

WA: Washington election returns crash state computers*
The Secretary of State's election website malfunctioned for much of the night Tuesday, causing frustration for news agencies, election officials and members of the public.

WA: 1,278 Snohomish County ballots not mailed until Monday*
More than 1,000 Snohomish County election ballots weren't mailed to voters because of an error during printing. The county auditor's office Monday mailed replacement ballots and asked that they be returned by 8 p.m. Tuesday.

WA: Snohomish County voters dealing with ballot snafu* (mail absentee ballots)
...The auditor’s office says it appears there was some type of mistake in the printing process and those ballots were set aside and never re-printed.
More than 1,100 voters in Snohomish County never received their ballots, including voters who live at the Chateau Retirement and Assisted Living Facility on 148th Street Southwest in Lynnwood.
Some voters around Lynnwood-area precincts also did not get their ballots.
The auditor’s office just found out about this problem on Monday — the day before the election. It’s been crunch time since. The auditor’s office mailed out replacement ballots Monday.


WA: 9th Circuit will re-open WA felon voting case

An 11-judge panel will re-hear the case that three of its own judges had decided in favor of the inmates earlier this year.

WA: Snohomish ballot-mailing error irks some*

That left voters only a few hours to return their ballots by the 8 p.m. deadline Tuesday. The concern was heightened because the ballots include the Edmonds School District levy, which would raise property taxes if approved.

Internet Voting Watch

Recapping The OSCON O’Reilly Radar Conversation (video avail, partial transc)
Will online voting ever be viable?
So, we’re not supporters of widespread use of the Internet for voting and we don’t believe it will be viable in the near future on a widespread basis. And honestly, we have too much to do in just improving upon ballot casting and counting devices in a polling place setting to spend too many cycles thinking about how to do this across the Internet.


Today Marks the 90th Anniversary of the 19th Amendment
A Brief History of How Women Earned the Right to Vote

Citizens United Strikes Again! Newscorp gives $1 Million to Republican Governors Association

Statelight: Transparency in a Box, Pt. 2
We have chosen three priority issues to begin with, and today I’m looking at why we feel like those issues are good places to start for state-based advocacy. They are: Ethics and Campaign Finance, Legislative Data, and Budget Transparency

#17: Let Prisoners Vote Ohio State University law professor Douglas A. Berman says everyone affected by society's laws ought to have a right to vote—even if they have to mail in their ballot from the big house.

There are currently 2.3 million disenfranchised inmates in the United States


Canadian perspective on lobbyist disclosure

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