Thursday, January 20, 2011

Legislators told that confusion about voting machines still reigns - The Daily News Online: News

AZ: Arizona court urged to decide redistricting issue - KSWT

A former Arizona Supreme Court justice is urging current justices to decide whether three nominees for the state redistricting commission are eligible for appointment. Former Justice Stanley Feldman represents supporters nominee Paul Bender, an Arizona State University law professor. Republican legislative leaders say Bender is ineligible because he's a tribal judge. Much of a Supreme Court hearing Tuesday on the challenge to Bender and two other nominees centered on whether the court should let the dispute go to court later based on challenges made to actual appointments. Read More

CA: OpEd - RCV lessons for the SF mayor's race | San Francisco Bay Guardian

Elections using ranked choice voting (RCV) in both San Francisco and Oakland contain important lessons for the upcoming SF mayoral election. Rather than rely on traditional endorsements and funding advantages, winning candidates need to get out in the community, meet people, and build coalitions. Jean Quan became the first Asian American woman elected mayor of a major city by coming from behind to beat the favorite, former state Senate president and powerbroker Don Perata. Perata outspent her five to one, but Quan countered by attending far more community meetings, forums, and house parties. She would knock on the door of a voter with an opponent's yard sign and say, "I know I'm not your first choice, but please make me your second or third choice." Read More

CO: Secret count preceded Saguache County election ‘retabulation’ - Colorado Springs Conservative |

Examination of election videotapes reveal that the Saguache County Clerk’s office and two judges conducted a secret vote count Nov. 4 from 2 p.m. to about 7:12 p.m. prior to the Nov. 5 "retabulation." The video recording copies were obtained through a Colorado Open Records Act request Nov. 16. The county clerk’s office is required by law to keep continuous recordings of all election areas and activities, beginning two months before the election, up to and including any recounts, for two years. Video recordings show that some type of report was run on the M650 voting machine the afternoon of Nov. 3. Then on Nov. 4 clerk’s office staffer Christian Samora, Elections Clerk Renee Hazard and County Clerk Melinda Myers sat in on a teleconference call from 10:31 a.m. to 10:40 a.m. After lunch Hazard operated a black laptop and seemed to be working with ballots, then helped a customer reconcile a rejected vote. Read More

DE: Delaware Looks to Restore Felons' Voting Rights - WBOC-TV 16

There is a new push in Delaware to restore voting rights to convicted felons who have finished serving their time behind bars. In Delaware felons must wait five years after being released from prison to vote again, but some lawmakers said that's simply not fair. Legislation has been filed in the General Assembly to allow felons to vote without having to wait five years. Read More

IA: Bill would require showing a photo ID to vote - Radio Iowa

A bill that would require all voters in Iowa to show a photo I.D. before casting a ballot has gone through an initial review at the statehouse. Republican Matt Schultz, Iowa’s new secretary of state, made a photo I.D. requirement for voting the cornerstone of his campaign. The move has opponents, like the League of Women Voters. Amy Campbell, a spokewoman for the group, says many Iowans do not have a photo I.D. “Twenty-five percent of African Americans do not have identification; 10 percent of people with disabilities and 15 percent of low-income individuals do not have I.D.s,” Campbell says. Read More

IA: NAACP: Branstad’s voting order is a discriminatory “poll tax” on black Iowans | Des Moines Register Staff Blogs

Gov. Terry Branstad’s decision to rescind a process allowing ex-convicts to quickly have their voting rights restored discriminates against black Iowans, a group of black Iowa community leaders said Wednesday. They compared Branstad’s insistence that ex-offenders must first pay all fines, fees and restitution ordered by the courts to a “poll tax” reminiscent of Jim Crow-era laws that discouraged blacks from voting. Read More

MN: Secretary of State Ritchie visits Mankato to talk elections » Local News » The Free Press, Mankato, MN

Minnesota Secretary of State Mark Ritchie, a Democrat who oversees elections, visited Mankato Wednesday to talk to local election officials about the recent recount and changes he’ll support this legislative session. He said he’ll advocate a bill to authorize early voting, as well as a change to the threshold at which automatic recounts are triggered. Now, if the vote totals are within a half-percent, a recount is triggered that costs, on average, 15 cents a ballot, according to a Pew study. That’s $300,000 to recount 2 million ballots, though the per-ballot cost may be much lower in some counties. Ritchie said he supports reducing that gap to one-tenth of 1 percent, but one-eighth or one-fourth are also acceptable. He only supports lowering that gap in small races, and wants to require a candidate request the recount. He also wants to compensate counties for their costs in the recent gubernatorial recount. That recount wasn’t as burdensome as the 2008 senate contest, which Ritchie thought at the time would be an isolated incident. Read More

MN: All sides support new St. Paul voting standards -

Both zealous cheerleaders and bitter enemies of a new system of voting in St. Paul said Wednesday they're satisfied with the way the city will implement it. In November, voters in the capital city will elect seven City Council members under a voter-approved method known as ranked-choice voting, or instant runoff voting (IRV). Under IRV, voters rank candidates in order of preference. Merely getting a plurality of voters' first-choice votes isn't good enough to win. The goal of IRV is that, by dropping out the least popular candidates and redistributing their votes to their supporters' second-choice candidates, the winner assembles a majority. IRV replaces the primary for the city council, but school board elections will be conducted as in years past: A primary will be held, if needed, to winnow the field to eight candidates competing for four seats. Minneapolis used IRV two years ago; this fall will be St. Paul's first time. Read More

NY: Legislators told that confusion about voting machines still reigns - The Daily News Online: News

Confusion has not ended over the electronic voting machines used in the fall 2010 elections, Genesee County legislators were told Wednesday. Election commissioners Richard Siebert and Dawn Cassidy said several questions remained unanswered about the digital equipment that replaced the old lever-style machines that were in use for most of the past century. The electronic scanners were used in the September 2010 primaries and November 2010's general election. Read More

OH: Democrats' bill clarifies counting of provisional ballots | The Columbus Dispatch

Anytime a person casts a provisional ballot in the correct voting location it should be counted, regardless of whether it is cast in the proper precinct, House Democrats argued today. In the wake of a legal fight in Hamilton County over the counting of certain provisional ballots, Democrats proposed a bill they hope would provide more clarity, set a single statewide standard and ensure that no one loses their vote because of a poll worker's error. "We find it's absurd that poll-worker error would cost somebody their opportunity to have their vote counted," said Rep. Alicia Reece, D-Cincinnati. Efforts to clarify the issue fell short last session when the House and Senate did not reach agreement in time on a broader election bill. Provisional ballots are cast by voters who move and do not update their registration or whose names don't appear in the poll book. The ballots are held for 10 days while the voter's eligibility is determined. Read More

OK: State awards contract for new voting system - Sequoyah County Times

The State Election Board announced earlier this month that Hart InterCivic Inc. of Austin, Texas, has been awarded a contract to implement Oklahoma’s new statewide voting system. Paul Ziriax, State Election Board secretary, said, “Hart InterCivic received the highest overall scores in the evaluation process and also provided the lowest cost. Hart’s bid presents the best value for the taxpayers, and we are very excited about working with Hart on this very important project.” The new voting system will be installed throughout all 77 counties in time for the 2012 elections, and Oklahoma will continue to use paper ballots and scanners with the new system, similar to the current statewide system that Oklahoma has used for nearly two decades, Ziriax said. Read More

TX: Texas Legislature News - The Dallas Morning News

The Republican majority in the Texas Senate on Wednesday pushed through a plan that would clear the way for approval of a hotly contested voter ID bill this year, dismissing objections by Democrats that it unfairly targets certain groups of voters. The proposal carves out a special exemption in Senate rules for the voter ID legislation, making it impossible for Democrats to block the measure under a requirement that two-thirds of the members concur before a bill can be brought up for debate. All 11 Democrats present voted against the rules and all 18 Republicans present supported them. One Democrat and one Republican were absent Wednesday. Read More

WV: Legislature Weighs in on Gubernatorial Election | Huntington News

Members of the West Virginia legislature have introduced legislation that would determine the date and format(s) of the special election for governor. The West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals ruled that a special election must occur before Nov. 15. Left open in the opinion : The legislature has the power to tweak the procedures.House Minority Leader Tim Armstead R-Kanawha along with 11 Republican co-sponsors would set a special primary for May 14, 2011 and the special general election for August 6. Read More

WV: Morgantown prepares for vote-by-mail system - The Daily Athenaeum - News

A pilot vote-by-mail program for the city of Morgantown will debut this spring for elections. The system will take the place of traditional polls, but voters will use ballots similar to absentee ballots and drop them in their respective wards throughout the city. Citizens will receive their ballots at home from April 8 to April 12. They have 18 days to mail it back. Election day is April 26. City Council member Ron Bane expressed some concerns over potential problems with the vote-by-mail program. Bane said he is worried it will be difficult to determine the validity of ballots, and there is a possibility that ballots may be delivered to individuals not meant to receive them. Jake Glance, a spokesperson for the West Virginia Secretary of State's Office, said the system for verifying the identity of a voter casting the ballot is no different than what is used in polling stations. Read More


Belarus: Election official condemns European Parliament`s demand for new elections as counterproductive | Belarus News

The European Parliament’s demand for a re-run of Belarus’ December 14-19 presidential election is a counterproductive step, Mikalay Lazavik, secretary of the central election commission, told BelaPAN, commenting on the EP’s Thursday resolution on the government’s post-election crackdown on opponents. The resolution reveals the European Parliament’s “complete ignorance about the situation in Belarus,” Mr. Lazavik said. “The Belarusian election was held in strict accordance with Belarusian laws and international standards.” The official accused the West of orchestrating "disturbances" in Minsk`s Independence Square on the election night. Read More

India: 25 arrested for attack on election officials

The Kalol police arrested 25 people on Wednesday for leading a mob attack on election officials before counting of the Bakrol Gram Panchayat elections a day earlier. Among those arrested include Narpadsinh Chauhan, the father of a candidate, Dilipsinh, the police said. They added that Narpadsinh was demanding inquiry over the allegations that the strongroom where the Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) were stored, had its lock broken despite having a seal. Read More

Nigeria: One week of hitches, disappointments, complaints - Vanguard

It is exactly seven days since the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC began the much expected compilation of fresh voters’ list in 120,000 polling units across the country. However, 168 hours after, the exercise is still dogged by hitches, complaints and disappointments. Seven days to the end of the two-week exercise, most of the registration centres are yet to register 100 voters. Each of the centres is expected to register between 500 to 1000 voters to make up the expected 70 million voters that will vote at the 2011 general elections. As of yesterday, INEC registration officers are yet to begin the exercise in many locations, especially new towns and communities that developed after the last voters’ listing in 2006. The voters’ registration exercise has been greeted by an avalanche of hitches and complaints from all over the country. The complaints range from faulty machines, inability to capture biometric data of registrants, and unavailability of registration officers in many areas. Read More

Voting News archives here at
Also at Twitter
Subscribe to Voting News at this link: =============================================
The Voting News is a free service made possible by the Verified Voting Foundation. You can help support the Voting News by sending a check to Verified Voting Foundation, PO Box 4104, Carlsbad, CA 92018. Be sure to note "for Voting News" in the memo line of your check! Your contribution is tax deductible to the extent permitted by law.
Donate online at this link:

Disclaimer: Articles and commentary included in "Voting News" do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the editors of Voting News,or its allied organizations. Articles are selected for inclusion to inform subscribers'ability to draw their own conclusions based on noteworthy and credible news,research, legislation, and debate bearing on the integrity of elections.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments must be approved to eliminate spamming.

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.