13 August 2012 by Paul Dempsey
Given the still recent history of Bush v. Gore, you might think they'd learned a lesson. But according to the report, the offending states continue to use newer machine-based voting systems that do not produce an independent record of the vote cast. The vote therefore cannot be subsequently audited to provide any proof losers demand. The group includes swing states such as Colorado, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Virginia.
We have had these machines for a while, but the research (produced by the Rutgers School of Law - Newark, the Verified Voting Foundation, and Common Cause) notes that as recently as March, only the intervention of a judge to force an audit in Florida discovered the allocation of votes in one election not only to the wrong candidate but the wrong actually vote.
E-voting always comes into the spotlight during an American election but 2012 presents the vote's administrators with a particularly acute challenge.
There have been numerous - overwhelmingly outrageous - challenges to the validity of President Obama's election four years ago. A vocal but bitter minority, largely on the Republican right, continues to challenge his legitimacy.
Meanwhile, 2000 and Florida's 'hanging chads' remain an equally distasteful memory on the Democratic right. Indeed, both sides seem to delight in accusations of voter fraud, rigging and - now - hacking.
The Rutgers-led report says that there is time between now and November to get better audit-verifiable systems in place (and be honest, the perfect electoral system does not exist). Whether the political will to do so is also there is another question, but in a viciously divided America, you'd hope some of the relevant administrators do wake up in time.
Meanwhile, this blog is back after an online break to once more begin reviewing all the fun and games in the run-up to November's vote. Excuse the absence - though there are a few things afoot, more of which shortly.
Edited: 23 August 2012 at 04:51 PM by View from Washington Moderator
Posted By: Paul Dempsey @ 13 August 2012 12:16 PM General
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