Stand Up For Your Right to Vote

Diebold is a prominent source of voter anger, but it isn't the only company that screws up our elections. Election Systems & Software claims to be "the world's most experienced election management company." If that's true, the company's performance has become a compelling argument against the privatization of election management.

From Imboden, Arkansas:

ES&S has struck again, causing more frustrations at the polls. "It was hectic because we were backed up all the way double line to the door and couldn't get them out," said Imboden poll worker Iva Jean Smith.

Around 7:00 a.m., most of the precincts in Lawrence County began experiencing problems with the electronic voting machines as they were preparing to open up the polls. The cause of the problem... ES&S, the company that runs the state's voting machine, supplied the county with the incorrect device that pulls up voter ballots.

The county clerk says she's "very dissatisfied" with ES&S. She certainly should be, given the company's poor performance during the county's primary and again today. And she isn't alone in her frustration. The list (pdf) of problems that ES&S or its voting machines have caused in other elections over the years is lengthy.

There are surely voting procedures that improve upon the slow but reliable X in a box on a paper ballot, but paper ballots are better than machines that can't be trusted. Acts or omissions that deprive citizens of their right to vote, whether intentional or negligent, undermine democracy. It's no wonder that nearly half the country, even in the most desperate of times, doesn't bother to vote.

Poll workers in Lawrence County said there were a couple of voters so skeptical of the electronic voting machines that they refused to vote all together.

As Big Tent wrote here, this election might be the one in which the demand for easy and verifiable voting reaches critical mass. Don't be shy about voicing those demands to any or all of the candidates who win tonight.

< Exit Polls!!! | The Start of the Story: Indiana and Kentucky >
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    STATUS INACTIVE - changes to purging rules in NY (none / 0) (#1)
    by jh2504 on Tue Nov 07, 2006 at 06:41:47 PM EST
    Apparently if you missed voting in the last election in New York you may be purged from the voter rolls. It used to be four years before you were purged. Now (the NY Board of Elections told me) it has been changed to One Year.  

    I found out about this change today when my husband went to vote and found himself purged. When we called the Board of Elections we found out he IS REGISTERED but his STATUS had been CHANGED to "INACTIVE" because he didn't vote (wasn't allowed to actually - due to an address glitch) in the last election. Even though he re-registered he was still status "Inactive".
    Eventually he was allowed to file a provisional ballot, but who knows if it will be counted. I'd like to know how this rule got changed in NY, if anyone knows. It could mean a lot of people (probably not Republicans) are being purged from the polls. There were several people in line with him experiencing similar problems and not for the first time.