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Congressmen Push for Paper Ballots
NY Times ^ | January 17, 2008 | Ariel Alexovich

Posted on 01/17/2008 4:33:20 PM PST by Bloody Sam Roberts

Both New Hampshire primary elections are going to be recounted, since Dennis J. Kucinich has put up $27,000 to get the Democratic recount started, and Albert Howard (who was on the New Hampshire Republican ballot) has donated $56,000 to re-tally the Republican vote.

But the only reason these elections can even be recounted is because voting precincts in New Hampshire use paper ballots. And now some folks on Capitol Hill want to make it easier for other states to switch to non-electronic voting systems before the November election.

Rush Holt, a Democratic representative of New Jersey, introduced new legislation today that would reimburse all state and local jurisdictions that opted to convert to a paper ballot voting system, offer emergency paper ballots or convert audits by hand counts.

Speaking at a news conference in Washington this afternoon, Mr. Holt said there’s still time to make sure the 2008 presidential election doesn’t see the same voting controversy as happened in Florida in 2006, when some 18,000 electronically recorded ballots were marked “no vote,” and there was no accounting for what happened.


This bill, called the Emergency Assistance for Secure Elections Act of 2008, is a modified version of a bill Mr. Holt introduced last year that would have required a voter-verified paper ballot for every vote cast, in addition to random auditing. Since that more all-encompassing bill is still awaiting the House floor, Mr. Holt introduced this one, which moves from a paper ballot mandate to a paper ballot enticement.

(Excerpt) Read more at thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com ...


TOPICS: Front Page News; Government; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: ballots; democratparty; elections; nh2008; votefraud
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Did the usual search and found nothing posted.

Hopefully this will catch on and we can get rid of all those electronic vote fraud machines once and for all.

1 posted on 01/17/2008 4:33:22 PM PST by Bloody Sam Roberts
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts

Yeah, we need more recounts </sarc


2 posted on 01/17/2008 4:36:29 PM PST by Soliton (Casual Christians fear Committed Christians)
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts

Being very familiar with computer systems validation there is no reason why electronic systems can’t be orders of magnitude more reliable and accurate than paper ballots which can be lost, forged, etc.. I suspect the rats want to go back to paper because they know all the ways to cheat using them.


3 posted on 01/17/2008 4:37:37 PM PST by Mogollon
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts

I think we should use the voting machines for the local stuff but for the Presidential Election we have two cards one blue one red with the name of the candidate on it, you pick up one and deposit it in the box.


4 posted on 01/17/2008 4:37:39 PM PST by SF Republican
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts

Sounds good to me,here we start with paper then feed it to a machine,,might as well stop at the paper


5 posted on 01/17/2008 4:38:24 PM PST by silentreignofheroes (I'm Southron,,,and I Vote...)
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To: Mogollon
Being very familiar with computer systems validation there is no reason why electronic systems can’t be orders of magnitude more reliable

I can think of one big one:

Politicians are involved in the funding, procurement and some of the design processes. This means the outcome WILL be flawed.

6 posted on 01/17/2008 4:40:13 PM PST by Bloody Sam Roberts (Bureaucracy is a parasite that preys on Free Thought and suffocates Free Spirit.)
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts

>>Both New Hampshire primary elections are going to be recounted, since Dennis J. Kucinich has put up $27,000 to get the Democratic recount started, and Albert Howard (who was on the New Hampshire Republican ballot) has donated $56,000 to re-tally the Republican vote.<<

1. Uhh, yeah that makes since since they both came in such a close second.

2. But I do think there needs to be a paper trail. I don’t care who the President of Diebold donates to - that won’t stop conservatives from getting screwed at some point.


7 posted on 01/17/2008 4:40:34 PM PST by gondramB (Preach the Gospel at all times, and when necessary, use words.)
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts
Even though everyone knew it was stupid not to have a paper trail, the government went ahead and wasted millions on these machines.

Now that we’re in the middle of an election, all of a sudden they want to complain.

Forgive me, but this is just asinine !

8 posted on 01/17/2008 4:44:00 PM PST by airborne (Proud to be a conservative! Proud to support Duncan Hunter for President!)
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts

We moved from paper voting because the Rats complained after 2000 that their voters were too stupid to understand how to vote. Then once we moved to electronic voting, they complained again and want to go back to paper. This is getting tiresome.


9 posted on 01/17/2008 4:45:47 PM PST by bshomoic
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts

We use paper ballots and prefer those over electronic. However in the future it seems there should be a way to have a paper record that includes identification of the voter that cast the ballot.


10 posted on 01/17/2008 4:47:42 PM PST by plain talk
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts

The problem with paper ballots is that the Democrats always seem to have some stashed away in a warehouse, that turn up just in time to prove that their candidate won.


11 posted on 01/17/2008 4:49:34 PM PST by Eva
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts

Good news. The democrat fraud machine loves these new electronic wonders....the rest of us end up wondering who voted for who.


12 posted on 01/17/2008 4:59:43 PM PST by TheLion
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts
This might be a silly question, but why is Albert Howard, a Republican from Michigan, asking for a recount in New Hampshire? Kucinich's reason is because, well, he's nuts!
13 posted on 01/17/2008 5:00:06 PM PST by Bushbacker1 (Officially Fredbacker1 but don't know how to change my name)
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts

Duncan Hunter Calls for Paper Ballots

http://www.bradblog.com/?p=5249


14 posted on 01/17/2008 5:02:06 PM PST by RasterMaster (Rudy McRomneyson = KENNEDY wing of the Republican Party)
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To: plain talk

No secret ballot. I don’t think so.

We have paper too and it is just fine, cheap, and fast.

There is no way to secure electronic voting. Just look around today. Electronic systems are always being defeated. At least with paper, you can see the culprit and a large scale cheating effort with proper oversight is going to be plainly visible.


15 posted on 01/17/2008 5:02:38 PM PST by ImJustAnotherOkie
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts

I love to joke with folks by telling them that Rush is my congressman. ;-)


16 posted on 01/17/2008 5:02:48 PM PST by Clemenza (Ronald Reagan was a "Free Traitor", Like Me ;-))
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To: Eva

No warehouse necessary when you have a VOTE-A-MATIC stashed in the trunk!


17 posted on 01/17/2008 5:03:49 PM PST by RasterMaster (Rudy McRomneyson = KENNEDY wing of the Republican Party)
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To: Eva

Besides, the DUmocrats always keep those extra cases of votes stashed in CHURCHES where the Rah’vrund Al & Jesse go to make speeches.


18 posted on 01/17/2008 5:05:51 PM PST by RasterMaster (Rudy McRomneyson = KENNEDY wing of the Republican Party)
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To: bshomoic

Why not have a machine that asks if you are sure this how you wanted to vote, and prints a receipt? People could then pull a numbers report and make sure it went to where it was supposed to.


19 posted on 01/17/2008 5:06:03 PM PST by CindyDawg
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts

I’m not 100% sold on voting machines, but when you consider the Dem track record with paper ballots, there’s probably a reason they want to go back to paper. Manufacturing votes with a supply of ballots and a machine is something an eighth grade dropout can do, but you need specialized skills to hack a Diebold voting machine.


20 posted on 01/17/2008 5:08:34 PM PST by Mr. Silverback (Support Scouting: Raising boys to be strong men and politically incorrect at the same time.)
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To: bshomoic
That's the bottom line. Excuse after excuse, accusation after accusation, for not being able to win (steal) elections.
21 posted on 01/17/2008 5:14:10 PM PST by CounterCounterCulture (Duncan Hunter for President.)
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts

Paper ballots are the Democrats’ idea of a make work stimulus.


22 posted on 01/17/2008 5:23:45 PM PST by Brilliant
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts

I have always wanted a system in which you have a paper ballot which contains a removeable stub that contains an ID code ( bar code or number coded etc..). The code will not in any form identify you as the person who cast that particular ballot, but would be used by the election officials as some kind of input into a data base so the vote can be registered online and eventually check by the voter. So the only real use it will have is so the voter can go online and check to see if their vote was counted , and if it was counted correctly. The ballots could be issued in a random draw by the voter, so it couldn`t be traced by anyone but the voter.


23 posted on 01/17/2008 5:25:06 PM PST by Bud Krieger
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts
Being very familiar with computer systems validation there is no reason why electronic systems can’t be orders of magnitude more reliable and accurate than paper ballots which can be lost, forged, etc.. I suspect the rats want to go back to paper because they know all the ways to cheat using them.

Doh! Why can't we have electronic voting machines that will print out a running record of the vote per machine plus a receipt of your own vote?

24 posted on 01/17/2008 5:26:05 PM PST by jrushing (Anti-American-Terrorists-Cowards-Nazis-Communist-Socialist-Democratic Party)
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To: Bushbacker1

Howard, believe it or not, was on the ballot in NH, just like Ron Paul, from TEXAS, etc. He got FORTY-FOUR votes, so the recount will cost him $12,500 per vote that he got. Almost as much as some of the “real” candidates??


25 posted on 01/17/2008 5:37:03 PM PST by BohDaThone
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts

A fool and his money...


26 posted on 01/17/2008 5:58:52 PM PST by Slings and Arrows ("Those who surrender personal liberty for lower global temperatures will receive neither."--weegee)
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To: ImJustAnotherOkie
There is no way to secure electronic voting.

Nonsense. There are plenty of ways to make electronic systems secure. The problem is that nobody seems interested in doing so.

Explain how you would attack the following: A board using nothing but common of-the-shelf components is constructed with a microcontroller that can interface to two flash-based memory cartridges. The board has no non-volatile storage of its own. The controller can only execute code from the first cartridge port, and it is incapable of writing to the media stored there.

Each cartridge has a read-write port and a read-only port, and is constructed in such a way that when a cap is placed on the read-write port it cannot be written unless or until the cap is removed. The cap my be held in place with a number of seals, one for each interested party. Designs for inexpensive cartridge readers are readily available.

The machine should be constructed with a place to affix a number of padlocks (say, four). When the locks are installed, the machine cannot be opened. The cartridges may be viewed through a window, but not tampered with.

Before an election, the initial contents of both memory cards are prepared and published. The "code" cartridge is write-protected and sealed by election judges from all parties, who then use the read-write port to confirm its contents. The "ballot" cartridge is temporarily write-protected, verified by all the election judges, and then loaded into the machine. Seals are applied to hold the cartridges in the machine, and the machine is locked up using a padlock from each party.

After the election, in full view of election judges from all parties, the locks are removed and the "ballot" cartridge is write-protected and sealed. Members of all parties read out the contents of both cartridges and exchange digitally-signed copies. If the copies don't match, each party summons someone else in the party to supply another reader, until the contents of the cartridges are reliably established.

Where's the room for tampering?

27 posted on 01/17/2008 6:00:44 PM PST by supercat (Sony delenda est.)
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts
As I recall, in Azimov’s future (Foundation Series) computers were banned.

Maybe I have that mixed up with a different series, but in a way I support the notion when it comes to elections.

It is much easier to falsify computer data than it is to produce actual ballots.

28 posted on 01/17/2008 6:03:14 PM PST by Radix (If your outgo exceeds your income, your upkeep will be your downfall.)
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To: Mogollon
Being very familiar with computer systems validation there is no reason why electronic systems can’t be orders of magnitude more reliable and accurate than paper ballots which can be lost, forged, etc..

You might want to think about that a little further. This is an excerpt from a piece I first posted in 2003,

Voters have read and seen all sorts of assurances that the new touch-screen balloting systems are fool proof, tamper proof, and nothing to worry about. Many, including those who are familiar with the technology, are not at all reassured.

The concerns are on two levels. First, from the perspective of those not familiar with the technology, it is a device whose inner workings and inherent security they cannot possibly understand. If they can't understand it, how can they be assured that it is honest? Second, those who DO understand signal processing, software, and communications technology know that is far too easy to defraud the system in a way that would be irreversible and undetected. Either way, touch-screens are a loser.

Now, as users of ATMs, cell phones, the Internet, and other electronic media, it might at first seem a little strange that so many people have such concerns. Upon further consideration however, the key distinctions between voting and a service handling mere money become obvious:

Governments are monopolies. One can go down the street to another bank and take the offending bank to court. An evil government can land you in prison (or worse) because they ARE the court. The stakes associated with voter fraud are far higher than with an ATM and so is the temptation to defraud the system.


29 posted on 01/17/2008 6:04:08 PM PST by Carry_Okie (We have people in power who love evil.)
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To: Bud Krieger
So the only real use it will have is so the voter can go online and check to see if their vote was counted , and if it was counted correctly.

And also show anyone else who was interested that he "voted correctly"? A proper secret ballot requires that nobody--even the voter himself--be able to prove how he voted except in near-unanimous elections (if 120 people voted, and there are 119 votes for John Smith, the person who didn't vote for John Smith knows how everyone else voted). Otherwise, it would be possible for someone to coerce anyone who would be able to prove how he voted, to actually do so.

30 posted on 01/17/2008 6:04:27 PM PST by supercat (Sony delenda est.)
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To: Carry_Okie
Upon further consideration however, the key distinctions between voting and a service handling mere money become obvious:

People are allowed (and encouraged) to compare their own records with those of their financial institutions. In a secret-ballot system, such comparison is impossible.

31 posted on 01/17/2008 6:06:37 PM PST by supercat (Sony delenda est.)
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To: CindyDawg
Why not have a machine that asks if you are sure this how you wanted to vote, and prints a receipt? People could then pull a numbers report and make sure it went to where it was supposed to.

I don't get that either. It seem so simple. When I pay a bill online, I always print out a confirmation page. As usual, capitalism is way ahead of government.

The one problem is that printed ballots, and probably receipts would need to stay inside the polling place. Otherwise, the voter could be 'detained' by some 'friends' just to make sure he voted the way he was instructed to. Then they could beat the tar out of him if the receipt said otherwise.

That said, all Dems should be required to use a butterfly ballot!

32 posted on 01/17/2008 6:10:40 PM PST by Balding_Eagle (If America falls, darkness will cover the face of the earth for a thousand years.)
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts

We just finally got electronic voting, probably not even paid for yet.


33 posted on 01/17/2008 6:15:41 PM PST by SouthTexas
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To: BohDaThone
Thank you. I thought this guy wasn't happy with the outcome in N.H. so he wanted a recount. Now, I understand. I believe a recount, if he got 44 votes, will find enough votes that it will probably shoot him past McNuts and into the lead for the Republican nomination. /s

This must be practice for next November.

34 posted on 01/17/2008 6:17:59 PM PST by Bushbacker1 (Officially Fredbacker1 but don't know how to change my name)
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To: Bushbacker1

Bumb and what makes everyone think its Howards money being used for a recount?


35 posted on 01/17/2008 6:25:47 PM PST by NoLibZone (If the Clinton years were so great, why is Obam doing so well?)
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To: supercat
People are allowed (and encouraged) to compare their own records with those of their financial institutions. In a secret-ballot system, such comparison is impossible.

Good point.

36 posted on 01/17/2008 6:27:14 PM PST by Carry_Okie (We have people in power who love evil.)
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To: bshomoic
We moved from paper voting because the Rats complained after 2000 that their voters were too stupid to understand how to vote. Then once we moved to electronic voting, they complained again and want to go back to paper. This is getting tiresome.

No matter what, the Rats will have something to whine about. I say lets go back this and get it done and over with:

Although even this would cause whining in the Rat packs .. they'd cry that "so-and-so didn't make eye contact with me while my hand was raised" ...... EGADS !!!!

37 posted on 01/17/2008 6:36:39 PM PST by Mr_Moonlight
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts
Computer systems handle world wide finances.
I'm pretty sure they can safely handle counting a few million punch cards.
38 posted on 01/17/2008 6:43:15 PM PST by Zathras
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To: supercat
The "code" cartridge is write-protected and sealed by election judges from all parties, who then use the read-write port to confirm its contents.

How can the contents be confirmed and by whom? It would take a programmer familiar with the language of the "code" cartridge who also has full knowlege of further 'instructions' that might be on the microcontroller board. That isn't a very transparent system to the average poll worker and one that is full of opportunity for whoever might wish to have a leveraged affect on the electoral process.

39 posted on 01/17/2008 6:43:21 PM PST by 1_Of_We
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts
I’ve seen lots of ways a paper ballot can be used in fraud.

One year in CA, each county had their own ballot (a paper punchcard). Each county and some large precincts had their own paper ballot- with the order of the main candidates different! So a box of ballots from Orange County, which is pretty republican, scanned in Marin county, which is pretty democrat, will yield different vote tallies since the punch in Orange, say slot 1, is for Reagan, but in Marin, slot 1 is Kucinich. This was discovered when I got the wrong absentee ballot (I travel a lot) that was printed for human eyes “Humboldt” rather than “Los Angeles” but my neighbor got an LA ballot and we compared, standing out under the eucalyptus tree we share. A few phone calls verified that the paper ballots were indeed all different depending on county and precinct. Otherwise there was nothing digital to distinguish the two. The paper folder that had which hole to punch directed us to different punches for the same candidate. Confusion and fraud potential built in.

Anyone else from CA have data on this?

Paper is mutable, negotiable, volatile, flammable, punchable. Paper can be trucked and shuffled.

Dems and libs love it! The Washington state gubernatorial race is a case in point- each count of paper ballots was different and closer to a dem win, until the dem won. But, if I ask my computer here for a checksum of a file, every time, it will say the same even if I write C code to ask a million times. Pretty immutable, and if you depend on cheating and trucing boxes of paper around, intolerable.

If you have a voting machine with a secured paper tape for audit, once the paper tape is swapped for another and the paper tape does not match the electronic record, what do you do to resolve the discrepancy? Well, a court would probably go with the tape record, which can be printed anywhere and anytime for anyone’s advantage.

That Youtube video, in which some professors with unlimited access to a voting machine wrote their own code and then proved that they could hack their own code given, again, unreasonable access to the machine, had a lot of influence.

40 posted on 01/17/2008 6:45:15 PM PST by DBrow
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts

41 posted on 01/17/2008 6:46:04 PM PST by Mad_Tom_Rackham (Elections have consequences.)
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To: Radix

I couldn’t’t agree more. As an electrician that works with PLC’s and computer networks every day, I would trust a paper ballot cast into a taped-up empty beer case with a slot cut into it than any electronic device. It would take only ONE rotten apple and the whole country would be screwed...


42 posted on 01/17/2008 6:48:54 PM PST by MRadtke (NOT the baseball player)
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts
I am completely in favor of:

1- Paper ballots, and
2- Absolute proof of photo ID to vote.

Recount them all you like.
And if you have no proper ID, no vote for you.

43 posted on 01/17/2008 6:48:56 PM PST by Sender (Feel like, I feel like a poke chop san'wich)
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To: ImJustAnotherOkie
“a large scale cheating effort with proper oversight is going to be plainly visible.”

It has not been so far. If I put a box, certified sealed, in my truck, then drive to a warehouse where we read the number of paper ballots in the box and take a similar box with the correct number of paper ballots marked for my candidate, apply a certification sticker, and then deliver it to the central office for certification, where is your paper trail?

If that new box is part of a recount, there will be no way to tell if it’s been tampered with since, after all, it has the official paper seal on it with a signature and all of the tallies will match- number of voters at the precinct, number of ballots in the box. The correct box is out to sea.

44 posted on 01/17/2008 6:52:50 PM PST by DBrow
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts
Speaking at a news conference in Washington this afternoon, Mr. Holt said there’s still time to make sure the 2008 presidential election doesn’t see the same voting controversy as happened in Florida in 2006, when some 18,000 electronically recorded ballots were marked “no vote,” and there was no accounting for what happened.

Note that our Florida county had switched to the paper mark-sense ballots before the 2000 debacle and during those recounts, the count DID NOT CHANGE. Did the other counties follow our example? Hell no. Uncle Sugar ponied up megabucks and everyone bought the touch screen systems. Now guess what? we're paying for them to scrap the touch screens and buy ... mark-sense equipment.

45 posted on 01/17/2008 6:53:20 PM PST by NonValueAdded (Fred Dalton Thompson for President)
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To: Bud Krieger

I offer you $10 for each stub for my candidate, paid out after I see online that that stub was a vote for my guy.

Bring me seven, verified, and I’ll give you a carton of cigarettes (sorry no tax stamp but good tobacco).

What do you say, you game?

Or maybe I’m your shop steward, or supervisor, or “curriculum monitor” of your school.


46 posted on 01/17/2008 6:58:34 PM PST by DBrow
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To: Radix

“As I recall, in Azimov’s future (Foundation Series) computers were banned.”

Dune, I think, which is why there were mentats.


47 posted on 01/17/2008 7:00:29 PM PST by DBrow
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To: DBrow

I read both series more than once.

I am still not sure, but you’re probably correct. I won’t be reading either series again I am sure.


48 posted on 01/17/2008 7:03:23 PM PST by Radix (If your outgo exceeds your income, your upkeep will be your downfall.)
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To: DBrow
“If I put a box, certified sealed, in my truck, then drive to a warehouse where we read the number of paper ballots in the box and take a similar box with the correct number of paper ballots marked for my candidate, apply a certification sticker, and then deliver it to the central office for certification, where is your paper trail?”

So that box is fraudulent and dishonest. Is that going to be the case with every ballot box in the country? Is EVERYONE a crook? I don’t think so. With electronic balloting, it would only take ONE crook...

49 posted on 01/17/2008 7:04:23 PM PST by MRadtke (NOT the baseball player)
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To: 1_Of_We
How can the contents be confirmed and by whom?

A digitally-signed copy of the contents is posted on the web for anyone to archive and examine. While a comparatively small number of people would have the expertise to make head nor tail of such a thing, a copy posted on the web could be inspected by people the world over.

As for ensuring that the particular cartridge matched the publicly-posted web copy, the judge from each party would plug the cartridge into a reader device and check.

The reader device could be constructed quite simply and cheaply, using readily-available plans and open-source software. The software could be written so that no particular technical expertise would be required for use in the field. Some expertise would be required for setup, but not too much.

Proposed method of use: each machine is pre-loaded with the proper pre-election ballot images, a list of public signature keys for the opposing party, and a private key for its owner's party. Before the election, the judges will insert the write-protected cartridges into their machines which will indicate whether they match the pre-loaded images. After the election, the judges will connect their machines together and insert the cartridges into each machine in turn. The two machines will communicate via an established protocol and digitally sign copies of the cartridges. Each machine will also check the validity of the other's signatures.

As a backup, it would be recommended that the judges bring printers, so that paper copies of the data could also be signed.

Doesn't seem too hard to me.

50 posted on 01/17/2008 7:10:06 PM PST by supercat (Sony delenda est.)
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