We've moved!

Social Icons

twitterfacebooklinkedinrss feed

Monday, June 8, 2009

E-Voting Snafu in Rapid City Doubles Vote, Shows Need for Paper Backup

If you've seen Terminator, you know you shouldn't trust machines. An eager reader points us toward a story of election machines gone awry that I should have caught sooner. In last week's municipal election in Rapid City, the vote-counting software somehow turned 5,613 actual ballots into 10,488 reported votes. For the most part, the results stayed the same: Mayor Hanks, for instance, beat challenger Bonnie Redden 71% to 29%, not 70% to 30% as initially reported (so Bonnie Redden's Tea Party principles could only roust 1,600 people from their chairs, not 3,000—pretty weak!). But the initial computer count would have given Ward 4 City Council challenger John Roberts a shot at taking out incumbent Ron Kroeger in a run-off. The corrected count put Kroeger over the 50% mark and cancelled the run-off.

Machines can do much more much faster than humans. That includes screwing up. We need to look at e-voting the way Reagan looked at the Soviets: trust but verify.

Update 2009.06.09 07:59 CDT: no word yet on any connection between Rapid City's voting machines and ACORN. Get on that, Bob!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments are closed, as this portion of the Madville Times is in archive mode. You can join the discussion of current issues at MadvilleTimes.com.

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