May 11, 2009

Voters May Vote On E-Voting: What's The Point?

RIVERSIDE COUNTY is debating the wisdom of putting an advisory measure on the June 2010 Primary election ballot that would ask voters if they prefer electronic voting machines to paper ballots.

One editorial said, "We would venture a guess that some 70 to 80 percent of the populace prefers electronic voting machines to paper ballots." They're much more modern, quicker and, well, just generally cooler. But public opinion might also change drastically if the ballot included much of the evidence suggesting that e-voting is highly vulnerable to hacking and election fraud."

Meanwhile the $25 million worth of Sequoia electronic voting machines sit in a warehouse gathering dust.

While a ballot measure might be interesting in the campaign it produces, the question is really moot. A couple of years ago the Secretary of State decertified the machines following a top to bottom security audit of the machines and their software.

So, even if the public showed their approval for the electronic devices, they still could not be used.

What's the point?

Would the point be to show that the county did not make a mistake by originally selecting the electronic voting equipment? Would the point be to generate some campaign ammunition to be used against the current Secretary of State in her next campaign? Or would the point be to discredit the work of Tom Courbat and the folks at Save Our Vote?

I say, "give it up."

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