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OnTheOtherHand Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-29-08 12:12 PM
Response to Reply #26
28. eh
This seems to sum up NYVV's position on lever machines pretty well. My freehand paraphrase: it's not likely that we'll be able to keep them indefinitely, and they aren't that great anyway (not entirely reliable, not verifiable). It doesn't really strike me as masking other views.

This sums up NYVV's position on optical scanners versus DREs. Again, it strikes me as pretty reasonable, but what's missing is a clear statement that audits are crucial. Here is an interesting statement about that (from January 2006) :
...While some would prefer a system of hand-counted paper ballots over optical-scan counting, we need to remember that politics is the art of the possible and to seek to discover what can and cannot be accomplished politically at a given place and moment in time (Bo Lipari). Most of the election commissioners who have been given the power to choose our voting system in New York have deep reservations about managing elections based on paper ballots. Advocacy of the PBOS system is politically wise inasmuch as it answers the publics interest in rapid preliminary counts at the same time as it promises the commissioners that they will need to count paper only for the 3% required audits and whenever problems arise.

NYVV joins the Government Accountability Office in urging improved standards and testing of all electronic voting equipment, including optical scanners. Adequate testing should be able to close some of the doors to hacking. Careful procedures and audits of hand-marked paper ballots will take us the rest of the way to voter confidence in the paper ballot-optical scan system.

That's a bit dodgy about the 3%, but we can do pretty damn fine auditing with 3% if it's spread around sensibly.

Or here is Bo from earlier this month:
As far as I'm concerned, audits are ALWAYS warranted, regardless of the reason. Indeed, this is one of the reasons why NYVV has worked so hard for paper ballots in New York State - so we can audit and recount.

I note that Bo often expresses his position as support for paper ballots, not for optical scanners. I agree with you in principle that in much of New York, hand counts could work. But then I watch that little film and see an election official from Essex County (with about 20,000 voters in the entire county) express his fervent support for DREs, and I think, of all the reasons that New York doesn't have hand counts, Bo Lipari's putatively excessive enthusiasm about optical scanners is not in the top thousand.

I know that Bo and NYVV came out politely but firmly against the proposal to hand-count all federal votes in the 2008 election. Should it have stayed neutral? I couldn't honestly say that I think it's imperative for New York to do that; I think the lever machines are good enough for at least one more election.
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