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Just got this in my inbox re Straight Party Voting from TX Dem party chair

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Melissa G Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-15-08 02:13 PM
Original message
Just got this in my inbox re Straight Party Voting from TX Dem party chair
I'd appreciate the forum's commentary before I respond.



Attention All Democrats:

With early voting about to begin and the November 4th election day approaching, misleading voter information is being circulated to confuse Democratic voters and cancel out straight Democratic Party votes.

This is a crucial time for you to make your voices heard by voting the straight Democratic ticket. I urge you to carefully review the information below which outlines the correct procedure for voting a straight Democratic ticket:

When you mark "Straight Democratic" then cast your ballot, your vote will count for Barack Obama and all the Democratic candidates, including all congressional, state and local Democrats on the general election ballot.

NOTE: A separate vote for an individual candidate is required only in a special election (e.g., Senate District 17)

OR

If you do not wish to vote a straight party vote, you must mark each individual candidate for whom you wish to vote, and then cast your ballot.

BUT

DO NOT SELECT "STRAIGHT DEMOCRATIC" AND THEN SELECT INDIVIDUAL DEMOCRATIC CANDIDATES. THIS COULD CANCEL OUT YOUR VOTE FOR THOSE INDIVIDUAL CANDIDATES!

Additionally, carefully read the review screen after marking your selection and before casting your ballot. If you have any questions at the polls, ask an election judge for assistance. Visit our Voter Information page for more information about deceptive voting information and review your rights as a Texas voter.

I am confident that together we can overcome deceptive GOP messaging and vote our Democratic candidates into office from the court house to the White House!



Your friend and fellow Democrat,

Boyd L. Richie

Chairman

Texas Democratic Party
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Bill Bored Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-15-08 02:28 PM
Response to Original message
1. With Dems like that, who needs enemies!
Edited on Wed Oct-15-08 02:30 PM by Bill Bored
The safest way to vote is to vote for each candidate separately.

Tell this guy that unless you can see the ballot definition programming on every machine in the state, there is no way to know that "when you mark 'Straight Democratic' then cast your ballot, your vote will count for Barack Obama and all the Democratic candidates, including all congressional, state and local Democrats on the general election ballot."

And no one can actually see that programming.

Good luck Texas!
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Melissa G Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-15-08 04:30 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. Do we have a list of states
that we have caught problems with this besides West VA? I remember seeing at least one other, maybe two.
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Bill Bored Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-15-08 11:10 PM
Response to Reply #2
3. New Mexico! nt
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liam_laddie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-16-08 01:44 AM
Response to Original message
4. In 2004, Hart Intercivic touch-screen machines
in Harris County TX. In several precincts, selecting the straight Dem ticket resulted in the Pres vote being flipped to Bush. I think, but cannot verify, that the rest of the ticket was recorded as Dem. Kip Humphrey, a computer whiz who lives there, documented it. On his third try, the vote did go to Kerry. But only a tech-head might suspect this intentionally malicious programming. Who knows how many Kerry votes were lost just in this small region?
The letter in the OP is thus somewhat suspicious, unless they've been able to verify the software, which, being TX, I sincerely doubt.
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Melissa G Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-16-08 03:50 PM
Response to Reply #4
5. Hi Liam,
The letter definitely came from The TX Dem Party chair and much to my chagrin, I see 'vote straight party' signs springing up in my Austin neighborhood. I'm linking this thread and sending it to the chairman as well as articles on the problems in New Mexico and West Virginia.

Thanks for the reminder about Harris county. It had slipped my mind.
Best,
Melissa
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elizm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-16-08 06:13 PM
Response to Original message
6. Our local Dem party in SC has been emphasizing the same thing!
Edited on Thu Oct-16-08 06:15 PM by elizm
I remember reading 4 years ago that voting a straight party ticket was risky. I've been trying to spread the word but the local party folks have their folks out there pushing it.
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Melissa G Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-16-08 11:31 PM
Response to Reply #6
7. Regretable with what is happening in NM and WV. South Carolina and Texas rank with the worst states
Edited on Thu Oct-16-08 11:37 PM by Melissa G
for State Preparations for Voting Machine Problems. Oh Joy!

Edit to show Brennan Center info...
The Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law, Common Cause Education Fund and Verified Voting Foundation today released "Is America Ready to Vote? State Preparations for Voting Machine Problems." The report examines the laws, regulations and procedures of all 50 states and the District of Columbia in four key areas: polling place contingency plans, requirements for sound ballot accounting and vote reconciliation, use of systems with voter-verifiable paper records, and post-election audits of those paper records.

"Today, the challenge for election jurisdictions is not how to avoid mistakes entirely," the report says. "The challenge is to institute procedures that will make it possible for jurisdictions to deal appropriately with mistakes -- and malfunctions -- when they occur."

Among the report's findings:

* Of the 10 states that received that received the worst rankings in three of four categories, six are in the South: Kentucky, Louisiana, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia. The other states with low rankings are Colorado, Delaware, New Jersey and Utah.

http://southernstudies.org/facingsouth/2008/10/voting-r...
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Bill Bored Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-17-08 02:07 AM
Response to Reply #6
8. In SC, you CAN'T Vote for President Straight Party, can ya? nt
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