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NOT NY: Resolution asks Congress to allow PA to use lever voting machines!!!

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Bill Bored Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-15-09 11:29 PM
Original message
NOT NY: Resolution asks Congress to allow PA to use lever voting machines!!!
Edited on Wed Apr-15-09 11:30 PM by Bill Bored
I thought the voters of the Keystone State might be interested in this since they seem to be having SO MUCH TROUBLE getting rid of their DREs:

http://www.pahouse.com/PR/056041309.asp

HARRISBURG, April 13 State Rep. James E. Casorio Jr., D-Westmoreland, recently reintroduced legislation that would petition the U.S. Congress to allow counties in Pennsylvania to return to the use of lever voting machines in elections.

As part of the federal Help America Vote Act of 2000, which instituted new national standards for elections and voting, all counties in Pennsylvania have been required to use electronic voting machines since 2006.

But, Casorio said...there are still plenty of problems with voting machines in Pennsylvania.

"Both voters and poll workers continue to express frustration with the mandated electronic machines," Casorio said. "In many cases, these machines are harder for voters to use and more difficult for poll workers to maintain. The electronic machines make many voters less secure in the belief that their vote is being counted, and counted accurately."

Casorio also pointed out that...HAVA forced many counties in Pennsylvania to spend thousands of extra dollars to purchase and prepare new electronic machines while functioning, accurate lever machines were still available.

"In counties where election budgets are tight, where there is a shortage of poll workers, and where the majority of poll workers and voters are more comfortable with older style lever machines, I believe counties should be permitted to use these machines," he said.

Casorio said that at least one study, the Caltech/MIT Voting Technology Project, has concluded that lever machines are more accurate than electronic machines.

"...the real goal should be an accurate vote for everyone," Casorio said. "Until the problems that remain with electronic voting machines can be worked out, lever machines which have proven to be accurate and which many voters are more comfortable with than electronic machines should be available to voters who wish to cast their vote in this way."

Casorio's resolution (H.R. 176) has been referred to the House State Government Committee for consideration.
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MarjorieG Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-15-09 11:38 PM
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1. Interesting because HAVA doesn't ban levers, and an opinion from the corrupt Election Assistance
Commission upholding PA's need to buy electronics, in collusion with vendors. Now to go back to PA, after allowing/forcing NYS legislature interpreting HAVA to ban levers in 2005. Setting in motion the secret vote counting we're trying to stop-and keep our levers.
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Bill Bored Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-16-09 12:00 AM
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2. Ironic is more like it.
It's comforting to know that at least some legislators are still capable of distinguishing between computers and actual vote counting machines.
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kster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-16-09 12:12 AM
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3. K&R...NT
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demodonkey Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-16-09 04:13 AM
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4. Oh dear. Jim Casorio's MY rep. His heart's in the right place but our levers...

...are long gone. I mean really gone as in smashed to smithereens. They were sold for scrap metal, most of them. And even though they are preferable to DREs, it is unlikely that anyone will tool up to start making them again in the foreseeable future.

:-(

Thanks for catching this. For the past few days I have been preparing for another meeting and doing taxes, thus I'm behind on my research and e-mail.

I am now in Harrisburg for the other meeting and planned to be in Jim's office later today anyway, so I will keep you posted I guess. I do appreciate that he gets it that the DREs are no good (as well he should, with me yelling away about bad DRES all the time in his district, LOL!)

I will say that even if it does not pass this bill will make many of the voters in Jim's district (the PA 56th) very happy with him because ours is a fairly conservative (blue dog Dem types) area with a lot of seniors and working class folks, many of whom are on the non-electronic side of the digital divide. As I said the other day, we had a lot of citizen support for keeping the levers, especially in my home area. Unfortunately, our Gov Ed Rendell likes DREs (the Danahers that Philly uses) and after the DOJ got after PA and the State Supreme Court ruled against keeping levers and punch cards, it pretty much was a slam dunk that the levers were gone. Thus, we began pushing for optical scan and audits as the better choice rather than DREs, and have been doing so every since.

PS -- one PA county, Northampton, did hang on to their levers for awhile and when WINvote was decertified they used them again for a state election in 2007. But as I understand it, even they got rid of them last year for scrap.


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Wilms Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-16-09 10:05 AM
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5. Elsewhere in PA...
With the old lever-driven machines, Eckhardt says, "any qualified mechanical engineer or auto mechanic could inspect them and make sure they were working correctly." But with a computer-driven system, "all relevant details of the operation of these machines are withheld from public scrutiny."

http://www.pittsburghcitypaper.ws/gyrobase/Content?oid=...

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