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(ES&S) Voting System Adds Nearly 5,000 Ballots to Tally

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Wilms Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-07-09 03:43 PM
Original message
(ES&S) Voting System Adds Nearly 5,000 Ballots to Tally

Voting System Adds Nearly 5,000 Ballots to Tally

By Kim Zetter

June 5, 2009

A software glitch in an optical-scan voting system added nearly 5,000 ballots to the tally of a South Dakota election this week. The error was discovered only after the election results were called, according to the Rapid City Journal.

The problem occurred when officials combined tallies from optical-scan machines in three precincts in Rapid City in Pennington County. The tabulation software used to combine the totals added 4,875 phantom ballots to the count. The system indicated 10,488 ballots were cast when, in reality, only 5,613 ballots existed, indicating that the glitch wasnt simply a matter of doubling the votes.

Oddly, (or predictably - Wilms) no one caught the problem during the initial count. City election officials hadnt bothered to keep a manual tally of the number of ballots cast as voters handed them in and they were scanned into the machines a procedure designed to catch exactly such a discrepancy. It was only after someone began to question the high voter turnout for the small election, that officials went back to count the ballots.

~snip~

No one in the county election office was available to speak about the issue when Threat Level called.

http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2009/06/voting-machine... /


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frog92969 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-07-09 03:51 PM
Response to Original message
1. "software glitch"
:rofl:

The real question here is who did the computer vote for.
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Omar4Dems Donating Member (95 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-08-09 02:53 PM
Response to Reply #1
8. Can the computer vote for itself?
Maybe the Republicans will blame it on liberal computers. :eyes:
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GreenPartyVoter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-07-09 04:00 PM
Response to Original message
2. Now there's a real shocker.
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WillYourVoteBCounted Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-07-09 06:10 PM
Response to Original message
3. the question is - did the M650 do it or the Unity Software or the Election officials?
It sounds like the votes were double counted.

Was this a case of someone uploading the results twice (which the system should not allow but perhaps did)?

Or was this a case of the Unity software having a flaw?

Or did the election director set up the ballot files or Unity election wrong?

It could be all in the ballot setup.

I sent an email to the Election Clerk/Auditor to see if she could advise.

I wish Kim Zetter had asked more questions.
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Wilms Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-07-09 06:50 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. From the article:
"The system indicated 10,488 ballots were cast when, in reality, only 5,613 ballots existed, indicating that the glitch wasnt simply a matter of doubling the votes."

and...

"No one in the county election office was available to speak about the issue when Threat Level called."

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yellerpup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-07-09 08:08 PM
Response to Original message
5. Kicking for more visibility
This stuff needs to be spread throughout all media. :kick:
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Tigress DEM Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-08-09 12:50 AM
Response to Original message
6. Kick
:kick: :kick:

:dem:

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diva77 Donating Member (999 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-08-09 01:54 AM
Response to Original message
7. how many more optiscan failures must we endure before people realize that
Edited on Mon Jun-08-09 01:55 AM by diva77
it's not enough to have a paper ballot. We need a manual tally at the precinct on the spot.

And now for my rant:

Every single time I go to Staples to use the copy machines - which are basically paper being scanned and tabulated with software, a good 30% are out of order, or at least malfunction during my time there. So why, oh why, on Election Day, should we be expected to swallow the belief that all of the "machines" are going to function as intended - not a chance; there never was, and there never will be. :argh:
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