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Maryland House Unanimously Approves Paper Ballots for Coming Election

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kpete Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 11:38 AM
Original message
Maryland House Unanimously Approves Paper Ballots for Coming Election
Md. House Approves Paper Ballots

By Ann E. Marimow
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, March 10, 2006; Page B04

The Maryland House of Delegates unanimously passed legislation yesterday to ditch the state's touch-screen voting machines for the coming election in favor of a system that uses paper ballots.

The 137 to 0 vote in the House and the endorsement of the plan this week by Republican Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. represents a stunning turnaround for a state that was on the leading edge of touch-screen voting in 2001, and it reflects a national shift toward machines that provide a paper record.


Linda H. Lamone, Maryland's top elections official, says paper ballots provide a "false sense of security." (By Robert A. Reeder -- The Washington Post)

Return to Paper Trail Reflects Trend

The Maryland House's unanimous vote to return to optical scan voting machines reflects a national shift favoring voting methods that leave a paper trail. Optical scanning requires voters to mark a paper ballot, which is then read by an optical scanner and dropped into a metal ballot bin.

The touch-screen system, for which Maryland has committed more than $90 million, would be put aside for one year while the state spends at least $13 million to lease optical scan machines.

"It's critically important for voters to know their vote was cast and that it will be counted correctly," said Del. Obie Patterson (D-Prince George's).

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/20...
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MadMaddie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 11:39 AM
Response to Original message
1. Good News!!
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 11:42 AM
Response to Original message
2. Congratulations, Maryland!
:toast: :toast: :toast: :toast: :toast:

:applause: :applause: :applause: :applause: :applause:


:woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo:
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myrna minx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 11:44 AM
Response to Original message
3. Way to go Maryland!
:patriot:
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Norquist Nemesis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 11:45 AM
Response to Original message
4. opti-scan machines aren't much better
Before they spend that money to switch over, they should do some more research. For instance: http://www.nytimes.com/2006/03/10/education/10sat.html?...

SAT Errors Raise New Qualms About Testing

Published: March 10, 2006
The scoring errors disclosed this week on thousands of the College Board's SAT tests were made by a company that is one of the largest players in the exploding standardized testing business, handling millions of tests each year.
...

These are scanned sheets. Yes, there's paper to check against but the point is that it's not necessarily more accurate or reliable.
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hootinholler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 11:53 AM
Response to Reply #4
8. We already have opti-scans from prior elections...
I agree the tabulators suffer problems, but, at least votes can be recounted by hand with them.

If Erlich really cared he would fire LeWhore.

-Hoot
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FredStembottom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 10:42 PM
Response to Reply #8
21. Yep. Only "half a loaf".....but it's the _best_ half!
Paper ballots can be recounted by hand. That's not everything - but it gets us to a minimum acceptable level.

Let's help this "virus" spread to other states! :kick:
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sinkingfeeling Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 11:46 AM
Response to Original message
5. At least one state still is sane! Congrats!
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marions ghost Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 11:48 AM
Response to Original message
6. good news
but they still need random hand counts
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hootinholler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-11-06 11:59 AM
Response to Reply #6
23. Indeed we do!
We're working on that educational issue.

-Hoot
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Greeby Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 11:50 AM
Response to Original message
7. Woot, gg maryland
http://www.barrywelsh.org/fiftystate/index.html <-------------------- although, in terms of the big picture, it's more of a hold-the-line proposition than major pickups
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NastyRiffraff Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 11:57 AM
Response to Original message
9. My state!!!!
I'm so proud. Yes, I know more needs to be done, and whatever system replaces Diebold has to be looked at carefully. But the important point is, votes will be verifiable.

I dislike Erlich, but on this one issue I have to say he's done a stunning turnaround.

I'll still vote against him, though
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ooglymoogly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 11:59 AM
Response to Original message
10. proof that some sanity still exists
kick n nom
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DoYouEverWonder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 12:01 PM
Response to Original message
11. #13 million could pay for a lot of people
to hand count paper ballots.

Oh that's right, then it would be harder to cheat.

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MissWaverly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 12:11 PM
Response to Original message
12. Great news!
To think that I will never have to vote on the machine that defaulted to Bush 5 times when
I tried to vote for Kerry makes me feel really good. Democracy is coming to the USA!

:-)
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donsu Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 12:20 PM
Response to Original message
13. better watch how they are counted. . . .
nt
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electropop Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 12:40 PM
Response to Original message
14. A miracle!
Let's hope it's a big trend.

We still need laws to back it up, such as:

Requiring true random audits by outside agencies, for every election.
Prohibiting the SoS from being involved in campaigns, or running for other office or accepting another appointed office within 5 years of an election.
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qanda Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 12:45 PM
Response to Original message
15. I was an election judge in the last Maryland election
And we had way too many problems with the touch-screen machines. I'm glad they made this decision.
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goclark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 12:46 PM
Response to Original message
16. Yea for Maryland!

Now on to the rest of the States!

Let's March!
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Richard Steele Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 12:48 PM
Response to Original message
17. BIIIIG step in the right direction! Way to go, Maryland!
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mom cat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 01:46 PM
Response to Original message
18. Congradulations to all who worked to make this possible by
fighting foe election reform and raising the issue of fraud, especially Andy and TIA.Please pray for TIA's speedy recovery. We need him.
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texpatriot2004 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 02:01 PM
Response to Original message
19. Glad to hear this good news nm
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FogerRox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 03:41 PM
Response to Original message
20. KNR
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kster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 11:25 PM
Response to Original message
22. Thats cool , but if a group of
concerned citizens want to recount them voter verified paper ballots BY HAND within a timely fashion after the election , for absolutely no reason at all, will they be able to? Thats what I'd like to know.

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