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Reply #15: I have worked on two fronts [View All]

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OnTheOtherHand Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-27-08 09:08 AM
Response to Reply #14
15. I have worked on two fronts
Edited on Sun Apr-27-08 09:17 AM by OnTheOtherHand
First, I've done considerable work in election forensics. There is a tacit conspiracy among certain self-styled election integrity supporters -- presumably unintentional -- to undermine the movement by serving up facially risible claims and partisan (or anti-"establishment") rants. Like many other people, I've spent a lot of time and energy trying to demonstrate that one can take election integrity seriously without drinking the Kool-Aid. This work is tedious but essential, because election integrity is a majoritarian value and deserves majoritarian arguments -- arguments that at least merit the endorsement of most Americans. To speak credibly about threats to election integrity, one has to be credible. Lots of self-appointed leaders can't clear that hurdle. (Take Mark Crispin Miller, whose premise in Fooled Again is that Bush's reelection was "a miracle." There's no way he can sell that pile to most people, or most political scientists; he might as well paint a scarlet Q for Quack on his forehead.)

Second, I've worked on post-election audit design. (Really this is almost indistinguishable from the first point: audits are proactive forensics, more or less.) I coauthored an article in The American Statistician about statistically rigorous audits, helped to draft New Jersey's statistical audit legislation and testified on its behalf, participate in audit working groups in Ohio and Florida, and have helped informally with audit proposals in Colorado, Massachusetts, and California.

It isn't very much, but I think we could have gotten further if some people thought harder before they spoke.

I have to admit, "Bonn1997," I'm not very curious about what you've done. But if you want to share, maybe it's more interesting than I think. (ETA) Let me be clear about this: you may be doing excellent work when you aren't busy waving your hands about exit polls over here; if so, I applaud it. I'm just not very curious one way or the other.
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