Brad Messer Commentary • KTSA • Wednesday, May 5, 2004

E-vote Learning Curve

Touchscreen voting is really catching on. This year one-fourth of U.S. votes will be electronic.

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E-voting has had a learning curve. The earliest machines, and the latest ones, occasionally make mistakes. Someone will vote for one guy, but the X will appear beside the other guy, that sort of thing.

All touchscreen machines are computers. Sometimes they have a glitch and subtract when they're supposed to add, or delete a few hundred votes, and it's hard or impossible to figure out why.

As we've learned more about E-voting, most experts have come to believe in "verifiable voting"— in which you get a receipt – similar to an ATM receipt – and computers keep totals on paper, so recounts can be done by hand.

Bexar County has touchscreen machines that don't give you a receipt. As soon as printers are available, we must buy them— because without a paper trail, computer voting is not even slightly trustworthy.

Brad Messer Commentary, KTSA.

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