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Kathy Dopp: Confidence Election Auditing Update

2008 Update to the "History of Confidence Election Auditing Development"

By Kathy Dopp
National Election Data Archive

FYI, Just a quick informational email for those who follow the best practices and up-to-date methods for auditing elections, to let you know that I've updated the "History of Confidence Election Auditing Development (1975 to 2008) & Overview of Election Auditing Fundamentals" to add the newest election auditing methods which have been developed in 2008.

There has been substantial progress in developing new, 30% more efficient methods for auditing elections. Although there is much research and work still remaining to do on elections auditing methods (specifically there is much work remaining to describe how to analyze audit discrepancies and decide whether to certify the election or to expand the audit, and to describe specific methods for randomly selecting vote counts for audit) - I thought some of you would want to know about these new election auditing methods now.

The updates in the "History of Confidence Election Auditing Development (1975 to 2008) & Overview of Election Auditing Fundamentals" include:

Title change - to "(1975 to 2008)"

New sections:

1. "2008 – Probability Proportional to Margin Error Bound (PPMEB) Methods for Election Auditing" - reviews the new methods of auditing elections which are approximately 30% more efficient than the "uniform" vote count audit sampling methods proposed earlier.

2. "Appendix H: Derivation of the Probability Proportional to Margin Error Bound (PPMEB) method for determining samples for Vote Count Audits" - shows how this new PPMEB election auditing method is derived mathematically

Amended sections:

1. "Agreement on Election Auditing Fundamentals" - to account for recent advances in election auditing methods

2. "Conclusion" - to shorten and simplify

3. "Abstract" - to shorten and simplify and to add a more precise definition for "confidence-level" election auditing

4. "Acknowledgments" - to thank those people who have done recent new work in the election auditing field or who helped by encouraging me or helped by reviewing my work

If you have an interest in the latest election auditing methods, please take a look at my newly revised "History of Confidence Election Auditing Development (1975 to 2008) & Overview of Election Auditing Fundamentals"

or read my simple (but still an incomplete) description of the new probability proportional to margin error bound (PPMEB) methods for election auditing.

This short new paper below also provides the results of having tested the new PPMEB method and comparing it with the prior uniform confidence vote count auditing method on all (over 80 separate) federal and state-level election contests in the 2004 Utah general election:


Please support our ongoing work which takes very considerable time and effort.

About The National Election Archive: The National Election Data Archive has been organized for educational and scientific purposes of promoting fair and accurate elections by promoting public access to election records and data; and developing technology and mathematical methods to detect any voter disenfranchisement or vote count inaccuracy. Such methods include independent manual vote count audits, exit poll discrepancy analysis, and the public release and scientific analysis of election data along with public release of election records necessary to verify the integrity of elections. NEDA is a completely non-profit organization that relies heavily on the donation of time by its volunteers, many of whom are mathematicians who donate their time and expertise because of their dedication to vote integrity and public service. The project happily expects donations from the public and we truly appreciate the generosity from citizens who are concerned about fair and free elections in America. All donations are tax deductible. To make a donation or become involved in the project, please visit



Kathy Dopp
National Election Data Archive
Dedicated to Accurately Counting Elections

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