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Voting News: Fix Tennessee broken elections

Fix Tennessee broken elections, Hawaii prime for open source voting,Voting machines made in China?

Posted: 30 Oct 2009 03:45 PM PDT

NYTimes Slams Diebold/ES&S Merger, Succeeds In Not Using Word 'Paperless' Even Once!...Is the Supreme Court about to turn the US into a corporate democracy?...Senator Feingold and Representative Ellison for Introducing Same Day Voter Registration Bill...Military ballot law means some states must move up primaries...

Humboldt County uses the Hart Voting System for the 1st time...Controversy heats up over IRV question on St Paul MN ballot...Op/ed in Tennessee says voting system isn't broke, don't use taxpayer money fix it - but oh Tennessee's voting system is most definitely broken and Tennessee has millions of federal $ to fix it...Wisconsin Supreme Ct says ok for judges to preside over cases involving big campaign contributors...How To Vote From Six Feet Under...Deal Reached in Honduras to Restore Ousted President...Queensland Australia wants internet voting for disabled...Irony: China to make Philippines voting machines?...

CA: Elections office preps for big day
10/28/2009 For a moment, things got tense.
...The county opted to make the switch to the new equipment after discovering flaws with its Premier Elections Solutions equipment last November -- flaws that ultimately led to the system having its statewide certification withdrawn by California Secretary of State Debra Bowen.
To help with the transition, Hart Intercivic consultant David Magedson is on site in Humboldt County, and will remain to help the local elections staff until Nov. 4

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CA: Oakland, California, Moves Closer to Using Instant Runoff Voting
October 30th, 2009 According to this story in the October 30 Oakland Tribune, the Alameda County (California) Elections Department says the vote-counting machines used in that county can handle Instant Runoff Voting. Alameda County is waiting for the Secretary of State to certify those machines

CA: Perata questions ranked choice voting in Alameda County
10/30/2009 Three years after Oakland voters approved instant runoff voting for city elections, one Oakland mayoral candidate is questioning whether or not the city, county and voters are ready for it.

In a letter to Alameda County Administrator Susan Muranishi, former state Senate leader Don Perata brings up a variety of questions and concerns about the possibility of using instant runoff voting in next year's city elections.

CT: Working Families Party May Elect City Council, School Board Seats in Bridgeport, Connecticut
October 30th, 2009 Bridgeport, Connecticut, like other towns in that state, is hold local partisan elections on November 3, 2009. In Bridgeport, and certain other Connecticut towns, no one political party is permitted to run a full slate of candidates.

HI: Hawaii should clean its election house and join other states supporting open source voting software
Who will you vote for in 2010?

If you live in Hawaii, the better question right now is “how” will you vote in 2010.

If a crisis can be an opportunity, we’ve got the makings of a grand opportunity as our Office of Elections continues to melt down.

Senate Ways and Means and Election Commission hearings that put Chief Elections Officer Kevin Cronin on the hot seat have not yet revealed any clear path to solving the many problems the CEO faces
With its budget cut 94% by the gov, lawsuits still pending and procurement on hold, there is yet no solution in sight. Hawaii is, in fact, unable at this moment to even have an election in 2010. Of course, somehow we will get through this.

HI: Lack of competition should require Cost or Price Analysis of Hawaii voting machine purchase

MN: League of Women Voters to pro-IRV: Take our name off your lit
The co-presidents of the St. Paul League of Women Voters are asking instant-runoff voting supporters to "correct" an "error in their literature."
Johnson explained that the League's equivocating position (arguably in support of both the yes and the no campaigns?) was the result of disagreement within the organization. "We have members who are supporting it, and since we also have some members who are opposing it, we can't speak in favor of voting yes as an organization,"

So much for 'low-key': IRV foes file formal complaint
October 30

MN: Questions on instant runoff voting: Rank your answers (much needed humor)
There have been a lot of questions about instant runoff voting. What is it, how does it work, who's on first, does this mole look odd, why can't I just text in my vote like I do on "American Idol," and so on. Well, let's start by re-examining the previous election.

NC: Third Parties.
The N.C. Supreme Court may soon have to decide whether the state's third-party ballot-access law is constitutional. This matter should not have had to come before the courts.

If legislators and the two major parties would look beyond their own interests, they'd see that the law needs changing, as the Libertarian Party has been saying for years.

North Carolina ballot-access law is one of the strictest in the country and one of the few things that Democrats and Republicans agree upon. The law limits the playing field for these two parties, allowing them to stay comfortably within their own party bases and ignore the discontent of voters looking for different solutions.

To gain access to the ballot under state law, a party must file a petition bearing the equivalent of 2 percent of the state's registered voters. That is a daunting threshold for new parties to meet, one that usually consumes its meager resources of money and volunteers. In 2008, Libertarians needed 70,000 signatures to get on the ballot. In 2012, third parties will need about 85,000.

NC: Voter registration lists need to be modernized
October 28, 2009 Doug Chapin LTE
The Sept. 26 article, “Election boards wonder if military ballots are too costly,” is prime evidence of the need to modernize our outdated voter registration system
However, unreturned or undeliverable military and overseas ballots are not the problem.

They are a costly symptom of an outdated, inefficient and inaccurate registration system that doesn’t work well, particularly for these highly mobile individuals

NY: Rockland prosecutors find no fraud in absentee ballot win
NEW CITY - Rockland prosecutors announced Thursday that they found no criminality in the way a Clarkstown Town Board candidate and her supporters filed absentee ballots to win her the Working Families Party line in the Nov. 3 election.

OH: Lawrence Norden commentary: Voter-registration reform could dampen disputes
October 29, 2009 By Lawrence Norden.
...But changes to election law in Ohio can minimize the frequency and impact of some of these controversies by creating clearer and fairer laws that improve election administration, decrease burdens and costs on county election offices and put the voters first. The Ohio House Committee on Elections and Ethics is considering legislation that should make progress on all of these fronts.
Or use this tiny url

OH: Worker pleads guilty to voter fraud
The pro-casino worker Hamilton County prosecutors said forged absentee ballot applications admitted Friday he did.Walter Sullivan, 27, of Montgomery, pleaded guilty Friday to the five counts of filing a false signature, all felonies.

PA: Luzerne controller nominee annoyed about instructions on absentee ballots (Straight ticket voting instructions)
October 28, 2009 WILKES-BARRE - Walter L. Griffith Jr., the Republican nominee for county controller, is upset instructions on absentee ballots were printed before the county board of elections voted to approve the ballot.

TN: Rethink the VCA (this op thinks there's nothing wrong in Tennessee)
If the voting machine system ain’t broke, don’t spend taxpayer money to fix it.
OpEd by Rich Holden

VA: County voters head to polls next Tuesday; voters to choose new governor, delegates (Unilect Patriot voting machine, like machine that lost votes in NC in 2004) October 28, 2009
Pittsylvania County voters will go to the polls Tuesday, Nov. 3, to elect a new governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general and members of the House of Delegates

Election officials were busy last week testing the county's Patriot voting machines.
A programming glitch last November caused some voters to leave polling places without voting for county treasurer, but did not affect the outcome of the election.

WI: Wis. High Court: Donations Don't Require Recusals
MADISON, Wis. (AP) ― The Wisconsin Supreme Court adopted rules Wednesday allowing judges to hear cases involving their biggest campaign contributors, siding with business interests and rejecting calls for reform.


NYTimes Slams Diebold/ES&S Merger, Succeeds In Not Using Word 'Paperless' Even Once!

Corporate Democracy:
Potential fallout from a Supreme Court decision on Citizens United
The impending Supreme Court decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, which could be announced as early as Tuesday, Nov. 3, is expected to significantly expand the role of the most powerful special interests in financing American elections.

Demos Applauds Senator Feingold and Representative Ellison for Introducing Same Day Voter Registration Bill
Federal Proposal Would Increase Voter Participation Nationwide

Same Day Voter Registration Re-Introduced
By allowing voters to register at polling places the same day as they vote, the Same Day Registration Act would help increase voter turnout and voters would not have to worry about sitting an election out because they missed a registration deadline. And by having voters register in person, there is less of a chance that voter fraud could take place.

Troop ballot law has states in a time squeeze
Oct 29, 2009 ST. PAUL, Minn. — A new law meant to protect the voting rights of deployed troops and other Americans overseas is forcing at least a dozen states to consider holding their primaries earlier or to negotiate another plan that federal officials will accept.

Ballots must be sent to certain voters at least 45 days before an election under a requirement included in a major defense bill signed Wednesday by President Barack Obama.
Colorado, New York, Washington and Wisconsin are among states already planning to request waivers.

How To Vote From Six Feet Under
Even death can’t stop some voters.
Thanks to the increasing popularity of absentee voting, a rising number of the recently deceased are casting ballots — legally. The trick is to pull the lever before you kick the bucket.


Australia: Qld election budget 'blew out by $850k'
October 29, 2009 The budget for the Queensland state election in March blew out by $850,000, the electoral commission says.
The commission plans to seek a change to the law to allow a trial of internet voting for people with disabilities who need voting assistance and who can access the internet through screen readers loaded on their home computers.

Deal Reached in Honduras to Restore Ousted President
October 30, 2009 MEXICO CITY — A lingering political crisis in Honduras seemed to be nearing an end on Friday after the de facto government agreed to a deal, pending legislative approval, that would allow Manuel Zelaya, the deposed president, to return to office.

Nicaraguan Congress will not debate re-election
MANAGUA, Nicaragua — The Nicaraguan Congress on Wednesday narrowly rejected an initiative to force a debate on whether to annul a hotly disputed court ruling allowing President Daniel Ortega to seek re-election.

Philippines: Poll machines will now be made in China, not Taiwan
10/30/2009 Smartmatic picks new subcontractor for PCOS machines
MANILA - Is it a violation of the poll automation contract?

Voting News by Joyce McCloy.
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