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April 17, 2006

Comments

tylerh

I certainly hope the Harkey folks do a recount. First, she owes it to her campaign volunteers. Second, it's a free subsidy to the rest of us: The Harkey checkbook is going to conduct an audit of the OC voting process. Either they will find some problem, which can then (hopefully) be corrected, or they will validate the existing process. win-win, no matter who you supported for the Senate Seat.

calwatch

236 votes is pretty close, and if she has money, she might as well burn it now. I think the vote margin will change slightly, but it has as much chance of being in Harman's favor as it does Harkey's.

Missy

If the voting machines (without paper tapes) had been used, how would a recount be accomplished? It seems to me that only paper ballots can be recounted.

Mike Hunt

Absentee ballots can always be recounted.

tylerh

Missy,

where did you vote? Here in Irvine I voted on a paper ballot. It felt great to drop a piece paper into a big box and not have to trust a computer.

Read it again, TylerH

I think Missy was posing a hypothetical:
"IF the voting machines ... had been used" [emphasis added]
An interesting question. Can someone get an answer from the Registrar's office?

New Fangled Technology

Could be wrong, but I think the Registrar of Voters was prohibited from using the electronic voting machines because they haven't yet been retrofitted with the "paper trail."

I don't think that new fangled contraption called the "computer" will catch on.

Missy

Yes, my question was hypothetical.

I don't mistrust computers per se, but I know the way to check a computer's work is not to have the computer perform the work a second (or third or fourth) time. The way to check it is to have a human being perform the same work manually.

It's true that the Registrar was enjoined from using the eSlates this time because they hadn't yet been retrofitted with paper tapes. But the Registrar's office wasn't the one who decided the paper tapes were needed. The Registrar's office felt that the computers alone, with no paper trail, were sufficient.

New Fangled Technology

The Registrars office is right. What are paper tapes other than a printing generated by the eSlate machine?

The vote is recorded both in the machine itself, plus in a centralized recording unit in each precinct. There already is a duplicative recording device. A paper printout is little more than a security blanket.

I'll admit I'm no fan of the ESlate machines. Try showing your elderly parents, who have only just recently mastered the ATM, to use the thing. Both of mine (in their 70s) tried to touch the screen to vote and looked for buttons on either side. That's all they know. Spinning the wheel is not intuitive, in my opinion.
But back to the question - How, exactly, would one go about a recount on an ESlate?

New Fangled Technology

Actually, an analysis was done and the elderly actually had an easier time using the machine than many middle-aged people because they took the time to read the directions. Touch-screens are, well, touchy because if one puts their finger between two candidates, the wrong one may be selected. You don't have the problem with the dial.

I believe that the only "first count" votes recorded are those in the centralized unit that records all the votes in each precinct. For a recount, you can count and tally each of the votes recorded in each individual eSlate machine and make sure it matches the vote count and tally in the centralized machine.

Harkey is throwing good money after bad. Lots of money on a losing campaign full of negative hit pieces. And now $2,000 a day for a recount. I guess her husband has a bottomless bank account.


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