Why a paper trail is not enough

From Jonathan Simon:

Re: VVPT-Voter-Verified Paper Trail, the idea being that, if the voter can check a “receipt” to see how he/she voted, all will be well. All will not be well.

The obvious problem is that the machine can easily be programmed to mark one vote on the receipt and store/transmit a different vote. Another problem is that most voters don’t verify. Another problem is that it dramatically slows the voting process, creating longer lines and more abandonments precisely in those Dem precincts where that’s a primo tactic for vote suppression. And another problem is that these receipts, if not aggregated and actually counted, are useless (see Utah, Nevada, New Mexico, Ohio 2004). You have to have a ballot of record that can be handcount-sampled as a check mechanism of the vote totals for the jurisdiction. Otherwise a determined rigger won’t be stopped.–Jonathan

0 replies on “Why a paper trail is not enough”

Very good practical reasons to not support VVPAT. There are also technical reasons to oppose. Specifically, it is not possible to create an electronic voting machine (DRE) which will provide both a secret ballot and a public vote count. Currently, the machines provide neither. It may be possible to provide one or the other, but not both.

Cheers, Jason Osgood

Private voting, Public counting.

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