Clouds over Minnesota?

From Jeremy W. Hubbell:
In my first election as an 18-year-old, I used the Minnesota “computer” voting system. I am now 34. Minnesota’s system, also described below, involves paper and a marker. You draw a line between two hatchmarks next to the candidate’s name. And then YOU put it the ballot the opti-scan machine, which counts and stores it.
And so I found the following article very, very strange–and possibly related to the closeness of the Ritchie-Kiffmeyer race for Secretary of State. Mark Ritchie, as you know and have posted on this list, is a voting-rights advocate. This article casts opti-scan voting as “new,” and assures Minnesotans not fret about accuracy. I don’t know what’s “new” about the system, except that a few more precincts are now using them. But with I find really WEIRD is that Minnesota Republicans are boasting about there not being glitches in a system not known to have glitches. All it does is suggest the possibility that “glitches” could occur.
VOTE103106
Last update: October 30, 2006 – 11:04 PM
Minnesota officials aren’t fretting about new voting technology

The state’s system has safeguards, lacking in other states, to allay worries of fraud and malfunction.

John Reinan, Star Tribune

Linda Mickelson hopes to go home early on election night — say, around midnight.

That’s a better deal than it sounds. Mickelson, deputy auditor in Grant County, usually gets to bed about 4 a.m. on Election Night after counting more than 3,000 votes by hand.

But on Nov. 7, for the first time, Grant County residents and every other Minnesota voter will cast their ballots on computers. And although concerns about electronic voting have been raised across the United States, Mickelson and other Minnesota election officials say they’re confident that voting machines across the state will function just fine on Election Day.

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