On Independence Day (fittingly enough), the NYTimes allowed a flash of light into its pages with this letter from Jonathan Simon, author of the indispensable Code Red: Computerized Elections and the War on American Democracy. The editors (of course) deleted Jonathan's chastisement of themselves for long blacking out the urgent issue of election theft (except for their vague crackpot charges against "Putin"). They also cut this pithy closing: "If we don’t [insist on public vote-counts], all the turnout in the world may not be enough. If we don’t, we pretty much deserve the 'democracy' we get." Still, the letter makes its all-important point; and if it's prompted anyone to read Code Red, and learn about US "elections" what the Times has always pointedly denied about them, it was a great thing (and its appearance there a fluke, if not a miracle). MCM
For Public Vote Counting
Judge Neil Gorsuch and Justice Anthony Kennedy during the swearing-in ceremony of Judge Gorsuch to the Supreme Court on April 10, 2017.CreditT.J. Kirkpatrick/Bloomberg
To the Editor:
Re “With Kennedy Gone, It’s Up to Voters” (editorial, June 28):
As in several past exhortations, your prescription for righting America’s increasingly entrenched political ills — in this case, the specter of a far-right Supreme Court for the rest of our lives — is to send more of us, in our anger and dismay, to the polls to vote.
The computerized vote counting era (2002 to the present) has not been a happy one for America or for American democracy. It has led to where we are now, and the signs are that it will lead us to worse. We must recognize the urgency of protecting our elections by restoring public, observable vote-counting and auditing.
I suspect that angry, anxious voters will turn out this November in droves. They deserve to know that their votes will be counted as cast. They are also more likely to vote if they have that knowledge.
If we want our democracy back — if we want to ensure that it is the people, not the programmers or hackers, setting our national direction — we must insist not just on the right to vote but also on the right (and the duty) to count those votes in public.
JONATHAN D. SIMON
The writer, executive director of the Election Defense Alliance, is the author of “CODE RED: Computerized Elections and the War on American Democracy.”