Re: Walking away with the ballot.

From: Ed Kennedy <ekennedyx_at_yahoo_dot_com>
Date: Mon Dec 20 2004 - 21:52:29 CST

Hello Kurt:

Hopefully this settlement from Diebold will allow a little better training in California. I could swear that this settlement was discussed many weeks ago. For spoiled ballots at my polling place we wrote, "Spoiled," in big letters on both sides of the ballot. Then we handed the voter a new ballot and the spoiled ballot. They would transcribe the material from the old ballot to the new ballot. They we would scan the new ballot and put the spoiled ballot in a plastic bag. The spoiled ballots (6 I think) were counted to round out the ballot count.

Thanks, Ed Kennedy
  ----- Original Message -----
  From: dr-jekyll@att.net
  To: Open Voting Consortium discussion list
  Sent: Sunday, December 19, 2004 8:22 PM
  Subject: Re: [OVC-discuss] Walking away with the ballot.

  Hi Ed,

  I guess it's the norm that only the Election Judges and Alternates go to the training.

  One more point. I don't know why, but in Texas we were required to record the ballot ID's along with the voters' names on the spoiled ballot form. Maybe that was to substantiate the number of spoiled ballots for a voter if we needed to enforce the spoiled ballot limit. Any way, that document was kept in the same envelope with the spoiled ballots and someone with access could look at the spoiled ballots and compare to the document to see how people intended to vote. One suggestion I gave to voters whose ballots were spoiled was to mark every choice. That way the spoiled ballots in the spoiled ballot envelope wouldn't compromise their secret ballots.

  --
  Kurt

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    -------------- Original message from "Ed Kennedy" <ekennedyx@yahoo.com>: --------------

    Hello Kurt,

    Asking permission of the voter to inspect rejected ballots? What a good idea. Frankly, it never occurred to me. Well, not generally, I usually volunteered the explanation that the ballot was hard to read with my bifocals and there was no way I could remember all the ballots. This year's ballot had nearly 40 items on them and were printed front and back. We didn't have to listen for a sound to know if the ballot failed to read. The rollers just reversed and the scanner spat it back out. As I said, we got zero training. By the way, with the difficulty in getting poll workers and the limited budgets counties now have, Zero Training is going to be more and more the norm. Everyone should keep this in mind when they are ready to say, "Well, the poll worker could ...."

    Thanks, Ed Kennedy
      ----- Original Message -----
      From: dr-jekyll@att.net
      To: Open Voting Consortium discussion list
      Sent: Thursday, December 16, 2004 11:30 AM
      Subject: Re: [OVC-discuss] Walking away with the ballot.

>> It is possible to layout the polling place so the voter has to walk by the Optical
>> Scanning Station or canvassing station on the way to the exit?

      That's how I did it when I was an Election Judge using optical scan equipment. Under-staffed as we were, I still made certain I had someone at the scanning station to help the people feed the ballot into the system if necessary and listen for the sound. A successful ballot resulted in a different sound than a ballot that failed the editing. We knew the sounds because we heard them all day, but the average voter didn't recognize them. This was a very frequent occurrence. It was the softest job and was used a few times to give a little break to the folks were eye-weary from checking registrations.

      Another good reason to station someone at the scanner -- I recall at least a few people who tried to leave without feeding their ballots into the machine. It's safe to assume that those who use an electronic device to mark them would be even more inclined to think they voted before feeding the ballot into the scanner.

      Another problem can be voter privacy. I had one fellow, whom I was coerced into letting work at the polls, who was stationed at the scanning station and was reading the voters' ballots. He excitedly told me how he was able to tell people with mistakes on their ballots that their ballots would fail the edit before they fed them into the scanner. I told him not to read the voters' ballots. Even if the ballot is rejected, just ask them to look at their ballots suggesting what they might find. If the voter can't figure it out, bring them to me and I'll work with them, asking permission to read their ballots only as a last resort. Later that same day, after the admonishment, he still came to me bragging how he could tell people beforehand when the ballots would fail the edit. I yanked him off that detail -- permanently.

      --
      Kurt

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      recycled electrons.

        -------------- Original message from "Edmund R. Kennedy" <ekennedyx@yahoo.com>: --------------

        Hello All:

        It is possible to layout the polling place so the voter has to walk by the Optical Scanning Station or canvassing station on the way to the exit. Not all problems have to be solved with high technology. While it's no absolute guarantee this layout and a sign, "Put ballots here," could cut way down on what is already a rare phenomenah. Just remember, the perfect is the enemey of the good and nothing is absolutly foolproof.

        Thanks, Ed Kennedy

        --
        10777 Bendigo Cove
        San Diego, CA 92126-2510

        "We must all cultivate our gardens." Candide-Voltaire

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Received on Fri Dec 31 23:17:17 2004

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