Re: Ballot tear-off

From: Richard C. Johnson <dick_at_iwwco_dot_com>
Date: Fri May 20 2005 - 10:49:26 CDT

David Mertz has a very good point, in that we don't really want to sacrifice some voting goods (anonymous voting) for others (verification to the last detail). It would be enough for me if my voting receipt (with a long number and no voting information) could be compared to an on-line list of similar numbers representing ballots tabulated in the official count. It would be enough if some audit process existed to insure votes did not go missing without any audit possible.
 
We do need poll watchers and monitors to insure that the post-election counting is done properly. This function cannot be done in a town meeting where the counters call out the vote to the crowd along with the ID of the voter. Nor is there likely any system at all that would permit a given voter to do more than insure his or her vote went through the counting process.
 
The fallacy in thinking of all problems being solved in the voting booth has kept many from considering how, exactly, the process is supposed to work downstream. What is it that keeps partisan public election officials from putting their thumbs on the electoral scale? I think we do need more transparency of process. I don't think we need to give up the secret ballot.
 
-- Dick
 
Richard C. Johnson, Ph.D.
dick@iwwco.com

David Mertz <voting-project@gnosis.cx> wrote:
> David Mertz said:
>> Somebody expecting to meet the big guys with the brass knuckles when
>> they get home is not at liberty to destroy a provided receipt.

On May 20, 2005, at 1:16 AM, Marty Schrader wrote:
> The argument that we have to circumvent any possible illegal activity
> after the
> fact is not going to fly. Our concern here is for a transparent and
> verifiable
> voting system. "Big guys with brass knuckles" is a matter best left to
> normal
> law enforcement, not to be addressed by our elect-tronics (you like
> that?) and
> software.

I do like the neologism. But maybe you missed the point here. The
guys with the brass knuckles also say "We demand that you prove you
voted for our preferred candidate."

A voting system both CAN and SHOULD make the answer to that demand: "I
have no way to prove to you how I voted, even if I want to do so." The
OVC design does that. My local paper-and-pencil ballots and the senior
center do that. For all their myriad and serious flaws, even Diebold
DREs do that.

I really, really don't think we should push a system in order to
establish the novel property: "Enables easier vote coercion."

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Received on Tue May 31 23:17:43 2005

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