Re: LARGE Human factor problems in florida e-voting??

From: Kathy Dopp <kathy_at_directell_dot_com>
Date: Thu Nov 04 2004 - 17:41:31 CST

charlie strauss said:
> Kathy Dopp gets credit for noticing this. She sent me the data she had
> collected from all the precints in florida and noticed some funny
> numbers. I made a plot showing the difference in voting patterns on
> e-voting machines and optical scan.
> the results can be found here for now:

I am not following all of your charts or logic yet Charles.

I've had two other mathematicians do regression analysis whose conclusions
disagree with yours, and I am not sure on what data you used to plot some
of those charts yet.

In most of your charts, all the Red REP voters on the top of the 45 degree
line, and all the Blue DEM votes underneath which shows a clear pattern
for optical scan votes that is completely at odds with the touchscreen
data and what one would normally expect.

Another one of your charts shows clear unmistakable divergence too with
most of the Repub on the top of the 45% line and most Dems below it for op
scan systems, so that for some mysterious reason Dems voting on opscan
machines seemed to abandon their party and everyone seemed to abandon
their party, and join the Republicans

> I'm still mulling it over, but it appears to me that there is VERY VERY
> strong Human factors problem present.

I agree with that because if op-scan voting machines were rigged, then
definately it was done by humans. :-)

I'm in the middle of a firestorm over this and still trying to obtain
other data and other measures to look at.

> the e-votes appears to follow party line (more predictable by the people
> registered in a county to a given party) much much more tightly than
> the optical scan process.

Yes. Agreed. Op-scan is showing a very suspicious pattern, but it might
yet be explained by other factors or demographics which people are working
on putting together.

> One hypothesis is that the serial nature of e-voting induces this effect
> perhaps by making it harder to consciously split vote parties in
> diferent races. Under this hypothesis The non-full-face, serial nature
> of electronic voting is highly detrimental to the voting process.
> Another hypothesis would be that optical scan machines are wildly
> inaccurate or have incidences massive ( perhaps >30% !!) undervotes that
> tend to favor Republicans a bit more often than Democrats. (Most

It doesn't look like there were many undervotes at all in this race, but
I'll look at it as soon as I get a chance.

> optical scan machines prevent overvotes, though I cant say if florida's
> machines do). Under this hypothesis electronic voting is significantly
> more accurate and less biased than optical scan.

I'm not so sure I'd attribute the difference to accuracy problems with
op-scan systems, more like shannigans or very unusual demographics that we
haven't quite figured out yet.

I'm getting emails from some county election officials in FL right now,
and calls from NY, so I'm kindof swamped by response to this study of
mine, and people are sending me statistical analysis, spreadsheets and
lots of advice, etc.

> I lean towards the human factors explanation. But perhaps there are
> other hypothesises you can generate. I dont have experience explaining
> voting patterns.

I agree with human factor, very possibly election-rigging, but I'm holding
out for more info before declaring that to be the case. I've got people
who are willing to pay money for more stats and others who have promised
to dig up more by county election results for me. It took me until 2 p.m.
to have breakfast and the emails are still coming in faster than I can
quickly answer them.

I don't particularly like your chart that maps actual votes for party pres
vs. number of voters registered to party because it doesn't seem to take
into account voter turnout in each county, or does it?

Some people want possible interviews. Hopefully this may eventually give
me a chance to mention OVC.


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Received on Tue Nov 30 23:17:09 2004

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