Antigua: Top Antigua Commissioner Opens Up On Electoral Matters | Caribarena Antigua

Chairman of the Antigua & Barbuda Electoral Commission Juno Samuel, in a wide-ranging interview with Caribarena, dealt frankly with challenges facing ABEC in the run-up to the general elections constitutionally due in 2014.

The ABEC chairman identified philosophical differences between members of the Commission as the most critical of these challenges. Samuel maintains that the continuing uncertainty over the ultimate position of former chairman – now ordinary member – Sir Gerald Watt has not in any way hindered the Commissioners’ approach to their work.

However, he pinpoints the philosophical divide over the powers and proper functioning of the chairman in particular as posing a significant – if not preponderant – obstacle to progress.

Kyrgyzstan: Period for forming election commission should be extended in Kyrgyzstan | Trend

The deadline for forming election commission should be extended in Kyrgyzstan, the Chairman of the Central Election Commission (CEC) Tuigunaaly Abdraimov stated at CEC’s session today, reported.

The CEC’s official Myrzabek Kargynbayev said that corrections must be made in prepared time-table draft. “The period of registration of territorial election commissions must be extended. 2,300 precinct election commission and 56 territorial commissions will be created as well as it is planned to establish 2,296 polling stations.”

Congo: Democratic Republic of Congo election protests turn violent | Reuters

Police in the Democratic Republic of Congo used tear gas on Monday to disperse hundreds of opposition supporters protesting outside the electoral commission against alleged irregularities in voter registration.

The clashes, confirmed by demonstrators and the police, were the first signs of tension in the capital Kinshasa as the vast central African country geared up for its second post-war poll.

The Voting News Daily: Happy 26th Amendment Day!, Egypt looking at e-voting

Editorials, National: Happy 26th Amendment Day! Enjoy It While It Lasts | Campus Progress July 1, 1971 saw the 26th amendment, which reduced the minimum voting age from 21 to 18, and millions of college-age Americans were given the right to vote. 40 years later, lawmakers are attacking this Constitutional right by introducing so-called voter…

Editorials: Happy 26th Amendment Day! Enjoy It While It Lasts | Campus Progress

July 1, 1971 saw the 26th amendment, which reduced the minimum voting age from 21 to 18, and millions of college-age Americans were given the right to vote.

40 years later, lawmakers are attacking this Constitutional right by introducing so-called voter ID bills. These bills require voters to show specific types of photo identification at the polls, a requirement that 18 percent of young people in the United States currently do not meet.

Many laws also limit the use of student ID cards as acceptable forms of identification. The student activism that led to the passage of the 26th Amendment should inspire and direct student activism today to protect our rights.

Egypt: Egypt looking at e-voting | Bikya Masr

Information technology in Egypt is on the rise and at a conference on Wednesday run by Intel’s “Egypt Tomorrow – IT Vision for a Brighter Future” experts and leaders pushed for the idea of e-voting to become a reality in the new Egypt.

The conference was promoted as an open discussion on the first steps toward how ICT can be a stepping-stone for democracy and freedom in future Egyptian elections.

Wednesday’s session looked at how e-platforms can help improve democratic institutions in Egypt to create a more open voting and educational platform for the country’s citizens. The speakers looked at how technology can play a vital part in achieving democracy.

Oklahoma: Cherokee Chief Asks For Machine Recount |

The war of words over the Cherokee Nation’s Election results continues this holiday weekend. Principal Chief Chad Smith wants a machine recount. Smith lost the election after the Cherokee Nation Supreme Court upheld the election and certified Bill John Baker as the new principal chief on Thursday.

Earlier, Baker was declared the winner in an unofficial vote, then Smith was certified the winner Monday, and now it’s Baker win, by a 271 vote difference.  Smith says he wants to get to the bottom of the different vote counts and there’s only one way to do it.

Pennsylvania: Controversy over Voter ID Bill Hits Pennsylvania | Philadelphia Jewish Voice

If Pennsylvania signs a contentious new bill into law, the process of voting is about to become very difficult for over 700,000 of the state’s residents. On June 24, the Pennsylvania House of Representatives passed the controversial voter ID proposition also known as House Bill 934.

House Republicans had forced the vote on the bill, which, if passed by the Senate, could potentially disenfranchise about 700,000 otherwise eligible Pennsylvanians.

House Bill 934 would require all voters to show a valid, unexpired photo identification to prove citizenship.

Australia: F1Esc Dumping Australian 2011 Election Data to ThePirateBay | ZeroPaid

It would appear that ThePirateBay is one of the most popular data dumping grounds for scores of hacked data. One of the latest data dump appears to be an ongoing release where data from the Australian 2011 elections are being posted. As of this writing, 5 data dumps have been posted so far.

The AntiSec movement isn’t really tied to any one country or any one or any group of hackers. In a tweet early last month, F1Esc tweeted that he had obtained 76GB of data from the Australian 2011 elections. It wasn’t until more recently that the data was being posted on to BitTorrent site ThePirateBay.

The release is being posted in batches. Part 1 is 180MB, part 2 is 513MB, part 3 is 1.69GB, part 4 is is 37MB and the most recently released part, part 5, is 276MB.

National: Anonymous Picks Up Where LulzSec Left Off, Targeting Government Servers | International Business Times

After computer hacker group LulzSec announced its retirement after “50 days of lulz,” an Internet rampage, the flame of cyber war seems to be losing fuel. LulzSec apparently jumped back on ship with its old buddy, Anonymous, to continue sailing the “Operation Anti-Sec” against governments.

Operation Anti-Security, an agenda tackled by LulzSec and Anonymous together earlier this month, originally intended to expose corrupt, abusive governments by protesting and combating any and all institutions’ or governments’ attempts to censor or moderate the Internet.

After revealing contents from the Arizona police force, the Anti-Sec team unveiled sensitive content from the servers of a number of governments, including content from the servers of Anguilla, passwords from Brazillian government servers, and the userbase of Zimbabwe. Another batch comes from Australia, but the contents remain vague.

National: 26th Amendment and #WhyUVote | Overseas Vote Foundation

Forty years ago – on the 1st of July 1971 – the 26th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified, lowering the voting age from 21 to 18, and forever changing the face of the American electorate.

Overseas Vote Foundation (OVF) honors this historical milestone and salutes America’s young people by engaging U.S. voters around the world in a dialogue about “why you vote” – in 140 characters or less.

Due to popular demand, we’ve decided to extend this event throughout the 4th of July weekend!

Editorials: Bob Hall: Voter ID requirement a step backward |

Forty years ago this month, North Carolina played a pivotal role in expanding voting rights for American citizens. On July 1, 1971, our General Assembly became the final state legislature needed to ratify the 26th Amendment, which lowered the voting age from 21 to 18.

A few days later, at a signing ceremony for the amendment, President Richard Nixon looked around the room of assembled young people and said, “America’s new voters, America’s young generation, will provide what America needs as we approach our 200th birthday – not just strength and not just wealth, but the Spirit of ’76, a spirit of moral courage, a spirit of high idealism in which we believe … that the American dream can never be fulfilled until every American has an equal chance to fulfill it in his own life.”

Thousands of miles away, 18-year-old Americans were fighting and dying in Vietnam. The cry of “old enough to fight, old enough to vote” had grown louder through the 1960s, and Congress finally proposed the 26th Amendment in March 1971. It sped through state legislatures, gaining the necessary ratification of three-fourth of the states with our General Assembly’s historic vote.

Later this month, the General Assembly will consider several bills with a far different purpose. They aim to restrict, rather than expand, opportunities for qualified voters.

Editorials: White claims vindication … but, please | Evansville Courier & Press

Despite a stern rebuke from the Indiana Recount Commission’s chairman, Indiana Secretary of State Charlie White claimed vindication after the three-member panel decided not to boot him out of office last week.

He said the secretary of state’s office, and he as its head, have lost no credibility as a result of voter fraud accusations that very well might result in White being forced out of office by a criminal trial in Hamilton County set to start in August.

His logic behind that claim? Voters knew about the accusations he faced, and still elected him. Therefore, he should be able to do the job with his name and reputation intact.


Oklahoma: New voting machines are coming, but Oklahoma voters may not notice a difference | Tulsa World

Oklahoma voters will have to learn how to fill in boxes instead of connect lines for the 2012 elections. Otherwise, said state Election Board Secretary Paul Ziriax, most won’t notice much difference from other elections over the past two decades.

There will be a difference, though, and a big one. The state will soon begin taking delivery on a new voting system to replace the OPTECH-III Eagle optical scanner machines in use since 1992. Ziriax expects the system to be fully tested and installed in time for the February 2012 school board elections.

“It’s my belief that most people won’t notice a difference,” said Ziriax. “Voters will still be marking their ballots by hand and they’ll still be putting them into a scanner. “The main difference will be that instead of connecting two ends of an arrow, there will be a box to fill in. And the ballots will be a little lighter weight stock.”

Thailand: Thailand elects first woman prime minister | WORLD News

Thailand’s opposition has won a landslide election victory, led by the sister of former Thai prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra in a triumph for red-shirt protesters who clashed with the army last year.

Exit polls showed Yingluck Shinawatra’s Puea Thai (For Thais) party winning a clear majority of parliament’s 500 seats, paving the way for the 44-year-old business executive to become Thailand’s first woman prime minister.

“I’ll do my best and will not disappoint you,” she told supporters after receiving a call of congratulations from her billionaire brother, who was ousted in a 2006 coup and lives in Dubai to avoid jail for graft charges that he says were politically motivated. “He told me that there is still much hard work ahead of us,” she said.

Thailand: Vote buying, ballot tearing top legal complaints in Thai election | The Nation

Suspected vote-buying and the tearing of voters’ ballots were the most common legal breaches on election day, with many complaints of such criminal acts lodged with the Election Commission (EC) and private watchdog P-Net.

A number of voters were arrested yesterday for tearing ballots for various reasons – ranging from misunderstanding to drunkenness to upset after crossing the wrong boxes – all of which could subject violators to a five-year restriction on voting, a one-year prison term and/or a maximum fine of Bt20,000.

Thailand: Backgrounder: Thailand’s general election |

Polling started on Sunday morning in Thailand’s first general election after years of political unrest as voters are casting their votes to pick up 500 members of the House of Representatives. The polling began at 8 a.m. and will close at 3 p.m. on Sunday. The unofficial results of the election are expected to be available by 10 p.m.

The Election Commission, according to law, shall endorse results within seven days if there is no complaint about electoral fraud. However, one could still file complaints about unfair election within 30 days.

Some 47.3 million eligible voters across the country will pick up 500 members of the House of Representatives, or the lower house — 375 members from single-seat constituencies and another 125 from party-list category.

Wisconsin: Costs add up as counties plan for recall elections | Pierce County Herald

With a state senate recall election, a recall primary and a Supreme Court recount, local election clerks are seeing their 2011 budgets fall apart.

While it’s difficult to plan for these unprecedented elections, St. Croix and Pierce county clerks figure the unbudgeted expenses will total about $25,000 for each county. Those projections don’t include the amounts each city, village and town will pay for poll workers and their own miscellaneous expenses.

Oklahoma: Vaults breached twice, Cherokee chief recount still not under way | Tulsa World

Principal chief candidate Bill John Baker says testimony given during a Cherokee Supreme Court hearing today has proven that vaults holding the votes were breached between Sunday after the election and Monday morning.

“We just found that the vault has been breached twice since they said that they’ve locked it up and the envelopes have been taken out,” Baker said to reporters during a recess in the hearing today. “We’re going to go back in and see what the justices think about them saying they hadn’t breached the vault and the vault being breached twice.”

The Supreme Court hearing was to determine whether ballots were safely maintained and that the chain of custody wasn’t breached during the tabulation. In the hearing are four Supreme Court justices; both chief candidates; Attorney for the Election Commission Lloyd Cole of Stilwell, Election Commission chair Roger Johnson, Smith attorney Dean Luthey and Baker attorney Kalyn free; and seven members of the media.

Oklahoma: Cherokees protest election outcome | Cherokee Phoenix

About 60 people, ranging from children to elders, gathered June 30 at the Election Commission building to protest the certified results of the Cherokee Nation’s principal chief race and support challenger Bill John Baker.

“What we’re doing today is we’re asking and praying that the Election Commission do an honest count because we have had several different stories of how the count was arrived at after the election was to be certified Sunday morning (June 26) just after 7 a.m. by the Election Commission,” Linda O’Leary, a former Tribal Councilor and one of the protestors, said.

Certified election results show Principal Chief Chad Smith with 7,609 votes to Tribal Councilor Baker’s 7,602. Unofficial results released by the EC on June 26 showed Baker leading with 7,600 votes to Smith’s 7,589.

An Internet- and Facebook-based group called Cherokees ForTruth organized the peaceful protest. According to its webpage, the protests were slated for June 30-July 1 at the EC building.

Rhode Island: Rhode Island General Assembly sends voter ID bill to Governor |

After lengthy and at times acrimonious debate Thursday, the Rhode Island House of Representatives sent to Gov. Lincoln Chafee a bill that would require voters to show identification at the polls starting next year.

A driver’s license, a passport, military ID or a voter identification card are among the acceptable forms of identification under the legislation. The bill would require the state to provide free voter identification cards. Until 2014, voters could also use a birth certificate, Social Security card or Medicare card.

Guyana: Guyana working to have elections this year |

Chairman Dr. Steve Surujbally says there will be no turning back in the move to general election after the final voters list is certified by Chief Election Officer Gocool Boodoo in early September.

Addressing political party representatives at the opening of a workshop on Wednesday the chairman said there are some who may “conspire to thwart” their efforts.

“Our action plan shows that he, (Boodoo) if everything is correct, we will leave no stone unturned to have everything correct, early September, I think it’s the 4th that he will be ready to provide that list. After that, that list has a shelf life of three months, do the math yourself,” Dr. Surujbally stated. The general and regional elections are constitutionally due by December 28.

Morocco: Moroccans Vote on Draft Constitution That Gives More Power to Parliament | Bloomberg

Moroccans vote in a referendum today on a draft constitution drawn up at the orders of King Mohammed VI, with activists who demand a reduction in the monarch’s powers calling for a boycott of the vote.

Under the proposal, the prime minister would be chosen from the party that wins elections. The king would retain the power to overrule or dissolve the parliament, and his role as “commander of the faithful” in the Islamic country. Polls open at 8 a.m. local time and close at 7 p.m., with 13 million people eligible to vote. It’s not clear when results will be announced.

New Zealand: New Zealand Electoral Commission deputy chair appointed | Scoop News

The Government today announced the appointment of Jane Huria as a member and Deputy Chair of the Electoral Commission.

Ms Huria’s appointment by the Governor-General is for a term of four years.
“Parliament has unanimously endorsed the appointment of Ms Huria, who will play a vital role in preparing New Zealand for this year’s General Election and the referendum on our voting system,” Justice Minister Simon Power said.

The new consolidated Electoral Commission was created as part of the Government’s wider programme of electoral reform and became operational on 1 October last year.

Bangladesh: Bangladesh abolishes caretaker government for elections | The Associated Press

Bangladesh’s Parliament on Thursday rescinded a 15-year-old requirement that general elections be overseen by nonpartisan caretaker governments — a move the opposition says could allow incumbents to rig the votes.

The ruling coalition of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina pushed the constitutional amendment through Parliament with a vote of 291-1, well more than the two-thirds majority needed in the 345-member chamber. The opposition’s 38 members abstained. The caretaker system came under fire in 2007 after a military-backed caretaker government stayed beyond its mandated three months and delayed the voting by about two years.

Opposition lawmakers, however, argue the new rules will allow Hasina to steer the result of the next parliamentary polls due in 2014, and have vowed to protest the move by continuing a campaign of general strikes and street protests started this month.

Egypt: Foreign Ministry to develop Egyptian expatriate voting process | Al-Masry Al-Youm

The Foreign Ministry seeks to develop an expatriate voting process for any upcoming elections or referendums in collaboration with other state bodies, it said Thursday. The ministry’s official spokesperson, Menha Bakhoum, said in a statement that there are many obstacles to organizing the balloting process for Egyptians abroad, such as the absence of legislative rules.

The interim government granted Egyptian expatriates voting rights when it amended election laws earlier this year.

However, in an interview with Al-Masry Al-Youm, Minister of Telecommunications and Information Technology Maged Othman ruled out the possibility of expatriates taking part in parliamentary elections set for September.

The Voting News Daily: US Senators concerned by photo ID requirement to vote, In conservative New England state, voter ID vetoed

National: Senators concerned by photo ID requirement to vote | Sixteen Democratic senators want the Justice Department to look into whether voting rights are being jeopardized in states that require photo identification in order for people to vote. The lawmakers wrote Attorney General Eric Holder on Wednesday to express concern that millions of voters do…

National: Senators concerned by photo ID requirement to vote |

Sixteen Democratic senators want the Justice Department to look into whether voting rights are being jeopardized in states that require photo identification in order for people to vote.

The lawmakers wrote Attorney General Eric Holder on Wednesday to express concern that millions of voters do not have a government-issued ID — particularly older people, racial minorities, low-income voters and students. The senators say the photo ID requirements have the potential to block millions of eligible people from exercising their right to vote.

Justice Department spokeswoman Tracy Schmaler said the department is monitoring, as it routinely does, this type of legislative activity in the states.

New Hampshire: In conservative New England state, voter ID vetoed | peoplesworld

New Hampshire might be the most conservative state in New England, but John Lynch, the Democratic governor, isn’t following the tea-party crowd. He vetoed June 27 a bill that would require all residents to present photo identification before voting.

“There is no voter fraud problem in New Hampshire,” Lynch said upon vetoing the bill. “We already have strong elections laws that are effective in regulating our elections.”

Stricter voting laws have been pushed in New Hampshire and in states across the country by the Republican Party and its tea-party allies. They argue that civic groups like ACORN have manipulated the voting process. Opponents point out that no significant cases of voter fraud have actually been uncovered.