In the mid-term elections on Tuesday, voters encountered malfunctioning machines, website crashes and delayed polling place openings in polling places around the country, while new voter ID requirements contributed to heavy volume on national election protection hotlines. Nationwide the trend away from touchscreen voting machines continued with over 70 percent of votes cast on voter-marked paper ballots. Barbara Simons notes that in this year’s election 31 states allowed over 3 million voters to cast ballots over the Internet in this election, a practice that computer security experts in both the federal government and the private sector have warned is neither secure nor trustworthy. In fact, Alaska’s own election site includes a disclaimer about votes cast through online voting or by fax. “When returning the ballot through the secure online voting solution, your are voluntarily waiving your right to a secret ballot and are assuming the risk that a faulty transmission may occur,” according to Alaska’s Division of Elections website. A federal appeals court has ruled that Arizona and Kansas cannot force a federal agency to add state proof-of-citizenship requirements to federal voting registration forms. ES&S acknowledged that a programming error caused an electronic ballot on its iVotronic voting machine to display the wrong name for the Republican candidate in the race for Texas governor. Calibration errors caused aging touchscreen voting machines in Virginia and elsewhere to behave erratically, causing concern among candidates and voters. Legal irregularities and troublesome voting procedures during the first round of the Romanian Presidential election cast uncertainty over the upcoming runoff and analysts have questioned the validity of separatist elections in Eastern Ukraine.
Nov 9 2014