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What's with voting machines and are they necessary?

Discussion in 'Political Zone' started by Phrozen Phil, Oct 21, 2008.

  1. Phrozen Phil

    Phrozen Phil Active Member

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    Several times during the past couple of years and during the last election, there have been reports of voting machines breaking down, not working at all, and lengthy lines to get into them. After the "Hanging Chad" incident you might wonder if they make sense. Up here we use a paper ballot, (albeit on a single vote) but with all the problems and potential cost, are they a good idea?
  2. BrAinPaiNt

    BrAinPaiNt Bad Santa Staff Member

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    If they keep them they need to have a paper trail for the voter and the ballot counters.

    That way you can get the totals quicker via the computer but if there is a problem the voter has proof that a vote was cast that he did not pick...or if there are questions the ballot counters have a paper backup to count.

    Two counties in my state, one being the county I live in, have already had troubles with the machines. Some people voted for Obama and the screen flashes up that they voted for McCain.

    In these cases, at least in my county, it was a computer issue and they are looking into it now.

    But what if those people did not pay attention or if the screen reset itself before they could get to someone working there? Neither the voter or those checking would have no paper trail to show anything.

    So they need to do a system where they use the electronic machines for easier and quicker tallies but with a paper trail for back up and verification.
  3. Phrozen Phil

    Phrozen Phil Active Member

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    Wouldn't it be simpler to just use a paper ballot to begin with?
  4. Kangaroo

    Kangaroo Active Member

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    Been using the digital voting for over 5 years in Harris county and we have no issues at all.

    I love them and then again I am a geek
  5. joseephuss

    joseephuss Well-Known Member

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    A computer system should be pretty simple. It should not be difficult to have a computer system that can print out a paper receipt as a back up if there is ever a discrepancy.

    I am all for voting machines/computers.
  6. Phrozen Phil

    Phrozen Phil Active Member

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    Fair enough. Maybe the only time I hear about these things is when they go wrong.
  7. joseephuss

    joseephuss Well-Known Member

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    That may be true of paper ballots as well. Most paper ballots are counted by machines/scanners/computers anyway.
  8. Cajuncowboy

    Cajuncowboy Preacher From The Black Lagoon

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    Don't forget the whole hangin' chad thing as well on those paper punch ballots.
  9. notherbob

    notherbob Active Member

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    Somebody once said that it is not the voters who determine the outcome of an election but those who count the votes.

    Computers may appear to be doing what the user says but actually they are doing what the programmer says.

    At least with a paper ballot you can see who you tried to vote for even though you can't see how the vote counter tallied your vote.
  10. Beast_from_East

    Beast_from_East Well-Known Member

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    I dont trust voting machines myself.

    I just saw a report on the news about some voting machines "flipping the vote".

    Meaning, you vote for McCain and it displays Obama and vice versa.

    How many times is this happenning and they are actually catching it, maybe 5% of the time???

    This type of stuff calls into question the validity of all votes, gives the impression that elections are fixed.

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