Friday, November 14, 2008

Help Audit The CT Elections

I received an email from my friends over at CT Voters Count
They need people to help with post-election audits.
Now You Have Voted: Make Sure Your Vote Counts
Become a Post-Election Audit Observer

We need more observers, especially in Eastern, Northern, and North Western Connecticut

We are planning our biggest audit observation yet, for the Nov Presidential Election. It is likely that close to fifty towns will be counting three races across thousands of ballots. Sign-up is available
The audit period is short: Wed Nov 19 through Mon Nov 24
Their goal is to cover 90% of the audits with a minimum of two Observers.
Your participation will make this goal a reality. Please sign-up today and participate in democracy!

They also reported this about the November elections:
* November Election Integrity Summary
A few glitches reported around Connecticut. Most major races and contests showed wide, comfortable margins. But now is not the time to become complacent, 2009 will be the best time to enact laws in Hartford and Washington to provide election integrity and confidence for 2010 and 2012. Without a strong chain-of-custody and a strong post-election audit, with observers representing the public, we cannot have confidence.

Nationwide there have been many, many problems (for details, see the Daily Voting News): Alleged flipped votes, lost voter registrations both new and old, optical scanners not counting correctly, totals being corrected for reporting errors, and lax voting procedures. Like, Connecticut, so far, none that we know of that could change a major election result.but without solid post-election audits we will never be time there may critical, close elections that could easily be lost by similar errors or fraud.

The good news is that these problems are being identified, surfaced, and to some degree covered by the media.

In Minnesota there is a very close Senate race. On election eve the difference was about 600 votes, which by law mandated a manual, hand-to-eye recount. The apparent winner called on the apparent loser to throw in the towel and call off the recount. Corrections in compiling the results have steadily lowered the margin - the latest is that it stands at 50 votes. If it reverses, will the new apparent looser forgo the recount? Should he or anyone?

Finally, what if that Senate race were in Connecticut, should we be satisfied with our machine based recount? Minnesota always recounted by hand, but last year put the requirement into law - so should Connecticut.
CT Voters Count should be applauded and supported by every voting Connecticut citizen. Help them out and go volunteer your time today.

I gotta tell you that what I witnessed in Hamden when election officers came to town hall, after the election was over, with their equipment and totals was astounding.. lack of proper documentation, improper accounting of seals on returned equipment and bags, some things not sealed.. and I don't suspect fraud but the chain of custody could have been seriously questioned. People were just very poorly trained in my opinion.