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Scotland dumps e-voting for hand-counted paper ballots

By       Message Mark Crispin Miller     Permalink

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Having gone through the "fiasco" of e-voting in 2007--the sort of mess that the Republicans and Democrats don't seem to mind at all--Scotland will go back to voting the old-fashioned way: hand-counted paper ballots. Although that method too (of course) enables fraud, the possibilities for election theft are infinitely greater with computerized systems, as we've seen in this faltering democracy time after time.
Funny how the Tea-Baggers (or most of them), for all their hatred of "the government,"don't seem to mind "the government" deploying electronic means to count their votes.
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And it is just as funny (although it's really not the least bit funny) that the Democrats aren't out there vowing to contest the outcomes of tomorrow's races, should there be any evidence of vote suppression or election fraud (as there will surely be, as there has been a lot of just such evidence already, all of which the Dems continue to refuse to see).
Meanwhile, in such vigorous democracies as Scotland and Germany, they've taken steps to make elections sound. (Germany's highest court ruled e-voting unconstituional, as it violates a basic human right.*)
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*http://www.mail-archive.com/newsfromunderground@googlegroups.com/ms g02181.html
http://www.mail-archive.com/newsfromunderground@googlegroups.com/msg0 0959.html
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Electronic voting system scrapped
http://www.google.com/hostednews/ukpress/article/ALeqM5iX9Ej7XylHsT9 skMtHwEIgQ5giPA?docId=N0111001288118627909A
A controversial system of electronic ballot counting is to be ditched for next year's Holyrood election, it has been confirmed.

Votes will instead be counted by hand following the chaos which followed the 2007 Holyrood election which saw more than 140,000 ballots spoilt.
Scottish Secretary Michael Moore has also confirmed that the election next year will also see a return to two separate ballot papers for the constituency seats and regional lists.
Holyrood election ballots to be counted by hand
More than 140,000 ballot papers were spoilt in the 2007 election
Ballot papers for next May's Scottish elections will be counted by hand, in the wake of the 2007 voting fiasco.
The last Holyrood election, which made use of electronic counting, was hit by problems which resulted in more than 140,000 spoilt ballot papers.
There will also be a return to two separate ballot papers for the regional list and constituency contests.
There will be a bigger gap between the close of nominations and polling day, allowing more time for postal voting.
The problems which besieged counting in 2007 also resulted in the suspension of a number of counts across Scotland, and an independent review later concluded voters were "treated as an afterthought" in the planning and organisation of the polls.
Scottish Secretary Michael Moore, who is in charge of Holyrood elections, said: "There is no doubt public confidence needs to be repaired after the problems that were experienced in 2007."
Other changes include a move to display registered party names first on the regional ballot paper, followed by the party description and an option to use the preface "Scottish".
In 2007, the SNP used the phrase "Alex Salmond for first minister" on regional ballot papers.
An order has now been laid before the UK Parliament to make the changes.
Electronic counting will continue to be used in council elections, the running of which is devolved to Scotland.


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Mark's new book, Loser Take All: Election Fraud and the Subversion of Democracy, 2000-2008, a collection 14 essays on Bush/Cheney's election fraud since (and including) 2000, is just out, from Ig Publishing. He is also the author of Fooled Again: The Real Case for Electoral Reform, which is now out in paperback (more...)

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