Guy Who Insists E-Voting Machines Work Fine... Demonstrates They Don't

from the say-that-again-please dept

If someone pitched a movie based on e-voting machines that work as bad as the ones being used in the current election, the story would be dumped as being unrealistic. But truth is, indeed, often stranger than fiction. You may recall on Friday that we had a post about problems with e-voting machines in West Virginia selecting the wrong candidate when voters touched the screen. Various officials rushed to insist that there was absolutely nothing wrong. One, the local county clerk, Jeff Waybright insisted that the problems were "the result of voter error."

Well, it appears that a group called Video The Vote went and visited with Mr. Waybright as he showed them how the e-voting machines work, and perhaps the "human error" is on Mr. Waybright's part. The beginning of the video is troubling enough, as he brushes aside concerns while he shows a miscalibrated machine. He demonstrates how he clicks on one candidate and another is highlighted, in a tone of voice that suggests why would anyone possibly be upset or annoyed if that happened? He then oddly thinks the fact that his wildly miscalibrated machine enhances his point because when he clicks on Barack Obama's name, the actual name highlighted isn't McCain (of course, it's not Obama either, but he doesn't seem troubled by this). Waybright seems to think that the only complaint people are making is the fact that some tried to vote for the Democratic ticket and saw the Republican ticket show up -- when the real concern is simply the fact that when you touch one name, someone else's name is highlighted. Democrat or Republican really isn't the issue here.

However, then things get worse. After mocking the idea that anyone clicking on a Democratic ticket vote would get the Republican ticket vote, he shows how to correctly calibrate the machine, showing how easy it is to fix the "problems" of the miscalibrated machine. When he's done, to prove it works, he touches the box to vote for a straight Republican ticket ticket... and, wouldn't you know it, Ralph Nader's name is highlighted as the voter's choice. His response? "Oh, that's out of calibration!" as if it was no big deal, apparently missing the fact that he had just calibrated the machine. He then seems to think none of this is a big deal, because voters will see the misvote before they submit it, apparently unaware of the idea that many people are already quite distrustful of these machines, and seeing them highlight the wrong name over and over again will make them seriously question the legitimacy of the election.

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  1. identicon
    H.R. Hughes, 30 Oct 2008 @ 12:05am

    Election errors in voting machines

    What bothers the hell out of me is that with all these errors compounded by the ignorant people in charge as reported, is that the errors will undoubtedly stand after the election is over. We had fours years since the last presidential election to solve the many voting problems that were reported.

    Some problems probably simply did not exist and were reported by disgruntled losers. Keep recounting the votes until you find out how many you need to change the election your way, then produce the needed votes from somewhere, somehow.

    As far as I am concerned, the election officials are criminally negligent in their duties and should have resolved and cleared up the problems a long time ago. There is no penalty for being incompetent in these positions but a lot of people should have to spend some time in prison for their failure to perform adequately.

    We are losing our faith in the election process vote counting and someone other than the voter must be held responsible for this scandal. Acorn is a bunch of nuts and they are no help at all in maintaining the integrity of the election process. A bunch of them need to spend some time in prison in addition to the time some of them have probably already spent in prison. What a bunch of crooks!!!

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