Grand County voters shouldn’t have to rely on electronic voting machines
March 8, 2009
To the Editor:
I don’t trust electronic voting machines. I think they aren’t safe from hackers. I think that any machine made by a person can be hacked into by another person, from within or without. The better the machines get, the better the hackers get.
I think our founding fathers would turn over in their graves if they could see that electronic voting machines were suddenly the ONLY way that we were allowed to vote.
I accept the outcome of the recent recall election. It failed. But, I’m concerned about FUTURE ELECTIONS.
My privacy was taken away, on election day, Feb. 17, because I had to ask an election judge to watch every step of my voting, on the electronic machine, to try to make my vote count. How many others, also unfamiliar with electronic voting machines, were too proud to ask for voting help, or didn’t want to give up their privacy while voting?
When the recall election date was first announced, I was told by E. Grand Fire station people that there were going to be two ballot boxes available on election day, for paper ballots ” one ballot box for walk-in voters who prefer voting on paper ballots, and a second ballot box for hand delivered mail-in (absentee) ballots.
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Then, about a month before the election, (not known about by most voters) County Clerk Sara Rosene apparently quietly decided there would NOT be any regular paper ballots available on election day for us voters to use at the polling place. Instead, Sara decided that anyone who insisted on using a paper ballot, rather than the now mandatory electronic voting machines, could use a paper ballot, but their paper ballot would now be called a PROVISIONAL BALLOT. But, PROVISIONAL ballots are for questionable voters, not regular voters. And, provisional ballots are counted LAST, sometimes days after the election, and may not be counted, without our knowing this.
I heard that over 70 percent of votes cast in the Feb. 17 recall election, were PAPER mail-in ballots. So, why were those of us who walked into the E. Grand Firestation (polling place) NOT ALLOWED to vote on regular PAPER ballots too?
I’m concerned that our freedom to use regular paper ballots will be gone forever, in all future elections.
I read in the Sky-Hi Daily News that the electronic voting machines were “tested” a while back, by three people who already knew how to use those machines. A more reliable test would be to use a bunch of people (not just three), who never used electronic machines before, but who did know how to fill out a paper ballot. Results might have been quite different between THEIR paper ballots and electronic votes.
Some words were so small and smudged looking on the electronic machines that election judges had to put sample PAPER ballots above the machines, so people could read the sample PAPER ballots, to know what was supposed to be on the electronic ballots.
I’m doing an informal survey, to find out how many voters, voting either YES OR NO, who voted in person on Feb. 17 wanted to vote using a PAPER ballot, (not provisional) and didn’t want to vote on an electronic voting machine.
Call me at 531-5000. And PLEASE, also call Sara Rosene, County Clerk, at 725-3347. If you’re not satisfied with Sara’s response, call the Colorado Secretary of State, at 303-894-2200 (elections office).