Monday, August 23, 2004

Election year shenanigans

Florida is attempting to lower the number of African American voters in the state by using State Troopers to intimidate get out the vote campaigners, as well as those flawed felony lists from the last election.

Paul Krugman on Florida's flawed electronic voting machines.

Jim Hightower reports that the League of Women's Voters want a return to paper balloting.

The NY Times editorial board reports that some states are refusing to count provisional ballots (those cast when the person voting can't make it back to his/her assigned voting place).

An article in The Nation on insecure electronic voting systems and how they could be used to steal an election (long, but good).

Some might say, looking at the links above (most of which require you to register with the NY Times), that liberals are on message for once. Some might think that this is inevitable given the last election and how it was hashed out. I would argue that it's in the best interests of everyone in the country - Democrats, Republicans, Greens, Libertarians, et al - to make certain that we get accurate vote counts and that everyone is encouraged to vote. After all, each election year brings politicians out who lament the lack of participation in the electoral process. Both parties have played a hand over the years in suppressing the vote. Simple changes like changing the day people vote or extending the days to an entire weekend, absentee balloting, making it easier to establish third parties and allow them into debates, open primaries, and such could easily be enacted and would expand the number of people who want to vote. In some cases the major parties have actually fought those concepts. In Washington, for instance, they have fought (and won) against our open primary system (a very popular system, I might add - I actually participated in every primary since moving here which I could not say the same for Michigan). When are people going to get angry enough to demand an end to this?

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