Touch-Screen Voting in 2006!
A House united. That seems to be the effect that Diebold has had on the state of Maryland where they had initially deployed their paperless touch-screen voting machines in 2002 as one of two "showcase" states along with Georgia.
That "showcase" has turned into yet another public relations fiasco for Diebold of late.
The Republican Governor there recently slammed Diebold's paperless system, called for paper ballots and announced he had lost confidence in the State Board of Election and its Diebold-supporting Director, Linda Lamone, to carry out a fair election. Then information surfaced that Lamone had allowed MD to use uncertified Diebold software in the 2002 and 2004 elections. Then revelations were made public of massive machine failures in 2004. And now this from MD's Democratic House...
The state of Maryland stands poised to put its entire $90 million investment in Diebold Election Systems Inc. touch-screen e-voting systems on ice because they can’t produce paper receipts.
The state House of Delegates this week voted 137-0 to approve a bill prohibiting election officials from using AccuVote-TSx touch-screen systems in 2006 primary and general elections.
The bill was sent onto the State Senate for a vote after the House action, she said.
Healey said the effort was inspired in part by concerns raised by officials in California and Florida that the Diebold systems have inherent security problems caused by technological and procedural flaws.
Note the reference to the AccuVote-TSx system in the above is an error in ComputerWorld's reporting. Maryland uses the AccuVote-TS system which does not include a "voter-verified paper trail" -- unlike the newer TSx model which does.
Also note, the movement in the MD statehouse is calling for "paper receipts" or "paper trails" which is a far cry from paper ballots -- you know, those things which are actually counted, unlike paper "receipts" or "trails" which are not. Though their interim plan to lease optical-scan machines for 2006 would mean there would actually be ballots used -- at least until 2008.
Washington Post ran a story on this on the front page of this morning's print edition ...
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