Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Maryland City Considers Online Voting

Takoma Park, Maryland is considering allowing voters to cast their ballots online this November.

But before anything is decided, a system test will be conducted on June 9 where voters will be asked to pick their favorite Beatle and their favorite poet. For voters who are stressed about this difficult decision, rest assured that refreshments will be served. Here's how the system would work:

Voters would be mailed an envelope that contained, wait for it…more envelopes!
  1. One (sealed) envelope would contain an absentee paper ballot.
  2. The second unsealed outer envelope would be used to return the ballot to the city and would contain a third unsealed inner envelope.
  3. The third inner envelope would have scratch-off codes that give the voter the option of casting their ballot online.

But if you want to return it by mail, that's okay too. All you have to do is put your "marked ballot in the inner envelope, which…will [be] put in the outer envelope and mail[ed] to the city"--the exact same absentee voting process used in the past.

Leaving aside the many inner and outer envelopes, would you prefer to cast your ballot online, mail it in, or vote in person?

(Image Source)



1 comment:

1d1e7f7e-9892-11e0-bf13-000bcdcb471e said...

Cf. http://verifiedvoting.org/internet -- preferences should take into account whether the system is safe from tampering, private, capable of being authenticated, and capable of being audited or recounted. Online balloting is none of the above. The problem is less in the system deployed and more in the pathways the vote has to travel -- opening the voting system to tampering via a worldwide avenue.

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