November 22, 2004
On eVoting without a paper trail & the new importance of statistics

Michael Hout, Laura Mangels, Jennifer Carlson, and Rachel Best: Working Paper: The Effect of Electronic Voting Machines on Change in Support for Bush in the 2004 Florida Elections:

Public discussion of changing voting technology raised concern that some forms of electronic voting might produce a discrepancy between votersí intentions and tabulations of the electionís outcome. In particular, touch-screen voting machines were criticized for being unverifiable unless they printed out a hard copy that voters could certify as correct and election officials could keep in case a recount was ordered. Without a paper trail, statistical comparisons of jurisdictions that used e-voting are the only tool available to diagnose problems with the new technology.
Compared to counties with paper ballots, counties with electronic voting machines were significantly more likely to show increases in support for President Bush between 2000 and 2004. This effect cannot be explained by differences between counties in income, number of voters, change in voter turnout, or size of Hispanic/Latino population. In Broward County alone, President Bush appears to have received approximately 72,000 excess votes. We can be 99.9% sure that these effects are not attributable to chance.
Haiko Hebig:
This is Florida only. You do the math. The interesting part is not that such things happened, but that there is so much silence around them.
File under the 2004 U.S. Election controversies and irregularities...

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I like The Onion's take on the future of US e-voting:

Posted by: HŚkon Styri on November 22, 2004 05:14 PM
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