[E-voting] info on 2004 election irregularities

David GLAUDE dglaude at ael.be
Mon Nov 8 22:05:55 GMT 2004

I have a conspiracy theory about what the optical reading give strange=20
result when you compare poll exit result and official result...

Evoting vendor do not like optical reading (because it cost less than=20
DRE and "computer mistake" can be detected and proven.

So there is a high interest for vendor to make optical reading to fail.

If the "failure" is not detected, then there is going to be an happy=20
election candidate.

If the failure is detected, then citizen will want to get rid of that=20
horrible system (like they did get rid of punch card).

All in all american citizen do not like recount and prefer clear result.=20
This feeling is so strong that Kerry choose to conceed in the interest=20
of america (and to avoid beeing seen as someone that can not loose).

The same way, in Belgium the official expert are not in favor of=20
DRE-with-VVAT. It was a mess (more likely a mess by design if you=20
consider the procedure, the fact that in the two locations choosed for=20
DRE-with-VVAT there was no manual counting since before 1991 (more than=20
10 years) and they don't want it anymore and they say it to decision make=

The only problem for Belgium is that DRE-without-VVAT is capable of=20
production mathematicaly (not statisticaly) impossible result... and=20
that is hard to cover. ;-)

Justin Mason wrote:
>   'Always include that it takes two steps - (A) HAVING a paper ballot (=
>   was verified by the voter) and then (B) USING the PAPER ballots for a
>   mandatory auditing recount (of at least a random sample of the smalle=
>   reported sets of votes - usually called a precinct.)'
> that's a good point; if I recall correctly David Glaude noted that in
> Belgium, a recount of DRE-with-VVAT votes used the electronic "record" =
> the more trustworthy source!

It must be noted that the law was clear about what to do in case of=20
discrepancy between human and computer count.
Also that DRE-with-VVAT was designed as a show case test to demonstrate=20
to the general public that the same DRE-without-VVAT was trustworthy.
The law was designed to be a one shoot and the vendor said on radio that=20
it was never the goal to generalise that DRE-with-VVAT (despite the=20
minister saying that he needed one more year of test to decide wich=20
system is best [all minister said that repeatedly since a long time]).

The expert report is on:=20
http://www.poureva.be/article.php3?id_article=3D32 and say:
[[Le coll=E8ge est d=92avis que les r=E9sultats des op=E9rations de=20
d=E9pouillement manuel des tickets ne peuvent =EAtre consid=E9r=E9s comme=
fiables et que les r=E9sultats de la totalisation automatis=E9e peuvent =EA=
consid=E9r=E9s comme les plus fiables.]]

This mean: "The colledge believe that the result of the manual count can=20
not be considered as reliable and that the electronic result can be=20
considered as the most reliable."

There is no way to tell if the paper count or the electronic count have=20
been used... or not. It does not matter much since the final result of=20
who is to be elected does not change with the small margin of error=20
between the two results.

> Clearly pointless, but it certainly makes the recounting officials' job=
s a
> lot easier.

In our case it is not about recounting. It is about mandatory counting=20
made to proof that the system can be trusted. ;-)


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