Why can't New York City count votes?

  • Article by: EDITORIAL , New York Times
  • Updated: July 3, 2012 - 6:01 PM

The idea that poll workers are told to ignore the computers and do the arithmetic by hand is chillingly absurd.

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martiankingJul. 3, 1210:17 PM

You can come up with whatever argument you want to say machines do the job better, but a verifiable hand cast and counted ballot is the least likely to have a possible fraud committed against it. Have a machine count, but a verified hand count of a hard ballot for final tally.

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hobie2Jul. 4, 12 8:51 AM

Using the tally of the machines that counted the votes to recount is not a recount of the votes - it is just a check on what the machines said... I still want to know why the poll workers can't drop in 100 ballots randomly during the voting - to check that the machine is counting properly - and then remove that count from the counter tally when the polls close. I prefer their mistakes to the machine software arranging elections - almost every poll worker asked in a national survey want the check, the local leaders want it, but the manufacturer "won't allow it" and one of the parties when in power made the no-check rule national law. I trust the poll workers over the manufacturer of a machine that counts who gets to control a trillion dollar budget and direct a $15 trillion economy. Slip the manufacturer or the programmer $50 million in arranged futures wins, and your party wins control?

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owatonnabillJul. 4, 12 9:47 AM

To quote Montgomery Scott in Star Trek III, "The more they overthink the plumbin', the easier it is to stop up the drain". I'll take the occasional mistake made by those doing hand counting, with the ballots kept for validation and recount purposes, over the possibility of wholesale vote fraud being perpetrated by a few mouse clicks by those who know the system well enough to do such a thing.

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gimbelJul. 4, 12 6:43 PM

Well, it's unanimous then at least on this thread. We all believe in hand counts of paper ballots more than we believe in computerized counting of votes. In the case of this article about New York City it sounds to me as though no one has been told to ignore the computer count. They are simply using manual counts as a double check on the computer totals and to my mind that is a real good idea.

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jpcooperJul. 4, 1211:28 PM

Whats more astonishing in NYC is that people are still voting for Charlie Rangel???????

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garagewineJul. 6, 1210:02 AM

"Can't" and "won't" are two entirely different things.

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deebytefullJul. 6, 1211:29 AM

hobie2 - talk to your city or county election officials about what they do to validate the machines. I have worked with the officials in my city validating them prior to election day. They have a test set of ballots that are sent through each and every machine and results verified by two people against what was submitted. If I remember correctly, this process was open for public observation. One other thing - the machines will kick out a ballot with errors, like voting to 2 people instead of 1, so that if someone makes an error they can get a new ballot and correct the error. This would not be possible if all ballots were just put in a big box to be hand counted later.

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eddie55431Jul. 6, 12 2:19 PM

I don't know why the Dems are so concerned about voter ID. As their mentor Joseph Stalin said, "It's not the people who vote that count, it's the people who count the votes!" Does anyone really believe that the vote tally (either paper or machine) in New York is anywhere near close to the truth? From the poll worker patronage positions to the union cops who deliver the ballots the whole system is under the watchful eye and influence of the political machine.

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