There was a letter-to-the-editor this week in several papers encouraging voting on paper rather than on touch screen machines. Over and over it has been proven that touch screen machines correctly tally the votes and provide a back-up paper copy which is produced at the time the voter is in front of it and which the voter should verify. With the state of technology no one can guarantee absolutely that any system is not vulnerable to manipulation but safeguards are built into this method, and it doesn’t seem that the paper copy that is produced could be tampered with without showing signs of defacement.
If anyone has reservations about touch screen voting, they should attend the public test of voting machines that is held before each election in each municipality. (The notices for same are in this week’s papers.) Each person attending can actually vote on the machine to test the accuracy of the count, or if there are too many in attendance to get hands-on (which seldom happens) they can watch and question every step and see the tally with their own eyes. This will actually be the 2nd test of the machines because the clerks have to test them immediately when they receive the cartridges to look for any errors and to be sure the tally is correct.
The paper ballots (the hand count ones that are in use by most towns and villages, not the ones that are scanned by machine in the city) for this election are going to cause a headache for election inspectors – the presidential preference ones – because the voter gets 3 sheets of paper and the inspectors are going to have to be hawk-eyed and alert to be sure that the voter is not putting more than the 1 ballot to which she/he is entitled in the ballot box. Whereas voting on the touch screen will not allow a person to vote more than 1 party nor more candidates than are allowed.
I hope that you will spread the word about the integrity of the Barron County touch screen voting machines.