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Super Tuesday

Dan

Dear Leader
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18,199
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I stopped by my precinct's voting station today to cast my ballot in the primary elections. Aside from a bunch of judicial candidates, almost all of which were Irish-Americans for some strange reason, and a few tax issues, there was the Democratic presidential candidate.

Because Cuyahoga County uses Florida-style Votomatic punch card ballots, my vote was probably cast for Dennis Kucinich or Lyndon LaRouche, instead of my preferred candidate.

Anyhow, it didn't seem like I was really voting, not with those flimsy hole-punching thingies. 180 miles east, in Buffalo, Mom and Dad will vote the way my great-great grandparants did, using a massive, RUGGED! grey 1930s-era he-man-woman-hating mechanical voting machine, crafted by proud union workers in someplace like Troy, New York or Youngstown, Ohio. As you throw back a huge metal lever to the left, resulting in a grinding of gears, a loud SNAP!, and the separating of privacy curtains, you KNOW you voted.
 

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mendelman

Unfrozen Caveman Planner
Staff member
Moderator
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13,320
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49
that's some RUGGED voting machine!

looks like a 1930s era telephone switchboard.
 

biscuit

Cyburbian
Messages
3,904
Points
25
That rugged voting equipment is exactly what I had to use during the last election. In my almost nihne years of voting I had never seen a monstrosity like that before, In fact, I had to take a second or two and look the machine over to make sure I used it correctly.

As for the primary.... Well, Pennsylvania's is pretty late in the season so the candidate will be all but official by then. Besides, being that I'm a GDI, I'm not allowed to vote in the state primary race.
 
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ludes98

Cyburbian
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1,264
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22
I have not been to the polls in a long time. I exclusively vote early by mail. I don't miss the voting experience.
 

MD Planner

Cyburbian
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2,114
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29
That voting booth brings back memories Dan. We even had one of those in my high school for student council elections. Being behind that curtain really made it seem much more secretive and thus more significant (at least to a 16 year old kid)

Here in Maryland we now have touch screen voting. I have my doubts about it. I just can't figure out how a recount would be possible if it's needed. There is no physical record of your ballot. We used to have the absolute easiest ballots I've ever seen. You got a ballot and a marker and you completed an arrow next to the persons name you were voting for. My philosphy for most things is KISS Keep It Simple Stupid. I guess not enough people share that view.
 

Floridays

Cyburbian
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769
Points
21
Here in Maryland we now have touch screen voting. I have my doubts about it. I just can't figure out how a recount would be possible if it's needed. There is no physical record of your ballot. We used to have the absolute easiest ballots I've ever seen. You got a ballot and a marker and you completed an arrow next to the persons name you were voting for. My philosphy for most things is KISS Keep It Simple Stupid. I guess not enough people share that view.
Yay! Someone who shares my viewpoint exactly! Ever heard of the south Florida elections? And the problems with the machines? Guess what...we actually are recruited to help the supervisor of elections because people can't seem to figure out how to touch a screen on a machine. It's insane. My approach? It may be easier to do it like the Tribal Council on "Survivor." Write the name down and drop it in a pot. Sheesh. I just don't see why it is so friggin hard to vote down here. Amazing. (no I'm not bitter...really! :) )
 
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Cardinal

Cyburbian
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10,080
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34
We live in a country that has never had an instance of election fraud or mechanical problems with voting machines. Why would we ever want to have a physical record of the actual votes that were cast?
 

Rem

Cyburbian
Messages
1,524
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23
Our elections (all levels of government) are conducted with a paper ballot, marked with a pencil and stuffed into a box. It respects KISS up to that point. But, because we have proportional, preferential or straight proportional representation, things get complicated at counting stage.
 

otterpop

Cyburbian
Messages
6,655
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28
We vote paper ballots marked by a felt tip pen here in Helena. Needless to say, we aren't a Super Tuesday state. You don't see many candidates stumping here in the Big Sky country. Our electoral votes are nearly nil. We can count on the front runner of each party maybe getting off a plane in Billings, shaking a few hand, having a $100 plate dinner and then getting on the plane to go to a state that really matters to them.
 

Dan

Dear Leader
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18,199
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Rem said:
Our elections (all levels of government) are conducted with a paper ballot, marked with a pencil and stuffed into a box. It respects KISS up to that point. But, because we have proportional, preferential or straight proportional representation, things get complicated at counting stage.
Doesn't Australia have instant runoff voting, too?

I'd feel very wary of marking a ballot in pencil, since it can be erased.
 

michaelskis

Cyburbian
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19,770
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47
I hear in Canada, they put Maple Surup on the candidates, line them up, and release a moose... the one that can keep as much of the surup on as possible is the winner of the election.
 

Zoning Goddess

Cyburbian
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13,853
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39
Geez, I haven't seen a machine like that since I was maybe 6 and Mom took me along when she voted.

I'm in FL and in past elections we've filled in the little circles with a pen, just like the SATs. No hole-punching.
 

ilikefish0

Cyburbian
Messages
204
Points
9
Looks just like the voting machines that got dropped off at our garage every election day. I never really understood why they came to our house (it was very out of the way). Eventually voting got moved to a nearby firehouse.
 

JNA

Cyburbian Plus
Messages
25,154
Points
55
First experience voting was the RUGGED voting machine.
Most recent experiences was the Florida-style punch card ballots. Like Dan who did I just not vote for.
I have voted absentee by mail - nice and easy but if you are out of your area any length of time (like when you where in college) you must question yourself about voting for peope and issues you don't have the first clue about.
Now my fair county is going use touch screen voting.
 

NHPlanner

A shadow of my former self
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Fill in circles and optical scanners is the norm in most NH communities.
 

Tranplanner

maudit anglais
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7,903
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35
NHPlanner said:
Fill in circles and optical scanners is the norm in most NH communities.
Same in Toronto. Federal and Provincial elections still use paper ballots though that might be changing.
 

Gedunker

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Rem said:
But, because we have proportional, preferential or straight proportional representation, things get complicated at counting stage.
Some wag once said that "Democracy is not in the voting, it's in the counting".

Dan, I voted on those machines and loved 'em. It truly was a private, contemplative experience behind the curtain. Each lever was solid, so you knew when you pushed it down that you had selected a certain candidate. You could step back and verify before you pulled the big lever and make any last-second changes. And when you pulled that big lever, and the gears turned, man, it clunked into place. I seem to remember a bell ringing as well, but I can't be sure. Anyway, everyone knew you had fulfilled your obligation in this great democracy.

Now we have chintzy, plastic stands to "complete the arrow" and a scanner. Technology may (and I use "may" with great suspicion) have made it easier/faster/more reliable, but I am not sure if it is really better, IMHO.
 

BKM

Cyburbian
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6,464
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29
New touch screen machines in Solano County, California. I didn't notice if they were "The software backdoor is open and I guarantee Bush will win Ohio" Diebold machines or not. :)
 
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