Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Vote early and vote often

Via blogging newcomer Cruella, a case study of what everyone feared would probably happen:

"Kim Griffith voted on Thursday— over and over and over.

"She's among the people in Bernalillo and Sandoval counties who say they have had trouble with early voting equipment. When they have tried to vote for a particular candidate, the touch-screen system has said they voted for somebody else...

"She went to Valle Del Norte Community Center in Albuquerque, planning to vote for John Kerry. "I pushed his name, but a green check mark appeared before President Bush's name," she said...

"She again tried to vote for Kerry, but the screen again said she had voted for Bush. The third time, the screen agreed that her vote should go to Kerry.

"She faced the same problem repeatedly as she filled out the rest of the ballot. On one item, "I had to vote five or six times," she said."


Meanwhile, PoliticalStrategy.org expresses more fears that this election has already been cast into doubt. Minority voter turnout being suppressed, voter registration irregularities, attempts to invalidate registration documents, voter intimidation squads at polling booths, insufficient numbers of ballot papers, rumours of bogus officials collecting early ballots, reports of huge queues and chaos at early polling stations in Palm Beach, Florida, and now doubts over touch-screen voting accuracy.

It all sounds like shades of 2000. And we all know how well that worked out for America and for the world...

The following states are offering early voting. If you are American and you live in one of these (whether voting for Bush or Kerry), it might be an idea to start trying to fulfil your democratic right and duty sooner rather than later, lest your vote be discounted or given to the wrong guy on the day:

Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma (Begins Oct 29), Oregon (by mail), Tennessee, Texas, West Virginia.

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