Thursday, November 06, 2008

Hold these officials accountable


I have a different take on your question, “Why hasn’t Boulder County Clerk Hillary Hall heard about dust problems on her Hart Scanners? I would suggest that the reason is that there is no mechanism for this kind of problem sharing to take place.“
  1. The problem of spurious marks was detected by the State’s Voting System Certification Team. A CONDITION OF USE was set up that would require special manual pre-scanning treatment of all HART paper ballots. At a hearing, we attempted to protect this condition. However, the powerful, secret, Colorado County Clerks Association lobbied, using incomplete and erroneous arguments, to protect the vendor and themselves from this condition of use. They persuaded the SOS to remove the condition of use.
  2. The architecture of all paper ballot vote counting systems certified in Colorado is fatally flawed. None of these systems provide exports of the ballot images and the interpretation of each vote on each individual ballot. Consequently, independent verification of vote interpretation is not possible – not even by the Canvass Boards.
  3. The LAT is contrived and inadequate. The procedures and materials are idealized, and not at all representative of the real world. And, in the case of Boulder County, the Clerk contrived to exclude the people most knowledgeable of the HART system from serving on the LAT team. (Not to sound like sour grapes, I was not permitted to serve.)
  4. Despite repeated requests that officials follow Colorado Statutes and Rules, the County and the State have neglected to perform “acceptance Tests” of the voting system. The system test would include ballot printers/vendors as well as every other component/subsystem.

From my perspective, the problem of spurious marks on HART optical scanners is not a surprise and is not forgivable.

Election officials should be held individually accountable for this problem.

Al Kolwicz
Colorado Voter Group

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