One American Citizen

The View Of An American Citizen
expr:class='"loading" + data:blog.mobileClass'>

ad top

Saturday, February 8, 2020

How Can We Secure Our Elections

     One of the main topics that comes up during election season is "is our voting system secure?" The answer is unclear and that is unacceptable to me. With something a serious as our elections, we should have 100% confidence in the system we are using. It needs to be standardized across the nation. Some states use paper ballots at the polls, others use electronic voting booths, and some, like my state of Washington, have switched entirely to absentee ballots. Having so many different systems opens up many issues with vote counts, especially with mail in voting and the electronic voting booths.
    As we saw with the Iowa Caucus this year, electronics are not reliable enough nor are they secure enough to handle our voting. It also opens up the door to conspiracy theories about the vote being tampered with and personally, I am not ruling out that the vote was tampered with in Iowa. Lets face it, nearly any electronic system has the ability to be hacked or altered and that leads to the wide distrust in the voting system as we have seen in recent elections.
     Electronics aren't the only system that has issues with count accuracy and security. Anyone above the age of 30 most likely remembers the infamous "Hanging Chad" controversy. In a quick recap, Al gore was challenging George W. Bush in the 2000 election and needed to win Florida. Many Florida voters used Votomatic-style punched card ballots that, if not punched our correctly, resulted in a "hanging chad" and could lead to a vote not being counted by the machine. Long story short, hanging chads resulted in recounts and ultimately the Supreme Court of the United States intervening in a controversial decision basically ending the recount effort and giving the win to Bush. 
     Paper absentee ballots also are surrounded by controversy. In nearly every election we here about a close race in which a recount is called. During that recount, it always seems that votes are "found" somewhere. Sometimes they are found at post offices, ballot drop boxes, and even once in the trunk of a car. That always leads to conspiracies from the losing party that the votes were manufactured. Absentee voting also leads to the controversial effort of ballot harvesting, in which volunteers go to peoples houses to help people fill out their ballots and take them to the drop off point. This practice is illegal in many states but is legal in some like California. Just prior to the 2018 midterm elections, the California State Legislature passed a bill making ballot harvesting legal. This result in a large amount of ballots being submitted late which delayed the results of the election. In a number of races, preliminary results were indicating that one candidate was in the lead but after the harvested ballots were tallied, the race flipped to the other candidate. This lead to wide spread speculation that the harvesting was corruptly done and that only ballots for one particular candidate were making it to the drop off.
     So, how can we make our elections secure? We need to get back to basics and yes, it includes requiring ID to vote. First and foremost, get rid all technology when it comes to casting votes. That means no voting by smart phone, internet, or even electronic polling stations. We need to go back to the good ole paper ballot. Paper is the most secure way of voting when done correctly. This means no more mailing or dropping off ballots in ballot boxes. You must either go to a polling station to cast your vote OR fill out an absentee ballot at home and personally take it to the precinct where it will be counted. This would eliminate any speculation that votes are being "found" or "corruptly harvested" because it shrinks the amount of people handling the ballot and ensures that the vote makes it to the secure counting facility.
    In order to secure our elections, we must require ID to vote. Not only will this stop the conspiracies about the possibility of ineligible people voting, but it will ensure that the person who filled the ballot out is the person dropping it off at the polling station. It is absolutely ridiculous that we do not have a Voter ID law in this country. The claims by the opponents of the law are unfounded and make very little sense. If it comes down to it, make a program where the government will pay for the ID if the cost would cause hardship to low income people. It would be very easy and inexpensive to remove all barriers when it comes to voter ID. In my opinion, if you are against Voter ID laws, then you are assuming that the votes by ineligible people are going in your favor. 
    Now, I'm sure some would say going to a polling station would be a hardship for some and like every rule, I think there could be exceptions. If someone demonstrates that it would be a legitimate hardship for them to travel to vote, then they could apply for a mail in absentee ballot. This wouldn't jeopardize the integrity of the election because a vast majority of the votes would be handled in person. There wouldn't be enough votes being mailed in to make it worth trying to intercept or harvest them in order to influence the outcome of the election, not because you actually think it's wrong. 
    Our elections are fundamental to the success of our nation. We must be confident in the integrity of our vote counts and right now, it appears there is very little trust that the elections are fair and free of manipulations. What I laid out above is the only way I can see our vote being secure to the point that the population will accept the outcome without a feeling of doubt. If we can't trust our voting system, how can we trust anything our government does. We need to get back to basics and fix this before we get to a point that there is no confidence in our elections and we are no better than other countries with corrupt elections. 

-American Citizen
Sign Up for My Weekly Newsletter for Great Updates on Firearm News and Bill Status

No comments:

Post a Comment

Democrats Pulling Shady Moves in Washington to Pass The AG's Agenda

     Drama is unfolding in Olympia over the magazine ban bills. The patriots of Washington breathed a small sigh of relief on February 19th ...