There is no good reason to use voting machines

At the time I was elected president of the Rotary Club of Strongsville, Ohio, the club had about 160 members. About 100 or so usually were in attendance at our weekly breakfast meetings.

Our annual elections for club officers and directors worked like this:

Club members were given paper ballots and pens. Completed ballots were collected, then transported into another room where about a half dozen Rotarians counted and recounted—and recounted and recounted—them. Within about 20 minutes, we had results of around 10 to 15 contests.

If anybody took issue with the results we had the paper ballots to verify the count.

Paper ballots don’t dissolve during the count. Inked checkmarks can’t be slid across the page into a different column.

My voting precinct—Strongsville 3-C—has 1,331 registered voters who cast 865 ballots—by mail and in person—in the November 8 mid-term election. If a handful of Rotarians can process 100 paper ballots in 20 minutes, then a much larger group of counters, representing all political parties, should be able to accurately count—and recount and recount—865 ballots within hours after the polls close.

It used to be done that way before we digitized the process, and David Brinkley usually had no problem announcing the winners before people went to bed.

Now that we have leveraged technology to provide convenient, efficient and accurate election results, it has become normal to wait days, if not weeks, to learn some of the results. As I write this, it is two days after Election Day and we still don’t know which branch of the elitist uniparty will control the U.S. Senate and the House of Representatives for the next two years.

In Ohio, a precinct, by law, may have no more than 1,400 registered voters.

Assuming a 50 percent turnout, the counting of 700 ballots by citizens in each precinct on election night is not a daunting task. It wouldn’t be complicated for each precinct’s results to be delivered to each county board of elections and entered on a simple spreadsheet to determine totals.

There is absolutely no good reason to use machines in our elections.

If we want to leverage technology, let’s make it cameras, positioned all over the paper ballot counting area to capture any funny business. You can get them at Wal-Mart for about $30 apiece.

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