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Tuesday, March 06, 2007

John Edwards: Junk Touch-Screen Voting Machines

CINCINNATI (TDB) -- Progressive Democrats of America says John Edwards spoke at a California event and said he wants to rid the nation of touch-screen voting. Many are suspicious that the machines can be jiggered to report inaccurate results. There is a movement out there that suspects John Kerry and John Edwards are not in office today because the 2004 election was rigged.

[UPDATE: This post is on the Edwards campaign Web site about his comments. Though not directly from the campaign, it does say Edwards wants DRE machines scrapped. However, there is an inconsistency. The post says he wants those eliminated that do not have paper trails. The other says paper and paperless. I'm attempting to find out what is up.]

Apparently, Edwards was questioned during an appearance four days ago in Pacific Palisades and said the machines must go. His campaign does not seem to have put out a presser. The PDA has a weblog and is reporting an exchange between Edwards and a questioner:

Q. "You know the effect new technology has had on our elections, and after working a year and a half on this, Progressive Democrats of America and others have identified that the worst offender is the touch-screen direct record electronic voting machine.

"Edwards nodded and vigorously drew a large X in the air in front of him with his free hand.

Q. "So I'm going to ask you, do you support complete removal of Touch-Screen Director Record Electronic voting from our election systems, with or without a paper trail?"

A. "Yes!" Edwards replied without elaboration or equivocation."

The blog report said the room erupted in cheers and applause. Election machinery is a sleeping issue on the trail. Questions about accuracy and access and competency are hot in Cuyahoga County, where the board of elections has been plagued with miscues and finally eased out the elections director. Democrat Jennifer Brunner made voting integrity the heart of her successful campaign for Ohio Secretary of State last year. Prediction here: As the campaign grinds along there will be a lot more said about voting and counting ballots correctly. There are too many people out there who don't trust the system to function properly and fairly.

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