January 17, 2005

Does E-Voting Really Produce More Flawed Ballots?

Today, Political Wire links to a Sun-Sentinel article which states that E-Voting Produced More Flawed Ballots during the Florida election. However, the article does raise questions as to whether they have really discovered anything or are trying to push their own agenda (what a surprise).

The article attempts to make the case that when comparing 2004 Presidential ballots completed in optical scan machines and the newed e-voting machines, the newer machines produced worse results. The Sun states:

"Of 2.7 million votes on touch screens reviewed, 11,824 ballots had no vote registered for president. Of 2.3 million votes on optical-scan machines, 6,731 ballots were not recorded or flawed."

There are some flaws with their analysis. Since the touch screen votes had 11,000 ballots with no vote registered as opposed to only 6,700 optical scan ballots with no vote recorded OR which were flawed, the Sun attempts to lead the reader to the conclusion that there were many more flawed ballots on the touch screens. However, there were evidently no "flawed" ballots to count on the touch screens so the Sun is attempting to equate no votes with flawed ballots. Last I checked, it is NOT a flaw to decide not to vote for President, as shocking as that may be to the wingnuts on both sides of the aisle.

In addition, one could use this paucity of facts to conclude, just as easily, that the statistics indicate optical scan ballots were manipulated and many more optical scan ballots may have been "no vote" ballots (matching the numbers of e-voting ballots) that were later "completed" by someone after the voter voted. In no event do the "results" found by the Sun merit the unambiguous conclusion indicated by the title "Touch screens more likely to be flawed."

11:39 AM in 2004 Election | Permalink | TrackBack

November 24, 2004

If at first you don't suceed, litigate, litigate, litigate

Looks like Democrats are going to continue to litigate the Washington State governor's race, even though the Republican candidate won the election and the first recount.

10:34 AM in 2004 Election | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

November 09, 2004

Democrats Beginning to Face Reality?

In the NYTimes, James Carville: ""I think we have to come to grips with the fact that we are an opposition party right now and not a particularly effective one. I'm out of denial. Reality has hit."

You don't say?

09:23 AM in 2004 Election | Permalink | TrackBack

Harry Reid Replacing Daschle

The brouhaha over the direction of the Democratic party is already underway and is epitomized by the fight that may occur over the selection of Harry Reid as Senate Minority Leader. A Nancy Pelosi he is not. How this evolves will say much about which side (progressive or centrist wing) of the party has the upper hand following the election debacle.

09:17 AM in 2004 Election | Permalink | TrackBack

November 08, 2004

Interesting Thought - Clinton (v 3.0) vs Arnold

David Post at The Volokh Conspiracy has posted an intriguing idea - Clinton v. Schwarzenegger, 2008. Personally, I love the idea. It definitely would be interesting.

10:44 PM in 2004 Election | Permalink | TrackBack

The Important Hispanic Minority

We are going to be hearing a new mantra over the next several election cycles - you can't win without the Hispanic vote.  Whether there really is a monolithic category that can be labeled hispanic is open to debate, but this has been a base the Democrats have traditionally relied upon and taken for granted.  This election hilighted the tremendous inroads Republicans have made to appeal to hispanics. 

As with much of the post-election discussion, the electoral move of hispanics to the Republican party is being laid at the feet of values and religion.  I do believe this is part of the Republican success because hispanics do tend to be more religious than other ethnic blocks.  However, I also believe their turn to the right has a lot to do with the societies they have left.  In many Latin American countries, there is a paternalistic governmental ethos (and corruption) that infuses almost all daily actions.  Many Latin American hispanics (as opposed to European hispanics) are distrustful of government and the Republican idea of small government (and whether the current Republicans in power REALLY believe in small government is DEFINITELY open to debate) plays to this distrust. 

Whatever the reasons, the Democratic party must figure out a way to slow the growth of Republican support among hispanics.  It may  be that Bush had a unique appeal to Hispanic voters that would not be replicated by other Republicans.  However, I would expect that Republicans will continue to focus efforts on this extremely important voting block.

Two articles appeared today that discuss the hispanic vote.  One in the NY Times by Carolyn Curiel and another in the WSJ by Michale Gonzalez.

09:49 AM in 2004 Election | Permalink | TrackBack

Not All Europeans Hate America

Evidently there is at least 1 Brit who thinks we made the right choice.

Virginia Postrel writes about why hating America won't win elections.

Mark Steyn holds similar thoughts.

More to the point, nobody who campaigns with Ben Affleck at his side has the right to call anybody an idiot. H. L. Mencken said that no one ever lost money underestimating the intelligence of the American people. Well, George Soros, Barbra Streisand and a lot of their friends just did: The Kerry campaign and its supporters -- MoveOn.org, Rock The Vote, etc. -- were awash in bazillions of dollars, and what have they got to show for it? In this election, the plebs were more mature than the elites: They understood that war is never cost-free and that you don't run away because of a couple of setbacks; they did not accept that one jailhouse scandal should determine America's national security interest; they rejected the childish caricature of their president and paranoid ravings about Halliburton; they declined to have their vote rocked by Bruce Springsteen or any other pop culture poser.

All the above is unworthy of a serious political party. As for this exit-poll data that everyone's all excited about, what does it mean when 22 percent of the electorate say their main concern was "moral issues"? Gay marriage? Abortion? Or is it something broader? For many of us, the war is also a moral issue, and the Democrats are on the wrong side of it, standing not with the women voting proudly in Afghanistan's first election but with the amoral and corrupt U.N., the amoral and cynical Jacques Chirac, the amoral and revolting head-hackers whom Democratic Convention guest of honor Michael Moore described as Iraq's ''minutemen.''

09:31 AM in 2004 Election | Permalink | TrackBack

November 07, 2004

Suggests to Democrats from a Diplomat Abroad

Excellent commentary from diplomats abroad to the Democratic party.

This is not a good scenario for American democracy. The Republican Party does not have all the answers for America's problems and challenges. America needs vigorous debate and realistic options on a number of issues: the role of America in the world; federal vs. state powers; tax reform; deficits; immigration; health care, and so on and so forth. The Democrats should contribute to that debate in a positive and relevant manner. They are not, and do not seem preparing to do so. Instead they utter nonsense about never nominating another candidate from Massachusetts or the northeast; looking for another Clinton-type southern governor; finding somebody who has seen a WalMart, etc. This is condescending nonsense. In the 21st century, Americans won't and don't vote for or against a candidate based on where he or she was born and raised. Americans are drawn to a candidate's character and message; what the candidate genuinely represents. Kerry wasn't defeated because he was from Massachusetts; he was defeated for being a fraud with a confused and insincere message. Given his history of treason and vacillation, the majority of America's voters did not trust him with the nation's security in a time of war. A couple of "hard" speeches and six months of flag-waving didn't fool most Americans -- it certainly didn't fool our military who overwhelmingly voted for Bush. We will leave it to others more qualified to discuss domestic issues. We want to offer a few thoughts to the Democrats on foreign affairs. Foreign policy is a legitimate area for debate; the GOP has no lock on foreign policy wisdom. Some of the greatest successes of our foreign policy came under Democrats: defeat ofthe Nazis; NATO; Marshall Plan, and a host of others were Democratic ideas which relied on bipartisan support. The Democrats over the past 35 years or so, however, frame the foreign policy debate with the underlying assumption that America is not a force for good, but one for evil. The hopeless Jimmy "Dueling Banjos" Carter epitomized this approach, but even the "moderate" Bill Clinton "apologized" to Central America for our policies there -- policies which, despite strong Democratic opposition, defeated Soviet and Cuban efforts to dominate the region and install puppet regimes. Central America is free thanks to America; we should celebrate, not apologize. In this most recent campaign, the party danced to the tune of the Howard Deans, Michael Moores, and George Soros; a steady beat of America as the cause of the world's problems. That is a formula for disaster for the Democrats and for America.

09:08 AM in 2004 Election | Permalink | TrackBack

November 06, 2004

Perceptive Comment on What a Majority Means

Excellent quote over at The DailyKos.  Of course, I don't agree with 95% of what is said on the page, but I thought this was an excellent point:<blockquote>In the US majority doesn't rule, majority governs.  And governing in a democracy means respecting the rights and the interests of the minority even as you earn the right to govern from the majority.  </blockquote>  As Republicans crow over the next month and discuss what type of mandate they have and what that means, they should keep the above in mind.  As far down as the Democrats got themselves this election cycle, it won't take much for the Republicans to piss the American electorate off and lose all they've gained in the next election cycle.

01:14 PM in 2004 Election | Permalink | TrackBack

Two Different Looks

A List of Reasons to Not Despair

And a List of Reasons to Party

12:54 PM in 2004 Election | Permalink | TrackBack