What Are The Problems With Voting Machines?

Ever since we went to the touch screen voting machines there have been complaints of problems real or perceived. I have my reservations about machines that have no paper trail though I realize that if a person can hack the machine he can hack it so that it affects the printer. If we are going to use electronic machines I would prefer that the voter fill out a ballot (with the bubbles and number 2 pencil) and then the voter would activate the machine with the plastic card and insert the ballot to be tallied. This would provide a paper receipt that was generated by the voter and not the machine.

Having said that, I wonder why so many people have problems. I keep hearing reports of “I voted for one guy and when I voted for the next guy my first vote got changed.” Before people jump on the bandwagon and say there is fraud it might be helpful to see if voter error is involved. Did the person touch the wrong area of the screen? Did the voter select the wrong person in the first place? Perhaps the screen needs to be re-calibrated (a function that needs to be performed throughout the day). I know that the machines can be hacked but if someone were hacking a machine then it would be hacked in a transparent manner, not one that can be seen on the screen.

I also believe that many people say that there were problems even when there were not. We only need to look back two years and see that the Democratic play book indicated that people should allege problems even if there were none. This sounds like a perfect way to cast doubt on the process and allow lawyers to get involved in supposed problems. I am not saying that the Democrats have people who were told to do this but I would not put it past them. I also think there are people who are resistant to change and they will allege difficulties because they do not like the system.

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