Miss Vermont 2011 Katie Levasseur was central to the effort to give 17-year-olds in Vermont the opportunity to vote – a journey that started as a Statehouse intern and continues to this day. Moreover, she’s living proof that there is no typical election geek.
The St. Charles, MO County Executive recently vetoed a $1.2 million voting machine contract because there was only one bidder – the one bidder certified to bid on the contract. The certification system may need fixing, but better information about who pays what might be even more useful in the short term.
Pam Fessler’s latest NPR story focuses on a Tea Party-supported effort by citizen groups to identify potential irregularities on the voter rolls. While this project will certainly raise fears of voter suppression, it also holds out promise for providing feedback to election officials.
The ongoing debate over voter ID is beginning to produce something new: data. It isn’t yet clear how, if at all, such data will help illuminate the discussion but for now it’s a good sign that evidence will be used at all – if only to keep both sides on the road.
The alphabet soup of elections – my name for the considerable number of organizations aimed at election officials – is now spicier thanks to the emergence of South by Southwest (SXSW) as a destination for the absolute cutting edge of elections and technology.
When is someone behind bars not “imprisoned” and thus ineligible to vote? A new suit claims that a California “realignment” program aimed at reducing the state correctional population means that about 85,000 felons should now be eligible to vote.
One under-appreciated facet of the voter ID debate in Minnesota is its potential impact on the state’s tradition of Election Day Registration. Online news site MinnPost brings some light to the heated debate with a map demonstrating EDR’s partisan backdrop.
Something I’m thankful for post-Super Tuesday: Election administration has no expectations to beat, momentum to maintain or narratives to extend – just votes to count and results to report. That’s why I’m an election geek, not a political junkie.
Pollworkers in Virginia will soon have the option of waiving the (admittedly small) compensation they receive for their service. It will be interesting to see how that option – which is aimed more at tax-simplification than cost-cutting – affects the composition of the Election Day workforce and the cost of elections.
Early voting is down in Ohio in advance of tomorrow’s presidential primary. Figuring out why isn’t just the stuff of punditry – it could also help election officials better allocate their resources. Unfortunately, figuring out why isn’t likely to be easy given the various moving parts in Ohio this go-round.