2010-08-27 / Editorial/Opinion

Don’t Allow New Voting System To Deter Your Participation

Over the weeks leading to the September 14 primary election, you will probably hear lots of horror stories about how difficult this election year will be because New York State has finally joined the other 49 states to go digital – sort of. According to all reports, the new voting system is a mess, and likely to sow confusion to one and all – from the poll workers to those coming to cast their vote. When the Help America Vote Act was passed in the wake of the Florida “hanging chad” fiasco, states were mandated to do away with the traditional voting booths with their large mechanical levers. The other 49 states quickly adopted new, fully digital systems. Not New York, however, with its dysfunctional government and its need to play politics. What we have, therefore, is a hybrid system where voters will have to mark their ballots by hand with a special pen and then feed them through a scanner to record their vote. That leaves the “paper trail” that the state politicians required and still allows for some modicum of electronics – enough to satisfy the federal law. Don’t allow the horror stories to deter you from voting, however. Because of the financial meltdown and the general malaise with our elected officials, this might well be one of the most important elections in recent history. So, stay the course and get in line with the rest of us. What you might be saving is nothing less than democracy.

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