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We think of Massachusetts as an all paper ballot state.  For the past decade, it has been.  Small towns handcount the paper ballots, everywhere else counts them with optical scan machines.  But no longer.  This Tuesday, Massachusetts will be using Diebold TSx touchscreen voting machines in 12 cities and towns, thanks to our Democratic Secretary of State, Bill Galvin.

During the primary, I worked for Galvin's Democratic challenger, John Bonifaz and we tried to warn people that Galvin was considering Diebold touchscreen voting machines.  Unfortunately, we got very little press, and most voters didn't know about it.  Most voters still don't know about it.

Massachusetts voters: please don't vote for Galvin.  You can vote for Jill Stein (Green), who's on the ballot for Secretary.  You can write in John Bonifaz (Democrat).  You can write in someone else.  Just vote for someone for Secretary who is not Galvin!  Do you know anyone in Massachusetts?  Please pass this on!

According to Galvin's press release,
The AccuVote TSx machine will be at polling places in Amesbury, Ashburnham, Bedford, Georgetown, Hamilton, Ipswich, Manchester-By-The-Sea, North Andover, Reading, Salisbury, Watertown, and Wenham.

If you're emailing friends on MA who don't know why these voting machines are a bad idea, here are some useful links to send them:
* E-voting may be scarier than hanging chads - LA Times
* Are Electronic Voting Systems Ready for Tuesday? - Harvard's Berkman Center (from <lj user=goldsquare>)
* One Man, One Vote, One Big Mess - Washington Post
* a collection of election problem incidents

Here's a good summation of Diebold from CNN:

Here's a five-step plan guaranteed to make an obscure company absolutely notorious.

First get into a business you don't understand, selling to customers who barely understand it either. Then roll out your product without adequate testing. Don't hire enough skilled people. When people notice problems, deny, obfuscate and ignore. Finally, blame your critics when it all blows up in your face.

Edit: For people reading this from outside Massachusetts, some things to know before you comment...
* There is no Republican on the ballot for Secretary
* Bill Galvin will win. I'm 100% sure of that. The only question is will he get 95%, or 85%, or 75%. If Galvin gets below 90% it'll be a surprise. If he gets below 80% it'll be a very big deal.

Originally posted to cos on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 12:33 PM PST.

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