Friday, October 14, 2005

Ken Shram has weighed in on the ongoing saga of King County's election management at http://www.komotv.com/stories/39723.htm. It seems Washington's curmudgeon emeritus has had enough...

So just fix it, Mr. Logan. And no more whining...

It occurs to me that perfect elections are a lot like the second coming of Jesus: They are beautiful events that haven't happened yet. Some of my earliest political memories are of rants about how the 1960 election was stolen from Richard Nixon. Every close election has its sore loser quotient. But in recent elections the sore losers have been backed up by legions of lawyers, second guessers, and activist hangers-on, all of whom sacrifice objectivity to partisanship.

Let's ignore the fact election law has been demonstrated to be somewhat vague, inadequate, and even contradictory, certainly in need of recently implemented reforms and likely more.

Let's ignore for the moment the question of whether or not well-placed individuals or groups in or out of government are stooping to the level of common thugs by comitting outright fraud. We all hope it isn't happening but most of us accept the possibility it is, and endorse efforts to eradicate it.

Let's remember that there has been no organized activity yet identified related to this subject that rose to the level of a prosecutable offense in the eyes of those whose place it would be to pursue it. And it hasn't been for lack of trying.

With 100% honesty, how much error will exist from chance or just plain stupidity?

Our last gubernatorial contest was decided by a few hundred votes out of 2,805,000. Three different counts using two different methods yielded three different answers, and we will NEVER KNOW the "right" answer. Common sense screams UNINTENTIONAL errors throughout the process were far more than the victory margin. That's a tie in my book.

OK, we can't just call it a tie and go home. But there are alternatives to count after count, court case after court case. Why not instead of recounts, revotes? 63,000 of us voted third party. An automatic runoff involving only the two top candidates would have made more sense than the circus we ended up with and will certainly end up with again, considering the deeply divided nature of the body politic. I say go beyond the "revote" movement so many of us signed onto. Change the law.

An automatic revote would have eliminated all of the arguments from the first one. And the extra scrutiny, the sheer hype, couldn't help but dampen the miscreant impulse. It would take time and cost money but the truth is we spend next to nothing on our elections compared to their importance.

That's one alternative. There are others, certainly. Just as certainly, it's time to entertain alternatives. As it is, no matter who wins, the people lose.

Comments:
A revote would be a good idea.

Of course, it might be a good idea if the law was followed and enforced, so that only living residents of King County voted. But right now, what's to keep people from repeatedly voting "provisional", and having all thier votes counted?
 
When it comes to the election process in KC. Voters that were not on the voter roles. Appear to have their votes counted. So if you wanted to vote more than once come to KC they want every vote to count Legal and Illegal. Remember the mantra every vote must be counted. We have a problem in the process when citizens of other countries vote in our elections. That includes legal aliens. I thought elections were for US Citizens only. Since the ballot is published in so many languages it is easy for those not eligible to vote to vote because the ballots are in their own languages. KC admits it removed thousands of double registrations from the rolls yet another audit of names finds thousands more still exist. To lazy to compare names to addresses. If the birthdays are a day apart or a year apart they must be different people. Even though they live at the same address.
 
What is so frustrating about the last Governor's election is that I now have NO FAITH in the election process as run by King County.

Without faith in the election process government is not legitimate and will have difficulty in governing. I feel that I am not the only person.

This doesn't mean I have to agree with all election results. I can live with my side not winning a fair election.

King County has had problems with elections for over a decade. Each time a problem has reached the surface in the media (King 5 News investigations, investigations by local newspapers, many letters to the editor by voters who didn't get ballots or had ballots with wrong information on them), King County officials have wrung their hands, appointed a committee to investigate and then called a press conference and said the problem was fixed, when they either knew or should have known that it was not fixed.

Go back to the dead people and felon voting stories reported by King 5. Go back to the late absentee ballot mailings reported in the newspapers that got the person before Dean Logan fired. Go back and read the recommendations of the Voting Oversight Citizens Committee delivered in the Spring of 2004 warning King County Elections about probable problems with provisional votes in the November 2004 election.

There is a consistent pattern of "NOT FIXING THE PROBLEM" and yet telling folks that the problem has been fixed.

I HAVE NO FAITH IN ANY STATE WIDE ELECTION RESULTS WHERE KING COUNTY ELECTION NUMBERS SWAY THE FINALLY TALLY!

Ron Sims, Councilman Phillips, Dean Logan, and our beloved Secretary of State by not insisting that major problems get fixed that have been identified in the past have destroyed my faith in the elctorial process.

I agree with the part of the thread if we find that after a "good faith effort" to clean up voter roles in King County that a dozen or so dead people are still on the roles and that a couple dozen people are registered twice, I can live with it.

If we find instead that it is several hundred or a thousand, and King County didn't bother to fix known problems for whatever reason we are in a totally different situation....the current situation.
 
A revote is meaningless if the voter rolls are not maintained, and if ALL votes are counted, not just votes from those entitled and legally registered to exercise their franchise.

Once the system is cleaned up, then the best idea would be an instant runoff system. Everyone would get to pick their first choice on the ballot, and a second, or back up selection, if the first balloting ends in a tie. In the instant runoff, all primary choices are dropped, and the second choices are tabulated. This would be a boon to thrid parties, and would add some much needed dynamism to the process.
 
Who was it that said the following?"Those who cast the vote decide nothing. Thos who count the vote decide everything."

Was it Sims, Logan,the Secretary of State?

No Joseph Stalin. Says everything for Washington State Elections!!!!
 
The solution is so simple it could be implemented by a monkey. It won't happen because the Democrats can't win honestly and wouln't try if they thought they could. It's not in their nature.

The solution.

1. Every one votes in person.
2. Every voter shows photo ID. 3. Absentee voters have their ballots certified wtih a PIN and only those who are actually out of their precincts can vote absentee. 4. Anyone suspected of either illegaly voting or enabling an illegal vote will be prosecuted, given jail time and prohibited from voting or holding any public office in the future.

Like I said, it won't happen.
 
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