On the Matter of Elections

 

Outside of the old leftist stand-by of racism, I doubt there has been any subject more on the collective tongue than voting for the last few months. The noise has come from all political directions but little of it has processed much clarity, intellectual or otherwise.

A secure and valid vote is one of those necessary, vital elements if we are to practice, maintain and grow the liberty intended when our republic was founded. The Founders/Framers were wise enough not to create a strict democracy. They knew enough history not to make that mistake. They also realized that the path to that hard-to-define term “will of the people” was always an ongoing process requiring actual input from us peons in a variety of ways.

But secure, legal voting is central to not just give expression to that will but also as means of consent by those who are to be governed. No society had so formally made a government subject to that consent before in human history.

The integrity of our elections has been under a gradual assault for a while now, inch by inch. Foot by foot. But the last several months have seen the effort become not just more intense and dishonest but open and obvious even to minds as simple as mine, unless clouded by prejudice or motivated by gain.

It is difficult to convince me (well, maybe I should say impossible) that anyone working to undermine voter ID is very concerned about election integrity. They are interested in managing the outcome of elections. The same can be said of extensive early voting periods, endless streams of mail-in ballots, and several other strings in the web we have seen woven lately.

Both laws and elections should be simple and understandable. When they are not bureaucracy and “experts” are empowered and the citizen is removed farther from real decision making.

The unneeded rush to “lockdown” voting because of Covid-19 fears and concerns allowed the full-blown authoritarian in too many to be turned loose. Covid-19 does not trump state law or the Constitution. But with that as an excuse standing election law was side-stepped or purposely ignored.

I have always contended that it would be impossible to get any clear finding on extensive election fraud in the 2020 national election until well after the fact, if ever. There were too many violations of common sense security issues and far too much technology involved.

But it shouldn’t have come to that. There were clear violations of the Constitution in at least five states when election procedures were changed by someone other than the state legislature. The failure of the Supreme Court to take up that issue before the election was turning their back on a clear duty and responsibility. Those unconstitutional actions themselves made the 2020 election a farce. But it did send a clear signal that the doors were all open.

Those who chest-thump about their respect and love for that Constitution and the Rule of Law should have been both outraged and outspoken, regardless of their political leanings or candidate preference. But I feel that too many were relied upon because personalities had become more important than the document or the concept.

Voting has become less and less secure ever since the wide reliance on electronic voting. The actual vote counts from 2020 can be disputed a dozen different ways for years to come. Hopefully, a genuine forensic audit gives some clarity at some point. BUT that is a problem. The validity of a vote should not depend on a parade of conflicting “experts” speaking their own technical language.

A recount of real votes should only take a few days, at most. Open-source voting machines are open invitations to problems. The most secure and accurate election has real ballots marked by verified, legal voters that can be counted by hand under supervision. The evidence of that vote should be a solid, physical ballot that can be seen, held, and understood by any “regular” citizen.

Complexity invites deception. I feel that the complexity injected into our election system is purposeful and places its results more and more in the hands of a few. Complexity makes it possible for the recount to be just as corrupt as the election itself. If people are to believe in elections they must first understand them and plainly see their validity.

The wave of state election security laws is a grassroots reaction to the zoo that 2020 election became. The Great Virus was among us and so the letter of law was suspended. The Texas Fleebags who escaped to the safety of DC (at least for the moment) are not trying to preserve voter law. They are wanting to keep all the open violations of state election law used by Harris County (Houston) despite being told directly not to. That infection is deadlier to self-governance than any Chinese import.

I heard all my life that even a blind hog can root up an acorn every now and then. The other day Joe Biden proved the old saying in what was otherwise a nasty, deliberate attack on plain old truth and our system. Our nation is facing a grave threat, the worst since the 1860s. It is actually a multi-front attack and election security is one very dangerous thrust in that attack.

Something close to 80% of Americans know there should be voter ID. Around half of the American voters doubt the results of the 2020 election. It is not enough for a few “experts” behind closed doors to declare an election valid. It is the citizenry that has to declare an election valid IF there is to be actual self-governance.

The election of 2020 was turned into a confused mess because simple standards of law and common security were ignored. All of those confusing, wide-open aspects are now being proposed as a federalized, nation standard.

Election fraud can and does change history. A simple example can be found less than a century ago in Texas. A few days past on the Land of Confusion podcast, ToryWarWriter asked a few things about Texas politics during the era when it might have been considered part of the old “solid south” block of the Democrat Party. My answers were both short and incomplete, kinda like me.

The infamous 1948 Ballot Box 13 election was a run-off for the Democrat Senate nomination between LBJ and Coke Stevenson. Both the details and legends of that affair are pretty well documented.

Although Texas stubbornly had remained part of that “solid south” from Reconstruction, it had two distinct fractions. This had especially been true since the 1880s and the first influence of the “progressives” among those in the eastern parts of the state. For a simple explanation, one would pretty well be considered conservative today and the other far more liberal. Coke Stevenson was a popular governor and definitively a conservative. He would probably be a prime target for CNN today. LBJ was a New Deal ally of FDR and Sam Rayburn.

Ballot Box 13 in Jim Wells County not only sent Johnson on to the Senate and eventually to the White House. I feel that it began the slow turn of Texas toward the GOP.

Stevenson returned to life as a rancher and businessman but never backed another Democrat, for anything. The local elections were still determined by the Democrat primaries for another decade and a half but both Stevenson and Texas went GOP in 1952 and ’56. A majority of Texans grew less and less trustful of the Democrat Party regardless of any Reconstruction wounds, beginning with Stevenson’s “loss”. Toward the end of the ’60s, the turn had become complete.

But that is only one small way that old number 13 changed history. The deeper effect was that LBJ became president, hence the constitutionally toxic Great Society. And one can pretty well disregard the common leftist claim that without a Johnson presidency we would not have the Civil Rights Act or Voting Rights bill. Most of the support for these came from the GOP and Johnson’s main argument to convince his fellow party members to vote for the measures was that passage would “give us the black (not exactly the term he used) vote for the next 200 years.”

Power was at the heart of Johnson and Democrat motives. It still is. It is a power that does not fall to the citizen but to the political class, the opposite of our original national purpose.

It is not enough to simply say that there was not “enough error or fraud to change results.” If there is one illegal ballot, there can well be two. Or three. Or……

That is the cop-out of someone who is satisfied with the result. Those actually interested in protecting our Constitution and the rule of law would stand ready to fix these matters, not mildly accept them with a “no harm, no foul” approach. Their reasoning rings hollow.

Confidence in the election is instilled by making it more difficult for those errors and those frauds to occur, not easier or more likely.

Every vote that is not legal is a vote taken from a citizen. It is a method to cancel that citizen’s right of consent to be governed. It is a breach of the basic agreement between ourselves and those who supposedly represent us.

As I have said, the present attack on our system is a widespread one across many vital fronts. We will not win this struggle simply at the ballot box. Our efforts also have to be daily and widespread across those corners of our culture of liberty which are under such an assault. But the ballot box should be a reflection of all those other things we do and the battles we fight. It is citizens whose consent is needed, not government’s. So they deserve transparency. They deserve answers, clear and honest ones. The security and integrity of elections and the important protection of our willing consent are most vital to that culture of liberty.

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  1. DonG (2+2=5. Say it!) Coolidge
    DonG (2+2=5. Say it!)
    @DonG

    Great post.  Having trustworthy elections will take a culture change.  Dems have been running hinky elections for centuries and good-hearted people will need to work to make our elections better.  We are behind Europe.

    Ole Summers: Ballot Box 13 in Jim Wells County not only sent Johnson on to the Senate and eventually to the White House. I feel that it began the slow turn of Texas toward the GOP.

    Texas didn’t flip until the 70’s/80’s.   I think it was the Vietnam war that flipped the South and Texas to the GOP.  The people of Texas and the South are pro-military and when the Dems went anti-military, the people switched. 

    • #1
  2. Ole Summers Member
    Ole Summers
    @OleSummers

    DonG (2+2=5. Say it!) (View Comment):

    Great post. Having trustworthy elections will take a culture change. Dems have been running hinky elections for centuries and good-hearted people will need to work to make our elections better. We are behind Europe.

    Ole Summers: Ballot Box 13 in Jim Wells County not only sent Johnson on to the Senate and eventually to the White House. I feel that it began the slow turn of Texas toward the GOP.

    Texas didn’t flip until the 70’s/80’s. I think it was the Vietnam war that flipped the South and Texas to the GOP. The people of Texas and the South are pro-military and when the Dems went anti-military, the people switched.

    I said it was a slow turn , my home county and those surrounding ones all voted for Ike both times by strong numbers – the GOP still didnt bother in run a slant for local offices though – almost went Nixon and Goodwater before going full Nixon in ’68. But you still had a hard time finding anyone who would admit to voting that way till around 72 when it became “respectable” just as you said. But I still remember as very young kid hearing older ones remark about what had happened to Stevenson a good decade after it happened

    • #2
  3. D.A. Venters Member
    D.A. Venters
    @DAVenters

    First, a disclaimer – I thoroughly agree with Ole Summers here about making elections more secure and efforts to ensure the count is right, etc… Clear and secure elections better serve the Rule of Law, and because modern people have come to expect that kind of thing – ID checks, proper forms, etc…they help to legitimize the outcome in the minds of the public. 

    Where I disagree a little, is the notion that this kind of very bureaucratically clean election was thought necessary by the Founders.  Elections back then were chaotic messes compared to now, with no voter registration rolls, voters being plied with alcohol and publicly bullied and badgered right up to the polling place where they cast a very un-secret ballot.  If we were grading them on democratic legitimacy, those elections would get a solid F.  There is absolutely no way to know whether the results of a close election back then were legitimate or not, if legitimacy means that the person the majority of legal voters wanted to win did, in fact, win. 

    For all the complaints about elites these days, they had far more power back then to determine who held office.

    So, with these ridiculously close modern elections (I don’t mention landslides because ordinary fraud, mistakes, etc..don’t really matter in those), I’m all for the triumph of the rule of law, and enforcing those to determine who should win (but remember those laws include the court processes and rules – like the doctrine of standing –  as well). 

    I’m not, however, concerned that the legitimacy and existence of democracy in America depends on all of that.  In a very close election, from a democratic “consent of the governed” perspective, it really doesn’t matter who wins.  They are both equally legitimate.  There is no “voice of the people” in that circumstance.  It matters from the “rule of law” perspective, but not from a democratic perspective, that is.  There is no divinely ordained outcome that we are missing, no matter who wins. After all, it has happened a number of times that, by all indications including polling and the popular vote, the Presidency was held by the person that most people wanted to lose the election.  Our side has benefited from that in recent times more often than the Left.  This is why, incidentally, the Left claims to be so suspicious of voter ID laws and other efforts to tighten up the voting.

    My point is not that we should abandon efforts to tighten up elections, but we should loosen up a little about the importance of those efforts in terms of the Future of Democracy in America, etc…  So should the Left.  Just get back to the business of convincing voters your policy positions are right, and you won’t have to worry so much about the election bean counting.  We are spending so much time talking about the latter, we are neglecting the former.

    • #3
  4. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    D.A. Venters (View Comment):
    My point is not that we should abandon efforts to tighten up elections, but we should loosen up a little about the importance of those efforts in terms of the Future of Democracy in America, etc…  So should the Left.  Just get back to the business of convincing voters your policy positions are right, and you won’t have to worry so much about the election bean counting.  We are spending so much time talking about the latter, we are neglecting the former.

     Good historical points in your comment, but it matters a lot more now because so much more of the economy is controlled by the government. Back when governments were relatively weak and there were checks and balances, election results didn’t matter so much. 

    If you want to make the point that elections don’t matter much now, you could point to the power of the administrative state. That’s the real government. The legislative branch and the head of the administrative branch can cooperate with it or not, and that is indeed important, but swapping the minority party for the majority is not going to change the government. 

    • #4
  5. Raxxalan Member
    Raxxalan
    @Raxxalan

    A big problem was the suppression of speech by Big Tech and the Media.   That is new and makes the problem worse.   A democracy needs free speech to ensure that we work these things out publicly.  When one side puts it thumb on the scale and silences the opposition it doesn’t cure the issue.  It causes the wounds to fester and resentments to grow.   If we had an open a free flow of ideas about the election, I would be much more inclined to accept that the result was not tainted.  As it is I am constantly left wondering what are the Democrats, Big Tech, and the Media trying to hide.  

    • #5
  6. Chuck Thatcher
    Chuck
    @Chuckles

    Absent the restoration of Constitutional authority, closely followed by repeal of the 17th Amendment, seems to me there is little hope for any permanent restoration of legitimate voting procedures.

    • #6
  7. D.A. Venters Member
    D.A. Venters
    @DAVenters

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    D.A. Venters (View Comment):
    My point is not that we should abandon efforts to tighten up elections, but we should loosen up a little about the importance of those efforts in terms of the Future of Democracy in America, etc… So should the Left. Just get back to the business of convincing voters your policy positions are right, and you won’t have to worry so much about the election bean counting. We are spending so much time talking about the latter, we are neglecting the former.

    Good historical points in your comment, but it matters a lot more now because so much more of the economy is controlled by the government. Back when governments were relatively weak and there were checks and balances, election results didn’t matter so much.

    That’s a great point. 

    If you want to make the point that elections don’t matter much now, you could point to the power of the administrative state. That’s the real government. The legislative branch and the head of the administrative branch can cooperate with it or not, and that is indeed important, but swapping the minority party for the majority is not going to change the government.

    I agree with this as well.  I wish Congress would focus more on these kinds of structural government concerns, but they don’t seem to have any incentive to do that.  That’s not where the action is, I guess.

    • #7
  8. Bob Thompson Member
    Bob Thompson
    @BobThompson

    Here’s one specific thing I have been thinking about resulting from observations of 2020 voting integrity issues in the mega-cities of the battleground states.  Those cities include Atlanta, Phoenix, Las Vegas, Detroit, Philadelphia, and Milwaukee. These states have significant Republican influence and political control that has not been used advantageously in recent campaigns by the state Republican Parties. We can see that the numbers can be easily increased fraudulently in the listed cities and since states determine their  Electoral College Electors from the results of the states’ popular vote we got the 2020 Presidential result. The Republicans in these states must insist that the Party do the work necessary to both resolve any voting integrity issues in their states, especially in those mega-cities,  and increase turn out Republican votes throughout their states in 2022 and 2024. 

    This means constant attention in fighting an ongoing battle with the Communist-influenced Democrats on election integrity but also on other issues like public education and the Covid related mandates.

    • #8
  9. Ernst Rabbit von Hasenpfeffer Member
    Ernst Rabbit von Hasenpfeffer
    @ape2ag

    I think the right is making a mistake in attacking electronic voting.  While many of the systems used in 2020 were highly insecure with kluged black box tabulation systems, electronic voting systems can be designed to be secure and transparently auditable.  Paper ballots will always invite ballot box stuffing and lost batches.  Physical security of the ballots on that scale can’t be guaranteed.  And then there is the problem of interpreting ambiguously marked ballots.

    • #9
  10. JoelB Member
    JoelB
    @JoelB

    There were clear violations of the Constitution in at least five states when election procedures were changed by someone other than the state legislature. The failure of the Supreme Court to take up that issue before the election was turning their back on a clear duty and responsibility. Those unconstitutional actions themselves made the 2020 election a farce. But it did send a clear signal that the doors were all open.

    This, IMHO, is the heart of the matter.  

    • #10
  11. Bob Thompson Member
    Bob Thompson
    @BobThompson

    Ernst Rabbit von Hasenpfeffer (View Comment):

    I think the right is making a mistake in attacking electronic voting. While many of the systems used in 2020 were highly insecure with kluged black box tabulation systems, electronic voting systems can be designed to be secure and transparently auditable. Paper ballots will always invite ballot box stuffing and lost batches. Physical security of the ballots on that scale can’t be guaranteed. And then there is the problem of interpreting ambiguously marked ballots.

    Isn’t there some way that the computer software could be open-sourced (if that’s the right term) so that anyone can examine a certified version of the software used in processing and tabulating votes?

    • #11
  12. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Ernst Rabbit von Hasenpfeffer (View Comment):
    electronic voting systems can be designed to be secure and transparently auditable.

     I am skeptical, but would be open-minded enough to look at the detailed specifications for such a system.  

    • #12
  13. Chuck Thatcher
    Chuck
    @Chuckles

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Ernst Rabbit von Hasenpfeffer (View Comment):
    electronic voting systems can be designed to be secure and transparently auditable.

    I am skeptical, but would be open-minded enough to look at the detailed specifications for such a system.

    Trust in the system by the general populace is also essential, and after the recent debacle I just don’t believe any such system would warrant such trust.

    I prefer this:

    • #13
  14. Bob Thompson Member
    Bob Thompson
    @BobThompson

    Chuck (View Comment):

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Ernst Rabbit von Hasenpfeffer (View Comment):
    electronic voting systems can be designed to be secure and transparently auditable.

    I am skeptical, but would be open-minded enough to look at the detailed specifications for such a system.

    Trust in the system by the general populace is also essential, and after the recent debacle I just don’t believe any such system would warrant such trust.

    I prefer this:

    And it just so happens that the most untrustworthy voting environment is in the locations with the greatest number of votes to be counted.

    • #14
  15. Chuck Thatcher
    Chuck
    @Chuckles

    Bob Thompson (View Comment):

    Chuck (View Comment):

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Ernst Rabbit von Hasenpfeffer (View Comment):
    electronic voting systems can be designed to be secure and transparently auditable.

    I am skeptical, but would be open-minded enough to look at the detailed specifications for such a system.

    Trust in the system by the general populace is also essential, and after the recent debacle I just don’t believe any such system would warrant such trust.

    I prefer this:

    And it just so happens that the most untrustworthy voting environment is in the locations with the greatest number of votes to be counted.

    That’s correct, but it doesn’t invalidate the premises that the OP gives – nor the paper ballot.

    • #15
  16. Bob Thompson Member
    Bob Thompson
    @BobThompson

    Chuck (View Comment):

    Bob Thompson (View Comment):

    Chuck (View Comment):

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Ernst Rabbit von Hasenpfeffer (View Comment):
    electronic voting systems can be designed to be secure and transparently auditable.

    I am skeptical, but would be open-minded enough to look at the detailed specifications for such a system.

    Trust in the system by the general populace is also essential, and after the recent debacle I just don’t believe any such system would warrant such trust.

    I prefer this:

    And it just so happens that the most untrustworthy voting environment is in the locations with the greatest number of votes to be counted.

    That’s correct, but it doesn’t invalidate the premises that the OP gives – nor the paper ballot.

    I agree. Don’t all these computerized vote tabulations have paper ballots that can be hand counted if required? I know my vote in Maricopa County, Az was on a computer-generated paper ballot (produced upon my in person appearance at the voting site). I marked the ballot and deposited it for them to process at some later time. Obviously, mailed ballot leave a paper ballot. The objections raised against hand recounts I find no way to support or even understand how they can be supported. I welcome any explanation that will help me to understand such opposition.

    • #16
  17. Ernst Rabbit von Hasenpfeffer Member
    Ernst Rabbit von Hasenpfeffer
    @ape2ag

    Bob Thompson (View Comment):

    And it just so happens that the most untrustworthy voting environment is in the locations with the greatest number of votes to be counted.

    A huge chunk of votes coming out of Democrat controlled cities are imaginary in the sense that they don’t represent any positive engagement by individual citizens.  It’s been that way a long time.  The question of fraud depends on the specific local laws and how many shortcuts the vote collectors took to count people as votes towards their preferred electoral outcomes.

    • #17
  18. Ernst Rabbit von Hasenpfeffer Member
    Ernst Rabbit von Hasenpfeffer
    @ape2ag

    Chuck (View Comment):

     

    I prefer this:

     

    Oh man.  I don’t prefer that at all.  Zoom out and you’ll see the 5 Dem lawyers looking over his shoulder.  When that’s happening the Dems are going to win.

    • #18
  19. Chris Oler Coolidge
    Chris Oler
    @ChrisO

    Bob Thompson (View Comment):
    The Republicans in these states must insist that the Party do the work necessary to both resolve any voting integrity issues in their states, especially in those mega-cities,  and increase turn out Republican votes throughout their states in 2022 and 2024.

    Couldn’t agree more. Perhaps a factor is the aggression one state’s efforts has seen from media and the Federal government. There were some significant updates on election integrity presented yesterday, but you’d hardly know it.

    To be sure, these should be categorized as allegations. Interestingly, some of these allegations came not from ballot examination, but voter roll irregularities ranging from registrations accepted after the (state supreme court imposed) deadline, to more than ten thousand names appearing on lists in December that had not been there in November (and recorded as having voted), and a greater number removed from the records even after voting in November.

    In another state we’ve seen how more than 35,000 people voted at addresses no longer valid as they had moved out of the state.

    Perhaps we could make more sense of it–and better protect the integrity of future votes–if these efforts weren’t fought both officially and in the media. There may be an explanation for these things, after all, beyond dismissals.

    The discovery of any irregularity, one would think, should provoke a response in all dedicated adherents to representative government. The appropriate response: fix the problem. The apparent response has been resistance and denial. This alone can and should lead to reasonable questions and perhaps a conclusion or two.

    • #19
  20. Chuck Thatcher
    Chuck
    @Chuckles

    Chris Oler (View Comment):

    Bob Thompson (View Comment):
    The Republicans in these states must insist that the Party do the work necessary to both resolve any voting integrity issues in their states, especially in those mega-cities, and increase turn out Republican votes throughout their states in 2022 and 2024.

    Couldn’t agree more. Perhaps a factor is the aggression one state’s efforts has seen from media and the Federal government. There were some significant updates on election integrity presented yesterday, but you’d hardly know it.

    To be sure, these should be categorized as allegations. Interestingly, some of these allegations came not from ballot examination, but voter roll irregularities ranging from registrations accepted after the (state supreme court imposed) deadline, to more than ten thousand names appearing on lists in December that had not been there in November (and recorded as having voted), and a greater number removed from the records even after voting in November.

    In another state we’ve seen how more than 35,000 people voted at addresses no longer valid as they had moved out of the state.

    Perhaps we could make more sense of it–and better protect the integrity of future votes–if these efforts weren’t fought both officially and in the media. There may be an explanation for these things, after all, beyond dismissals.

    The discovery of any irregularity, one would think, should provoke a response in all dedicated adherents to representative government. The appropriate response: fix the problem. The apparent response has been resistance and denial. This alone can and should provoke reasonable questions and perhaps a conclusion or two.

    I know its limitations, but the first thought that came to mind was “where there’s smoke there’s fire.” And the second, also applicable, is that “When words are many, transgression is not lacking.” (Prov. 10:19)

    • #20
  21. I Walton Member
    I Walton
    @IWalton

    Good article, some good comments.  Everyone is too polite to say that the last election was stolen, but it was in spite of the fact that Republican held the White House, half the states and the Senate.  Do folks believe we’ll win when we have neither the Senate or the White House and the most aggressive combination of big corporations, the bureaucracy, the media against any Republican and the system is being systematically altered toward top down governance with full scale refusal to insist that only voters who can prove they’re citizens get to vote.  I hope we have a plan when the obvious occurs.

    • #21
  22. Dbroussa Coolidge
    Dbroussa
    @Dbroussa

    Ernst Rabbit von Hasenpfeffer (View Comment):

    I think the right is making a mistake in attacking electronic voting. While many of the systems used in 2020 were highly insecure with kluged black box tabulation systems, electronic voting systems can be designed to be secure and transparently auditable. Paper ballots will always invite ballot box stuffing and lost batches. Physical security of the ballots on that scale can’t be guaranteed. And then there is the problem of interpreting ambiguously marked ballots.

    I think the optimal solution is to combine the two systems as we do in my county in TX. We use a machine that presents the selected ballot electronically to the voter on a touch screen. The voter selects their choices and then submits their ballot. This prints a ballot card that has their choices for each race printed on it. The voter inserts that into a tabulator that records the resukta on a storage device and drops the printed ballot into a sealed hopper. At the end of the night the two Judges for the Vote Center will unseal the tabulator and remove the storage device. They then hand carry that and the ballots in the sealed container to the county election office where the storage device is inserted into an air gapped system that counts the votes and the sealed ballots are stored securely. During the canvass after the election there is a spot check on the physical ballots to check consistency with the electronic reporting as well as check in records that have to match counts. 

    • #22
  23. DonG (2+2=5. Say it!) Coolidge
    DonG (2+2=5. Say it!)
    @DonG

    D.A. Venters (View Comment):

    If you want to make the point that elections don’t matter much now, you could point to the power of the administrative state. That’s the real government. The legislative branch and the head of the administrative branch can cooperate with it or not, and that is indeed important, but swapping the minority party for the majority is not going to change the government.

    I agree with this as well.  I wish Congress would focus more on these kinds of structural government concerns, but they don’t seem to have any incentive to do that.  That’s not where the action is, I guess.

    The Constitution has a procedure for when D.C. is screwed up, a convention of States.   It takes 37 states to change the Constitution and presumably fix D.C.  Unfortunately, about half the states like an infinitely powerful and corrupt D.C.

     

    • #23
  24. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Dbroussa (View Comment):

    I think the optimal solution is to combine the two systems as we do in my county in TX. We use a machine that presents the selected ballot electronically to the voter on a touch screen. The voter selects their choices and then submits their ballot. This prints a ballot card that has their choices for each race printed on it. The voter inserts that into a tabulator that records the resukta on a storage device and drops the printed ballot into a sealed hopper. At the end of the night the two Judges for the Vote Center will unseal the tabulator and remove the storage device. They then hand carry that and the ballots in the sealed container to the county election office where the storage device is inserted into an air gapped system that counts the votes and the sealed ballots are stored securely. During the canvass after the election there is a spot check on the physical ballots to check consistency with the electronic reporting as well as check in records that have to match counts.

    I hadn’t heard of that method before, but it sounds good. 

    • #24
  25. Dbroussa Coolidge
    Dbroussa
    @Dbroussa

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Dbroussa (View Comment):

    I think the optimal solution is to combine the two systems as we do in my county in TX. We use a machine that presents the selected ballot electronically to the voter on a touch screen. The voter selects their choices and then submits their ballot. This prints a ballot card that has their choices for each race printed on it. The voter inserts that into a tabulator that records the resukta on a storage device and drops the printed ballot into a sealed hopper. At the end of the night the two Judges for the Vote Center will unseal the tabulator and remove the storage device. They then hand carry that and the ballots in the sealed container to the county election office where the storage device is inserted into an air gapped system that counts the votes and the sealed ballots are stored securely. During the canvass after the election there is a spot check on the physical ballots to check consistency with the electronic reporting as well as check in records that have to match counts.

    I hadn’t heard of that method before, but it sounds good.

    In person voting is the most secure way to vote. Any deviation from that injects potential error. That’s why very few countries outside of the US have large amount of mail or remote voting. 

    • #25
  26. I Walton Member
    I Walton
    @IWalton

    Dbroussa (View Comment):

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Dbroussa (View Comment):

    I think the optimal solution is to combine the two systems as we do in my county in TX. We use a machine that presents the selected ballot electronically to the voter on a touch screen. The voter selects their choices and then submits their ballot. This prints a ballot card that has their choices for each race printed on it. The voter inserts that into a tabulator that records the resukta on a storage device and drops the printed ballot into a sealed hopper. At the end of the night the two Judges for the Vote Center will unseal the tabulator and remove the storage device. They then hand carry that and the ballots in the sealed container to the county election office where the storage device is inserted into an air gapped system that counts the votes and the sealed ballots are stored securely. During the canvass after the election there is a spot check on the physical ballots to check consistency with the electronic reporting as well as check in records that have to match counts.

    I hadn’t heard of that method before, but it sounds good.

    In person voting is the most secure way to vote. Any deviation from that injects potential error. That’s why very few countries outside of the US have large amount of mail or remote voting.

    Every country I served in, voted personally and inked fingers.  They know fraud from the ground up.  We pretend we don’t, but we’re right up there with the worst.

    • #26
  27. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    I Walton (View Comment):

    Dbroussa (View Comment):

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Dbroussa (View Comment):

    I think the optimal solution is to combine the two systems as we do in my county in TX. We use a machine that presents the selected ballot electronically to the voter on a touch screen. The voter selects their choices and then submits their ballot. This prints a ballot card that has their choices for each race printed on it. The voter inserts that into a tabulator that records the resukta on a storage device and drops the printed ballot into a sealed hopper. At the end of the night the two Judges for the Vote Center will unseal the tabulator and remove the storage device. They then hand carry that and the ballots in the sealed container to the county election office where the storage device is inserted into an air gapped system that counts the votes and the sealed ballots are stored securely. During the canvass after the election there is a spot check on the physical ballots to check consistency with the electronic reporting as well as check in records that have to match counts.

    I hadn’t heard of that method before, but it sounds good.

    In person voting is the most secure way to vote. Any deviation from that injects potential error. That’s why very few countries outside of the US have large amount of mail or remote voting.

    Every country I served in, voted personally and inked fingers. They know fraud from the ground up. We pretend we don’t, but we’re right up there with the worst.

    One thing I’m curious about is whether any other countries have “voting centers.” Some states have them.  Instead of voting in your township polling place or other local precinct, you can go and vote at any voting center in the state.  

    I didn’t like them when I first learned about them a few years ago, and after the election mischief of the past year I came to like them even less.   I’m glad we don’t have them where I live.

    • #27
  28. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    I Walton (View Comment):

    Dbroussa (View Comment):

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Dbroussa (View Comment):

    I think the optimal solution is to combine the two systems as we do in my county in TX. We use a machine that presents the selected ballot electronically to the voter on a touch screen. The voter selects their choices and then submits their ballot. This prints a ballot card that has their choices for each race printed on it. The voter inserts that into a tabulator that records the resukta on a storage device and drops the printed ballot into a sealed hopper. At the end of the night the two Judges for the Vote Center will unseal the tabulator and remove the storage device. They then hand carry that and the ballots in the sealed container to the county election office where the storage device is inserted into an air gapped system that counts the votes and the sealed ballots are stored securely. During the canvass after the election there is a spot check on the physical ballots to check consistency with the electronic reporting as well as check in records that have to match counts.

    I hadn’t heard of that method before, but it sounds good.

    In person voting is the most secure way to vote. Any deviation from that injects potential error. That’s why very few countries outside of the US have large amount of mail or remote voting.

    Every country I served in, voted personally and inked fingers. They know fraud from the ground up. We pretend we don’t, but we’re right up there with the worst.

    One thing I’m curious about is whether any other countries have “voting centers.” Some states have them. Instead of voting in your township polling place or other local precinct, you can go and vote at any voting center in the state.

    I didn’t like them when I first learned about them a few years ago, and after the election mischief of the past year I came to like them even less. I’m glad we don’t have them where I live.

    Might not be so bad, if inked fingers (or some other body part) was also included.

    Then we just have to make sure the Dims don’t go around inking the fingers of those they don’t want to vote.

    • #28
  29. Dbroussa Coolidge
    Dbroussa
    @Dbroussa

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    I Walton (View Comment):

    Dbroussa (View Comment):

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Dbroussa (View Comment):

    I think the optimal solution is to combine the two systems as we do in my county in TX. We use a machine that presents the selected ballot electronically to the voter on a touch screen. The voter selects their choices and then submits their ballot. This prints a ballot card that has their choices for each race printed on it. The voter inserts that into a tabulator that records the resukta on a storage device and drops the printed ballot into a sealed hopper. At the end of the night the two Judges for the Vote Center will unseal the tabulator and remove the storage device. They then hand carry that and the ballots in the sealed container to the county election office where the storage device is inserted into an air gapped system that counts the votes and the sealed ballots are stored securely. During the canvass after the election there is a spot check on the physical ballots to check consistency with the electronic reporting as well as check in records that have to match counts.

    I hadn’t heard of that method before, but it sounds good.

    In person voting is the most secure way to vote. Any deviation from that injects potential error. That’s why very few countries outside of the US have large amount of mail or remote voting.

    Every country I served in, voted personally and inked fingers. They know fraud from the ground up. We pretend we don’t, but we’re right up there with the worst.

    One thing I’m curious about is whether any other countries have “voting centers.” Some states have them. Instead of voting in your township polling place or other local precinct, you can go and vote at any voting center in the state.

    I didn’t like them when I first learned about them a few years ago, and after the election mischief of the past year I came to like them even less. I’m glad we don’t have them where I live.

    Vote Centers are not a problem for in person voting. Well, they aren’t in a suburban County like where I live and work elections. We have a database of every person registered to vote in the county on site in two laptops. We look you up and see if you are valid to vote. Once we check you in that is synced with the county clerk and thence to the other vote centers. Overall it’s a solid way to make it easy for you to vote anywhere in your home county. 

    • #29
  30. Chuck Thatcher
    Chuck
    @Chuckles

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Might not be so bad, if inked fingers (or some other body part) was also included.

    Then we just have to make sure the Dims don’t go around inking the fingers of those they don’t want to vote.

    Well, maybe: Depends upon if voting in person is allowed for more days than the ink lasts.

    • #30