Three years ago this week, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled unconstitutional a key provision of the Voting Rights Act (VRA), which was enacted in 1965 and extended four times since then by Congress. The decision, says Kousser, was wrong.
Experts in voting technology from the California Institute of Technology and Massachusetts Institute of Technology say that four relatively simple and inexpensive steps can be taken to ensure that voting procedures in this fall's presidential election are as accurate and reliable as possible.
Michael Alvarez, professor of political science at the California Institute of Technology, has been appointed to the Help America Vote Act (HAVA) California State Plan Advisory Committee. The purpose of the committee is to seek public input and provide policy guidance to assist the secretary of state of California in drafting the state's initial plan for compliance with federal mandates contained in HAVA.
If one measures election success by equipment performance alone, Florida's push to get new voting equipment on-line for the 2002 election appears to have paid off. Compared with the performance of equipment in past Florida state primary elections, the new technologies for casting and counting ballots look like clear improvements according to experts at the California Institute of Technology and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
The Caltech/MIT Voting Technology Project has submitted a preliminary report to the task force studying the election in Florida. Their nationwide study of voting machines offers further evidence supporting the task force's call to replace punch card voting in Florida. The statistical analysis also uncovered a more surprising finding: electronic voting, as currently implemented, has performed less well than was widely believed.