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California preps e-voting ban bill

Democracy threatened by machines - Senator

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"Democracy is too important to turn over completely to a machine," according to a Californian state senator who will introduce a bill that would ban electronic voting machines in the November elections. Last week the state's election commissioner decertified $100m worth of machinery, and ordered counties with e-voting terminals to produce a backup system for the November elections.

However, Senate Bill (SB.1723) by the Republican senator for Irvine would trump that. The bill states that urgent action is needed after the precedent of the March elections this year when, notes the author the Senator Ross Johnson, "thousands of voters were provided with the incorrect electronic ballots or mistakenly cast electronic ballots before they were finished voting.

"This had a direct effect on the outcome of a Democratic County Central Committee contest and possibly other races as well. In Alameda County, encoding machines necessary to operate the voting devices failed in 24 percent of the polling places and an entire race for a Republican County Central Committee seat failed to even appear on the ballot."

At least one county has vowed to sue the elections commissioner over last week's decision. ®

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