Thursday, March 31, 2005

Minutes From SF No Confidence Workshop

Thanks to Pat Villano for arranging the space to do this workshop. He also recorded the following minutes:

3-25-2005 NO CONFIDENCE Resolution workshop (at SF Green Party HQ on Howard st. in San Francisco)

Meeting minutes:

Reasons for No Basis for Confidence in US elections:
1Machines unreliable
a.Source codes are privately held
b.Hacking issues/manipulation of tallies
c.No paper trails/receipts
d.Partisanship (private, often right-wing companies create and operate voting machines and software)
f.History of flaws (Overvotes in many precincts; Unusual results like GOP wins in predominantly democratic districts)
g.No audit requirements

2 Election officials incompetent/corrupt
3 Security of Ballots
4 Disenfranchisement
a. Two-party system inherently corrupt, stands to gain by disenfranchising certain groups (minorities)
b. Number of machines available not adequate in many precincts
c. Intimidation and misleading information given (suppression of votes)
d. Purging of voter rolls
e. Number of permissible IDs
f. Registration takes too much time
g. Felons barred (justice issues)
h. Burden of proof of voter eligibility is on citizens instead of government

5 Corporate personhood
a. private corporations have little to no accountability

6 Fraud perpetuates further lower voter turnout/apathy
7 No genuine representation
8 No transparency (witnesses not present during vote-counting)
9 Making voting days into national holidays (workforce can’t take time off for voting purposes)
10 Media access/coverage of elections
a. Equal time not assured
b. Cost of access for candidates

Conditions Needed to Restore Confidence in Voting (points for the “Be it resolved” section of a new draft of the resolution):
1 Proportional representation and multi-delegate districts
2 Paper ballots counted in their own precincts (non-centralized), with WITNESSES present
3 Same day voter registration
4 Expanded number of permissible IDs
5 Public financing of elections
6 Constitutional amendment to protect voter rights (universal suffrage)
a. Automatic registration

7 Open source code on software (or NO electronics involved – Punch card systems only)
a. No proprietary software/machines

8 Due process to challenge voter rights/denials
9 Full accessibility
a. Adequate number of voting machines in all precincts/no 1-8 hour waiting lines

10 Non-partisan election officials



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