National News

National: Electoral integrity in all 50 US states, ranked by experts | Vox

December 26, 2016

Ever since the contested 2000 presidential election, the way that American elections are run has become increasingly partisan and contentious. The 2016 elections ratcheted up the number of complaints by all parties, yet there is heated disagreement about the nature of the problem — let alone potential solutions. For many years, the main complaint by the GOP has centered on alleged incidents of illegal fraud, in which it is claimed that ineligible people registered and cast ballots, for example non-US citizens and felons, or simply imposters voting more than once.

National: Recounts or no, US elections are still vulnerable to hacking | Associated Press

December 26, 2016

Jill Stein’s bid to recount votes in Pennsylvania was in trouble even before a federal judge shot it down Dec. 12. That’s because the Green Party candidate’s effort stood little chance of detecting potential fraud or error in the vote — there was basically nothing to recount. Pennsylvania is one of 11 states where the majority of voters use antiquated machines that store votes electronically, without printed ballots or other paper-based backups that could be used to double-check the balloting.

Editorials: Why the Green Party Continues to Demand Presidential Recounts | David Cobb/The Nation

December 22, 2016

Presidential recounts are not about changing election results. At least, that is not their primary purpose. At their core, recounts are about ensuring confidence in the integrity of the voting system. It is unfortunate, if not all that surprising, that the two largest corporate-controlled political parties have chosen to stand in the way of these grassroots-demanded recounts—in the case of Republicans, actively blocking them in the courts; in the case of Democrats, capitulating in their refusal to push for them.

A Democracy Worth the Paper — Ballot — it’s Written on | Commentary by Mark Halvorson and Barbara Simons

December 21, 2016

As the CIA digs deep to investigate foreign influence on our election, we should recognize that we don’t need cybersecurity experts to tell us if our votes have been accurately counted. Citizen observers can do the job, if we fix the way we vote and the way we verify those votes.

National: Green Party U.S. election recount bid comes to a close | Reuters

December 14, 2016

The recount effort by Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein in three U.S. states came to an end on Monday, after weeks of legal wrangling yielded only one electoral review in Wisconsin that favored Republican winner Donald Trump. A federal judge in Pennsylvania rejected Stein’s request for a recount and an examination of that state’s voting machines for evidence of hacking in the Nov. 8 election won by Trump.

National: Stymied vote recount exposed flaws in ballot integrity, Jill Stein says | Los Angeles Times

December 14, 2016

Jill Stein, the Green Party candidate for president, conceded Tuesday that her three-state vote recount drive was “stopped in its tracks,” but said she’d illuminated the need to shore up the security of balloting nationwide. “While the count may have stopped, the movement for a voting system we can trust has been enormously energized,” Stein told reporters on a conference call. Stein raised more than $7 million to seek recounts of the presidential vote in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania. President-elect Donald Trump narrowly won those states.

Editorials: Back to the future: Paper ballots still the best fraud prevention | Theresa Payton/The Hill

December 4, 2016

It’s hard to believe the moment we all learned the presidential election would be recounted in Wisconsin. Thank goodness Wisconsin has paper ballots that can be physically counted again. Did you know that many of the voting machines in New Jersey, Delaware, Georgia, Louisiana and South Carolina produce a report of how the voting machines recorded the votes but there is no paper trail to allow you to count the ballots again if needed.

National: Clinton camp splits from White House on Jill Stein recount push | The Guardian

November 27, 2016

Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign said on Saturday it would help with efforts to secure recounts in several states, even as the White House defended the declared results as “the will of the American people”. The campaign’s general counsel, Marc Elias, said in an online post that while it had found no evidence of sabotage, the campaign felt “an obligation to the more than 64 million Americans who cast ballots for Hillary Clinton”.

Verified Voting Blog: Want to Know if the Election was Hacked? Look at the Ballots | J. Alex Halderman

November 25, 2016

You may have read at NYMag that I’ve been in discussions with the Clinton campaign about whether it might wish to seek recounts in critical states. That article, which includes somebody else’s description of my views, incorrectly describes the reasons manually checking ballots is an essential security safeguard (and includes some incorrect numbers, to boot). Let me set the record straight about what I and other leading election security experts have actually been saying to the campaign and everyone else who’s willing to listen. 

National: U.S. Officials Defend Integrity of Vote, Despite Hacking Fears | The New York Times

November 27, 2016

The Obama administration said on Friday that despite Russian attempts to undermine the presidential election, it has concluded that the results “accurately reflect the will of the American people.” The statement came as liberal opponents of Donald J. Trump, some citing fears of vote hacking, are seeking recounts in three states — Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania — where his margin of victory was extremely thin.

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