Election 2012: New Voting Tech Caused Some Headaches


The 2012 election relied more heavily on technology, including digital voting, than ever before. While voters came out en masse to narrowly re-elect President Barack Obama, not everything went exactly as planned. There were plenty of examples of broken and malfunctioning voting machines, a flawed email voting scheme in New Jersey and other problems.

Reports of problems with voting machines started even before Election Day. On Monday, the Ohio Green Party chairman filed suit seeking removal of software upgrades on voting machines in 39 Ohio counties because they were not tested or certified as required by law. Early voters in Pueblo, Colo., and Adams County, Colo., reported that voting machines were changing their votes.

One of the big stories on election day was a video, initially posted to YouTube and Reddit, of an electronic voting machine in Perry County, Penn., repeatedly changing a vote for President Obama to one for Mitt Romney. The video, which received more than 500,000 views throughout the day, showed the error in real time as the voter pressed next to President Obama’s name only to have Mitt Romney’s name selected.

According to reports, the machine was taken out of service once the problem was indicated, but was later recalibrated and placed online, with no further problem reports.

Machines changing votes weren’t the only problem of the day. In many locations, there were examples of machines that were on the fritz. For example, in heavily populated Cuyahoga County in swing state Ohio, there were a number of reports that ballot counting machines were jammed, with some having to be replaced, despite having been tested before Election Day.

Read More at . By J. Nicholas Hoover.

Photo Credit: The US Army (Creative Commons)


Let us know what you think!