I Voted Touchscreen!

I Voted Touchscreen!

That’s what the sticker says. They gave one after I voted today in Los Angeles at one of the twenty new touchscreen voting centers. They plan to roll them out county wide by 2004-5.

They are easy to use, especially for anyone with even a little computer expertise. And – no more dangling chads!

On Election Day, I will be an inspector at a local precinct, helping people vote, checking the residency against volumes of paper lists, determining what to do if say, a person brings in an absentee ballot but forgot the envelope it goes in (they then vote on provisonal ballot basis).

I went to the training session last night. While the County Registrar of Voters has certainly tried to make it simple, lemme tell you, the current system is deeply convoluted and uses way too many pieces of paper. Touchscreen voting will be a huge improvement. For example, voters can be looked up via computer to determine eligibility rather than by manually going through pages of paper at the precinct.

Connecticut, where I grew up, has used computerized voting booths since the late 50’s. No muss no fuss. Everything gets done quickly. Here in LA, each precinct, after close of voting, opens the ballot box, separates write-in ballots from other votes, and puts them in a red box (after removing the outer envelope from the non-write-in votes), then two precinct workers drive the ballots to a drop off location. After of course, totalling up the various types of votes manually and putting numerous other items in their respective colored containers.

Computerized touchscreen voting eliminates much of this tedious work, and allows quicker tallying of votes and less chance for error. Bring it on!