Something's rotten in the state of Denmark

Sunday, November 14, 2004

Carolina on my mind

We've been so gung ho about Ohio, Florida, and New Hampshire, that we haven't been posting near enough about North Carolina, but they experienced some severe irregularities of their own.

Check out Steve Hartsoe's piece for the AP.

Now, North Carolina was a state which John Kerry did not come close to winning -- he lost by more than 400,000 votes. So the electoral vote is not endangered by what happened in NC. (But keep in mind that any votes stripped away from the popular vote total by glitches and recounts also help to strip away a little of the, cough cough, mandate that the Bush-Cheney folks are claiming.) But just because North Carolina didn't come close to going for Kerry, doesn't mean that their voters don't deserve answers.

Consider this:

A Florida-style nightmare has unfolded in North Carolina in the 10 days since Election Day, with thousands of votes missing and the outcome of two statewide races still up in the air.

The fiasco has not reached the proportions of what happened in 2000 in Florida, in part because the presidential race was not close in North Carolina.. But election observers say North Carolina has been the site of some of 2004's worst problems.

The biggest failure resulted from a computer glitch that wiped out more than 4,400 votes in Carteret County, while other disputes have focused on how to count provisional ballots. In another county, 12,000 early and absentee votes were misplaced because of a procedural error, but later found. Federal authorities said they plan to investigate.

What happened in Carteret County should be reason enough that no county, Democrat or Republican, should allow any kind of electronic voting machine system put in that does not leave a paper trail. Just insane.

Is any hack still floating the flack-story that "these electronic voting systems really went off without a hitch?"