Do you think we should vote in elections by mail or online?

    by Mark Glaser
    November 7, 2006

    As the mid-term U.S. elections are today, I thought it would be a good idea to consider the intersection of technology and politics once again. So far, the mix has been pretty toxic, with so many electronic voting machines coming under fire for a lack of paper trail or being susceptible to hacks. Oregon has gone around precinct voting problems entirely with a vote-by-mail system where people have a few weeks to mail in ballots or drop them off at their convenience, which raises the participation level. Jeremy Wright, who helped push through the system in Oregon, explains how it works on the Daily Kos blog. What do you think? Should other states switch to mail-in ballots? Or should we create a safe way to vote online as well? What would the problems be with online voting besides security concerns? What other ideas do you have to eliminate the problems of long lines, voting machine irregularities, and intimidation at polling places? Share your thoughts in the comments below and I’ll run the best ones in the next Your Take Roundup.

    Tagged: comments election
    • Is there concern that making voting easier by offering it over the Internet will encourage more people who do not research issues and candidates to vote? Perhaps more basically, is the effort to go vote at a certain location correlated with attention to political issues prior to voting?

    • I am a big believer in online voting. I think that a lot of the concerns regarding the veracity of an online vote are, in a word, bogus. If amazon.com can keep my credit card info and address under wraps, then I think we can develop a solution that makes it clear if I voted “yes” or “no” on Virginia Ballot question #1 (“no”, BTW)

      If the online voting system is created as an open source project, it wold also have tremendous transparency and security, which our democracy deserves.

    • I would LOVE to be able to vote online, and think David offers an excellent suggestion as to how this might be accomplished in our new, “networked” society.

      We have all become extremely busy. I would hate to think that requiring people to go to the polls (when a viable alternative exists) is reducing participation in our democratic system.

    • Vote by US Mail.

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