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Voting Controversies

September 15, 2006 • Volume 16, Issue 32
Can all citizens vote — and are all votes counted?
By Peter Katel

Introduction

A Miami woman votes during the 2004 presidential election. The reliability of touch-screen and electronic voting machines is an issue in the upcoming November elections.  (Getty Images/G. De Cardenas)
A Miami woman votes during the 2004 presidential election. The reliability of touch-screen and electronic voting machines is an issue in the upcoming November elections. (Getty Images/G. De Cardenas)

Vote-counting controversies in both the 2000 and 2004 presidential elections have left a cloud of concern hanging over the upcoming November 2006 congressional vote as well as the not-so-far-off 2008 presidential election. The issues range from the trustworthiness of electronic, touch-screen voting machines to fears that laws requiring more stringent verification of citizens' identities would disenfranchise minority voters. Some computer experts insist that touch-screen machines are vulnerable to hackers and that “paper trails” are needed to ensure that the vote counts can be verified if challenged. But the devices are so popular with election officials that up to 40 percent of voters will use touch-screen machines this year, many of which will not produce backup paper print-outs. Meanwhile, scrutiny of the entire voting process, from voter registration to ballot counting is intensifying in courthouses and statehouses across the country.

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Voting Rights
Feb. 21, 2014  Voting Controversies
May 18, 2012  Voter Rights
Sep. 15, 2006  Voting Controversies
Oct. 29, 2004  Voting Rights
Feb. 28, 1975  Minority Voting Rights
Apr. 18, 1962  Protection of Voting Rights
Mar. 19, 1958  Right to Vote
Feb. 24, 1954  Eighteen-Year-Old and Soldier Voting
Sep. 13, 1932  The Solid South and Political Sectionalism
Jun. 18, 1928  Voting and Non-Voting in Elections
BROWSE RELATED TOPICS:
Campaigns and Elections
Campaigns and Elections
Civil Rights: African Americans
Domestic Issues
Voting and Suffrage
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