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    Election Reforms Proposed

    Some committee headed up by James Baker and Jimmy Carter released a report on election reforms they think should be implemented to ensure “fairer” elections. From the press release at the site for this report gives highlights of the main items.

    • To address the most serious problem of inaccurate registration lists, the Commission
    recommends that states, not local jurisdictions, organize and update their lists, and that the
    U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) take the lead in making the lists interoperable
    so as to eliminate duplicates when people move between states.

    • To enhance ballot integrity, states should require voters to present a REAL ID card at the
    polls and provide non-drivers with a free photo ID card for voting, but during a transition,
    citizens without a card should be permitted to vote with a provisional ballot.

    • States should make voter registration and IDs accessible to all eligible citizens by using
    mobile offices and other means to register more voters and issue photo ID cards.

    • Congress should pass a law to require voter-verifiable paper audit trails on all electronic
    voting machines, and the EAC needs to take additional steps to ensure those machines are
    secure and accessible for people with disabilities.

    • The U.S. Election Assistance Commission and state election management institutions should
    be strengthened and reconstituted on a nonpartisan basis.

    • The presidential primary schedule should be reorganized into four regional primaries.

    Here is a link to the entire 113-page report, if you are really bored. I really can’t argue with any of those main bullet items. I couldn’t care less how the presidential primaries are set up since no matter what system is used, it will never work the way anyone intends it to work, especially if Iowa and New Hampshire conitue to get the first two slots before the so-called regional primaries. And the state election management system being non-partisna, while ideal, will never ever happen no matter what anyone does. It is like trying to claim the media is non-partisan.

    However, the requirement for people to prove their identity is an absolute must. I would even be willing to say the Government should provide ID’s to people who claim they can’t afford them so that nobody, and I mean nobody, can claim they are being discriminated against. Frankly, I have found it to be ridiculous that you do not have to identify yourself before voting in the state of Maryland. Every time I have gone and voted, I could easily claim to be anyone of my Democratic neighbors and nobody would have a clue. In addition, paper trails on these electronic machines is also an absolute must. Not because I believe the machines are inherently faulty, but precisely because I believe the machines work well and any paper trail should prevent politicians (from both parties) from claiming any close election was rigged because of the machines. I’ve never understood why it seems it is mostly Republicans are the ones against paper trails for electronic voting machines. If anything, it would prove the routine charges by Democrats of elections being stolen “by the machines” in every election completely baseless.

    Any election reform that does not include both of these items can not be considered real election reform. Back to the identification requirements, I think it is obvious as to why many liberals don’t want people to be forced to prove they are who they claim they are before voting. One reason is that corpses don’t photograph very well….

    I’m sure there are other things in this report, but I really don’t feel like reading through the entire thing. Maybe somebody can.

    Posted by Dave at 7:40 am
    Filed under: Election 2004 News (Recent) | Comments (14)

    14 Responses to “Election Reforms Proposed”

    1. gil says:

      If Jimmy Carter has anything to do with it, it will be screwed up. Why on earth would anyone give any credence to what the worst president in the 20th thinks or cares. Remember Haiti. Remember North Korea. Remember his whole failed and miserable presidency. Please someone tell Jimmy to please just shut up.

    2. Go DUKE!!! says:

      But he does such good work with his hammer.

    3. palinurus says:

      Jim Baker and Jimmy Carter?….Couldn’t they find a Republican to pair with Carter?

    4. zorkpolitics says:

      Photo ID is a no brainer, in my town the only “ID” you present is you have to give a name of a registered voter, they never ask for any proof you are the person you say.
      State wide registration also makes sense, but I’d go one step further, every time a person registers to vote they should be required to fill out a post card that goes back to their last state/county to be sure their name is removed from that list. I still wonder about the 10,000 people that were registered in NY and South FL back in 2000, how many voted twice?

    5. bob says:

      Anybody see anything bout havin to be alive to vote? I guess the dems veto’d that

    6. McCain says:

      Just seems like more big government solutions to small problems. The one thing all of these “reforms” has in problem is it moves power away from the lowest common denominator and toward higher up governments, either state or federal. Bad — powers is best distributed as near the people as possible.

    7. palinurus says:

      bravo, McCain, but since you have a panel headed by two big government liberals there is: 1. deep distrust of the people, and thus, local and state governments (brace yourself for more visits from the nightriders and a return of the poll tax) and 2. a belief that only big brother can save us.

    8. Mike in Maryland says:

      Jim Baker a big government liberal? Since when?

    9. palinurus says:

      Since when is Jim Baker a big government liberal?

      Baker was a Jerry Ford Republican, then a Bush I Republican, both times against of Ronald Reagan. He joined Reagan after the ’80 election and helped the trains run on time, but then he went over to Treasury, where he helped convince Reagan to raise taxes and greatly increase federal spending. Through the ’86 tax reform act, which he pushed, billions were cut from personal taxes only to be added through increased, hidden business taxes.
      Tax rates dropped but dozens of deductions were cut or repealed.

      After helping Bush I win the ’88 election, he stood by as Nick Brady convinced Bush to break his no new taxes promise, thereby giving us 8 years of Bill Clinton.

      He consistently has favored positive relations with the Red Chinese and continues to favor close ties to Germany and France. He has urged that we cut and run in Iraq.

      From the old Soviet Union, Iraq, and Yugoslavia, he preferred accommodation with these regimes, rather than assist in their demolition.

      Of course, I am exaggerating a little. Baker sure beats Carter, and he has done a few good things. He convinced Reagan to debate Carter, which many advisors thought was a mistake. He is pretty good at conning the Dems on procedural stuff related to elections, and the lefties do hate him for his connections to the oil business, so he can’t be all bad. But he is no conservative.

    10. Polaris says:

      McCain,

      I tend to agree with you vis a vis government. However, how can you defend a system where you have to show more ID to buy a drink than you do to vote?

      -Polaris

    11. McCain says:

      I don’t defend it, in fact, I think IDs should be required by whichever government controls the election, whether that is local or state. But it is their choice, not mine, to decide how folks in aoother state govern their election process.

    12. Polaris says:

      McCain,

      Except that Federal requirements already exist (per the 14th amendment) even for local elections. To wit, you have to be a US Citizen to be eligible to vote an *any* election in the US.

      I don’t see why requiring a photo ID (esp if the appropriate govt pays for it) is too much to ask.

      -Polaris

    13. McCain says:

      Certainly it is the least of my complaints about the laundry list of big brother actions listed above. I think we can agree on that point.