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Supporters of Democratic presidential candidate U.S. Senator Hillary Clinton (D-NY) take part in the Iowa caucus 212th precinct of West Des Moines at Valley High School in Iowa January 3, 2008. REUTERS/Jim Bourg
Democratic caucus-goers in Iowa, 2008. Moving this stuff online would be a significant upgrade.
Kinda cool: Iowa Democrats are investigating the idea of allowing internet voting for the 2016 caucuses.
Iowa Democrats are mulling a slate of ways to boost participation in their next presidential caucuses, including permitting Internet voting, a controversial method that would mark the first time in history the web is utilized to cast an official ballot preference for president.
It shouldn't be so controversial. Indeed, the entire financial sector operates online, and if banks and brokerages and services like PayPal can safeguard your money—the juiciest, most tempting target for nefarious hackers—then we could hold elections online.

The problem with voting online has nothing to do with the technology, and everything to do with, well, that part about "boosting participation". In short, if everyone votes, Democrats win. So naturally, Republicans are already agitating against the mere idea.

“I think it’s a very bad idea,” says the Heritage Foundation’s Hans von Spakovsky, who thinks computer-based voting will never happen, or at least not in the “foreseeable future.” [...]

“Computer experts basically say the Internet has such fundamental security vulnerabilities,” von Spakovsky said. “It’s not something you can fix in the hardware or software. It’s in the architecture of the Internet. I just think it’s stupid to go there.”

If von Spakovsky's name sounds familiar, it's because he was George W. Bush's point man at the Justice Department for voter suppression efforts. His career focus has always been on making sure the least number of people turn out to vote, so you can imagine how terrifying the idea of internet voting must be. Why, think of all those young people voting! It would be chaos!

But even he should cringe when reading back this quote: "it’s not something you can fix in the hardware or software." Luddites are inherently conservative, I suppose.

Internet voting will eventually happen. It'll begin with a few brave tests (a 2010 test in DC failed), and someone will figure it out. And then a (Blue) state will adopt it. I nominate California. And then more (Blue) states will adopt it. And it will be glorious. And if demographic trends haven't already done the GOP in, true universal voting will.

That is, unless we finally get that long-promised "rebranding" past their current incarnation.

Originally posted to kos on Mon May 12, 2014 at 08:43 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

    •  I run an electronic touch screen voting machine , (24+ / 0-)

      voting on a computer is being done now in California ,
      its just a small step away from voting on a lap top or desk top computer .

      "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

      by indycam on Mon May 12, 2014 at 08:49:33 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  This is ridiculous (10+ / 0-)

        In-person authentication and online auth are whole separate things.

        --
        Make sure everyone's vote counts: Verified Voting

        by sacrelicious on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:22:46 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Seriously, and let's not forget (10+ / 0-)

          that banks have shown again and again that they can't protect our money. Identity fraud is extremely common.

          No War but Class War

          by AoT on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:38:42 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  they can't always but everyone will still move to (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            cocinero

            online banking.  are you proposing that the world end online banking and go back to the abacus?

            •  No, I'm pointing out that the premise (8+ / 0-)

              that our online banking and financial system is secure is false. Target just had millions of cards stolen, what if something like that happened in an election? Online voting makes that possible, and given the amount of power one could gain from gaming the system like that you can be guaranteed that people will do their best to alter the results of these votes.

              I'm not categorically against online voting, but I've yet to see a foolproof system, and that's what we'll need. Or at least something that if proof against mass fraud. Given that we can't do that with banking, and that we don't have secure electronic voting at this point, at least not implemented, I think that online voting is a fool idea.

              And really, the GOP would love online voting, yet another way to implement fraud and disenfranchise people.

              I use online banking, but how we chose our government is far, far more important than how we deal with our personal money. And if something happens to my bank account I can call up or go in and deal with it. That's not something you can, or want to, deal with in an election.

              No War but Class War

              by AoT on Mon May 12, 2014 at 02:27:51 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  What in-person authentication (5+ / 0-)

          do you think happens at the polling place where I work ?

          I bank by computer .
          I trust that my banking is safe because of on line "authentication" .

          As a poll worker , I can tell you the flaws with walk in voting . I know how to vote more than once with paper ballots .

          "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

          by indycam on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:39:23 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Banking and voting are VERY different (12+ / 0-)

            IF...

            we decide to give up the idea of the secret ballot

            THEN...

            we can secure online voting... mostly but not completely

            IF...

            we want to keep a secret ballot

            THEN...

            internet voting CANNOT be secured. Period. End of sentence. Paragraph. Chapter. Manual.

            This from Markos..

            "It shouldn't be so controversial. Indeed, the entire financial sector operates online, and if banks and brokerages and services like PayPal can safeguard your money—the juiciest, most tempting target for nefarious hackers—then we could hold elections online. "

            Is crap. He should know better.

            The reason online financial transactions can be secured, the reason ATM transactions can be secured, is that they have multiple tracking numbers such as account numbers, SSN, etc that tie the transaction to the person and allow complete auditing of transaction from start to finish and back again.

            This eliminates the secret ballot.

            So... if you want a secret ballot then cannot be done. If we want to eliminate the secret ballot then it can definitely be done... to the degree that anything on the internet is secure.

            "Do what you can with what you have where you are." - Teddy Roosevelt

            by Andrew C White on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:44:00 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  So when people vote on the (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              cocinero, sebastianguy99

              electronic touch screen machine that I run ,
              do they give up their "secret ballot" ?
              Or is it still a secret ballot ?

              So... if you want a secret ballot then cannot be done. If we want to eliminate the secret ballot then it can definitely be done... to the degree that anything on the internet is secure.
              And if I disagree ?
              Are mail in ballots "secret" ?

              "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

              by indycam on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:52:19 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  The auth is done by paper before you vote (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                deltadoc

                The voting machine doesn't handle authentication at that point, only guaranteeing the one-use session card you got from the kindly volunteers is valid (based on my experiences).

                indycam, if internet voting were easily secured, we'd already be doing it.

                --
                Make sure everyone's vote counts: Verified Voting

                by sacrelicious on Mon May 12, 2014 at 11:04:35 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  Tell me: do you have a spycam to detect whether (3+ / 0-)

                the voter is being supervised by a ward heeler?

                There's no such thing as a free market!

                by Albanius on Mon May 12, 2014 at 11:30:44 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Do you ever vote by mail ? (4+ / 0-)

                  Would you say that vote by mail will never work because there is no "spycam to detect whether the voter is being supervised by a ward heeler?"

                  "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                  by indycam on Mon May 12, 2014 at 12:06:56 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Vote by mail is inconsistent w/secret ballot too (6+ / 0-)

                    which is obviously true.

                    That is a separate question from whether it will "work."

                    There is a long history of ward heeler intervention in voting:
                    in Albany NY just a few years ago a political operative I knew slightly was caught forging votes on absentee ballots from nursing homes.

                    Reasonable people can disagree about whether it is worth trading off ballot secrecy for greater accessibility and broader participation, but an honest debate must be based on the recognition that there is a tradeoff.

                    That contrasts with the Voter ID debate, in which there is no evidence that voter impersonation fraud actually occurs, but solid evidence that strict voter ID requirements discourage many eligible citizens from voting.

                    There's no such thing as a free market!

                    by Albanius on Mon May 12, 2014 at 12:35:15 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Agreed, though I would just add... (0+ / 0-)

                      Vote by mail has been around for awhile, and election folks have spent decades figuring out ways to preserve secrecy for it. There are some reasonable ones -- like making sure there aren't names on the ballots.


                      A beggar on horseback lashes a beggar on foot. The beggars change places, but the lash goes on. --WB Yeats

                      by kestrel sparhawk on Mon May 12, 2014 at 02:23:51 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Unless the NSA becomes a lot more intrusive... (0+ / 0-)

                        it will be IMPOSSIBLE to detect whether someone other than the voter fills out a mail-in ballot, or supervises the voter.
                        But it that case, the voting won't be secret from the NSA: Catch-22.

                        There's no such thing as a free market!

                        by Albanius on Mon May 12, 2014 at 04:20:11 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

              •  If someone can supervise your vote... (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Lost and Found, deltadoc, Wee Mama

                ...then it isn’t secret.

                See also:
                * Spouse-pressure v. the gender gap
                * Bosses encouraging voting at work
                * Apps for voting with cash rewards
                * and best of all: Here, let me help you vote

              •  The answer to the touch screen is (0+ / 0-)

                ... it depends.

                It depends on how the software is coded but yes, it is possible to retain a secret ballot with a touchscreen.

                Mail in ballots also maintain a secret ballot the same way that absentee ballots do in other states... that however is not where mail in ballots are at risk. I have no idea at all how you guarantee that a mailed in ballot actually came from the intended voter.

                "Do what you can with what you have where you are." - Teddy Roosevelt

                by Andrew C White on Tue May 13, 2014 at 10:01:32 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

            •  If stockholders can vote online securely, (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              indres, Janet 707

              why not political voters?

              My Karma just ran over your Dogma

              by FoundingFatherDAR on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:53:08 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Eh ? (0+ / 0-)
              THEN...
              internet voting CANNOT be secured. Period. End of sentence. Paragraph. Chapter. Manual.
              Sure ...

              "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

              by indycam on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:54:07 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Thank you for rejecting wishful thinking (6+ / 0-)

              I lived with the Director of Elections (for Iowa, as it happens) for 12 years, and acquired quite a bit of knowledge about the safety of internet voting because it was a hot topic then. It wouldn't happen in Iowa under her watch (she's quit now, owing to a combination of being fed up with corruption and being overridden by politicians on both sides of the aisle) because, as almost all election directors agreed after serious investigation, it was too vulnerable. I haven't heard of any innovations since which would guarantee security to at least 95%, much less certain.

              Yes, there are all sorts of machinations with in-person and machine voting, but there are solid systems to double check them. This would not be the case with internet voting at this time. (For example, one votes by machine now, but the paper ballots are retained for rechecking during challenges. At least in Iowa and Minnesota.)

              I think primaries and caucuses are a whole different kettle of fish -- they're actually technically private partisan voting events overseen by states just to avoid rampant corruption. I always thought the state should CHARGE Republicans and Democrats for the cost. If the parties want to be vulnerable to candidate theft, well, that's their look out. I don't recommend it, but then, I'm not a pol.

              While  I love the idea of internet voting, and agree that (if noncorrupted) it would highly improve Democratic chances, I do think those who advocate it should do serious research on its potential drawbacks. (and, btw, no, banks aren't secure either. Nor retail outlets. Read the news.)


              A beggar on horseback lashes a beggar on foot. The beggars change places, but the lash goes on. --WB Yeats

              by kestrel sparhawk on Mon May 12, 2014 at 11:38:26 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  "Wishful thinking" ? (0+ / 0-)

                I can do it now . Its not "wishful" .

                Because someone else failed to understand how it can be done doesn't mean its undoable .

                "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                by indycam on Mon May 12, 2014 at 12:11:28 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Oh, for heavens' sake (4+ / 0-)

                  Here are a few articles which suggest arguments proponents of internet voting have to answer.  The commentary here makes me wonder if the left is any smarter than the right about thinking science is just another point of view.

                  I'm disabled and find it hard to get places, and ADHD and find it hard to mail ballots. I would LOVE internet voting. But then, I want a magic wand too.

                  ATT corporate employee (ATT wants in)

                  National Democratic Institute -- doesn't say impossible, but recommended solutions not in place.

                  A tech study on problems with overseas military voting

                  The problem is that most people who want internet voting are either salespeople for internet systems or know very little about the technical problems. And the problem with discussions like this is that they appear not to want to know. I don't think ignorance should determine policy even for Democrats.


                  A beggar on horseback lashes a beggar on foot. The beggars change places, but the lash goes on. --WB Yeats

                  by kestrel sparhawk on Mon May 12, 2014 at 02:05:08 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  You sure do think you have it all figured out (0+ / 0-)

                    don't you .

                    The problem is that most people who want internet voting are either salespeople for internet systems or know very little about the technical problems.
                    I am a technician who is called an electronic voting system specialist by the election officials here .
                    The commentary here makes me wonder if the left is any smarter than the right about thinking science is just another point of view.
                    I've made my living by making things work , I've fixed very complex things . When things that no one else could get to work they brought them to me , when things on other islands needed fixing they flew me in .
                    Insult me some more , its really working for you .
                    Your whole man will never fly is so very interesting , do keep on with it .

                    "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                    by indycam on Mon May 12, 2014 at 02:55:25 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  sorry if you felt insulted (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      deltadoc

                      I was getting very frustrated because I didn't see you even acknowledging what some of the problems might be.

                      If you are a technician -- seriously, how do you see the concerns might be resolved? I don't mean "because tech will work and women will fly" -- I mean recs the way the ones who actually developed flight looked at things.


                      A beggar on horseback lashes a beggar on foot. The beggars change places, but the lash goes on. --WB Yeats

                      by kestrel sparhawk on Mon May 12, 2014 at 04:31:10 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  15 Reasons Why Internet Voting Must Be Opposed (7+ / 0-)

                        Internet voting conceals ALL FOUR essential steps of transparent elections from the public (Who can vote, Who voted, Whether ballots counted are same ones as were cast, Whether the count was accurate), and therefore alters our form of government, violating our inalienable rights and transferring power to insiders (government and vendors).

                        Internet voting “security” cannot possibly be assured to the public, since it conceals all the essential steps listed above, including who’s voting remotely.

                        Whoever controls the servers controls the election results. Voters will never know whether the tally is accurate.

                        Internet voting violates voter privacy and the secret ballot. Voters no longer have the security of the polling booth and may be pressured and intimidated by bosses, spouses, or others to vote in particular direction. It is also possible for whoever gains access to the system to see how voters have cast their ballot, thereby violating the secret ballot.

                        Internet voting is not transparent. Looking at a report created by an administrator is NOT the same thing as scrutinizing the original input. Internet voting creates a funnel -- lots of people input information, one person or a very few people control the output.

                        No security from hackers. Whether they be the Chinese, the Russians, the North Koreans or the kid down the street, with hacks done successfully on such powerfully protected entities as the Pentagon, the White House, the Defense Department and Google, why would anyone believe that Internet voting could be successfully defended from hackers, who could change the outcome of ANY election, at ANY time, without ANY evidence of the hack? Or, the opposition candidate could hack the election with no trace.

                        Internet voting companies controlled by foreign corporations. The main company currently doing Internet voting for U.S. jurisdictions, Scytl, houses its server in Spain. No one has any idea who the administrator is for any given election. There is no way for the public to authenticate who put the votes into the system; there is no way for the public to authenticate that the announced result is in any way the real result.

                        Internet voting destroys the paper ballot and therefore cannot be recounted. In the case of errors or contested results, there is no capacity to recount the ballots. Elimination of the paper ballot means a loss of the official record of the vote. The United Nations considers the paper ballot to be the international "Gold Standard" for election integrity.

                        Internet voting is immune to democratic checks and balances; voting is anonymous, and the vote inauditable by the voter, once cast. There is no paper record. Any paper record created remotely is the product of digital flow passed through easily-compromised servers.

                        Internet voting is NOT the same as online banking. Internet banking is not impervious to manipulation; banks reimburse customers for fraudulent transactions, which happen fairly regularly. However, because the vote is private, you cannot be "reimbursed" for a vote that was stolen, because ballots are anonymous and there is no way to know whose vote is whose. Bank account owners remain connected to their account; Internet voters are severed from their vote. The only way to rectify that is to remove political privacy, which would re-introduce threats of coercion and vote selling.

                        Internet voting technology is worth big money, and is being pushed by a small handful of private corporations, some already given “preferred status” by the Department of Defense. If allowed to overtake our elections, these private businesses will have the capacity to manipulate election results, with little or no possibility for detection, by either hacking or controlling the servers.

                        Global financial and political interests would be very keen to hack into our Internet elections or own the servers. This would be much easier and less expensive than waging war to increase power, or hacking into the Pentagon.

                        Internet elections would become centralized (globally), so no local operation would be needed. The civic engagement would diminish, and then disappear. Voters would be subject to whatever results were reported with no alternative to challenge the results of the tally. Election Day would likely vanish, creating a far more challenging and expensive campaign environment, especially for the grassroots. Thousands of poll workers would lose their positions, and all community oversight would disappear entirely.

                        No guarantee of increased turn-out. Internet voting is touted as increasing the youth vote, but elections have taken place in the USA, and have resulted in lower than normal turnout. For example, a 2009 Internet election in Hawaii, for an election type that typically was drawing a 25% participation rate, dropped to just 7% participation.

                        Hacking is already underway. The irony of Internet voting is that it comes at a time when large institutions such as the Pentagon, the Federal Reserve, large multinational banks and other high security institutions are being consistently hacked. The Department of Homeland Security has warned of the extreme likelihood of intervention in our elections by foreign nations via computer hacking.

                        http://www.electionintegritycoalition.org/...

                        •  Very good analysis. You have changed my mind (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          sacrelicious

                          Also more mudane problems might be too many people voting at one time, server crashes, etc. Look at all the problems with the ACA website.

                          It sure would be nice to have something more convenient but it does not sound feasible at this time.

                          If billionaires can afford to spend millions of dollars so that they can avoid paying taxes and fair wages, then they *can afford* to pay taxes and fair wages!

                          by Pixie5 on Mon May 12, 2014 at 11:10:25 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                    •  One thing you haven't done though (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      brainburst

                      is explain how you get around the difficulties. I too work with very complex systems. I am a z/OS Mainframe operating systems programmer. I am intimately familiar with how transaction processing works. If you give up privacy like we do with banking transactions then it is easy to do and a tried and true process. But as I said above, with financial transactions we have id numbers that identify us as individuals, numbers that identify our specific account, numbers that identify the institutions involved in the transaction, numbers that track time, day and location and finally an individual number for the transaction itself. Similarly, if the transaction occurs at a bank or an atm machine then there are cameras taking pictures of us... oh, and there are numbers that track the teller, their workstation, or if done from home, our pc and the network locations involved. All of that secures the transaction quite well but completely eliminates secrecy. You can't have both. It is not possible.

                      "Do what you can with what you have where you are." - Teddy Roosevelt

                      by Andrew C White on Tue May 13, 2014 at 10:18:19 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

              •  Director of Elections sounds like a luddite. (0+ / 0-)
                •  Actually no! (4+ / 0-)

                  But I wish they were.

                  Luddites were actually smart people who knew their jobs were being destroyed by the Industrial Revolution, and were among the forebears of unions. We've been taught to put them down because they were working class and opposed the ruling class. They didn't oppose "progress," but destruction of jobs and lives. As I think those of us who find internet voting to be risky agree.
                  A bit about Luddite reality


                  A beggar on horseback lashes a beggar on foot. The beggars change places, but the lash goes on. --WB Yeats

                  by kestrel sparhawk on Mon May 12, 2014 at 03:06:56 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

            •  Could the secret ballot be preserved (0+ / 0-)

              by using the Captcha words used to be sure it is a human accessing a site?  One should be required first to establish registration. Could another be generated once the ballot is cast to give the voter a ballot ID to check it was counted - without tying it to the person? The voter could print their own voted ballot for backup.

              I would be interested in whether the individual ballot votes could be published using that ID so any corruption of the counting computers could be identified by voters.

              As someone who would prefer human counting of ballots, it could be done both ways. The humans could count using computer screens rather than printing all ballots. Since the computer should take care of paper ballot marking errors, human interpretation should not be necessary. To catch computer program interference in the count, human counting could be done randomly, rather than all votes.

              Significant mismatch in votes counted with exit polls, and/or voter reports of counting errors if they can verify their ballots through the ID only they have, would trigger full human counting.

              "People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed and redeemed; never throw out anyone. " Audrey Hepburn "A Beautiful Woman"

              by Ginny in CO on Mon May 12, 2014 at 11:50:06 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  “Here, let me help you vote...” (0+ / 0-)

                No one can supervise what I do in a voting booth or pull the lever for me.

                Secure voting isn’t the same as secret voting.

                •  ??? How does that apply to my comment? (0+ / 0-)

                  BTW, as an election judge, I have supervised what some voters did in the booth. Those that asked questions and the disabled (which you sometimes actually 'pull the levers' for).

                  Isn't the whole point of this discussion how to maintain BOTH with PCs?

                  "People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed and redeemed; never throw out anyone. " Audrey Hepburn "A Beautiful Woman"

                  by Ginny in CO on Mon May 12, 2014 at 02:23:12 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  So I have had couples come in together (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Wee Mama

                  and vote together , same booth , same time .
                  I have asked them if they would please use separate booths , if they say no and I see no proof that one is forcing the other there is nothing I can do .

                  Secure voting isn’t the same as secret voting.
                  I have helped people fill out their ballots . When their ballots will not scan and gets rejected by the optical scanner , I have asked if they want some help . A few have asked me to mark the ballot for them . I asked them to tell me , do you want to vote for A or B and then I make the make , and so on .

                  "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                  by indycam on Mon May 12, 2014 at 03:05:20 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Completely separate issue (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Wee Mama

                    voters can choose not to hide their ballot or share it with a spouse or ask for assistance in marking it... though ballot marking devices should be available so that getting you as the polling inspector are not necessarily involved. But the bottom line is I have the right to announce to the world who I vote for. But I also have the right for no one to know who I vote for.

                    "Do what you can with what you have where you are." - Teddy Roosevelt

                    by Andrew C White on Tue May 13, 2014 at 10:26:28 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

            •  Internet voting will be solved unless progressives (0+ / 0-)

              keep their heads in the sand and join with anti-franchise republicans to block it.

              •  This has nothing to do with being progressive (0+ / 0-)

                or conservative. It has to do with the technology involved. As of today the technology available to us cannot secure internet voting while also maintaining a secret ballot. It is a technical impossibility. And that is all there is to it.

                "Do what you can with what you have where you are." - Teddy Roosevelt

                by Andrew C White on Tue May 13, 2014 at 10:27:36 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

            •  same as walk in voting... (0+ / 0-)

              Your identity would be authenticated before you entered the portal for actual voting.  This is no different than what they do now.  They already know whether or not you vote even by you physically signing the voting register. There is no real privacy on that issue right now.

              "Attempting to debate with a person who has abandoned reason is like giving medicine to the dead." -Thomas Paine. "It's a battle of wits with an unarmed opponent." - Miss Gayle

              by MissGayle on Mon May 12, 2014 at 06:41:23 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  Right ... (5+ / 0-)

          It is, however, quite good enough for the IRS.

          I hope that the quality of debate will improve,
          but I fear we will remain Democrats.

          Who is twigg?

          by twigg on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:40:11 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  What part of secret ballot requirement (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Doug in SF, deltadoc

            do you not understand?

            The IRS folks need to know who you are, where you live, etc to validate you are you.

            The voting machine can't store this if the secret ballot requirement is to be preserved.

            https://www.verifiedvoting.org/...

            --
            Make sure everyone's vote counts: Verified Voting

            by sacrelicious on Mon May 12, 2014 at 11:07:58 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  If the "secrecy" issue (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Ginny in CO, mdetrano, Sir Roderick

              is the problem, rather than fraud ... double-blind authentication would deal with that.

              Besides, it would be optional, what's wrong with offering it as an option to folk who really don't care who knows which way they voted?

              What part of "courteous discussion" do YOU not understand?

              I hope that the quality of debate will improve,
              but I fear we will remain Democrats.

              Who is twigg?

              by twigg on Mon May 12, 2014 at 11:38:03 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Let's be courteous (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                jrooth

                First off, if you're referencing terminology that I can't google, I'd appreciate if you back it up with a reference.  What is a double-blind authentication?  Can you back up your assertion?

                Secondly let's discuss the optional secret ballot - if that if the secret ballot is optional, it will still be a problem.

                Scenario: mob boss  asks a "customer" to vote a way so his crony gets voted into office.  If the customer has any way to provide an accurate receipt of his voting, then this scenario can lead to coerced votes.

                Similar scenarios for bullying spouse, or employer.

                Right now, because it's not even optional, the "customer" only has to say (s)he voted one way, while actually voting another.

                If you're still listening, lets talk substantive details here.

                --
                Make sure everyone's vote counts: Verified Voting

                by sacrelicious on Mon May 12, 2014 at 02:00:10 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  The authentication is really simple. (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Sir Roderick

                  Voter registers for online voting.

                  When it is time to vote, voter logs in with normal security questions. Separate server authenticates the log-in.

                  Computer sends a one-time random code to voter.

                  Voter enters code, and is re-directed to voting form and votes.

                  Code is only held on a second system, and is wiped once used. Voter is marked as having voted.

                  Vote is tallied, but it is not associated with the code because that only grants access to the voter form, and it is not stored.

                  The only requirement is that the software is not proprietary, and that the code can be inspected.

                  Technically this is not a hard thing to do.

                  I hope that the quality of debate will improve,
                  but I fear we will remain Democrats.

                  Who is twigg?

                  by twigg on Mon May 12, 2014 at 02:37:14 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

            •  every technical issue is solvable unless (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              twigg, Sir Roderick

              progressives and republicans join together to block the use of new technology.

              •  No it is not (0+ / 0-)

                "every technical issue is solvable"

                This is not a "TECHNICAL ISSUE", IT IS A SECURITY ISSUE
                It is not solvable, because state and local governments are not interested in spending the amount of money needed to do this. This will come down to which parties hackers are the most effective.

    •  Exactly. Oregon has no problems (24+ / 0-)

      with our snail mail elections and no fraud. I'm not sure what our turnout would be without it but it could be improved.

      We have it within our power to make the world over again ~ Thomas Paine

      by occupystephanie on Mon May 12, 2014 at 08:50:57 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Not if you're comfy with secret ballot (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cyberKosFan

      Clearly snail-mail based voting works only because the secret ballot requirement is effectively waived (I put my name/address and signature on CA mail-in ballot).

      If it's required to keep secrecy on the internet ballot, there is no way to prove corruption.

      I'd rather have limited turnout than a system where we can't prove has been corrupted.

      I'd be game to accept that if you vote online, you may need to authenticate and be traceable. That would give up secrecy (to a small part - maybe it's secret except for counting/auditing purposes - and that visibility is extremely limited).  But there must be some way of confirming you are you online.

      It's a really BFD for me.

      --
      Make sure everyone's vote counts: Verified Voting

      by sacrelicious on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:22:01 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  A couple of things. (0+ / 0-)

        First, mail-in voting is secret. The inner envelope containing the ballot does not have your name on it. The outer envelope is destroyed after receipt is recorded. Only the fact that you sent a ballot is known. Not what your vote was.

        Second, consider geolocation. It's a computer technique that identifies where a user is physically located. That would be matched against voter registration records. Online voting attempts that fail authentication and geolocation would be prevented.

        Obi Ben Ghazi to House Republicans: "Use the Farce."

        by edg on Mon May 12, 2014 at 05:55:35 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  It's already been tried in Arizona in 2000... (0+ / 0-)

      I voted VIA THE INTERNET in the 2000 Presidential primary elections in Arizona. It was an experiment, it was legal, and as I recall, it worked!

      America is not 317 million individual boats afloat on an ocean; America is an ocean supporting 317 million boats.

      by Jimdotz on Mon May 12, 2014 at 11:04:05 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  That you see no difference is what is terrifying. (0+ / 0-)

      Truly.

      More frightening still is that I am almost certain this will come to be.

      "Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities." - Voltaire

      by Greyhound on Tue May 13, 2014 at 07:09:02 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  The Republican Party will fight this (26+ / 0-)

    tooth and nail for one simple reason:  increased turnout will be a disaster for them!  That's why they put so much effort into making it harder to vote.

    The Republican base is in a long term decline and there's no way for them to win but to reduce participation.

    Not enough Christian Right and corporate voters left!

    •  I don't know; they seem to like it OK here. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      joedemocrat

      If there is any good in life, in history, in my own past, I invoke it now. I invoke it with all the passion with which I have lived. --Elizabeth Kostova,

      by SouthernLiberalinMD on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:23:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Considering the billions saved (0+ / 0-)

      It can be turned around as a money saving, government shrinking measure.

      “Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities.” ... Voltaire

      by RUNDOWN on Mon May 12, 2014 at 11:40:16 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  oh really? (0+ / 0-)

      Let us stipulate that the GOP is to minimize number of voters who might vote non-GOP.  Let us also stipulate that many who vote GOP are poor, uneducated, and but who may work more than 40 hours so getting to the polls might be difficult. Let us also stipulate that many are brain washed Christians who will vote as their church dictates.

      This may explain why red states who are allegedly afraid of expanding voting days are in fact the states with early voting.  States without early voting or no excuse absentee voting include NY, PA,  RI, CT, NH, MA, DE, along with a few southern states.

      Voting on Sunday is boon for the GOP because it allows church buses to take like minded people to the polls after service.  Internet voting will only increase this trend.

      Voter ID, voter intimidation(as the tea party has done) and voter location shenanigans, as in Wisconsin, are the ways the GOP limits votes.

    •  exactly. so if the Rs hate it, why are there so (0+ / 0-)

      many progressives (see these comments) who ignore this key point.

  •  Luddites, indeed. (5+ / 0-)

    Probably still use corncobs instead of toilet paper. And if not, they should.

  •  kos, in all my recent payload drops, (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    commonmass, elwior, annieli

    concerning this (now completely read) book, it should be understood that much longer before, i requested that my library purchase - which it did - your book "American Taliban."

    at the time of that book's arrival to my nest, similar payload drops were made. Mr. Rich's book, however, is a novel -- though much is factual and recent. Brownback, for instance, and lots more.

    i hope you will read it and know why i felt the need for so many payload drops, and where more fitting than in your own diary. you really look great as a 'mature' successful man, and your masthead updates are fantastic.

    TRAILHEAD of accountability for Bush-2 Crimes? -- Addington's Perpwalk.

    by greenbird on Mon May 12, 2014 at 08:52:17 AM PDT

  •  I'd Like to See a Comparison of Mass Identity (15+ / 0-)

    theft rates involved in physical shopping vs online shopping.

    Because I'm not recalling anything happening in the physical shopping world that compares to, say, Target's online mass identity theft issue. Even in the digital world, "last winter" means "current."

    I've done US mail voting and like it, so I'm on board with the generic concept of getting away from (mandatory) voting booths. But I don't want to expand the credibility problems of polling place digital voting systems to internet digital voting systems.

    We can start by mandating a few obvious advances in polling-place digital voting such as open source code and routine performance of certain kinds of audits.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Mon May 12, 2014 at 08:54:01 AM PDT

    •  Thank you for your support (10+ / 0-)

      I was a founding member of the now-defunct Open Voting Consortium, which produced a proof-of-concept system for Free Software/Open Source voting software, combining the security and auditability features of both paper and electronic voting, while eliminating as many vulnerabilities as possible.

      We were unable to get any government, even ones as favorable as the more Progressive California cities, to take our system seriously as a starting point for developing something deployable, even though they had millions of dollars in HAVA money that they could have invested in it.

      Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

      by Mokurai on Mon May 12, 2014 at 08:59:46 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  But couldn't you take that idea (0+ / 0-)

        and use it for dedicated terminals that replace existing voting machines?

        It would make sense - it could be much easier, and cheaper, to use existing computers as the terminals. Upgrading would be easier too.

        The software downloads could be restricted, with multiple levels of encryption and security, to ensure that not just anybody downloaded the software. And if the hardware is also secure, that's even better. It would be nice if the hardware was consistent, but that's not really as necessary.

        If you use a secure VPN connection, you could even upload the data or have them be live online connections, so tallies would be almost instantaneous.

        •  fraud (0+ / 0-)

          with proper safeguards this would be a very good thing.  The problem with current voting machines is they have no oversight and no voter verification.  If the code on the computer were open sourced so that anyone could peruse and validate the function, that would be an improvement.  If each voter were given a bar coded AND human readable print out that they could then verify and drop in a ballot box, that would be good.  One issue is are the voting booths delivering the votes.

        •  We did use stock PCs (0+ / 0-)

          The software was to be provided on signed write-once CDs. The most important factor for the computers was to have absolutely no communications and no storage in the voting units other than a CD reader. There were to be no tally data at the computers. Instead, the machine-readable printed ballots would be taken to a different canvassing computer to have their security data verified and the votes tallied under observation.

          The source code of the software would be available online for inspection and experimentation. Among other things, that would allow any knowledgeable member of the public to verify its workings, rather than the secretive testing services used for proprietary voting software.

          We were talking about putting a version of the software into the Sugar educational software distribution for One Laptop Per Child, as part of a larger civics software suite, but that did not happen either.

          Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

          by Mokurai on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:36:14 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  you had the right idea, but you were too early. (0+ / 0-)

        The tech won't stop, and internet voting is inevitable.  The republicans will have to be paved, though, to get it done since they want to limit voting to white males with gun permits.

    •  The banks didn't lose that info (0+ / 0-)

      Target did. Banks know how to keep their stuff secure. It's all the other people storing credit card or SSN info that are the problem.

      With online voting, that wouldn't be a problem. We'd have some serious-level security, such as deployed by the banks, the NYSE, etc.

      •  Oh really? You mean like JPMorgan Chase & Co? (4+ / 0-)
        (Reuters) - JPMorgan Chase & Co is warning some 465,000 holders of prepaid cash cards issued by the bank that their personal information may have been accessed by hackers who attacked its network in July.

        The cards were issued for corporations to pay employees and for government agencies to issue tax refunds, unemployment compensation and other benefits.

        JPMorgan said on Wednesday it had detected that the web servers used by its site www.ucard.chase.com had been breached in the middle of September. It then fixed the issue and reported it to law enforcement.

        Bank spokesman Michael Fusco said that since the breach was discovered, the bank has been trying to find out exactly which accounts were involved and what information may have been compromised. He declined to discuss how the attackers breached the bank's network.

        (emphasis mine)

        link

        "Turns out I'm really good at killing people." - President Obama

        by jrooth on Mon May 12, 2014 at 01:21:12 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Even with the breaches, retailers and banks (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Lost and Found

        will keep plowing forward, and online retailing will continue to grow.

  •  I get the part about increased participation-- (28+ / 0-)

    I have no doubt that increased participation would result--however, I remain uncomfortable about the possibility of manipulation of that vote tally.

    The fact is, banks cannot guarantee the safety of your transactions 100 percent of the time. People's financial transactions get hacked all the time, identities stolen, etc.

    I hate to say this, but I'm uncomfortable with the idea. Look at the problems that have arisen in some places with touch-screen voting (which I also oppose). Of course, paper ballots can be "stuffed", too. However, I'm not quite sure it would be as secure as we think.

    Call me a luddite if you must, but I think I just agreed with the Heritage Foundation, which means I must now take a bath in bleach.

    SPES MEA IN DEO EST.

    by commonmass on Mon May 12, 2014 at 08:55:11 AM PDT

    •  What happens if a recount is called for? (11+ / 0-)

      What happens if the recount differs from the initial count?

      I don't know. I totally trust banking and doing my car registration online, because the people who are handling those things benefit from hosting secure software. There really is no motivation for the bank or government to fudge the numbers in those cases. Especially, because I have receipts and statements and such and can independently verify all of the information. That is on an individual level.

      I wouldn't get any of those assurances with voting.

      "If you don't sin, then Jesus died for nothing!" (on a sign at a Mardi Gras parade in New Orleans)

      by ranger995 on Mon May 12, 2014 at 09:17:23 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I agree (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ranger995, commonmass, TrueBlueDem

      I could perhaps be convinced, but the idea makes me a little nervous.  What happens when the Koch brothers hire a battalion of hackers to change the vote tallies?  Unless that sort of thing can truly be made impossible then it will happen eventually.  

      My state does mail in ballots for everyone.  That seems pretty close to maximum convenience to me- all you have to do is make a few marks on the ballot and lick the envelope, and you've got a couple weeks to do it.  

      •  As hiring a "battalion" ... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        commonmass

        of "poll watchers" is so much better, after having to spend an entire day experiencing the "odyssey" of placing your vote under the current system.

        “Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities.” ... Voltaire

        by RUNDOWN on Mon May 12, 2014 at 11:47:35 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  So do vote by mail. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          PsychoSavannah, commonmass

          I don't so much see a problem with voter fraud from the perspective of individuals pretending to be someone else.  It seems to me that the danger is someone would hack into the system that kept tally and just change all the numbers with a few key strokes.  

          As long as there is an actual physical ballot you can always double check.  When voting is reduced to numbers in a computer then I don't see any way of assuring that they those number are for real.

          •  Your concern seems misplaced. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            RUNDOWN

            He who counts the vote determines the outcome. If you can't trust him, no input system is safe, whether it be paper ballot or Internet vote.

            Al Gore didn't lose in Florida because some hacker broke into the system and entered a few key strokes.

            Obi Ben Ghazi to House Republicans: "Use the Farce."

            by edg on Mon May 12, 2014 at 06:05:46 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  I guess you don't vote on one of those mysterious (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        commonmass

        electronic voting machines that has no audit trail.

        The current system, including republican/plutocratic disenfranchisement efforts, is a pile of crap.

    •  Far less than 100% of the time. (6+ / 0-)

      And, in addition to any deliberately nefarious proceedings, there's also the fact that the people who are making the decisions about what security is necessary for voting haven't got the faintest goddamned clue what is necessary for digital security. I base this on my experience in the MD Senate. Neither the committee in charge of deciding whether to do internet voting and how to do it nor their advisor had the first idea what it takes to provide security of any sort.

      Here's the proof.  It was the end of April. We were going to have a Presidential election in November. The advisor appeared before the committee and said "And of course we're going to get security people in to make sure everything is safe."

      I about came out of my chair. You're going to? Six and a half months before you go live? You're going to get security in? You mean you haven't already gotten security in and put it through a beta test? This is a Presidential election, not a fucking online shooter. In fact, fucking online shooters get better, more responsible security measures taken, because the people in charge of decision-making regarding the online shooting game have some digital skills, and don't simply regard the word "internet" as meaning "We've made it all cool and technological and stuff!"

      If there is any good in life, in history, in my own past, I invoke it now. I invoke it with all the passion with which I have lived. --Elizabeth Kostova,

      by SouthernLiberalinMD on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:30:56 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  the electronic machines used in many states (0+ / 0-)

        lack any audit trail, and are a joke.  have you even bothered to consider the horrid state of the current system in your pronouncements.

        •  Since it was a new system being proposed (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          jrooth

          no, I based my opinion of the new system on the new system and on the people who were presenting it.

          If there is any good in life, in history, in my own past, I invoke it now. I invoke it with all the passion with which I have lived. --Elizabeth Kostova,

          by SouthernLiberalinMD on Mon May 12, 2014 at 05:41:31 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  The current ballot counting system (0+ / 0-)

      Also cannot guarantee a perfect glitch free or fraud free vote 100% of the time ... or even 80% of the time? ... or ...

      Many pols continue smiling about that.

      “Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities.” ... Voltaire

      by RUNDOWN on Mon May 12, 2014 at 11:44:04 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  if you agree with the Heritage Foundation, you are (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      commonmass

      undoubtedly wrong.

      •  And so are the voters and legislators here in (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ranger995

        Maine where touch-screen voting is not approved. Optical scan or paper ballots only.

        If you want to trust the intertubes, go right ahead. Here, we're not likely to anytime soon.

        SPES MEA IN DEO EST.

        by commonmass on Mon May 12, 2014 at 04:13:48 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  How would it work to ensure... (14+ / 0-)

    that whoever claims to vote is voting? Not arguing, just curious... Electronic signature? Facial recognition?

    No snowflake in an avalanche ever feels responsible.

    by Magster on Mon May 12, 2014 at 08:55:59 AM PDT

    •  point is- we won't solve these problems unless (0+ / 0-)

      we make a serious effort.  I cannot understand how so many progressive can view republican disenfranchisement programs and still oppose greater use of technology to broaden the voting base.

      •  By introducing voting methods (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        jrooth

        requiring a voter to have internet access?  Making the gap between the haves and have nots even bigger?

        I'd rather we spend our resources making in person voting more universal and accessible.

    •  The process is easy. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Magster

      A voter registers and creates their user ID/password combo. They are given or create a unique PIN for the forthcoming election.

      On voting day, voter logs in and authenticates. The geolocation of the voter's computer is matched against their registration details.

      Upon completing the ballot, a tracing email is sent to the voter and cc'ed to an audit system.

      Votes are tallied and results announced.

      Obi Ben Ghazi to House Republicans: "Use the Farce."

      by edg on Mon May 12, 2014 at 06:17:46 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  so now i have to obtain a super-secret code (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    annieli

    from a highly-trained mechanic with his or her special tool, probing the secrets and ailments of my car -- hidden right in front of me via the dashboard-array portal -- to do anything but rotate tires.

    surely many feel this is true:

    Luddites are inherently conservative, I suppose.
    so is the converse/reverse/obverse.
    Conservatives are inherently Luddites, I suppose.

    TRAILHEAD of accountability for Bush-2 Crimes? -- Addington's Perpwalk.

    by greenbird on Mon May 12, 2014 at 08:57:12 AM PDT

  •  Odd that a caucus state would do this (8+ / 0-)

    As I understood it, the point of having a caucus as opposed to a primary was to foster discussion and require more commitment to have a voice.

    Internet voting would appear to be antithetical to these goals.

  •  Why would it terrify them? (9+ / 0-)

    considering that the hard core Dem base disproportionately does not have internet access??

    •  Yep, once again DK is out of touch with the base (9+ / 0-)

      of the actual Democratic Party. DK is whiter and richer than the Party. Democrats would overwhelmingly be hurt by going to online voting because that would be just the excuse the GOP need to cut back on in-person voting hours and polling places. They are already doing enough of this now, let's not give them an excuse to continue with that process.

      President Obama at Madison Rally 9/28/2010 - "Change is not a spectator sport."

      by askew on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:02:30 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Why not allow libraries and government offices (0+ / 0-)

        to have vote-ready computers for people who don't have a computer of their own?

        Yes, DailyKos DOES have puzzles! Visit us here Saturday nights @ 5:00 PDT (easier puzzles) and Sunday nights @ 5:00 PDT (more challenging) for a group solving. Even if you just pop in and comment while watching the fun, everybody is welcome. uid:21352

        by pucklady on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:15:57 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Because not everyone knows how to use a computer. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Roadbed Guy, lina

          President Obama at Madison Rally 9/28/2010 - "Change is not a spectator sport."

          by askew on Mon May 12, 2014 at 11:10:53 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  And not everyone knew how to use (0+ / 0-)

            a tabulated voting machine, either. They got assistance.

            Yes, DailyKos DOES have puzzles! Visit us here Saturday nights @ 5:00 PDT (easier puzzles) and Sunday nights @ 5:00 PDT (more challenging) for a group solving. Even if you just pop in and comment while watching the fun, everybody is welcome. uid:21352

            by pucklady on Mon May 12, 2014 at 01:39:44 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Paid for by whom? (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Roadbed Guy

              You think every library in the country will get paid-for assistance for every patron that needs it? What computers will be used--the ones our patrons already are using to full capacity? Or will we need to have additional PCs installed? Where will the internet drops come from for them?
              I teach beginning computer courses--it takes 2 two-hour sessions to teach people how to use a mouse. Another full session for the keyboard just to fill out text boxes on a screen. Another 1/2 hour just to get them logged into a pre-made email account. (Iow, to type in a username and password that they themselves picked out ahead of time.)
              It's more complicated than you think.

              "Lone catch of the moon, the roots of the sigh of an idea there will be the outcome may be why?"--from a spam diary entitled "The Vast World."

              by bryduck on Mon May 12, 2014 at 02:26:30 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  And that problem is new, how? (0+ / 0-)

                I get that some people are techo-illiterate. But those people have always existed and have always had to be trained to use a voting machine. I don't see how the expense is any more than always existed.

                Yes, DailyKos DOES have puzzles! Visit us here Saturday nights @ 5:00 PDT (easier puzzles) and Sunday nights @ 5:00 PDT (more challenging) for a group solving. Even if you just pop in and comment while watching the fun, everybody is welcome. uid:21352

                by pucklady on Mon May 12, 2014 at 03:57:33 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

      •  They don't need any excuse ... (0+ / 0-)

        They are doing anyway - every day, here and now.

        “Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities.” ... Voltaire

        by RUNDOWN on Mon May 12, 2014 at 11:49:28 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Out of touch? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Matt Z

        Before you accuse someone of being out-of-touch, you might want to verify that they are, in fact, out of touch. To wit:

        Finally, [smart phone] penetration is highest among Blacks (64%), followed by Hispanics (60%) and whites (53%).
        If you think "internet" means "desktop computer", then you are painfully out of touch. Heck, nearly half our traffic comes from mobile devices these days.
        •  But wait, that article (3+ / 0-)

          actually concludes that it is the wealthier, younger people who are the bulk of the smartphone users, not the poor, so while the commenter may have been off-target about race, they may have fallen into correctness about "class."

          "Lone catch of the moon, the roots of the sigh of an idea there will be the outcome may be why?"--from a spam diary entitled "The Vast World."

          by bryduck on Mon May 12, 2014 at 02:31:35 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  False choice. system can easily be structured (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        AaronInSanDiego

        to retain other voting options.  We'll see how the Republicans feel about internet voting. I predict they will oppose; I guess you would predict

    •  Conventional internet access, maybe (0+ / 0-)

      but I'd be hard pressed to find somebody who's relatively (or maybe absolutely) poor who didn't have a cell phone. And internet access.

      It might be prepaid, and might not be real consistent, but they'll have it.

    •  I'm sure we can all go (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      WisePiper, jrooth, Roadbed Guy

      to our numerous, well-appointed, well-funded American libraries to get all the access that we need.

      Anyway, does the Democratic party care about those people anymore? After all, Hillary can count on Republicans for the extra support she needs.

      If there is any good in life, in history, in my own past, I invoke it now. I invoke it with all the passion with which I have lived. --Elizabeth Kostova,

      by SouthernLiberalinMD on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:33:48 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I suspect that this comment also involves (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        SouthernLiberalinMD

        a backhanded reference to the Repubs attempts to shut down public libraries . . .. . (IIRC, that's a topic right here at DailyKos of late).

        And about HC, last week I posted a link about how 25% of Repubs would be willing to vote for her.   That, combined with the "enthusiasm" shown at "progressive" sites like DailyKos makes her unstoppable it might seem.

        But who knows, occasionally miracles do happen.

        •  I note your "dick fingers" and approve. :-) (0+ / 0-)

          Hey, given the fact that Hillary Clinton hasn't even declared her candidacy and neither has anybody else, it's nigh certain!

          and yes, it is a reference to library funding.

          If there is any good in life, in history, in my own past, I invoke it now. I invoke it with all the passion with which I have lived. --Elizabeth Kostova,

          by SouthernLiberalinMD on Mon May 12, 2014 at 11:30:48 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Umm, no (0+ / 0-)
            Hey, given the fact that Hillary Clinton hasn't even declared her candidacy and neither has anybody else,
            according to Wikipedia that is not the case
            Candidates

            The following notable individuals filed with the Federal Election Commission to run for President of the United States in 2016, and/or have expressed to the media that they are running. (Although these individuals are notable, that notability does not necessarily equate with viability as a candidate.)

            Democratic Party

            Jeff Boss, conspiracy theorist and perennial candidate from New Jersey[1]

            Robby Wells, former Savannah State University head football coach, from North Carolina[2][3]

  •  Hope the rollout doesn't look like ACA (5+ / 0-)

    Hundreds of companies are qualified to build a secure online voting system. Can the government competently identify even one of them?

    Sorry for the wingnut-sounding blather, but ACA rollout was inexcusible.

    “Hardworking men and women who are busting their tails in full-time jobs shouldn't be left in poverty.” -- Elizabeth Warren

    by Positronicus on Mon May 12, 2014 at 09:02:32 AM PDT

  •  people voting at all (9+ / 0-)

    terrifies republicans...

    The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

    by Laurence Lewis on Mon May 12, 2014 at 09:04:29 AM PDT

  •  I think it could work, but I worry about not (14+ / 0-)

    having a verifiable trail. I don't think there would be voter fraud, but as with the Diebold machines, there could be number fudging.

    "If you don't sin, then Jesus died for nothing!" (on a sign at a Mardi Gras parade in New Orleans)

    by ranger995 on Mon May 12, 2014 at 09:09:42 AM PDT

  •  gahhhhhhhh (23+ / 0-)

    kos, I know a few technologists you should spend several hours with before you tell us all that "the problem with voting online has nothing to do with the technology." (Coincidentally, some good ones gave a press conference in Estonia this morning....)

    Indeed, the entire financial sector operates online, and if banks and brokerages and services like PayPal can safeguard your money—the juiciest, most tempting target for nefarious hackers—then we could hold elections online.
    At least two big problems with that analogy: (1) Banks don't prevent fraud, they just keep it to generally acceptable levels (setting aside that whole identity theft thing); (2) Financial transactions aren't supposed to be anonymous, whereas voting is. If your money is stolen, you probably have some evidence; if your vote is stolen, how can you tell? There are ways to address that question, but they are far from slam-dunk fixes.

    Here's a link to an academic paper about how a small team was able to utterly subvert Washington, D.C.'s 2010 internet voting trial. Of course that doesn't prove that nobody can ever get internet voting right, but it's cause for real concern.

    "Democracy is a political system for people who are not sure they are right." —E. E. Schattschneider

    by HudsonValleyMark on Mon May 12, 2014 at 09:14:35 AM PDT

    •  The current system (0+ / 0-)

      Just fails at keeping at "acceptable levels", by restricting voting all together.

      And if you are registered with a party, that information is easy to find anyway. If you are active in local politics, your own politics will be well known.

      Not nearly as easy for your boss or neighbors to gain intimate details of your finances.

      “Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities.” ... Voltaire

      by RUNDOWN on Mon May 12, 2014 at 11:56:09 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  not sure what you're saying here (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        jrooth

        My point wasn't that internet voting compromises vote privacy, although it does. It's that any attempt to implement vote privacy in internet voting complicates the security problems.

        It is far from proven, and far from obvious, that switching over to internet voting would increase voter turnout. Regardless, higher turnout isn't worth radical doubt about who won.

        "Democracy is a political system for people who are not sure they are right." —E. E. Schattschneider

        by HudsonValleyMark on Tue May 13, 2014 at 02:46:12 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Voting security experts (20+ / 0-)

    including those who worked with the Open Voting Consortium, agree that Internet voting is nothing like Internet banking. In secret-ballot voting, it is illegal to associate an identity with a vote, which makes it completely impossible to audit the voting tallies. In banking it is an absolute requirement to associate an identity with every transaction, primarily because that is somebody's money, and secondarily for use in auditing.

    Absentee, mail-in balloting addresses this issue by having two layers. The envelope contains identifying information that must be verified before the envelope can be opened and the actual ballot separated from it. It is a minor weakness that we have to trust the clerks involved not to make any notes about who voted for whom, but having observers present largely deals with that. Forging signatures on ballot envelopes is possible in very small numbers, but quite rare. Although we cannot trace those paper ballots back to their senders, we still archive the paper for some time, permitting meaningful auditing.

    There is no technical means for securing votes in an online election that is proof against human ignorance and incompetence, short of issuing unique IDs and one-time-password tokens to every voter. OTP tokens generate a new pseudorandom password for each and every use. The system where the passwords are used independently generates the same password for the same login attempt. (I was a contract Senior Technical Writer for VeriSign on their OTP product documentation and other security products.)

    We can assume that large-scale phishing for voter ID passwords or PINs would become rampant immediately. Automating the use of stolen IDs of these kinds for fraudulent voting in quantity would be trivial.

    Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

    by Mokurai on Mon May 12, 2014 at 09:19:51 AM PDT

    •  Well, wait a minute (0+ / 0-)

      When I send in my mail ballot, I have to sign the ballot envelope. How is that different from a digital vote?

      If I create a vote using my own password/id (maybe from a ballot that was mailed to me?) and get a vote ID on my transaction. I keep the vote ID as my receipt.

      Then, when I want to check my vote, I can look up the vote tallies by my vote transaction ID and see that my transaction shows who I voted for. If it isn't right, or isn't counted, then I call shenanigans.

      It's still a secret ballot because the vote transaction and my identity aren't connected except in my own records.

      Yes, DailyKos DOES have puzzles! Visit us here Saturday nights @ 5:00 PDT (easier puzzles) and Sunday nights @ 5:00 PDT (more challenging) for a group solving. Even if you just pop in and comment while watching the fun, everybody is welcome. uid:21352

      by pucklady on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:24:16 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Then when hackers download the entire (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        out of left field

        ID and password database from the server, we're hosed. If they leave no traces of the theft, and only put in just enough fraudulent votes to swing the election and avoid an audit, they are home free. Also making sure only to vote where the real person hasn't.

        The difference is that they can't download the signature database for absentee voting, and print the signatures on fraudulent ballot envelopes. We can tell pen ink from printer ink very easily.

        Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

        by Mokurai on Mon May 12, 2014 at 02:26:02 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  That's not what I said (0+ / 0-)

          I'm saying that only the voter has the password access - it's on a paper document that they receive from the Registrar of Voters. That gets them to the voting app.

          The password allows the voter to vote only once, and it has certain security along with it. Perhaps the voter needs to provide a voter ID along with the password - something that is difficult for the hacker to steal.

          Then when the voter has completed voting, the ballot is assigned a sequential number. That ballot is then complete and is available only as read-only no matter who accesses it. They could also get a paper or email copy of their ballot along with the vote sequence number. That's the validation receipt.

          The voter can check the progress and validity of their ballot as it goes through the system. If the vote doesn't get counted, or changes, the receipt can be used.

          The Registrar of Voters also can look at all the votes by sequence number (which are secret because they are separated from the voter ID) and discover if any votes are missing or duplicated. A checksum could also determine if the contents have been altered.

          Yes, DailyKos DOES have puzzles! Visit us here Saturday nights @ 5:00 PDT (easier puzzles) and Sunday nights @ 5:00 PDT (more challenging) for a group solving. Even if you just pop in and comment while watching the fun, everybody is welcome. uid:21352

          by pucklady on Mon May 12, 2014 at 03:54:51 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  This is complete nonsense (0+ / 0-)

            The only way you can use a password is if it is in the database for the Web site.

            Stealing personal ID is easy. It is done by the millions with great frequency.

            Mailing copies of ballots to voters is completely illegal, in part because such ballots could be used in voter coercion schemes if anybody else can demand to see the ballots.

            Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

            by Mokurai on Tue May 13, 2014 at 09:16:18 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  And then we'd say that suggesting election fraud (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TrueBlueDem

      via phishing was a conspiracy theory.

      If there is any good in life, in history, in my own past, I invoke it now. I invoke it with all the passion with which I have lived. --Elizabeth Kostova,

      by SouthernLiberalinMD on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:36:33 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  the current system is abysmal. I am quite (0+ / 0-)

      sure that internet voting, once security issues are addressed, will be an improvement on the current abomination.  there will never be complete security guarantee for internet voting or any other kind of voting, and we should not allow an unreasonable standard to block the use of this technology.

  •  If more people vote we will haz tyranny n stuff nt (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    annieli, red moon dog
  •  So it's OK to conduct my banking transactions (6+ / 0-)

    online.

    It's OK to buy and sell stocks and securities online.

    It's OK for me to arrange financing for my retirement online

    It's OK for me to renew my motor vehicle registration online

    It's OK to take tests and obtain an accredited education online.

    But voting online is too "fraught with risk?"

    Really.

    •  For those other things, you set up an account and (12+ / 0-)

      you can independently verify all of your transactions.

      Those things are all handled individually in an non anonymous way. You have access to the accounts and you can verify and track everything.

      All of those accounts also deal with you solely as an individual.

      Voting involves everyone in the district sharing the same account anonymously.

      Can you see there is a difference there?

      Sure the software could work, but how to you verify anything?

       

      "If you don't sin, then Jesus died for nothing!" (on a sign at a Mardi Gras parade in New Orleans)

      by ranger995 on Mon May 12, 2014 at 09:27:30 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  What about using biometric recognition (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ranger995, annieli

        technology (such as a thumbprint reader) to verify who you are (and record an image of the thumbprint), coupled with your recorded vote?

        •  I am pretty sure that would be illegal, because (5+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Dartagnan, Terre, askew, mmacdDE, AmericanAnt

          one's vote has to be anonymous. Going to a polling station, they only check your identity to vote, they don't record how you voted.

          I am not 100% against the idea. I just think that voter fraud is not the only potential risk, we have to keep the counters honest as well. That has to be worked out before I support it.

          "If you don't sin, then Jesus died for nothing!" (on a sign at a Mardi Gras parade in New Orleans)

          by ranger995 on Mon May 12, 2014 at 09:36:03 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  The fundamental issue is anonymity of the vote (0+ / 0-)

            yet find a way to be absolutely sure that the vote is what the voter stated and that the count is correct. Using something similar to the double envelope mechanism where the actual vote is encrypted inside the carrier that can only be counted once separated from the carrier and only be counted by the elections' office would seem to be the correct approach.
            Suggestion is that the user logs into the election site using whatever authentication mechanisms needed.  Receives through a separate channel an "envelope" - validates the code on the envelope back to the website and then receives the ballot which is then voted online.  The ballot is then encrypted, and encoded with internal validity checks and downloaded to the voter who then attaches it to his carrier email - who then signs it or attaches their own code and then emails it using a separate, secure program to the elections office.  So, the ballot is separate from the carrier and remains as a separate, and permanent file that can be retained in perpetuity.  The count of these files is separate from the envelope/carrier so anonymity is maintained but there is a an absolute equivalence between the number of ballots received and the votes counted.

            Not a complete or perfect solution yet but I think this is a least a doable and workable idea.

            Good Sense is Seldom Common

      •  this issue will be addressed. relax (0+ / 0-)
    •  There's a difference though (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dartagnan, jrooth

      If someone hacks your financial accounts the bank will generally suck it up and give your money back.  What happens when a crooked billionaire hires hackers to jigger the vote tally for an election and puts a bunch of teapartiers in power?  

    •  Those other things seem tolerably risky to me. (0+ / 0-)

      Especially since our own security sector seems interesting in blowing big holes in Internet security to facilitate their snooping capacity.

      If there is any good in life, in history, in my own past, I invoke it now. I invoke it with all the passion with which I have lived. --Elizabeth Kostova,

      by SouthernLiberalinMD on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:37:53 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  exactly, this is the craziest discussion ever. (0+ / 0-)

      don't forget how sacred our voting rights are -- so we use electronic machines with no audit trails and software installations, chad-ridden paper ballots, strict vote id requirements to limit voters to white males with gun permits, etc.

    •  Sounds like the voter ID proponents (0+ / 0-)
  •  another thing for Diebold to work on... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DFWmom, decitect

    until SCOTUS figures out how to digitally repeat their 2000 travesty

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "I’m not the strapping young Muslim socialist that I used to be" - Barack Obama 04/27/2013 (@eState4Column5).

    by annieli on Mon May 12, 2014 at 09:22:46 AM PDT

  •  Details to work out for sure (0+ / 0-)

    But if the core idea is that we're a democracy (or more accurately a republic with representative government) then it would seem that increasing participation should always be a major goal.

    Of course even going back to the Founding Fathers there has always been those who live in fear of what actual democracy and people power would look like. They always look for ways to make sure that only those with proper "education" or "property" who have a real "vested interest" in the outcome are the ones who predominately participate.

    Mostly they are the same people who rail against the government not trusting the people. But the last thing they really wants is a government "of the people".

    Blue is blue and must be that but yellow is none the worse for it - Carlisle Wheeling

    by kenwards on Mon May 12, 2014 at 09:24:25 AM PDT

  •  seems easy enough to me with an eye scanner nt (0+ / 0-)
  •  free copies of IE 7 with each voter info pack (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Terre, cyberKosFan
    “Computer experts basically say the Internet has such fundamental security vulnerabilities,” von Spakovsky said. “It’s not something you can fix in the hardware or software. It’s in the architecture of the Internet. I just think it’s stupid to go there.”
    The Heartbleed bug allows anyone on the Internet to read the memory of the systems protected by the vulnerable versions of the OpenSSL software.

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "I’m not the strapping young Muslim socialist that I used to be" - Barack Obama 04/27/2013 (@eState4Column5).

    by annieli on Mon May 12, 2014 at 09:27:26 AM PDT

  •  Internet voting should terrify every human being (8+ / 0-)

    terrible, terrible idea.

    “In the beginning there was nothing, which exploded.” Terry Pratchett

    by 420 forever on Mon May 12, 2014 at 09:28:08 AM PDT

  •  Speaking as an Iowan who has experience with (12+ / 0-)

    the caucuses, I am on board with trying to find ways to increase participation. However simply replacing the physical caucus with an online vote would lose the real value of the caucus.

    In the caucus, people talk to each other. One of my joyful memories is seeing a class mate of my twenty year old son making the case for Obama in our caucus. Then, an initial tally is taken - but people physically move into groups. Undecided people cruise around the room asking questions.

    Rarely, the first division settles it. Usually, the least favored candidates are dropped and their supporters then have to pick one of the remaining ones, again after discussion.

    This is much more than an accounting procedure; this is consensus building and group reflection on values and priorities. I really don't see how any online replacement can do that. An additional difficulty is that folks on the wrong side of the digital divide are probably left out.

    I would like to see something like an absentee ballot introduced for the caucuses. People who know they can't spend the time at the regular caucus could file with the precinct chair a ballot listing all the candidates ranked. There should also be a baby sitting area available at all caucuses, to encourage young parents to come and have their voices heard. Having that staffed by teenagers who are too young to vote would be one way for them to start getting a taste of what the political process is about.



    Is it true? Is it kind? Is it necessary? . . . and respect the dignity of every human being.

    by Wee Mama on Mon May 12, 2014 at 09:45:54 AM PDT

    •  agreed, and would add ... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Wee Mama, PsychoSavannah

      I agree with you on how sublime the 2008 cauci were. But I've participated in several other ones and have never come close to this level of participation. I think it has usually been 3 to 6 people. In 2004 (Dr. Dean!), we had more like 8 or 10. 2008 was over 20 people.

      Your concerns are completely valid. I would like to see several things: the caucus to continue; online participation; a participation process that takes into account your concerns and that we end up with a process that is richer and more inclusive than the present system. I don't know what that process would look like, but I think this is a good start on its criteria.

  •  What worries me is having an election decided (6+ / 0-)

    completely by some 4Chan hacker.

  •  If internet voting raises participation (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    red moon dog

    then its a good idea. Heh, the GOP is scared because the NSA can read the votes? The internet is plenty secure enough to vote on, I welcome it.

    A true craftsman will meticulously construct the apparatus of his own demise.

    by onionjim on Mon May 12, 2014 at 09:52:07 AM PDT

    •  Because so many in the Chinese military (4+ / 0-)

      have been denied the opportunity to participate in our elections for too long.

      Because the SCOTUS must be given the opportunity to rule in a 5:4 decision that the principle of "one person, one vote" does not apply to corporations, for whom voting in an internet election is a form of protected free speech.

      Because the SCOTUS must be given the opportunity to rule in a 6:3 decision that any government discussion or examination of suspected fraud in an internet election constitutes libel and irreparable harm to the reputation of the corporation that designed the software.

  •  Kos, you're doing it wrong. (7+ / 0-)

    There's two things wrong with this post: what it's not talking about, and what it is. I'll talk about the problem with omitting voting systems (ie, solutions like approval voting) below. First, I'll address the points that are in the post.

    As long as malware is rampant — that is, for the foreseeable future — there is no way I would trust internet voting over people's personal computers/cellphones/whatever. Unless you're doing cryptographic math on paper, the box in front of you is a perfect MITM (man in the middle) for any voting you use it for, and that means that malware (virus, trojan, whatever) running on your computer could change your vote without you knowing it. Yes, some paranoid geek would probably catch it in the act if it were tried, but that would be too late.

    However, it is certainly possible to design a secure voting system that runs on computers which boot from read-only media, and which sends voting data over the internet. You can even use homomorphic encryption to give everyone a receipt with which they can easily check to see their vote was counted correctly. Obviously, strong computer security is never easy, but in the right conditions, it is clearly possible.

    So, for me, "internet voting" is something that should be used to cheaply expand polling and voting locations and hours, but not something that people should do from the privacy of their own home.

    For instance: it would be possible to make every ATM machine into a voting machine.

    Now: why is there a front-page post about changing the way we're voting that doesn't talk about voting systems? Plurality voting and single-member districts systematically give us fewer and worse Democrats, while encouraging us to waste our energy arguing about it. Yet somehow fixing those problems is too "out there" to talk about, while internet voting — which isn't a nightmare for Republicans, simply because there is enough opposition to the idea on both sides to keep it from becoming a factor in the foreseeable future — is getting front-page discussion.

    More on this: electology.org

    (OK, I know this is a bit of a derail... so here's the obligatory disclaimer: I am not a crank... I'm an activist. When nobody is talking about an important issue, you take whatever openings you can get.)

    Senate rules which prevent any reform of the filibuster are unconstitutional. Therefore, we can rein in the filibuster tomorrow with 51 votes.

    by homunq on Mon May 12, 2014 at 09:53:12 AM PDT

  •  Accountability (5+ / 0-)

    Only if....
    If internet voting comes with a printed ballot, and a camera installed, so that it lets me SEE my ballot printing out, and let's me see exactly what's on the printed ballot, so I can confirm that there is an accurate printed representation of what I voted for.

    I don't have a single doubt.  I KNOW that people will tamper with our electronic voting.  I know that they are already doing it.    

  •  If the Heritage Foundation (0+ / 0-)

    is against it - then I am for it.. :-)  

    Why do Republicans Hate Americans?

    by Caniac41 on Mon May 12, 2014 at 09:59:16 AM PDT

  •  That's too bad. I like the Iowa caucuses. (0+ / 0-)

    Of course, they could be changing it because they are worried that Hillary Clinton will lose the caucus against a more organized and less polarizing candidate. She said a lot of horrible things about Iowa after losing it in 2008 and as someone who has done campaign volunteering in Iowa presidency races, the activists there have long memories.

    President Obama at Madison Rally 9/28/2010 - "Change is not a spectator sport."

    by askew on Mon May 12, 2014 at 09:59:31 AM PDT

  •  Universal voting should mean (0+ / 0-)

    one person one vote. If we're still all hung up on the electoral college your vote doesn't really count.

    "Onward through the fog!" - Oat Willie

    by rocksout on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:00:34 AM PDT

  •  The GOP is ready for this (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cyberKosFan

    ...with the end of Net Neutrality, how many votes from Democratic areas will fail to arrive in time to be counted?

    America, we can do better than this...

    by Randomfactor on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:03:09 AM PDT

  •  This is a terrible idea.. (7+ / 0-)

    the potential for fraud is extremely high both on the voter side and the collection side.

    Every vote cast outside of the supervision of an election judge is suspect already.

    Look no further than last year's absentee ballot fraud in the Miami area..

  •  How do you do a recount? (8+ / 0-)

    Can you say "man-in-the-middle?"  Gee, I knew you could.

    Bad idea for a General Election, Kos.

    Happy little moron, Lucky little man.
    I wish I was a moron, MY GOD, Perhaps I am!
    —Spike Milligan

    by polecat on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:05:48 AM PDT

  •  Let's not forget that the NSA has succesfully (6+ / 0-)

    undermined internet encryption standards in order to ensure a smooth sailing with that whole keeping us safe™ whatchamacallit.

    Sorry if my post oozes with white privilege, but I thought this point is relevant to the discussion at hand.

    “In the beginning there was nothing, which exploded.” Terry Pratchett

    by 420 forever on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:06:44 AM PDT

  •  Internet voting is an interesting... (6+ / 0-)

    …thought exercise. But generating an indisputable paper trail AND maintaining the concept of "secret ballot" are hurdles that must be conquered from my perspective.

    In the meantime, let's expand Election Day to "Election Week" or "Election Fortnight" for ALL Federal Elections.

    Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. --Martin Luther King Jr.

    by Egalitare on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:07:06 AM PDT

  •  California is too big (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    red moon dog

    We don't even have same day registration yet. Maybe soon.

    I nominate Minnesota.

  •  Too many moving parts (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Shifty18, pigpaste, cyberKosFan, ranger995

    No thanks.

    There are many, many other ways to increase voter turnout. National Holiday for voting, extended polling hours, increasing polling places etc.

    -7.5 -7.28, Jesus was a socialist

    by Blueslide on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:08:34 AM PDT

  •  Oh hell yes. (0+ / 0-)

    You want to increase turnout, this is the way.

    Also I don't have to pay for a stamp.

  •  we are doing everything else over the internet; (0+ / 0-)

    why not voting.  this will petrify the Rs who are struggling mightily to limit the franchise to white males.

    i am willing to bet anyone that the Republicans will strenuously oppose internet voting.

  •  My only question with online voting... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ranger995

    ....is how they guarantee that my vote is secret.

    It's not the side effects of the cocaine/I'm thinking that it must be love

    by Rich in PA on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:18:53 AM PDT

  •  asdf (4+ / 0-)
    and if banks and brokerages and services like PayPal can safeguard your money—the juiciest, most tempting target for nefarious hackers—then we could hold elections online.
    Well, if we engage in finance online, that must make it OK!

    No worries!

    Only a conspiracy theorist would have any qualms.

    It's not like our political opponents would ever attempt election fraud, after all.

    If there is any good in life, in history, in my own past, I invoke it now. I invoke it with all the passion with which I have lived. --Elizabeth Kostova,

    by SouthernLiberalinMD on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:22:28 AM PDT

    •  Exactly. (3+ / 0-)

      Too many people think they can just wave their hands and say "encryption" three times and everything will magically be secure and accurate.

      "Turns out I'm really good at killing people." - President Obama

      by jrooth on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:40:47 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Oh, god, don't get me started. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        jrooth, ranger995

        I'm not even a security expert myself (have friends in the business, that's what happens when you're a geek or nerd in the DC area) and even I wince at the way this stuff plays out in public discourse. For instance, in the MD Senate.

        If there is any good in life, in history, in my own past, I invoke it now. I invoke it with all the passion with which I have lived. --Elizabeth Kostova,

        by SouthernLiberalinMD on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:45:24 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Think NSA... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jrooth, cyberKosFan, pam

    Russian/Chinese hackers, Target shoppers etc. I'd love a safe and secure internet but I don't see it happening anytime soon. It's bad enough I have to worry about Diebold.
     The single best thing we could do is to make Election days National and State holdays.

    Join the Koskraft Group Koskraft -39761

    by meagert on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:24:34 AM PDT

  •  WHAT? How is it a good idea to move voting online (8+ / 0-)

    when not everyone has access to the Internet at all, let alone access at home? How is this not just another sort of poll tax or "literacy test"? How is this any better than voter ID requirements? The same people who are least likely to have valid legal ID are also the least likely to have access to the Internet.

    "The great lie of democracy, its essential paradox, is that democracy is the first to be sacrificed when its security is at risk. Every state is totalitarian at heart; there are no ends to the cruelty it will go to to protect itself." -- Ian McDonald

    by Geenius at Wrok on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:24:39 AM PDT

    •  can continue to allow other voting options, but (0+ / 0-)

      I would predict these will rapidly disappear as people come to enjoy the convenience of internet voting.

      •  Uh-huh. (0+ / 0-)

        Just like walking rapidly disappeared as people came to enjoy the convenience of cars. And everyone had a car and nobody ever had to walk anywhere anymore.

        "The great lie of democracy, its essential paradox, is that democracy is the first to be sacrificed when its security is at risk. Every state is totalitarian at heart; there are no ends to the cruelty it will go to to protect itself." -- Ian McDonald

        by Geenius at Wrok on Tue May 13, 2014 at 05:11:36 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Simple! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SouthernLiberalinMD

      Those people allow their purchases at Wal*Mart to be recorded, and Wal*Mart will use data mining and analytic software to predict their voting preferences, and vote for them.

      Likewise, for citizens with internet access, if there's any question about how one actually voted in an internet election, your purchases at Amazon will be examined and Amazon's totally awesome Amazerica algorithm will send a back-up vote to your local elections board.

      So, the more you shop, the better chance your vote will be accurately tallied (that's what they would tell us), and the equivalence of 'citizen" and "consumer" will be total.

    •  Oh, it's better than a poll tax. (2+ / 0-)

      It's a vulnerable to subversion and fraud poll tax run by decisionmakers who don't understand how the system works or how to make it safe, advised by people who either don't understand it either or don't care as long as they get the funding they want for the projects they want.

      What could go wrong?

      If there is any good in life, in history, in my own past, I invoke it now. I invoke it with all the passion with which I have lived. --Elizabeth Kostova,

      by SouthernLiberalinMD on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:47:02 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  There is a lot of financial fraud (6+ / 0-)

    on the internet, but in that case banks and businesses are willing to take that a part of the cost of doing business.  I don't think the same level of tolerance is appropriate when it comes to voting.

    You have a point that Republicans are against this in large part because it would make it easier to vote. But that doesn't mean there aren't real and serious technological problems with the idea. See this article about a fall 2012 Princeton symposium on the subject:

    A decade and a half into the Web revolution, we do much of our banking and shopping online.   So why can’t we vote over the Internet? The answer is that voting presents specific kinds of very hard problems.

    Even though some countries do it and there have been trial runs in some precincts in the United States, computer security experts at a Princeton symposium last week made clear that online voting cannot be verifiably secure, and invites disaster in a close, contentious race.

    “Vendors may come and they may say they’ve solved the Internet voting problem for you, but I think that, by and large, they are misleading you, and misleading themselves as well,” Ron Rivest, the MIT computer scientist and cryptography pioneer, said at the symposium. “If they’ve really solved the Internet security and cybersecurity problem, what are they doing implementing voting systems? They should be working with the Department of Defense or financial industry. These are not solved problems there.”

    ...

    "Turns out I'm really good at killing people." - President Obama

    by jrooth on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:27:02 AM PDT

  •  I don't think they plan on making it the ONLY way (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    red moon dog

    to vote.

  •  I admit, I am not in favor of internet voting. (5+ / 0-)

    I understand how many feel about this as a way to increase participation.. but I also worry about some of hte unintended consequences.

    My wife has all of my passwords, I have hers.   It's no big deal.. we never use it... but a 'just in case'.

    Operating behind a single IP for point of verification, it would be EASY for me to vote for every her and my son when he reaches age.  

    What would be the solution?  Would they turn me in for voter fraud?

    If you think there are not men/women who would have no problem voting for their spouse... meanwhile, having worked campaigns I can tell you a LOT of women break and vote differently then their husband.

    Making it easy (really easy) for a one point to vote for two is a way in my mind to quickly create a wipeout of individual voter value.

    I may be wrong, paranoid, whatever.. but I also think there is real value in getting people to feel as though they are part of the process.. and that means not just voting but acting as part of the process.  

    The easier you make it for people to check out, the harder that is.

    What about Oregon, with mail in ballots, wouldn't these problems occur there?   Somewhat.. but the differences are also stark.   Using a computer to quickly vote and use passwords eliminates something that exists with a paper ballot.. in that situation, even though it's mailed in, everyone in a houeshold KNOWS they are present.  Meanwhile, voting online means that someone can go online, vote for their spouse and tell them about it days later before the thought has crossed their mind.

    The paper ballot, even a mailed in one tells people: this is YOUR vote.

    So, for now, I'm tentatively - not hardcore - but tentatively in the 'not in favor' camp

    Gandhi's Seven Sins: Wealth without work; Pleasure without conscience; Knowledge without character; Commerce without morality; Science without humanity; Worship without sacrifice; Politics without principle

    by Chris Reeves on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:31:34 AM PDT

  •  Definitely one of those Dem-ideas ... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    red moon dog

    ...if R's are against it or think it stupid...you know it's good if not great idea for Dems.  

    Our nations quality of life is based on the rightousness of its people.

    by kalihikane on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:33:48 AM PDT

  •  the "Goo-Goo Syndrome.." (0+ / 0-)
    If von Spakovsky's name sounds familiar, it's because he was George W. Bush's point man at the Justice Department for voter suppression efforts. His career focus has always been on making sure the least number of people turn out to vote, so you can imagine how terrifying the idea of internet voting must be. Why, think of all those young people voting! It would be chaos!

    "....No Compromise in the Defense of Mother Earth!"

    by Seattle Socialist on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:35:04 AM PDT

  •  it could be transparent, God forbid, such as.. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    portlandzoo, red moon dog

    sending you an email confirming that you voted, even giving you a specific security ID so that you can see how you voted.

    or Sending you the same confirmation by snail mail.

    open, transparent verification can be set up through a publically available database/website to protect for fraud so that wealthly individuals don't stuff the "ballot box"

    oh no, they definately are against the "boost public participation" part, conservatives govern by attrition but swelling numbers of disgusted non-voters is creating it's own, new problems for the governing oligarchy, the masses are getting restless.

    •  If you can see how you voted (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jrooth

      so can someone else. I see no way to have internet voting without giving up the secret ballot. Maybe that's a good tradeoff, but we should at least be aware of that in the discussion.

  •  2020 Census is moving to online (0+ / 0-)
    The Census Bureau already has started offering an Internet option to the 250,000 households it selects every month at random for the American Community Survey. Since becoming available in January, more than half the responses have come in on a secure site that requires codes and PIN numbers.
    A major reason for the Census moving to online would be to save money. The 2010 Census cost $96 per household, $70 in 2000 and $39 in 1990. Back in 1970, it was only $14.

    Maybe it'll be done via an app made by the gov't, some link on the IRS's site or some newfangled tech not invented yet.

  •  I'm sorry, Kos, but I am simply not on board with (5+ / 0-)

    this idea. My own experience in the IT world, and reading many of the comments here, makes it plain to me that we are a long way from perfecting Internet voting. Any voting method that is only a stream of electrons is simply too vulnerable to fraud, abuse, hacking, etc.

    I don't think one has to be a Luddite to recognize that technology has not yet come up with a more secure process than a simple paper ballot.

  •  seriously? (0+ / 0-)

    “Computer experts basically say the Internet has such fundamental security vulnerabilities,” von Spakovsky said."

    hmm… the banks don't seem to have a problem with teh intertubes - or any number of secure commerce sites.

    Luddites indeed.

    "Please proceed, Governor"

    by portlandzoo on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:57:31 AM PDT

  •  Publicly traded stocks have online voting option. (0+ / 0-)

    My Karma just ran over your Dogma

    by FoundingFatherDAR on Mon May 12, 2014 at 10:58:01 AM PDT

  •  agreeing with von Spakovsky (4+ / 0-)

    I can't believe I'm agreeing with von Spakovsky over kos, but on internet voting, that's where I am. Or at least I'm aware of the security problem. It's not the same as banking.

    For our accounts online, we rely on verifying our identity to secure every step. Voting, however, is the one thing where our identity has to be hidden. How do you have security when, rather than making sure the person supposedly involved is traceable, we make sure they aren't? And no paper trail? As someone who remembers recounts where paper ballots were recounted by hand, I'm loathe to give that up and trust the machines without an ability to audit. Remember Franken/Coleman 2008.

    A caucus is different in that it isn't anonymous, but speaking as someone active in the party grassroots in a caucus state, that face-to-face contact is hard to beat. It lets Democrats find other Democrats in their precinct. It provides a chance to recruit volunteers, and a completely transparent process for selecting convention delegates and party officials. People may not really care who gets elected, but maybe that's because they can see that nothing funky is going on. There's a lot to be said for being able to hear form candidates and ask questions when caucuses apply to down ballot races as well as president. This is unscientific, but FWIW my observation is that caucus states have stronger state and local parties.

    •  I'm from Minnesota (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jrooth

      and the Franken/Coleman was MORE of a mess because Minnesota hadn't followed the procedures correctly. At least they HAD paper ballots. Otherwise, we would have had Senator Coleman.

      Agree on your caucus comparison. Would hate to see it change to internet, which might as well be a primary. If nothing else, it's fun for pols and gives us something to do.

      I've never disagreed with Kos before (much) but I'm going to start paying attention to the info he's using to get his conclusions. Because how we vote matters if we think voting matters.


      A beggar on horseback lashes a beggar on foot. The beggars change places, but the lash goes on. --WB Yeats

      by kestrel sparhawk on Mon May 12, 2014 at 02:42:16 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Yes, America (2+ / 0-)

    the rest of the world is starting to have qualms about even sending their email through your internet infrastructure, but  it's the best of times to do your voting through it. Pay no attention to that security man undermining the security of the Internet--he just wants to get a better look at your online purchases and how often you say the words "al-Quaeda" on blogs.

    If there is any good in life, in history, in my own past, I invoke it now. I invoke it with all the passion with which I have lived. --Elizabeth Kostova,

    by SouthernLiberalinMD on Mon May 12, 2014 at 11:07:04 AM PDT

  •  Broken clock is right 2 times a day - the GOP (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pam, kestrel sparhawk

    in this case are right if they are wary of internet voting.

    https://www.verifiedvoting.org/...

    --
    Make sure everyone's vote counts: Verified Voting

    by sacrelicious on Mon May 12, 2014 at 11:09:06 AM PDT

  •  Put "e-" or "cyber" in front of it. (0+ / 0-)

    That makes it cooler.

    If there is any good in life, in history, in my own past, I invoke it now. I invoke it with all the passion with which I have lived. --Elizabeth Kostova,

    by SouthernLiberalinMD on Mon May 12, 2014 at 11:13:51 AM PDT

  •  The loss of Net Neutrality makes this even (0+ / 0-)

    more awesome.

    You can vote.....ten times slower than your rich counterpart!

    If there is any good in life, in history, in my own past, I invoke it now. I invoke it with all the passion with which I have lived. --Elizabeth Kostova,

    by SouthernLiberalinMD on Mon May 12, 2014 at 11:15:26 AM PDT

  •  Yay! Predications! (0+ / 0-)

    aren't those always fun?
    Sorry, Kos, but I can't see California doing online voting first. I think a small state is more likely and I nominate Vermont! A lot of rural households and a history of trying new things.
    I wish it was Colorado but the Dems here are rather timid.
    (with some notable exceptions).

  •  Got a Better Idea (4+ / 0-)

    Internet voting's main objective is to increase participation.  Try this on for size to increase participation:
    1 - Make election day a federal holiday.
    2 - Allow early voting for at least a week before election day.
    3- Give all voters the option to vote by absentee ballot.
    4 - Increase hours polls are open and allow the Sunday before election day voting.

    I realize there is nothing new hear, but I once read that to... "fix a new problem you should rad an old book."  No matter what you try to increase participation you need to consider that Republicans have opposed increasing voter participation since about three nano-seconds after the Big Bang.

  •  Voting terrifies them which is why they (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ranger995

    want to prevent us from voting. Their product is so crappy they have to restrict our access.

    I voted Tuesday, May 6, 2014 because it is my right, my responsibility and because my parents moved from Alabama to Ohio to vote. Unfortunately, the republicons want to turn Ohio into Alabama.

    by a2nite on Mon May 12, 2014 at 11:56:11 AM PDT

  •  Internet voting would become largest target (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Greyhound

    Of course internet voting isn't the largest target for hackers - it doesn't even exist!

    You can count on Internet voting servers as being target #1 if this ever came to pass.  The stakes are way too high.

    Why don't we extend early voting and making Election Day a federal holiday so that workers don't have to take time off from work to vote.  Those two simple actions would increase voting percentages.

    "Give me a lever long enough... and I shall move the world." - Archimedes

    by mconvente on Mon May 12, 2014 at 11:59:59 AM PDT

  •  Anonymity and verification. (0+ / 0-)

    Each voter can be issued a "coin", and long string of characters with which they each vote - one time.

    These number strings can then be posted online after the count with the corresponding vote, for anyone to look up and verify. That, along with their own printed record can be compared for mistakes.

     

    “Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities.” ... Voltaire

    by RUNDOWN on Mon May 12, 2014 at 12:00:22 PM PDT

    •  And then your boss or abusive husband (0+ / 0-)

      or whomever will say "give me your coin so I can check if you voted the right way."

      So much for secrecy.

      "Turns out I'm really good at killing people." - President Obama

      by jrooth on Mon May 12, 2014 at 12:13:33 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Abusive husbands ... (0+ / 0-)

        Is another matter and has no place in this discussion IMO.

        Since abusive husbands probably wouldn't let those wives out to vote W/O supervision - or at all, anyway.

        Right wingers bring up these kinds of arguments.

        If someone is so scared of their "boss" they would give up their basic right to privacy (like the absurdity of Facebook access) - I wouldn't much expect them to vote - or fight for much of anything in their lives.

        “Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities.” ... Voltaire

        by RUNDOWN on Mon May 12, 2014 at 12:22:44 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  But with in-person secret ballots (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          pam, kestrel sparhawk

          that abusive husband has no way to verify if his wife voted as he told her to.

          Can't remember the source now, but years ago I read some personal accounts of women in fundamentalist Christian families who's husbands would sit the whole family down at the kitchen table and supervise the filling-out of absentee ballots.

          There's good reason to think that kind of thing is reasonably rare today, but if one implemented a system where most or all votes cast can be verified after the fact by the voter (and therefore by any third party who can coerce the voter into divulging their verification string) then it seems very likely to me that vote coercion and vote buying schemes would rapidly become more common.

          "Turns out I'm really good at killing people." - President Obama

          by jrooth on Mon May 12, 2014 at 01:07:19 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  that possibility already exists (0+ / 0-)

        for all forms of absentee voting.  Internet voting would not change that for good or ill.

  •  I want Internet voting! n/t (0+ / 0-)
  •  I beg to differ (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cyberKosFan, pam

    “It shouldn't be so controversial. Indeed, the entire financial sector operates online, and if banks and brokerages and services like PayPal can safeguard your money—the juiciest, most tempting target for nefarious hackers—then we could hold elections online.“

    First and foremost, because of the NSA national stazi state and their ability crack our encryption technologies, voting by the internet would give the NSA a complete accounting of who voted for which candidate. Just imagine what the NSA would then do with a list of all people that voted a certain way. They currently and routinely collect all our data anyway but your suggestion that voting over the internet need not be controversial is rather striking. Hey no reason to get excited about the Fox guarding the hen house, right?

    Second, the data breaches of the banking, financial, retail and government sectors over the years, prove beyond a shadow of a doubt, we are still not technologically ready, nor safe, to vote over the internet.  (See my first point.)

    Third, the roll out of the ACA web site was a technological fiasco and there are still back end problems that have yet to be address or solved. Not to mention all the states that decided not to participate and the problems that has caused for millions of people across this country. Imagine what all the governor's who won't like the idea internet voting and what they will do to sabotage the effort, like they did with the ACA.

    Forth, what commercial company could be trusted with developing the necessary technology and infrastructure, especially considering that many of the top tech companies in the US secretly work with the NSA to subvert public encryption technologies, willfully allowing back doors to be implemented and standards to be compromised, just so the NSA can spy on the entire world's internet population.

    •  They "safeguard our money" -- to a point. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jrooth, SouthernLiberalinMD

      If you experience a fraudulent transaction on your account, you call the bank, they look at it, refund your money, and try to chase down the fraudster. That's possible because your transactions are not anonymous between you and the bank.

      It's a cost-benefit analysis for banks and others who conduct transactions online. Banks lose money all the time as do online merchants, to online fraud. But so far, it's still profitable despite those losses. So they keep doing it.

      The question is, how many votes can you afford to lose? A couple of hundred? Five or six hundred?  And you can't call your election official and say "hey, I voted for Candidate A, you posted my statement that says Candidate B -- that's not right!" and have them "fix" that for you.

      Let every man make known what kind of government would command his respect, and that would be one step toward obtaining it. --Henry David Thoreau

      by pam on Mon May 12, 2014 at 01:46:58 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Computer experts colleagues of the climate deniers (0+ / 0-)
    “Computer experts basically say the Internet has such fundamental security vulnerabilities,” von Spakovsky said. “It’s not something you can fix in the hardware or software. It’s in the architecture of the Internet. I just think it’s stupid to go there.”
    First off, we should probably learn a little more about the credentials of your source there Mr von Spakonvsky.  If, that is indeed your real name?

    More importantly though, the fundamental architecture of the internet is nothing more than software and hardware...  all of which can be re-engineered, replaced and/or upgraded.

    It should be noted that the current iteration of the internet is nothing like the original architecture, hardware or software of the original internet.  It can all be replaced, it has all been replaced.  

    The beauty of it is, that is should all be replaced.  This creates jobs.  Do you not want to create jobs Mr von Spakonvsky?

    •  That's grossly unfair. (5+ / 0-)

      In fact it's the other way around. The serious researchers in computer and network security are the ones warning that secure internet voting is an enormously difficult problem - one we're not even close to solving. It's the people dismissing those huge unsolved problems who are more like the climate deniers.

      "Turns out I'm really good at killing people." - President Obama

      by jrooth on Mon May 12, 2014 at 01:14:13 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yeah, it sure is. (3+ / 0-)

        But never mind, there's a superficial similarity that we can call attention to so as to obscure the facts.

        Let me show you how the argument works:

        You're critical of one potential application of this technology.

        Therefore you're critical of technology.

        Technology comes from science.

        Therefore you're critical of science.

        Climate deniers are critical of science.

        Therefore you are a climate denier.

        You Luddite.

        If there is any good in life, in history, in my own past, I invoke it now. I invoke it with all the passion with which I have lived. --Elizabeth Kostova,

        by SouthernLiberalinMD on Mon May 12, 2014 at 02:10:03 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Maybe when we re-engineer, replace and upgrade... (0+ / 0-)

      the fundamental architecture of the Internet -- which ain't happening any time soon, and certainly hasn't happened yet -- we can find ways to securely vote on the Internet.

      While software and hardware can be replaced, and much has been, there's also been an escalating arms race that rivals the antibiotic resistance of germs. We're living in a world of Stuxnet, Zeus, Heartbleed, and more; the architecture of today has allowed the proliferation of those kinds of vulnerability. Every time someone says "look, we have a secure system" someone else takes that as a challenge and hacks it. What is needed for voting is an independently auditable system. I-voting doesn't offer that; not today anyway.

      Let every man make known what kind of government would command his respect, and that would be one step toward obtaining it. --Henry David Thoreau

      by pam on Mon May 12, 2014 at 02:29:07 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Use Internet responsibly in elections. Not voting. (5+ / 0-)

    There are both D and R reasons not to like Internet voting. They may be different reasons, but dislike should prevail.

    Just today a press conference was held in Estonia, which currently offers Internet voting and which uses a national ID card, identifying staggering security holes in that nation's I-voting system and recommending it be withdrawn before the Parliamentary elections. In many other countries, Estonia has been held up as the example: "What could Estonia possibly know that we don't know? Surely we can do it if they can..." Well, turns out they can't do it --securely. The research team holding the conference included Dr. Halderman from UMich, the same professor who pwn'ed the DC system's server and made all ur votes belong to us.

    There's no empirical evidence that Internet voting improves turnout. States with the highest turnout and highest rate of return of voted ballots for military and overseas voters, for example, include those that do not permit any electronic return of voted ballots (MN and CT for instance).

    In an election in Canada, early voting increased 300% when I-voting was offered, but overall turnout increased not at all. So people who wanted to vote anyway experimented with the mode, but no more people came out to vote. Further, in a local election in Hawaii where Internet voting was used, turnout plummeted...

    More importantly, even if Internet voting increased turnout, the fact that the votes of those people who turned out can be subverted to whatever some insider wants them to be sort of negates that...

    For those who think voting and banking are same-same, this piece is useful: "If I can shop online and bank online, why can't I vote online?"

    And this: http://articles.latimes.com/...

    Here's a group that has nothing to do with right or left politics, and their view on Internet voting is "more research needed" and "unsolved problems"... The National Institutes of Standards and Technology (NIST). http://www.nist.gov/...

    Here's a list of technologists signing on to a statement about the as-yet unsolved challenges of Internet voting: The Computer Technologists' Statement on Internet Voting.

    Here's a former official with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) talking about how Internet voting is not ready for prime time, from an NPR piece by Pam Fessler. "Security around Internet voting is immature and under resourced."

    I could go on and on. Even thought this is election related and therefore could seem a partisan issue, it really isn't. Even the bi-partisan President's Commission on Election Administration, while it supported expansion of online voter registration, did NOT recommend Internet voting. Just because someone you don't like doesn't like it, doesn't mean you should like it. Many many (progressive) state groups have been working hard to ensure elections are conducted using secure means, and fighting a difficult battle against the "shiny!" of Internet voting, as have national groups like Common Cause and Verified Voting and many colleagues who work for voters' rights.  There are many ways to use the Internet for good in elections, which this group -- and Kos -- know better than most. Voting is not included in that list.

    Let every man make known what kind of government would command his respect, and that would be one step toward obtaining it. --Henry David Thoreau

    by pam on Mon May 12, 2014 at 01:27:15 PM PDT

    •  Thanks (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      pam, stevemb, jrooth

      you went into a lot more depth than I.

      What scares me about this is to realize how all these folks who believe in democracy and Democrats just blindly assume their vote will continue to be "real" and don't WANT to know otherwise. Which is the first step to making a decent policy.

      Reading this overall, I suddenly started hearing all those global warming deniers. "Well, MY vote is safe! It's just a few scientists' opinion!!"


      A beggar on horseback lashes a beggar on foot. The beggars change places, but the lash goes on. --WB Yeats

      by kestrel sparhawk on Mon May 12, 2014 at 02:27:16 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I do computer security (12+ / 0-)

    I follow discussion of voting systems.

    The more you know about technology, the lower-tech you want voting systems to be. Think "trust but verify". Any literate adult can be a scrutineer on a paper-based system. Only a specialist could check the operation of a software-based system. Those specialists may not be available and may have conflicts of interest. They may not be able to find a booby-trap planted by another expert. No board of elections will pay what they cost anyway.

    World-class cryptographers such as Chaum and Shamir have tried to find ways to vote secretly and securely. Everything they've come up with has been too complicated to be accessible to all voters. I mean the user interface for voting is too complicated in their systems. They were trying to solve an easier problem, making in-person voting on a computer safe after the retired people at the folding table have checked eligibility. Internet voting would be even more challenging.

    If you want to see analyses from people like me, check the archives of the Risks Digest.

    You don't need to trust opinions from people like me. Consider your own experience. How many times have you had to cancel your credit card when unauthorized charges appeared online? How many identity theft notifications have you gotten in the mail? How many viruses have you gotten? Think a virus couldn't cast your ballot for you, or better yet, edit it on the way out from your computer? Think nobody would write one to do it?

    It's too bad really. I'd like Internet voting to work. But I have to face the fact that it's as bad an idea as a screen door on a submarine.

    Anyone considering a dog for personal safety should treat that decision as seriously as they would buying a gun.

    by Dogs are fuzzy on Mon May 12, 2014 at 01:36:13 PM PDT

    •  In considering my own experience (0+ / 0-)

      I've been doing my banking on the internet for as long as it has been possible. My checking account has balanced to the penny from day one. One fraudulent charge appeared in 20 years and the company handling the transaction (Prodigy) immediately corrected it.
      Viruses are a big problem and in 20 years I've caught a serious infection once about ten years ago (McAfee) no problems since then (using Panda).
      Your most potent argument seems to be that one will run into unethical IT personnel. Only you can fix that.  

      •  I bank online too. And shop. And donate. (4+ / 0-)

        But your response gives you the evidence: the one fraudulent charge that happened to (fortunate) you was able to be corrected -- why? because your account with Prodigy wasn't anonymous to them. Infection with malware on personal computers is running at about 30% or so of all computers, about 58 million of them in the US. If yours isn't one of them, that's great, but client side malware is one of the unsolved problems to address before Internet voting will work.

        Let every man make known what kind of government would command his respect, and that would be one step toward obtaining it. --Henry David Thoreau

        by pam on Mon May 12, 2014 at 02:23:05 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Everything you know is wrong! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    maybeeso in michigan

    is the title of one of my favorite books.

    I vote by mail.
    I am sent a card that is my official ballot and fill it out as directed, the card is then placed in an opaque cover.
    This is placed in the official envelope that I sign just as I would have to sign in  in person. The ballot and the envelope share a unique identifier that is also on a small strip I can peel off and keep. I can hand deliver or mail my ballot.
    At the voting center the votes are separated from the envelopes and one winds up with a pile of votes and a pile of related affidavits should questions arise.
    To those who say it can't be done- Wrong! as history generally shows.
    To those who say it can't be done on the internet- If you can't code the above procedure consider retail.

    "And I say that with the greatest respect" -Jackie Mason

    •  can do it... just not securely. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jrooth, kestrel sparhawk

      Coding the steps -- not a big deal. The chain of custody problem is different, the authentication issue is different, the denial of service issues are different, the client side malware issues are different (if your pen doesn't work, you can detect it and you can get a new one -- not the same as online), the server side problems are different...

      If you don't care about anonymity of the vote, that changes the equation a lot. If you don't care about security, that too changes the equation.

      Let every man make known what kind of government would command his respect, and that would be one step toward obtaining it. --Henry David Thoreau

      by pam on Mon May 12, 2014 at 01:41:50 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Obviously I don't care about absolute (0+ / 0-)

        anonymity. I'm using the internet! ;-)

        •  It's okay if YOU don't care... for you. But (0+ / 0-)

          the right to a secret ballot gives benefits that accrue to all of us. We don't (for general elections -- maybe some primary caucuses) vote without anonymity, and the property of anonymity is (one of the things that) makes secure internet voting hard.

          Let every man make known what kind of government would command his respect, and that would be one step toward obtaining it. --Henry David Thoreau

          by pam on Mon May 12, 2014 at 02:15:51 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I do care (0+ / 0-)

            but mostly within the grounds of probability. I don't see anyone currently with the power to do anything more oppressive than inundating me with fundraising solicitations if they know how I voted.
            Functional anonymity is entirely possible as in the voting by mail scheme.
            I can renew professional licenses, shop, bank, trade stock, file a flight plan with the FAA, order my medication and appoint with my MD over the internet without being defrauded or oppressed.
            Surely someone can figure out voting.

            •  I'm not crazy (0+ / 0-)

              I draw the line at Facebook.

            •  If you have the opportunity to watch (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              kestrel sparhawk

              the process of counting absentee ballots, some things may come to mind. When a mailed ballot arrives, it has authenticating information on the exterior envelope. There is a team of people whose job it is to process those envelopes and determine if the sender was on the roster, etc. Once a ballot is approved through that first step, then the ballot -- inside an inner privacy envelope -- is separated from the identifying information. (In some places, if you've added identifying information to the ballot, it is considered void and is not counted, such as signing the ballot itself.)
              So now there are boxes full of privacy envelopes containing ballots. Those are dealt with by separate teams, or at a separate juncture to further reduce the possibility that someone's identity could be connected with their vote choices.

              When it's time to count those ballots, they are removed from the inner envelope and counted, either via electronic scanners or manually depending on the jurisdiction (few do manual counts, but some might if their number of mail in ballots is low).

              Okay. Contrast that with a ballot that arrived at the elections office via eFax or email. Military and overseas voters who use those transmission methods typically are required to sign a waiver that acknowledges that it is darn hard to keep their identity separate from their votes, i.e. waiving "their" right to a secret ballot. That signed waiver comes with the rest of the "pages" of the transmission in one package. While officials probably make every effort to process these in a way that prevents them seeing how a specific person voted, the waiver acknowledges that it's extremely difficult. And so that's just one avenue in which your vote can be connected with your identity.

              Let's say you obtained your ballot through an online portal after signing in and authenticating yourself through that system; now you mark your choices using an online ballot marking wizard that walks you through the steps, and then your ballot goes to a private server over the public internet for rendering to be printed. That server is NOT controlled by election officials. Those are typically private entities that provide that service for hire. Those systems are not subject to any testing for certification of any kind, including security tests. So your identity may or may not be associated with your choices. More to the point, let's say that information was being reviewed by someone who is a malicious insider. Let's say they cause your choices to appear in print as you selected, but in the non-human-readable barcode that is also printed on the same ballot, they modify the choices. You send that ballot in after you print it out -- by email or by regular mail. The ballot is "remade" (so that it will fit and feed in the scanner) when it arrives at the elections office, often by use of the barcode or QR code, and without anyone reviewing to see if the human-readable choices match the encoded choices.

              Let's say there's no real printout phase; let's say you log on, authenticate yourself somehow, maybe with a PIN that was mailed to you (physical mail... !!), and then you vote and click "cast ballot" all online. Again, this is not a system controlled by your election official, in all likelihood. And it's not a system that has been tested in any way. (Unlike the Estonia example, or the DC hack.) You have literally no idea whether your votes can be connected to you or not, and no idea whether they have been changed or not--at any hop along the way to the destination server via the public Internet. What's more, no observer can tell either.

              All those things you can do online -- without, you purport, being defrauded -- involve connecting your identity with the transaction in some way. Anything that goes wrong can be resolved one way or another -- sometimes well after it happens. It can be resolved because it can be noticed, by you, when you look at your statements. [Although the Zeus virus makes that part pretty tricky.]

              That's the hard part of voting. Your identity is disengaged from your vote, if it's being done right, and if it's being done wrong, then that's a different and potentially bigger problem, and one which you likely will never know about.

              Let every man make known what kind of government would command his respect, and that would be one step toward obtaining it. --Henry David Thoreau

              by pam on Mon May 12, 2014 at 04:07:37 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  If Brazil can do it... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    KenM13

    Online voting has been in place in Brazil since 1996. They have accurate counts from across the country within minutes of the closing of the polls. It's obvious that the main reason it won't work here is that, as the article says "if everyone votes, Democrats win."

    •  Electronic voting, which is not the same as online (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Garrett, ranger995, jrooth

      voting, has been in place in Brasil since 1996. They have counts within a short while of closing of the polls, but you have no way to know that they are accurate. Their system is not auditable, which they think is a feature, and I'd call a bug.

      This article has an official claiming their systems are not connected to communications, but other articles say they upload results to a central location via "secure" satellite link.

      According to this paper, in 2001 the president of the Brasilian Senate admitted to spying on the "secret" vote process through a backdoor built into the system. A proposal arose to include a voter-verifiable paper record for every ballot cast to enable voters to verify their votes were captured as intended and presumably to enable checking of the accuracy of the vote count.... but even that flimsy measure was lobbied against. So Brasilians have no way to know if the counts are correct or not. Fast doesn't necessary equate to right. But one should also keep in mind that votes marked on paper ballots and counted by scanners in polling places can also be transmitted "instantly" by "secure" satellite link at the close of polls. In that instance, however, you'd have a recountable system. In the voting machine model used in Brasil, not so much.

      Let every man make known what kind of government would command his respect, and that would be one step toward obtaining it. --Henry David Thoreau

      by pam on Mon May 12, 2014 at 04:26:55 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  In a way it sounds good....But scary too. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pam, stevemb, out of left field

    Scary because you have to think about how it will be created and implemented.

    We as a society, have been proven to be so stupid as to let a 3rd party private firm (who's leadership are Republican activists), to develop and implement it--remember Diebold? Then on top of that, they keep everything about it secret, so nobody really knows how it works. But mysteriously, Blue districts somehow turn up Red in important elections. But how dare anyone say anything...because it might violate patents, etc.

    While online voting definitely has it's good points, I hope people aren't fucking fools if it's ever implemented.

  •  So long as the NSA is not (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    stevemb

    the poll judge.

    "You cannot win improv." Stephen Colbert (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m6tiaooiIo0 at 16:24).

    by Publius2008 on Mon May 12, 2014 at 02:45:07 PM PDT

  •  Luddites were the good guys (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    rbaillie, pam, stevemb, out of left field

    Luddites historically were the radicals -- the working class forebears of the labor movement. Their reputation has been smeared by the ruling class. Technology has not always benefited the poor, to put it mildly, no matter what one has been taught to believe.

    The same is true with progressives concerned about internet voting. As the techs will tell you, it has a lot of problems before we could consider it a progressive good.


    A beggar on horseback lashes a beggar on foot. The beggars change places, but the lash goes on. --WB Yeats

    by kestrel sparhawk on Mon May 12, 2014 at 03:10:30 PM PDT

  •  Internet voting is a great way to keep the poor (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pam, kestrel sparhawk, stevemb

    from voting.

    Yeah, that will terrify Republicans, all right.

  •  If Ifs And Buts Were Candy And Nuts... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jrooth
    if banks and brokerages and services like PayPal can safeguard your money
    Fess up -- this diary was supposed to have a "SNARK" tag, right?

    On the Internet, nobody knows if you're a dog... but everybody knows if you're a jackass.

    by stevemb on Mon May 12, 2014 at 04:47:15 PM PDT

  •  really? (0+ / 0-)

    It is secure enough to e-file your taxes but not to vote?  I will bet all of them e-file to get their refunds ASAP.  

    "Attempting to debate with a person who has abandoned reason is like giving medicine to the dead." -Thomas Paine. "It's a battle of wits with an unarmed opponent." - Miss Gayle

    by MissGayle on Mon May 12, 2014 at 04:47:34 PM PDT

    •  Security is not the issue. The vote count would (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      out of left field

      not be verifiable. You set up an account in your name when you e-file your taxes. You do it on an individual basis. You don't file your taxes anonymously with thousands of others in the same file to be counted. There's no way to check the vote tallies or if all of the votes were properly counted. That's a much different problem than security.

      "If you don't sin, then Jesus died for nothing!" (on a sign at a Mardi Gras parade in New Orleans)

      by ranger995 on Mon May 12, 2014 at 07:49:33 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Think paper trail. (0+ / 0-)

        Well hey, who are you going to trust, nothings like Bruce Schneier or our chief Kossack?  

        https://www.schneier.com/...

        Anyone with a brain who looks at this concludes that simplicity and a paper trail are critical, and there's a lot to recommend paper ballots that are hand-counted in settings open to the public.

        (Kos also apparently had some problems with people like me who worried that the 2004 election had been rigged via corrupted electronic voting machines-- technology is goOOOod.  What do programmer's like me know about it?)

  •  w/internet voting GOP will get BILLIONS of votes (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ranger995

    This is a list of 76 universities for Rush Limbaugh that endorse global warming denial, racism, sexism, and GOP lies by broadcasting sports on over 170 Limbaugh radio stations.

    by certainot on Mon May 12, 2014 at 04:56:42 PM PDT

  •  Not a good idea. n/t (0+ / 0-)

    You show a little grit and you lands in jail.

    by cal2010 on Mon May 12, 2014 at 09:27:13 PM PDT

  •  You've built your life around the web and still (0+ / 0-)

    apparently know almost nothing about it.

    Here it is very simply, Secure Networked Computer is both an oxymoron and a myth. Voting over any part of the internet is a monumentally bad idea.

    See you at Defcon next year, I hope?

    "Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities." - Voltaire

    by Greyhound on Tue May 13, 2014 at 07:27:42 AM PDT

  •  the flaw only to this (0+ / 0-)

    you would get serious anarchist hackers who can modify and even sway elections like nothing. you would need at least several barriers for id verification through secure firewall to run this operation cleanly and if this is government based code, we already know it can fail miserably like the aca website. testing needs to be done first before any bandwagon can consider this as viable

  •  anything computer system can be hacked (0+ / 0-)

    We already see this in the Financial industry.

    I am really skeptical on whether the US can make a bullet proof online voting. We already underfund the current system. Why does anyone think we will fully fund a e-voting system?

    The states control elections including Federal elections. It is possible for the Federal government to change or control Federal Elections (http://www.law.cornell.edu/... ) "... The times, places and manner of holding elections for Senators and Representatives, shall be prescribed in each state by the legislature thereof; but the Congress may at any time by law make or alter such regulations, except as to the places of choosing Senators ..."

    There are 2 apparent problems:
    1. A re-count would be impossible,
    2. There would be no paper trail to do recounts. This is the problem I have w/ electronic voting machines.

    There are numerous better ways to increase voting such as mandatory voting w/ a small fine like Australia. There is a corollary to mandatory where voters would get a small $ dollar amount for voting.

  •  Uh no... (0+ / 0-)

    "Indeed, the entire financial sector operates online, and if banks and brokerages and services like PayPal can safeguard your money—the juiciest, most tempting target for nefarious hackers—then we could hold elections online."

    Uh no. Here's the problem. Financial institutions have a reason to safeguard money. Political parties don't have a reason to safe guard the vote. When money disappears, there is generally somewhere that it pops up, otherwise it can't be used. Votes can't be audited if they are changed. They don't show up someplace, they don't create an audit-able trail. An internet based voting system, unless a lot of money is spent on security, will be absolutely trivial to hack.

  •  If Internet voting becomes the norm (0+ / 0-)

    I'm concerned republicans will use this as justification to close thousands of polling stations in places they don't want people to vote. I'll bet virtually every republican has access to the Internet and I also bet that many more democrats wont be able to afford it once Net Neutrality is destroyed.

  •  If Internet voting becomes the norm (0+ / 0-)

    I'm concerned republicans will use this as justification to close thousands of polling stations in places they don't want people to vote. I'll bet virtually every republican has access to the Internet and I also bet that many more democrats wont be able to afford it once Net Neutrality is destroyed.

  •  KOS Nominates California for Internet Voting (0+ / 0-)

    So do I, bro! Here's why:
    Internet voting can Get Big Money Out of all US politics
    It can boost participation in all age groups
    Its been done over 100 times around the world - w/ no security breaches
    89 cities in Ontario, Canada will use it in 2014
    Read more,
    http://internetvotingforall.blogspot.com
    William J. Kelleher, Ph.D.

    William J. Kelleher, Ph.D. @wjkno1 Author of: Internet Voting Now!

    by wjkellpro on Wed May 21, 2014 at 03:19:36 PM PDT

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