Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Ideas on Fixing the Election Process

Here are some early thoughts on things that can be done to fix the problems with the election process in Shelby County. I encourage others to make suggestions and offer constructive criticism.

These are my thoughts after having been involved in reviewing data and pouring over ballot and sign-in sheets.

1. We should implement an address verification program that works. Currently, the workers tell me they take whatever you give them. (I created a website for law enforcement that has many different data sources such as the MLGW customer database, Motor Vehicle database, TN Driver's License data, 911 phone calls, tax data, etc.) This information could be used to glean where a person lives.

2. We should provide a photo id for those who can't afford it.

3. We should capture every voter's picture at the poll. This would require a digital web camera on the computer. Cost would be under $50.00 per precinct.

4. We should have a computer at every precinct which has the entire voter database and allows the poll worker to look up the voters by name, address, etc.

5. We should require a thumbprint when voting. Banks require it, surely it would help cut down on voter fraud at the polls and is minimally invasive.

6. The election commission should have an audit program whereby they send workers out to spot check voter's addresses based on a random selection of at least 5 voters per precinct - within 6 months of any election.

7. The voter database needs to be cleaned up.
A. There are over 1300 people with two registration numbers
B. There are over 10,000 deceased voters still on the rolls.
C. Missing Demographic data for sex,race,dob, etc
D. Incorrect ages for voters which show them to be over 110 years old.

8. The voting process at the polls needs to be stratified and a checksheet implemented for opening and closing the polls.

9. The verification and authorization of the voter needs to be done in a "checksheet" format. As the voter moves from one station to another, they should be accompanied with a checksheet which each worker signs off on. This could be done electronically or manually.

10. There needs to be a better way of getting information on felony convictions from the clerk's office to the election commission. Apparently there has been a breakdown in this process.

11. Interface with the register, assessor, county clerk, Sheriff, etc for the purposes of determining who the voter is and where they live.

12. Check the available information on vacant lots from sources in item 11.

13. Interface with the local and state health departments to retrieve death data so that deceased voters can be purged in a timely manner.

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