OUR VIEW: Another step toward ensuring a valid vote

Published on Thursday, 16 November 2017 19:51
Written by Staff

It may seem like a pain but an audit of the election just past is one of the necessary protections for our democratic system.

We learned this week that Bristol’s Chippens Hill Middle School was selected in a random drawing with 33 other precincts across the state - equal to 5 percent of the 677 precincts that use an optical scanner to read marked paper ballots and tally the results in Connecticut.

The audit is dictated by state law and can happen to any district that uses the scanners. It happened in Berlin four times in a row.

This safeguard comes at a time when a presidential commission is looking into the fairness of the voting process, the result of President Trump’s assertion that he would have won the popular vote in last year’s election if he hadn’t been thwarted by as many as 5 million illegally cast ballots.

According to the Pew Research Center, there are two basic forms of voting technology to record citizen choices: optical-scan ballots, in which voters fill in bubbles, complete arrows or make other machine-readable marks on paper ballots; and direct-recording electronic devices, such as touch screens, that record votes in computer memory but do not generate any “paper trail” for future recounts. Connecticut uses the paper ballot.

“This is really important because the public needs to know and be sure that our elections are transparent and fair,” said Secretary of the State Denise Merrill.

It’s that public confidence that is the key to successful elections. Voters must believe that the balloting was fair - and that the winner is truly someone we can believe in.

Posted in New Britain Herald, Editorials on Thursday, 16 November 2017 19:51. Updated: Thursday, 16 November 2017 19:53.