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E-mail, Feeds, 'n' Stuff

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Is your Oregon ballot being counted?

A reader in Portland worries that it might depend on what kind of writing instrument you use to fill it out. The reader writes:

Since more people probably get their election info from your blog than from the county elections office, you might want to pass this tidbit along.

When filling out my ballot this time, I noticed that the felt-tipped pen I was using occasionally bled through to the reverse of the double-sided ballot. I figured this shouldn't be a problem, since the ovals on one side correspond to "dead space" on the reverse side, but out of an abundance of caution I called the elections office to check. They informed me that any bleed-through spoils the ballot, and I'll have to go in to their office and get a replacement ballot.

Since I've used this same pen on prior ballots, I guess my previous votes may well have never been counted. Yet another reason I'd prefer to just go to a polling place where the county could provide the correct type of pen and I could resolve questions face-to-face with a precinct worker.

Sorry, your view does not match the prevailing dogma -- vote-by-mail is wonderful -- and has been summarily rejected.

It would be interesting to know how many ballots that are turned in are rejected as "spoiled."

Comments (23)

Well, fine, and I'm no fan of vote-by-mail either, but just ask the folks in Florida if leaving a ballot at the polling place is really any better.

And the electronic machines are easily rigged -- esp. by the machine-maker -- and hacked, and with no contemporaneous "paper record" of the votes (and even that's no insurance).

UC Scientists Release Voting Machine Hacking Video
The hack shows vote counts can be altered no matter what the paper receipts say

We're doomed.

Jack, I'm sure Ms. Brown will soon give your request of "spoiled" ballots count.

Perhaps the county elections officers would be the best to ask.

A "spoiled" ballot in this context just means that the machine will reject it and it will be counted by hand.

Doesn't the ballot itself say to use a #2 pencil (hah) or ball point pen and not felt tip? I've used a black ball point pen for years.

Yes, JS, the weighty matters of government, leadership and crime and punishment are in the hands of people who can't read the instructions on how to fill in the ballot.

Indeed, there is an argument to be made that adding idiot-traps to the ballot is perhaps a good thing!?

Since we have 36 different counties, I would assume there are 36 different protocols in place.

A good punchcard would be preferable, whether cast in person or at the polls.

How about a three day long election cycle, with liberal absentee ballot rules for those who prefer to vote for their dependents? The lines would be shorter, and you could include Saturday and/or Sunday for those who get weekends off.

"cast in person" (second sentence, above) should have read "cast at home".

Mister T -punch card? hanging chad? history?

A few weeks after the last election, my wife got a letter from the county saying that her vote wasn't counted because they didn't like her signature.

This election she didn't get a ballot.

Oh well, at least the dead can vote. My three dead neighbors each got a ballot.

" . . . I'd prefer to just go to a polling place where the county could provide the correct type of pen . . ."
Put on your Birkenstocks and tights, jump on your bike and head on down to County Elections. Short of that, if you can't follow instructions, then you probably should not be voting.


If you can't figure out how to push the chad all the way thru the ballot (even if you have to proof it after removing it from the machine), then you're going to have problems filling in an oval too.

I remember a time before "vote-by-mail" when the absentee ballots required you to punch out chads without so much as a stylus. It was never a problem for me: I understood I had to punch the hole clean to not be misunderstood.

"if you can't follow instructions, then you probably should not be voting."

Why don't you check out the actual instructions on the ballot ( They say "Use a pencil or pen (blue or black ink)." Absolutely no restrictions on what type of pen.

Uh, yeah, lets trash vote-by-mail, cuz the "correct type of pen" (actually, a #2 pencil) is so uncommon and hard to come by.

The real problem is people who refuse to read and follow simple instructions.

Steve, if someone pulls out "a blue or black ink" felt tip "pen", aren't they following the "simple instructions"?

"Absolutely no restrictions on what type of pen."

I give up! Whip out your Sharpie and complain about not being

I am ever astonished that people complain, or fret, or fret to complain, when they have the best and have it best, (such as those of us in our times with the internet, and yet all around is b!tch b!tch b!tch ... pathological haters, it sounds like; congenital liars' cousins, it seems, or somewhere in the DNA'd family tree), whether we're talking about Americans in the world fretting their lives, or Oregonians of the 50 States complaining about having vote-by-mail balloting: the best of them all.

I remember my fret complaints (I think it's the B-flat fret) as a kid here, imagining the exciting 'sensationalized' places - NYC, LA, DC, 'back East' - were 'better.' And it wasn't until I went there and did that that it dawned on me the best place is where I came from -- that's just simply Oregon's manifest Destiny, or individual Fate of the 50 States: being the best one, or leader, or 'prize' of all, which is the enculturated sense from our use of the idiom "the Oregon Trail," it's Oregon's branding, the "long Glory-bound 'Trail'" (of life) idiom -- drama of 'journey' -- and where it comes out, 'Oregon', there must Glory be, or else? ... else, the journey hardship was for naught? Glory is as Glory does? Glory does as Glory is?

That last option, I would say, (in my creaky years now): What you see is what there is is what you get, so try to see/find/show the Glory in it. Because this is 'Oregon, the best or bust.' (No comma-grammar police is another good thing about Oregon -- We're No. 1.) Mister Tee, "a good punchcard" (read: 'tangible = goods'), and "3-day long election cycle" -- smart! ideas -- the progressivism around here is starting to rub off on you. You're being 'progressivized' -- it's like body snatching but the progressives only snatch and inhabit your culture-mind.

And vote-by-mail, all absentee all the time, is. that. "good" you like: a tangible ballot. Hold it in your hand; let it stick up out of your shirt pocket showing 'ballot power,' and mocking others who proudly 'bulge' their jacket where their 'bullet power' is; you can fold it bend it spindle it, spill coffee on it, get it rainsoaked, lost in the mail, lost in the stacks of crap on your desk, on and on a million different ways to muck it up and inevitably a couple of percent do, indeed, get mucked, 'vote awry' ... and the comical hijinks ensue -- stay tuned.

For the pathological complainers who have to complain about something, look how bad they have it in the other States. First and foremost they DO NOT have "a good card-like" ballot, they only 'touch-the-TV' to vote -- the 'secret booth' at polling places feels like 'secreting' in a Catholic confessional and having a disembodied voice (computer-like) whisper back that 'it' (Glory) "will pray for your ballot."

Most of us are not going to go live at those places to see it: the mass nonsense of the balloting 'tradition' there, their 'culture' there, the way they do it: Not 'good.' There's a Cali website archiving the headlines everywhere of ballot fraud, (outside Oregon), and for most of us it is enough to see that list, and realize how good we got it, this vote-by-mail thing: it's best.

Brad Blog .com

Go there and Search (one word) 'Tennessee' where vote riggers are in prison, guilty and convicted. The Search brings this:

# The BRAD BLOG : Tennessee

She and Susan Pynchon, an election integrity advocate from Florida Fair Elections Coalition, had traveled to Shelby County (Memphis), Tennessee,

# The BRAD BLOG : Election Integrity Filmmaker Sees Own Vote Flipped ...

My wife, Patricia Earnhardt, had an early voting experience here in Nashville, Tennessee, where she saw her vote momentarily flip from Barack Obama to Green

# The BRAD BLOG : PAPER: National GOP Reportedly Tied to Voter ...

We immediately discovered massive voting irregularities in Tennessee. ... They documented many similar activities in Tennessee very similar to this one and ...

# The BRAD BLOG : Poll Workers Indicted in Tennessee, GOP 'Sore ...

Poll Workers Indicted in Tennessee, GOP 'Sore Losers' Continue Fight to Overturn

# The BRAD BLOG : ES&S Touch-Screen Votes Now Flipping in TX Too ...

Oct 24, 2008 ... The Tennessee "votes flip to Obama" story is not true. I sent you a detailed email earlier today describing what I learned by talking to ...

# The BRAD BLOG : Tennessee

Several electronic voting cards, used to cast ballots, are missing from a polling place in Memphis, according to the Tennessee Republican Party. ...

# The BRAD BLOG : GOP Laying Grounds to Declare Fraud in Tennessee ...

Nov 3, 2006 ... Several electronic voting cards, used to cast ballots, are missing from a polling place in Memphis, according to the Tennessee Republican ...

# The BRAD BLOG : Votes Reportedly Flipping from Repub to Dem in TN!

Oct 22, 2008 ... From Tennessee's Decatur County Chronicle today... Several Decatur County voters ..... We will follow up on this tomorrow here in Tennessee. ...

# The BRAD BLOG : What Are the Odds?: FBI Nuke Secrets Sting in ...

Jul 19, 2007 ... What Are the Odds?: FBI Nuke Secrets Sting in Tennessee Comes on Same Day Bush is to Speak in Tennessee.

# The BRAD BLOG : TN GOP Fights Against Rule of Law, Paper Ballots

Nov 7, 2009 ... In 2008, election integrity advocates in Tennessee won a hard and long-fought victory as the state legislature finally passed, ...

(Oh, and ... Jack, when you or your correspondent wonder how many Oregon ballots "reject" into 'Spoiled' you may simply go to the Elections Office and see with your own eyes -- the good stacks of good card ballots being fed into the scanner/counter, and during the scan the rejects flip out to the side hopper. ... and if there is some question, the good stacks of questioned ballots can be (guess what) REcounted! Polling booth 'TV privacies' can NOT recount where you touched them.)

Whatever day you see this, go, and be sure you'll see the current headlines at BradBlog report vote fraud going on all around the country. Not so much in Oregon, it's the best.

Other States 'prize' vote-by-mail, and use Oregon's quality to argue for "good ballots" and for "an extended period for balloting" in their States.

The next thing I'd like to see, Glory be!, is a ballot vote for us to repeal daylight savings time 'Springing' and 'Falling' around, no 1-hour shift no year no more, set the right time on the clock -- noon is at the shortest shadows -- and then leave the clock alone, it ain't broke don't 'fix' it, faggedabud da' Time, get'a work, you don't know how good you have it: there are kids growing up in the City who don't have a clock and no sense of noon, and they're having their private votes defrocked ... I mean, defrauded. I mean, degaussed. ... hmmmm, I wonder, who was this 'Gauss' guy, anyway ...?

Even with paper ballots and no.2 pencils -- the best deal there is for voting -- there are still rejects who can defraud and degauss themselves, can't quite figure out how to vote and to live at the same time, and about 2-out-of-100 go unglorified. 2 percent is a 'win' practically speaking, in a creaky age. Now you hotblood young turks and mohawks, (Mister Tee), do a better 'best.'

(Matins may as well be put in a comment as an email; either way it's public knowledge.)

cros: I moved here from a state that used the same type of ballots that Oregon uses (darken the oval, feed it into an optical scanner). The pens that the county provided at the polling place were felt-tipped. So, given that experience it just didn't occur to me to read your implied restrictions into the relatively straightforward instructions on the ballot. If this makes me stupid and incapable of following basic instructions in your book, then I guess I don't meet your exacting standards.

When I studied public administration in graduate school, we learned that public participation only works if government provides transparent access to the decision-making process. In my mind, that includes things like easily-understandable instructions on how to vote. Perhaps you think that civic participation should depend on passing an intelligence test of some sort, and perhaps I would fail your test due to my choice of pens (and I'm not talking about a Sharpie, by the way), but until such time as we do restrict participation to the people who pass muster with you, I'm not going to apologize for pointing out problems like this.

Mr. T since we've been hanging out in this BLOG of ill repute for so long, I'd like to remind you, it's not Lucas.... LucsAdvo is short for Lucifer's Advocate. Luc works. Lucifer works. Lucas does not work. And your point about visualizing chads doesnt work for folks with bad eyesight (and they do vote).

Looking at my ballot right now - says:

"Instructions to Voter" Use A Pencil or Pen (Blue or Black Ink).

That's it. Doesn't say anything about ball point, felt-tip, or not using ink that will bleed through. Can't find any more instructions in the Voter's Pamphlet, either - except for the instructions that say to use "black or blue ink" and nothing about pencils.

Tensk, having you complaining about complainers is hilarious-especially with you being one of the most holier-than-though complainers.


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