Sarasota Election "okay" according to state by Mitch E. Perry02/25/07
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday
Late last week, Florida election officials announced that an examination of voting software did NOT find any malfunctions that could have caused up to 18,000 votes to be lost in the disputed Congressional race between Vern Buchanan and Christine Jennings.
Instead, they suggested that voter confusion over a poor ballot design was mainly to blame. WMNF’s Mitch Perry reports:
The finding, reached unanimously by a team of computer experts from several universities, could finally settle the disputed election, last November’s closest in the country. GOP candidate Buchanan was declared the winner by just 369 votes, but the Democrat, Christine Jennings, has formally contested the results, claiming that the touch screen machines must have malfunctioned.
The report says that voters might have accidentally touched the voting screens twice, thus negating their vote… Or in the majority of cases, simply overlooked the flawed ballot.
But the Jennings camp isn’t buying it. David Kochman is a spokesman for the Jennings campaign (roll tape)
The study suggested that the confusion over ballot design probably accounted for most of the problems.
Some voting experts say that because the machines used in the election have been sequestered by a court, only a portion of them have been examined closely.
Judith Schaffer is with People For the American Way. She calls the state report a ‘whitewash’ (roll tape# 2 o.q.” “)
Governor Charlie Crist has announced plans to abandon touch screen machines, and put over 32 million dollars in his proposed new budget to make the transition to paper ballots.Mitch Perryh WMNF