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NYC: Goodbye, Lever Voting

Wednesday, January 6th, 2010

Lever Machine

In May, we brought you the story of how New York State was atwitter – in reality and online – about how best to ditch a vestigial organ of elections past: the lever voting machine. Today New York City is finally doing it, and not without further debate, David W. Chen reports this morning for the New York Times.

After years of delays and fierce lobbying, the city’s Board of Elections on Tuesday afternoon selected Election Systems and Software, an Omaha company, to provide new electronic voting machines in time for the September 2010 primary.

Voters will now be required to fill out paper ballots with ovals, similar to SAT exams, before feeding them into a fax-like scanner.

The change means that New York City will finally be in compliance with the federal Help America Vote Act of 2002. That law was passed to avoid a repeat of the recount debacle in Florida after the 2000 presidential election, and to help disabled people vote.

For more on the switch, read the complete story here.

You can watch me watching others attempt to use the machines that led to the Help America Vote Act of 2002 in this vlog. Hope you have a laugh.

Photo of NY lever voting machine via the schneider clan on Flickr.

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