Monday, December 04, 2006


Sunday in Sarasota, more than 500 people came together to protest the continued use of touch screen voting machines and the 18,000-plus undervotes in Sarasota County --- a highly unusual number --- in the 13th Congressional District race between Democrat Christine Jennings and Republican Vern Buchanan.

Local and state elections officials have certified Buchanan the winner in what was one of the most negative races in recent memory, but his margin of victory was just over 300 votes. A number of voters have complained about problems with the machines, from having their intended vote count for another candidate to not being able to see the candidates' names on the screen.

Buchanan dismissed the protest as a group of people from outside the area bussed in by liberal special interest groups. And while organizations such as Commom Cause, People for the American Way, and Voter Action did bring supporters from across the state, there were a number of local supporters on hand as well.

I had planned to attend the event, but family issues kept me close to home Sunday. My feeling is that while a revote with a paper trail is the only logicial resolution considering a highly unusual undervote, I simply don't see where a court will order one. This issue will likely have to go before the new House of Representatives, which constitutionally has the final say on these matters.


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