Tri-Valley Herald (California)
State plans paper trail on votes
systems considered vulnerable
Friday, November 21, 2003 - In a move sure to influence other states, California
is headed toward letting voters double-check their electronic votes with paper records.
Secretary of State Kevin Shelley is expected to announce today a timetable for California counties to offer
a voter-verified paper trail as a backup to computerized voting.
"It's huge," said Bev Harris, a Seattle-based investigator of e-voting systems and author of "Black Box Voting."
"California is one of those barometer states. In fact, if California does it, I think it's going to ricochet
across the country almost immediately." ...
Until now, the debate over mandatory paper trails has been stymied by what Stanford computer-science professor
David Dill calls a classic "chicken-and-egg problem."
Manufacturers said they would not develop the machines to print a paper record because no government required
them; governments said they would not require them because no manufacturer made them.
"Now everyone will know those products will be available and that's going to make a big difference," said
Dill, who was among a minority that recommended paper trails in July, while serving on a state task force on touchscreen voting
machines. He thinks states will embrace the idea.