Scott Reames e-mails:

Paul, take a look at this excerpt from

There is, however, a portion of the 34,000 who intended to vote for one of the Senate candidates but messed up. Voters were supposed to fill in the circle next to the name of the candidate they supported. Some, however, marked X’s. Others circled the name itself or crossed out the names of candidates they didn’t like.

So basically the election of a senator from Minnesota will come down to the moron vote… You just have to love the American political process!

My reply:

That’s why I’m in favor of moving all precincts to the touch-screen ballot. In the 21st century, there’s no reason the outcome of a statewide or federal election should come down to random ink marks on a piece of paper. Sure, there will be some voters who don’t know how to use it, but it can’t possibly be as bad as the continuing problems with paper ballots, butterfly ballots, optical scan ballots, and the other permutations of ballots that a small minority of Americans can’t seem to use.

Frankly, I’d tell those people that, if they can’t follow simple instructions, their votes just won’t count. This ain’t brain surgery.

Scott’s reply:

I totally agree with your comments. Those who worry about fraud could have the option of printing out a confirmation of their selections on the touch screen. And there’d be the added benefit of having results in a matter of minutes rather than the two weeks it seems to be taking the good people in Alaska to tabulate their ballots.

It is baffling to me that the right to vote, which we hold so dear and feel compelled to export to other corners of the world, is so badly funded and poorly executed every two/four years here in the US of A. Election Day should be a national holiday, with state-of-the-art polling machines in every corner of every state. Long lines around the corner and misfilled bubbles and hanging chads and butterfly ballots would be comical if so much were not riding on their outcome.

We can select an American Idol without much difficulty just using text messaging, after all.