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Electronic voting and the next election

All of this is speculation.

Later in the summer or some time in the autumn, there will be a cabinet reshuffle. I guess that Bertie Ahern will try to answer the protest vote by promoting fresh blood. We'll see some younger ministers, and quite a few current guys will be put out to pasture. Top of the list, I expect, will be the directors of elections – John O Donoghue and Martin Cullen. If not for their poor performances in their jobs to get more FF candidates elected (to say the least) at least because the former has been on a slippery slop for the last two years anyway and because the latter made such haymes of the introduction of electronic voting.

Which is my point, of course. The next person to fill the mouth-filling post of Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government will quitely begin the task of getting the Commission on Electronic Voting working on coming up with solutions for all the problems raised and discovered. If this new minister has any sense, (s)he will drop the current contracts, or failing that, force the vendors to configure the solutions for use with VVAT.

At the end of the day, as proponents for a voter verified audit trail in electronic voting keep banging on, there is nothing that better ensures the security and reliability of a voting system than a paper trail as described at http://www.evoting.cs.may.ie/vvat.shtml.

I predict, and maintain, that the next general election will not use electronic voting. There is just too much work involved, and if the government understands the implications of even a quarter of the criticisms laid against the proposed system, it would be foolish and counter productive to try to bring it back without a VVAT.

Éibhear