Editorial: Voting machines need uniformity

The final count of the 2000 presidential elections has been released, and it still does not completely clarify who the winner was. As the 2002 elections approach, the problems with the voting process are not being fixed fast enough. The old voting machines that caused the most confusion in last year’s presidential election are no longer being used. Not all the voting precincts used those types of machines.

Currently, a move to instill uniformity in the voting process across the state and nation is being undertaken. The steps to improve the voting process are good, but should have been done much sooner.

The voters should have reliable machines to vote with confidence that they chose the person they wanted.

Many people who thought their votes did not count before the 2000 presidential election changed their minds after the charade that occurred during the election.

Unfortunately, their votes still may not have counted, as many were thrown out or disregarded after the count due to unclear punches or ballots. The old machines that punched out chads to mark the selection have been obsolete for years. However, the money never arose to fix this problem.

The state is taking the measures to train employees at the precincts as well as the voters. This and the addition of new, paper-free ballots hopefully will inhibit such mistakes in the future; however, the process is not happening fast enough.

The 2002 elections will not take place on uniform machines across the state. This unfortunately, will leave room for the same mistakes to happen again. The state needs to press its counties to put the money into purchasing the latest machines that help elect the state’s and nation’s leaders.

As a nation, the people should have the right to know, without a shadow of a doubt, for whom they voted and who won the election.