Thursday, 1 March 2007

Bait and switch on eVoting

If you've read Sir Grahms recent speech at the AEA you'll know he expressed serious concerns around the process of voter registration. He has called for the introduction of a number of measures around registration to strength the system and help prevent fraud... whether it be on paper ballots, postal ballots or eBallots (did I just make that one up?). And his concerns lead him to ask that this years pilots be suspended until such time as the registration process can be strengthened (as is his right).

Does this mean he is condemning eVoting? NO! I've read over his speech a number of times and I'd like to know where his specific concerns over eVoting were in the speech. As to the recent Commons debate you'll also notice that the majority of concerns raised were again about the registration process... not eVoting! (there was one comment about findings from FIPR, a sister-ish organisation of ORG)

So why is Jason continually pointing at this as a damning condemnation of the very idea of electronic voting? Maybe because no there's very little else to talk about? He seems to be widening his remit from merely commenting on eVoting to all of the electoral modernisation process... is he really trying to take on the DCA and Electoral Commission on all these issues? I'm not sure where his experience in postal voting or registration comes from, but having said that his credentials in eVoting are hardly the most luminous (still waiting Jason, why is GNU.Free still available?).