State of Elections

William & Mary Law School | Election Law Society

Tag: Post-Election Audit

Minnesota Unable to Use Federal Funds to Improve Election Security

By: Samantha Becker

Election security was a significant concern leading up to election day in Minnesota. During the 2016 election campaign, the Department of Homeland Security determined that Russia attempted to hack into twenty-one state election systems. One of the states targeted was Minnesota. The attempt was unsuccessful, but it still raised concerns about the state’s ability to detect and protect against future election cyberattacks.

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Connecticut’s Long Road to Early Voting

By: Sarah Crowe

Connecticut citizens are surprisingly constrained when it comes to voting, and they are being left in the lurch while lawmakers wrestle with making elections more accessible. Currently, in-person voting is only permitted on Election Day, and early voting is not permitted at all. Furthermore, a voter must be outside their municipality during all polling hours to qualify for an absentee ballot. House Majority Leader Matt Ritter, a Democrat from Hartford, declares: “We make it as hard as any state in the country to vote and to exercise your constitutional right. That’s the bottom line.” In an effort to ameliorate the situation, lawmakers have proposed joining the thirty-seven other states that have adopted early voting. This proposal requires a constitutional amendment, and the lengthy process for such an action means that voters would likely not see any change to their voting laws for years.

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KS: Lack of Election Post-Audit Leaves Uncertainty in the Sunflower State

Quis custodiet ipsos custodes? Does anyone really watch the watchman? In Kansas, the state’s lack of an election post-audit is raising some questions, and a university professor wants to run the numbers on electronic voting machines in and around the state’s largest city.

Like other states across the Union, Kansas began using electronic voting machines following the presidential election of 2000 and the infamous “hanging chad” debacle in Florida. While many Kansas counties use optical scan paper ballots, the two most populous counties in the state, Sedgwick County (home of the state’s largest city, Wichita) and Johnson County (home of some of the most affluent Kansas City suburbs) use electronic voting machines. And while the machines in Sedgwick County print an extensive paper receipt, the machines used in Johnson County do not leave a paper trail.

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