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Topic: New project: certification in statistics
Replies: 17   Last Post: Nov 20, 2000 3:14 PM

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Herman Rubin

Posts: 6,721
Registered: 12/4/04
Re: manual recount - of punched ballots
Posted: Nov 15, 2000 2:20 PM
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In article <>,
Thom Baguley <> wrote:
>Bert Bishop wrote:

>> Thom Baguley wrote:

>> > I fail to see how the punch card improves on this (IMO it is worse
>> > because you simply can not fold it - or it won't go through the machine).

>> > Thom

>> The punch card is put into a folder concealing the punches. Folder and card
>> are deposited into the ballot box.

>So, at best no improvement in privacy over folding (which is simpler).


It is no improvement in privacy. It is an improvement in
the ease of counting under normal circumstances; my objections
to it are the possibility of inaccurate punching, which seems
greater than it should be, and of the great difficulty in
checking whom one has voted for.

If, instead, an PC was used, which would produce a punched
card after voting, and would presumably do a better job
of punching, this would not happen. Some of the errors
invalidating the ballot could not occur, such as too many
candidates for a position (too few is legal), and comparing
the number of ballots counted with the number produced
would be some control on other errors. It also removes
some of the dangers of hand counting, and even hand reporting,
one of which showed up; a 6 in the hundreds column was read
as 1. In "American", 7 and 1 are often confused.

This address is for information only. I do not claim that these views
are those of the Statistics Department or of Purdue University.
Herman Rubin, Dept. of Statistics, Purdue Univ., West Lafayette IN47907-1399 Phone: (765)494-6054 FAX: (765)494-0558

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