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Voting Changes

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When it comes to voting, there’s nothing wrong with bringing Utah technologically and logistically into the 21st Century, as long as the changes do not disenfranchise anyone.

The decision has already been made to move to electronic voting. It must be done for the state to comply with the Help America Vote Act that Congress passed following the 2002 election.

However, the money Uncle Sam is providing, some $26 million, isn’t enough to purchase all of the machines required for Utah’s election needs. So, the people who run elections throughout the state are proposing some interesting changes.

One is “early voting.” Citizens could cast their ballots up to two weeks before Election Day.

Another is “central voting.” Polling would be consolidated in convenient, more centralized locations. With electronic voting machines, ballots could be cast anywhere in a county, not necessarily in a voter’s home district.

In KSL’s view, these are proposals worth exploring. However, they demand exhaustive professional and legislative scrutiny. Voting is the very essence of democracy. Any change in the way it is done must be secure, along with assuring that no citizen who desires to cast a ballot loses that right because of technological intimidation or lack of access.

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