On eVoting and Stolen Elections


Kathy Dopp has made a splash with her analysis of voting in Florida. Kathy's analysis has led to a number of conspiracy theories about stolen elections. Kathy, who has an MS in Statistics, has been very involved in Utah's eVoting activities and told me before the election that she planned on doing a statistical analysis of the voting results. Wow! Did she ever.

I don't believe that the election was stolen. What I do believe, however is that election officials in Utah and elsewhere had better wake up and see that electronic voting is fueling a lack of trust in our voting system. There's no reason this has to be. In my experience, however, elections officials pay lip service to voting system integrity, but don't always make decisions that support it. They'll frequently just throw it in a pool of requirements like "cost" and then let them all battle it out. Often integrity ends up the loser when it ought to be paramount.

Utah hasn't made a decision yet and I hope that they will use the election as a learning opportunity. I think it will be tempting to say "see nothing terrible happened, eVoting works fine." That would be the wrong message since lack of evidence of a problem is not the same as not having any and it certainly doesn't show that problems won't happen in the future. Kathy's analysis and the subsequent discussion at least have helped move us past that.