Progressive Coalition Victory for Voting Integrity

Late in January, activists in NYS achieved an important victory in the struggle for voting integrity. The NYS Board of Elections rejected computerized voting machines in favor of optical scanners and an automark device for voters with disabilities. In the words of activist Bo Lipari of New Yorkers for Verified Voting, the decision “virtually guarantees that New York State will vote on paper ballots and ballot scanners when it finally replaces lever machines in 2009.”

This struggle is far from over. We must be sure that the machines chosen truly work for people with disabilities, and problems may arise with optical scanners as well. Additionally, until the dominant role of money is removed from the electoral process, democracy will have little chance.

However, celebrating victories is important. Locally, work to demand an accessible, reliable and verifiable voting system was coordinated by the League of Women Voters and the Greater Syracuse Progressive Coalition. Congratulations to the folks who worked so hard: Lenore Rapalski, Linda DeStefano, Gerry Lotierzo, Jan Markarian, Joan Johnson, Betty DeFazio, Ann Jamison and Mark Spadafore. To learn more about the Progressive Coalition, see www.peacecouncil.net/coalition or call Andy at 472-5478.