LOOMING VOTE-COUNTING PROBLEMS COULD DELAY RESULTS, TRIGGER COURTS Expert Advisory
In battleground states “the parties will certainly call into question registration tactics, and then call for greater observation by the Federal government at the polls. This could tie the process up.”
“The legitimacy of the election could be thrown into question, and there’s also the possibility it will be decided by the courts.”
With voter registration tactics (of ACORN) a hot topic in the presidential debate and MoveOn crying “voter suppression” in an email today, the insights above and below from political scientist David A. Caputo are particularly relevant. Caputo, a Yale PhD, is a seasoned political commentator who is President Emeritus and Professor of Political Science at Pace University and is now teaching a well-received course on the election.
Caputo adds: “Some fascinating things are coming up. In states like Ohio and others where there will be extensive purging of registered voters, the possibility exists that counting provisional ballots could delay the final count for days. Coupled with the registration snafus, poor planning and other usual events which cause problems, there is the possibility that the legitimacy of the election could be thrown into question and also the possibility it will be decided by the courts, not the electorate. Shades of Florida 2000! I don’t think the supporters of either candidate will accept a repeat of this. We could be headed for very difficult set of decisions.”
“Most Americans are unaware of what is happening now regarding early voting, use of provisional ballots, and the importance of the Help America Vote Act.”
Caputo’s work over the years in election administration provides a unique window into the problems faced by local election officials.
• He is a resolutely nonpartisan observer of the relationships between municipal, state and federal governments that are crucial to voting procedures. • He has been a Midwest consultant for the national election reporting service and the News Election Service. He has advised media organizations on election-night tallying, was an election-night commentator on nationwide ABC radio in 2004 and has provided brief election analyses for Fox, WNYC radio, WCBS-TV, WABC-TV and CNN International. • He edited a special issue of National Civic Review on civic engagement by college students. • He was instrumental in making Pace the location for the only debate among all ten Democratic presidential candidates in fall, 2004 and for the debates among New York statewide candidates in summer, 2006.
Preferred telephone: 212-541-5551. Cell: 917-232-2421 firstname.lastname@example.org Media contact: Cara Halstead, Public Information, Pace University O: 914-773-3312, Cell: 914-906-9680, email@example.com