Capitol Comments

Kansas City, Missouri like many other jurisdictions across the nation, have found themselves in need of new voting equipment to enhance customer service for voters during the election process.

While election processes are administered in the counties of most states, Wisconsin municipalities handle elections. Instead of 50-150 voter jurisdictions, Wisconsin voters must figure out which of the 1,852 municipalities to register and cast their votes. Wisconsin has recently launched initiatives to assist all voters, but particularly those voting absentee as military and overseas voters.

Georgia’s 6th District Special Election to replace now Health and Human Services Secretary, Tom Price’s, House seat will be one for the history books. The money spent and the voter turnout for this election quickly turned unprecedented as this seat became a crucial battle between the Republican and Democrat parties. This closely watched election is taking place against the backdrop of a potential data breach of 6.5 million voter records maintained by the Kennesaw State University’s Center for Election Systems.  The center assists the Georgia Secretary of State and all 159 Georgia counties in administering election operations and voting machines deployed statewide.

Technology grows at a rapid pace in today’s increasingly connected society. The computers we used in 2002 seem nearly fossil-like in comparison to 2017’s array of computing tablets, laptops, desktops, and smartphones. The same holds true for the election equipment we used in 2002, and Minnesota recognizes the need to upgrade.

As technology and social media grow increasingly popular, the time a teenager will spend away from their phone is decreasing rapidly. Any task that cannot be completed from a phone seems to take too much effort in today’s world. In attempts to keep up with the kids, Contra Costa County, California, has partnered with Global Mobile to provide a texting service to assist in encouraging young people to vote. The texting service was extended from an existing text service called “2Vote” that the county already used to provide voters with information from poll worker sign-ups to election night results.

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