Recently, I attended a conference of the National Association of Secretaries of State. My main interest was in voting processes because Pitney Bowes has a secure, reliable voting-by-mail solution called Relia-Vote™, and because we are conducting a pilot test with the U.S. Postal Service® and the states of Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana to insert voter registration kits into the Move Update and Welcome Kits we prepare for the U.S. Postal Service®.
Several things struck me as I reflected on the conference:
- After the Florida debacle in 2000, and the issues associated with the exceptionally tight Washington state gubernatorial race in 2004 that resulted in the election of Governor Christine Gregoire by about 100 votes out of 3 million cast, election officials and the federal government are more focused than ever on getting the election process right. They want accuracy, security, reliability, and, above all, they want every vote to count in the manner intended by the voter.
- Given the substantial increase in participation in voting as a result of the hotly-contested Democratic and Republican presidential primaries, they have a high degree of interest in securing long-term increases in voter participation. We will have a much healthier democracy if everyone participates not only in voting, but in other ways that result in greater civic engagement. (more…)