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Publication Title

America Votes! : a Guide to Modern Election Law and Voting Rights


This chapter reviews four dimensions of the still-unresolved voting technology quandary. It begins by briefly reviewing the Florida Bush v. Gore background that, combined with the tradition of state governmental control over election administration, spawned the contours and limitations of new federal regulatory apparatus. It also surveys some illustrative voting system malfunctions and their consequences surfacing predominantly from 2009–12.

The second part of this chapter, Federal Compulsion to Adopt Software-Based Voting Technologies, explains the misconceptions about software and digital equipment that led to both the flawed federal mandates and the ineffectual regulatory structure.

The third part of this chapter, Litigation and Enforcement Strategies, focuses primarily on the curious omission of Federal enforcement of HAVA's voting technology standards. This part also considers private party litigation that has sought to invalidate the use of allegedly defective voting machines.

The final part of this chapter examines Federal Promotion of Problematic Internet Voting. The chapter concludes by advancing recommendations for preparing the legal system to realize voting rights despite the wide deployment of problematic voting technologies.



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