mad anthony

Rants, politics, and thoughts on politics, technology, life,
and stuff from a generally politically conservative Baltimoron.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

I voted....

So I decided to stand up for democracy, and my love of puppies, and voted.

Turnout was strong - it took me about 45 minutes to get through the process. I'm not sure what that means for either side, but it does suggest that people care about the outcome. It looked like many of the voters were coming back from work, and there were a couple people with military, nurse, or firefighter uniforms on. I went afer work myself, and got there around 6. The polling places used diebold machines with smart cards - you go up to a table and they check you on the rolls, then encode a smart card that you take to a touch screen - insert card, go through the candidates, touch the ones you want, vote. They also print out a thermal reciept, and the judge writes down what voting machine you used. It seemed pretty secure on the front end, although how secure the back end is who knows.

This was my first time voting in Baltimore County, and only the third time I've actually voted at a brick and mortar polling place (I voted absentee in college and skipped the '03 and '05 elections). It took me a little while to find the polling place - I was thrown by the fact that I actually had to drive past another, closer polling place to get to it - the fun way zip codes are drawn in Baltimore County, I guess.

There were a ton of people in the front "electioneering" (handing out pamphlets)- something that didn't seem to happen in the city, probably because there isn't much point in a city that's 90% dem - and the resevoir hill polling place where I voted in '04 was probably more like 99.9%. There seemed to be more republicans, despite the fact that my area is about 2/3 dem. I've never quite understood the point of electioneering - I mean, if you haven't made up your mind who you are voting for by the time you are almost in the polling place, why did you bother coming to vote? I also don't get people who make a point of telling everyone they should vote - while I encourage people to look at the issues and make an informed decision, I don't see how it helps democracy just to add to the randomness.

So we'll see in a few hours (or days, if things drag on like they have in other close elections). I do have to say that the repubs did a good job getting out signs and stuff - I drove home up Northern Parkway, and given the number of Steele and Eherlich signs by Northern and York, you would never know the city was 90% dem. So if the repubs lose, it's not for lack of trying.


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