Friday, May 04, 2007

Late Edition Election Special ; Play Solitaire While You Wait To Vote

After the late night for most of our councillors at the Oasis this morning and last night, things stayed almost the same as before. The Conservatives still control Swindon Borough Council, the BNP didn't gain any seats in the town and about 30% of us actually voted.

The biggest issue of the night seems to be the trial electronic voting system at many polling stations yesterday. Being a wireless system, it relied on a strong broadband connection which was not maintained at all places and caused disruption in some wards. There was initial concern that problems could allow people to vote twice, this was later dismissed by the returning officer.

Anne Snelgrove, Labour MP for South Swindon, did say she found the system unacceptable, with people able to see who you were voting for, staff instructing people on the process of voting were able to watch who voters cast for and that therefore it undermines the usual process of voting. Party politics aside, she does raise important points, which no other local councillors were heard talking about.

But this was a trial, so feedback will be of prime importance.

Swindon Centric Says ; We can't help thinking that voting on a slip of paper with a pencil and ballot box is symbolic and highly efficent, lets give people the option of using a PC if they like (just like e-voting and postal votes), but you're never going to get an error message with a paper slip and a big black ballot box are you?

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