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PA_Irredentist t1_isu2gw8 wrote

We need a secret ballot because anything else opens the gates to corruption: your employer or landlord would coerce you to vote a certain way, or people would sell their votes. Those are the reasons we moved to a secret ballot in the first place.


psychcaptain t1_isu7t9l wrote

Indeed. The paper ballot is a way for the person the verify how they voted when it's scanned into a machine (which should be air gapped) and allows for a recount. An online system would either have no way for you to verify your vote (so you can't verify that the vote went through correctly) or it would, be an open to tracking by others.


BluCurry8 t1_isubddg wrote

Of course you could verify your vote. I can verified the amount of taxes I have paid on my quarterly estimates I have submitted. I can also download a receipt and get email notification.


psychcaptain t1_isuf7ad wrote

Really? Who would you call to tell you who you voted for last election?

There are no records of who you voted for. None. There are only records that you voted.

And when you voted, you for a paper ballot, which you would verify is correct, and then it gets counted. That's it. It's a secret ballot. No one gets to know how you voted, except you. Which is, again the problem with online services. No air gap which means altering your vote would be possible in a way a paper ballot makes it impossible. You have no way of knowing what the machine at the other side received, or whether someone highjacked your vote.


BluCurry8 t1_isu9pmh wrote

In this day and age, it is already determined if you are party affiliated. So, now tell me how a secret ballot stops someone from coercion? Even knowing a party affiliation how does that stop coercion? It doesn’t. Companies ask their employees to give to their PACs They do not require it, but they certainly try to influence their employees. Like I said, not seeing the benefits you seem to think we get with a secret ballot. It can still be private, just like your bank statements. You would then be able to confirm your ballot was counted and included in the final count with read only access after you submitted your ballot.


PA_Irredentist t1_isuo2mv wrote

I think the discrepancy here are that there are very specific types of trust we want to discourage in voting: specifically, trust between bad actors or between bad actors and potential victims.

The secret ballot, by definition, just requires that no one except the voter can possibly know who they voted. It doesn't prevent coercion for party registration or PAC funding - those are separate issues which have their own ins and outs.

You argue in favor of a private - not secret - ballot. I hear you and understand the value you find in that. It would be great for cases when there are no bad actors AND when people don't trust their votes are being counted accurately.

However, a private ballot like you endorse is completely open to coercion and corruption, even with read-only access. Imagine that a random person honestly offered to refund me for a debit card purchase of $20 at Wal-Mart. In the private world you're describing, Wal-Mart, my bank, and I know that I did. However, I can still validate it by showing the random person my private bank account statement.

In the current, secret ballot system we have, no one would rationally offer money for my vote because there is no legal way of validating the transaction. Even if I do as they wish, they have no way of knowing that I'm not lying through my teeth. In your private ballot system, I can use my read-only access to show the candidate, a party leader, my boss, or landlord that I completed my end of the bargain. Now, they can establish trust: they can use my ability to access that data to confirm that I voted the way they wished. As a result, they can coerce or bribe you or I to vote the way they wish.