Dan Tokaji's Blog
Professor Dan Tokaji
Election reform, the Voting Rights Act, the Help America Vote Act, and related topics -- with special attention to the voting rights of people of color, non-English proficient citizens, and people with disabilities

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Equal Vote
Thursday, June 29
 
Soaries Answers the Call
A few weeks ago, I posted these thoughts on a Rolling Stone interview with former Election Assistance Commission Chair, Reverend DeForest "Buster" Soaries, Jr. Further thoughts from Rev. Soaries on the state of election reform may be found here on the Brennan Center's site.

In the Rolling Stone interview, Soaries offered some candid thoughts as to the serious problems with our current system of election administration. After discussing those thoughts, I posed the question of what Soaries thought to be the solution, a point that was less than clear to me from the interview.

Yesterday, Rev. Soaries emailed me to say that he'd be "happy to say what the solution is if asked" but wasn't asked in the RS interview. So I asked. And here's how what he had to say:
1. We need a government funded prototype for electronic voting machines that guarantees security, reliability and accessibility.

2. We need a central resource for voters to locate polling places on election day.

3. We need weekend voting.

4. We need to recruit election workers the way we recruit jurors.

5. We need an apolitical discussion to address how the changes in America since the 18th century (size, mobility, diversity, media) impact the dynamics of states' rights in the area of voting.

6. We need mandatory standards that govern the conduct of elections.

7. We need professional training and certification for election administrators.

These reforms will require genuine commitment and leadership at the highest levels of government.

DBS
Thanks for taking the time to write, Rev. Soaries!

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