New voting systems and complex procedural changes may create problems

The Los Angeles Times has a good story this morning on how changes in election rules, procedures, and voting systems might create headaches and problems in this fall’s elections. This is especially true in parts of the country that will have competitive elections, according to Caltech professor Michael Alvarez:

But Caltech political science professor Michael Alvarez said election systems in most states remain works in progress, and goals for preventing another debacle like Florida’s ballot counting in the 2000 presidential election have yet to be reached.

“States have made some progress, and you continue to see some improvement. But it doesn’t appear that we have fully fixed a lot of the problems with voting,” said Alvarez, who is co-director of the Caltech-MIT Voting Technology Project.

“The bottom line here is that we are in a period of closely contested elections in the American body politic,” Alvarez added. “Nobody would care about this if elections weren’t so close.”