A few items from the newswire

Doug Chapin and I have been asked about this before–if you cast an early ballot and then die, is your ballot still counted?  I think we’ve agreed on a standard reply.  While everyone thinks this is an issue that can be dealt with using absentee ballots, what about early in person voting?  It seems to me that once you cast a ballot, that’s it.  (Of course, I’ve written before about the odd few states that have “do-over” provisions.

Am I the only one who does not see a problem with a private firm charging a small fee ($9.95) to process your voter registration?  Sure, it’s not necessary, but people pay for all kinds of things that they can get for free or low cost.

Enough about the professional skepticism–this story out of California does raise a point of concern.  If online voter registration is legalized, how do they check signatures on absentee ballots (as high as 40% in some California counties)?  The bill has a provision for capturing the digital signature from the DMV, but the Butte County recorder thinks these are badly out of date.  (Full disclosure: Pew and JEHT are funding a few studies of online voter registration systems.)