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Articles by Joan Krawitz

   

Joan Krawitz
VoteTrustUSA's Executive Director Joan Krawitz has worked full-time on election reform issues since 2002, when she participated in original research investigating touch screen voting machines. A founder and director of the National Ballot Integrity Project, she also served as Executive Director of the Help America Recount Fund, a 527 organization formed to help fund the 2004 recount effort. HARF raised $350,000 in less than two months, provided support for the New Hampshire and Ohio recounts, and managed field and legal operations for the New Mexico recount effort.

Use It or Lose It: For Democracy, the Time to Act is Now! PDF  | Print |  Email
Joan Krawitz
By Joan Krawitz, Executive Director of VoteTrustUSA   
October 06, 2005
When the Final Report of the Commission on Federal Election Reform was released in September, editorials across the nation and blogs around the web condemned its recommendations for a National Voter ID.  Generally overlooked were the Commission’s recommendation of a meaningless and expensive placebo paper record whose status would be left up to the individual states, and the very real risk that opponents of secure and accurate vote counts would attach this cosmetic VVPR requirement to the Commission’s Voter ID recommendations.

Well, it's happened exactly as we feared. Rep. Tom Feeney of Florida has introduced a bill that combines the worst of the Carter-Baker recommendations for Voter ID and meaningless VVPR.  The Orwellian title of HR 3910 is Verifying the Outcome of Tomorrow's Elections Act of 2005 (VOTE for short).  Its paper record requirement lets the States decide what significance the paper has – if any.  The Voter ID section requires a government-issued photo ID to vote in person, or a copy of it to vote by mail, per Homeland Security (read REAL ID) guidelines.
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From Black Box to Pandora's Box PDF  | Print |  Email
Joan Krawitz
By Joan Krawitz, VoteTrustUSA   
August 08, 2005
This speech was delivered at the Voting Rights and Electoral Reform Strategy Session on August 8, 2005 in Atlanta, GA.

My name is Joan Krawitz and I’m the Executive Director of VoteTrustUSA.org.  VoteTrustUSA is a nonpartisan alliance of state and local election integrity organizations from across the country.  We are a new coalition representing an increasingly important component of the national Voting Rights and Election Reform equation.  We represent nearly 30 independent organizations on the ground, and provide support services for approximately 40 more.  

What we have come to call the election integrity movement began when the Help America Vote Act tried to solve some of the problems of the 2000 election by throwing $3.9 Billion at the states to improve their election systems fast.  

Given an unprecedented sales opportunity, voting machine manufacturers touted their latest touchscreen voting machines as the solution to every election director’s prayers.  Few election officials had the technological or financial resources to independently evaluate these sales claims and, frankly, they were scammed by vendors were a looking to cash in on the HAVA windfall.

At best they were selling vaporware when they convinced unwary officials that their machines would eliminate overvotes, undervotes and phantom votes while doing away with messy paper ballots and hand recounts at the same time. 
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What Is A Ballot? PDF  | Print |  Email
Joan Krawitz
By Andy Stephenson   
July 13, 2005
The following was written by Andy April 29, 2005. It is a draft, about which he said, "Just putting thoughts on paper right now. So in case something happens to me, god forbid...I have it down for others in the future."

What a ballot is. It is not merely a piece of paper it is me...it is my voice. Each of us should guard it more than we would our most prized or precious possession. That ballot protects our other possessions. Without it you have no say. Over the last couple of years I have been adamant about the need for a voter verified paper ballot. It has been the driving force behind what I have done and will continue to do. To me, my ballot is the most sacred sacrament of the secular religion we call Democracy.
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