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NEWS
By Brent Jones and Baltimore Sun reporter | March 9, 2010
The nation's largest provider of voting equipment will forgo its acquisition of a rival company as part of an antitrust settlement reached with nine states, including Maryland, according to the Department of Justice. Election Systems & Software will divest all assets from its September 2009 purchase of Premier Election Solutions, which was the second-largest voting system company in the country. The acquisition was finalized six days before bids were due to install a new optical scan voting system in Maryland, limiting the state to contracting with ES&S or continuing under the current system, according to the attorney general's office.
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NEWS
By Michael Dresser and The Baltimore Sun | September 22, 2014
The state attorney general's office is appealing a federal judge's ruling ordering Maryland to use an absentee ballot-marking technology for the disabled that the Board of Elections had refused to certify as secure. The state will ask the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, Va., to throw out District Judge Richard D. Bennett's decision this month. Bennett found that the election board's refusal to implement the program violated the federal Americans with Disabilities Act. The attorney general's office filed a notice of intent to appeal Monday but did not spell out its objections to the ruling.
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ENTERTAINMENT
By Steven Zeitchik and Tribune Newspapers | February 5, 2010
The Oscars are using a preferential voting system this year to determine the best-picture winner. Although attempting to understand the system can sometimes feel a little like trying to divine the secrets of cold fusion, the system is actually logical - sort of. Whereas all other categories will use the same system used in the past - every voter gets to pick one of the five nominees, and the nominee with the most votes wins - the 10-nominee best-picture...
NEWS
By Ian Duncan, The Baltimore Sun | September 4, 2014
A federal judge in Baltimore ordered Maryland elections officials to adopt an online absentee voting tool in time for this year's general election, despite warnings from computer security experts that the system could lead to voter fraud. The ruling was sought by a group of disabled voters and the National Federation of the Blind, who say the tool will make it easier for people with disabilities to cast ballots without relying on another person. "The court today has protected the fundamental rights of voters with disabilities, including the rights to equal access and to a secret ballot," said Mark Riccobono, president of the federation.
NEWS
By Donald F. Norris and Paul S. Herrnson | February 26, 2007
Momentum is developing within the Maryland General Assembly to get rid of the state's perfectly functional touch screen voting system and replace it with an optical scan voting system that uses paper ballots. This proposed change is not only unnecessary, it would have negative consequences that no one, including proponents of paper ballot/optical scan voting systems, will like. It is fair to say that the touch screen system has performed well. Votes on touch screen machines were recorded and reported accurately in the 2004 and 2006 primary and general elections.
NEWS
By Andrea F. Siegel and Andrea F. Siegel,SUN STAFF | July 23, 2004
Lawyers for the state Board of Elections and the National Federation of the Blind of Maryland asked a judge yesterday to dismiss a lawsuit that seeks to decertify Maryland's 16,000 electronic voting machines until upgrades are made to the new voting system. The Takoma-Park based Campaign for Verifiable Voting and other plaintiffs sued in April. They contend that the touch-screen system does not comply with state law because it is vulnerable to security weaknesses and needs a paper trail for recounts, backup and audits.
NEWS
BY A SUN STAFF WRITER | November 22, 2003
Two prominent state senators have asked to expand a review of Maryland's new electronic voting system. Among other things, they want an analysis of the system's failure to provide printable paper receipts, a feature critics of the touch-screen machines have long requested. Sen. Paula C. Hollinger, chairman of the Education, Health and Environmental Affairs Committee, and Sen. Norman R. Stone Jr., head of a subcommittee on elections, asked the state Department of Legislative Services yesterday to widen its look at machines made by Diebold Election Systems.
NEWS
By BONITA FORMWALT | November 4, 1992
It's frozen yogurt vs. ice cream; a Yugo compared with the '65 Mustang; a turquoise Princess telephone with lighted dial instead of a six-ounce piece of plastic that chirps.It's the Optech II voting system: a long, skinny ballot card and pen that is replacing voting machines.Yes, I'm aware that the new voting system is faster and more accurate, but I can't help but feel that the majesty of the voting process, with its curtained booth, has been lost in our quest to tally votes faster.The actual voting process now resembles an S.A.T.
NEWS
By Michael Dresser and Michael Dresser,SUN STAFF | December 2, 2000
Gov. Parris N. Glendening is planning to announce plans Monday to look into the way Maryland conducts elections in the wake of the problems exposed in Florida's voting procedures by the close presidential contest. The governor is expected to name a task force to study the state's voting system and propose possible changes in the state's election laws. He is acting despite a 2000 election that came off with few problems in Maryland. Only one jurisdiction, Montgomery County, uses the punch card method of voting that has caused a nationwide furor over uncounted ballots in the race between Vice President Al Gore and Texas Gov. George W. Bush.
NEWS
By Larry Carson and Larry Carson,SUN STAFF | March 4, 1996
Baltimore County's new computerized voting system will mean fewer lines and faster results in tomorrow's primary election.The new Op-Tech III Eagle voting system, similar to those used in Anne Arundel, Howard, Harford and Carroll counties, will replace the 800-pound mechanical machines the county has used since the Korean War.Baltimore County is the first jurisdiction to convert to the new system since a Maryland election task force report in January recommended...
SPORTS
By Jon Fogg and The Baltimore Sun | July 2, 2014
I'm old enough to remember that it was a big deal when athletes were chosen to grace the front of a Wheaties box, yet I've never eaten a flake of it. General Mills would like to change that. The company has unveiled a promotion that, for the first time in the 90-year history of Wheaties, will allow the public to choose who's going on the iconic orange carton. The selection of athletes and the methodology show how General Mills is skewing younger with this promotion, the Wheaties Next Challenge . Lacrosse, the fastest-growing sport at the college and high school levels, gets a nod -- Rob Pannell, a former Cornell All-American and now a star with Major League Lacrosse's New York Lizards, is one of the five athletes up for the vote.
NEWS
By Michael Dresser, The Baltimore Sun | May 20, 2014
The National Federation of the Blind has sued Maryland election officials, charging that their April decision not to approve a system that would make it easier for disabled people to cast absentee ballots privately violates federal law. The Baltimore-based federation filed suit this week asking the U.S. District Court to order the State Board of Elections to provide that technology in time for the June 24 primary election. "The right to a secret ballot that can be filled out privately and independently is just as important to people with disabilities as it is for other voters," said federation spokesman Chris Danielson.
NEWS
By Michael Dresser, The Baltimore Sun | April 24, 2014
The future of a system that would let voters download absentee ballots before mailing them in was cast into doubt Thursday when the State Board of Elections refused to move forward with part of the plan amid fears it would open the door to widespread fraud. The five-member panel declined to certify a system for marking the ballots on a computer screen despite assurances from its staff that the system was secure and ready to be used in this year's June primary and November general elections.
NEWS
January 8, 2014
The Maryland State Board of Elections reportedly will replace its touch-screen voting system with a ballot card that is hand-marked by the voter in 2016. This is a regressive step that is not in the interest of Maryland's citizens. Hand-marking of ballots by voters allows the issue of the "intent of the voter" to be raised in close elections. Some marks will be too light to be read correctly, some smudges will be misread and some voters will not follow instructions in properly marking their ballots so they can be correctly read.
NEWS
June 3, 2013
The Eastern Shore's civil rights history is not a happy one. From the lynchings of the 1930s to the Cambridge riots of the 1960s, the Shore has struggled with race relations. Much of that is in the past - although perhaps not entirely. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, civil rights groups used federal Voting Rights Act lawsuits (or in some cases, the threat of them) to convince towns and counties with large black populations to create voting districts with majority-minority populations.
NEWS
Erin Cox and The Baltimore Sun | April 8, 2013
Maryland is poised to join a growing number of states that allow voters to register and vote on the same day as lawmakers today endorsed plans to expand early voting. The Senate passed Gov. Martin O'Malley's bill, sending the measure to his desk for his expected signature. Early voting would be expanded from six to eight days and the hours extended, moves intended to alleviate the long lines seen during last year's election season. More voting centers would be added, and lawmakers created a $5,000 fine for illegally registering to vote, allowed for residents to apply to register to vote online and called for a host of studies on the voting system. 
NEWS
By Larry Carson and Larry Carson,SUN STAFF | May 7, 1999
Secure in her primary election victory for Howard County register of wills, a tired, but happy Kay K. Hartleb relaxed at home last September -- until she flipped on her television.An errant county voting machine computer chip gave Larry G. Fales, her Republican rival, an extra 40,000 votes -- more votes, she knew, than were cast for both candidates combined."It was a real shocker," Hartleb remembers, chuckling. "I had won easily. I had seen it at [election] headquarters."The computer error was quickly corrected, but county elections administrator Barbara W. Feaga said the incident helped convince her it is time to start shopping for a new voting system.
NEWS
By Stephanie Desmon and Stephanie Desmon,SUN STAFF | February 11, 2004
Taking up one of the most contentious election reform issues facing states around the country, a House of Delegates committee heard a bill yesterday that would force Maryland to upgrade its 16,000 new electronic voting machines to allow voters to verify that their ballots were cast accurately. Proponents say the legislation would ensure that the $55 million voting system can be trusted when it is rolled out in nearly every precinct in the state in the Democratic presidential primary in three weeks.
EXPLORE
August 9, 2012
After reading Diane Brown's column of Aug. 2 ("Identifying the real issue when it comes time to say who you really are"), I chuckled at this sentence: "Now there are Americans who would force Americans to get a government-issued identification card in order to vote. " Why did I chuckle? Well, for several years I was a youth football coach for the Western Howard County WarHawks. The league in which we play required that every participant, from the 5 - 6 year old peewees to the 13 -14 year olds, have a "government-issued identification card" in order to play.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Simon Habtemariam | October 7, 2011
The Gang learned a key life lesson tonight: Democracy is hard. First of all, Dee is getting audited; but like most things related to Sweet Dee, nobody cares. The writers even made her the subplot, although this week's plot was already pretty thin to begin with. Dennis, Mac and Charlie decide they want a democratic system to resolve issues in Bar Policy. This would throw out the time honored tradition of long, drawn-out arguments followed by allowing Frank to make bad decisions on behalf of them all. Reason Will Prevail: This week's attempt at a memorable one-liner fell very short.
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