Re: Friday Meeting w/ UT Lt. Governor

From: Kathy Dopp <kathy_at_uscountvotes_dot_org>
Date: Sat Jan 15 2005 - 13:07:21 CST

Some of you asked to know how the meeting went.

Lt Governor Gary Herbert was terrific. He was very busy and looked like
he hasn't been sleeping enough but he had read and underlined our Best
Practices doc that he brought with him!! (revised version -
mentions OVC)

Lt.Gov. Herbert listened attentively, and seemed to be convinced that
optical scan and open source were the way to go, and we discussed how
difficult it would be to get from the purchase of a proprietary system
to an open source system. He also seemed pleased to receive a "plain
English" version of what a good voting system would look like:

Here is the followup email I sent him this a.m.:

Dear Lt. Governor Herbert:

Thank you for meeting with UtahCountVotes yesterday. We really
appreciated your time and careful consideration of our concerns about
Utah's voting systems. I had a few additional thoughts and information
I thought you might find useful in addition to what we discussed at the

My son is an Air Force pilot. Allowing local election officials to
determine the selection of Utah's voting equipment would be like
allowing my son to select the operating system for his KC135 because he
flies the jet. Even an "engineer" is insufficient to select the
operating system for the KC135 jet my son flies. An aerospace engineer,
and perhaps a specialist in his type of jet, must determine the
requirements for the operating systems for the jet if we want the jet to
stay in the air. My son was awarded officer of the month during the
very first month he did flight planning in Qatar at Central Command for
the war region due in part to the computer skills he applied to the job,
yet my son knows enough "not" to select the operating systems for his
own jet. By the same token, simply because someone is technically
proficient in using a few computer systems does not qualify them to
select Utah's voting equipment. If Utah is to select trustworthy,
problem-free voting systems that will save Utah money and minimize
inconvenience for local officials long term, it must hire reputable
computer scientists who are also voting system experts to help with the

Unfortunately, there are currently no voting systems experts in Utah, so
please let me know if I can help by providing contact info for voting
and election systems specialists such as those mentioned in our Best
Practices document.

Second, Here is the document that was submitted by Utah's computer
scientists and engineers, and other voting system experts that detail
the major flaws with Utah's current RFP for voting equipment. It
contains some of the reasons why it is very important to rewrite Utah's
RFP for voting equipment using the advice of voting & elections systems
experts this time, and re-open the bids to obtain bids for better voting

Please feel free to contact us if we can provide any other information
or assistance.

Best Regards,

Kathy Dopp

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Received on Sat Jan 7 22:28:57 2006

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