Monday, October 27, 2008

How long does it take to vote?

I'm curious what's going to happen here on Tuesday next week.
My state has a law that no voter may remain in the booth for more than 3 minutes: this goes back to the 50's or so, I believe, and was probably enacted as an attempt to disenfranchise some segment of the population (slow readers, less well educated, etc) which might catch more minorities than whites.
Although there was recently an attempt to strike the law, it failed, and so the law is still on the books. And if what I've been hearing is true, it is supposed to be enforced this year.

Now, in my county, there are some sixteen or so races on a typical ballot (it varies by town within the county, and I haven't yet seen an official ballot for my location) plus one local and three state-wide referenda.

This works out to between six and seven votes per minute, or eight to ten seconds per vote.

Now, the referenda are likely to take significantly longer to read than some of the other questions, so I'd say this leaves an average of say, 6 seconds for such momentous decisions as "where do I touch this screen to vote for my choice for president".

If they do start throwing voters out after three minutes, my suspicion is that they're going to have riots on their hands!

Yours, prepared to be disenfranchised,

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