Voting is defined as expressing the will or a preference in a matter by ballot, voice, etc (Grolier 1). Voting on the Internet has become a major issue in the past couple years. Their are many different groups who have very diverse opinions on the role the Internet should play in the 2000 elections.
The myriad types of on-line voting systems proposed for use has resulted in many heated arguments in the world of politics. Adversarys of voting on the Internet state, It would not be legally, practically or fiscally feasible to develop a comprehensive remote Internet voting Essay system (Phillips 3). However advocates of on-line voting argue, There is nothing inherently more mischievous about Internet voting than paper ballots (Wayne 1). Before a person can decide what side of the Internet voting debate they want to support, they must be made aware of the issues at hand.
One method of on-line voting is The Polling Place System. This is generally considered to be the most tamper proof system available to the public. The Polling Place System is run a lot like the traditional paper ballot voting structure election officials have used for many years (Phillips 2). The voters go to a designated votingstation and cast their votes using computers provided by the Federal Election Commission, or FEC (Wayne 1). The election is under the control of election officials at all times which allows for uniformity of communication privacy and security protocols.
Perhaps the greatest advantage to this system is the ability to provide paper audit trails and additional identity verification (Phillips 2). The capability to have a paper record of the ballots cast by each indiviual voter is what makes this system the most tamper proof available. The other process of Internet voting is called the Remote System. It is believed that this system will result in a, boost in voter turn out which is now at historic lows(Phillips 2).
This belief is a result of how accessible this system will make voting. The voter is responsible for providing the computer unlike the Polling Place System. This allows the voter to cast their vote anywhere as long as they have access to the Internet. However, the downfall of this system is the lack of paper audit trails (Wayne 3).
This in turn causes a lack of regulation in not only the ability to track individual ballots but the uniformity of voting conditions (Phillips 3). There are many advantages to voting on the Internet. One of the most evident advantages is that it is cost effective. It virtually eliminates any need for the current election provided equipment and the thousands of people working in the voting booths (Popkin 17). The freedom voters will have to vote from any location will eliminate the need for specific voting ballots (Phillips 2).
This freedom will also make voting more convenient and will probably boost voter turn out. It will allowfor a greater participation in voting from groups like business executives, overseas military and young people. These three groups generally have a low voter turn out but have readily access to the Internet (Wayne 2). This ability to access the Internet on a regular basis is what is believed will raise their voter participation.
On-line voting will also eradicate the need for pole workers (Phillips 2). This work would be handled by a small group of people working for the election vendor, the Internet site On-line voting also has many disadvantages when compared to the traditional paper ballot system (Popkin 13). At this time there are no standards in place for the election vendors. The lack regulations and uniformity can result in many different ballot outcomes (Wayne 1).
Other worries are that hackers may infiltrate the computer voting system and manipulate the results. It is feared that a hacker could implant a virus in the computers of the voters and substitute his own vote for thousands of legitimate votes. This type of fraud would make prosecution extremely difficult since there would no longer be physical evidence, like on paper ballots, to prove such fraud (Phillips 4). There are many different issues in debate over the topic of Internet voting. It is the duty of every U. S.