2020 Election Mess
The presidential election between George H. W. Bush and Al Gore was held on Tuesday, November 7, 2000. No clear winner emerged on election night and the media agreed as exit poll numbers were too close to call. Races in New Mexico and Oregon were so close, it took days until the final tally was announced in Gore’s favor. It ultimately came down to the state of Florida where there was a narrow gap separating the two candidates. The media initially projected Gore to win Florida, but later backtracked saying Bush had taken a large enough lead to win the state and the election. Gore conceded earlier that evening but changed his mind around 3 am when results came in reporting less than a 600 vote separation between the two candidates. Although Bush was still in the lead, the gap was moving in Gore’s favor. The state election law in Florida required a statewide machine recount and by November 10, Bush was declared the winner with a 537 vote lead out of six million cast but it was still not over yet. Lawsuits and challenges followed by the Gore camp over the punch ballots used and the machines that counted them. The Florida courts eventually declared that time had run out to devise a remedy and Bush became president. Rumors of voter fraud and election stealing were widespread but never proven. Jump to 2016 when Hilary Clinton and Donald Trump faced off in an election that shocked not only Clinton supporters, but the media who had projected her to be the first female US president when Trump won. Rumors of election interference in Trump’s favor from Russia led to an investigation that was eventually dropped due to a lack of evidence. There were also allegations of ballot-box stuffing and voting machine rigging on the Clinton side as hidden cameras and poll watchers alerted officials. These allegations so far have not been fully investigated and brought to trial. As I write this article, we are still waiting to hear the final results of the election between Donald Trump and Joe Biden. We are also facing the possibility of poll-watching suppression and voter fraud on a scale never seen before. Some states have already admitted that a “software glitch” in some of their vote-counting machines caused a certain amount of votes to switch to Biden that were meant for Trump and at least one person has already been charged with mail tampering among other related mail fraud charges. More people are expected to face similar charges as undercover and self-made videos are being posted showing individuals destroying mail-in ballots intended for Donald Trump. And while technology has made major advancements, election voting has not. Most votes are still cast on paper ballots then left in the hands of volunteers to make sure they are counted by machines that can be compromised leaving the door open for possible fraud.
Voting On The Blockchain
Blockchain technology wasn’t available during the 2000 election, but it is a good example of why it should have been used in the last two. It has already been tested in Denver, West Virginia, and parts of Utah with great results. Blockchain voting makes cheating almost completely impossible as votes are recorded instantly and permanently. Transparency is 100% as the blockchain is decentralized and public meaning it is open for anybody to see but impossible to change. Final tallies will be instant and a winner will be chosen as soon as the polls close. No more waiting until the next day or week to find out who won.
Security Of Your Vote
Making sure every legal vote is securely cast and counted can be easily done. Registered voters will be required to login to either a certified website or app with a unique username or their verified phone number. A “One Time Passcode” will be sent to their email or phone. Fingerprint and face recognition can also be an option. After the user chooses their candidates, the information is then sent in a digital package to the network of multiple nodes for verification. After verification, the vote is recorded on the blockchain. This all happens instantly and once this is done, it can never be changed as the results are not stored in one place but in multiple places and can be checked and verified by anyone at any time. Voters will be able to personally audit their votes by matching their ballot to the digital receipt they will get after voting. This system will also save Americans billions of dollars in tax money because it will cost about $0.50 a vote compared to the $7-$25 it costs now.
Making It Real
After this current election is over, I could imagine blockchain voting on a nationwide scale will be looked at closer. The amount of wide-spread voter fraud that is being uncovered cannot be ignored any longer. Blockchain voting is a safe and secure way to see that every legal vote is counted correctly and easily verified.