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Published:October 30th, 2008 12:59 EST
Touch Screen Voting Machines Not Working Properly

Touch Screen Voting Machines Not Working Properly

By Robert Paul Reyes

"A caller from Beaumont, Texas reports that his mother, who he accompanied to the polls, had problems assuring the electronic touch screen machine was accurately recording her preference for Sen. Barack Obama. `She went to punch the selection for Obama and it flipped to McCain,` the caller said. `They need to do something about this. They need to separate the names. Put `em apart, pretty much. Side-by-side instead of stacked on top of one another. This issue needs to be addressed,` said the caller.

CNN Political Ticker

Young people are comfortable with electronic devices, on a daily basis they interact with touch screen computer monitors, cell phone keypads and game console joysticks.

But there are many elderly folks who are intimidated not only by computers, but by most high-tech gadgets. I have an elderly friend who has never used an ATM, she doesn`t trust them.

In states that have early voting, many elderly persons are having trouble with touch screen voting machines. Braving the traffic and finding their polling place is already a burden for many elderly, we shouldn`t make voting an even more tedious process by forcing them to use newfangled voting machines.

I live in Virginia and we have the option of using a touch screen machine or an old fashioned paper ballot. Every voter, especially the elderly, should have the option of voting by paper ballot.

Young people have no trouble reading the text in tiny cell phone screens, but some senior citizens have trouble reading the words in large computer screens. Touch screen voting machines should be senior citizen friendly, with large text and a double space between the names of the candidates.

It would be a tragedy if once again it came down to Florida, and the outcome was in doubt because many senior citizens had trouble with electronic touch screen machines.