Going to have to read this opinion. Utah's system has been paper based for many
years. Until the legislature takes up this issue itself, I have a hard time
understanding how a court could rule in such a manner.
Maybe because an electronic signature should be as valid as a paper signature.
Maybe because the state allows you to conduct business electronically. If you
can renew your car tags, you should be able to sign a petition the same way,
electronically. This was an example of a government throwing obstacles in the
way of the citizens for no apparent reason. Just my opinion.
Jeff - I believe we have a national election decided by a court rather than the
voters, remember?Electronic signatures should require the voter ID
number that too would be another safeguard.Just another example of
the incompetence of the Lt Governor and the Attorney General of Utah.
"State officials, meanwhile, said Utah's elections operate on a "paper-based
system" and electronic signatures would open the process up to fraud and
confusion." But you can register to vote on line so what's the
difference? If that system to register to vote is not "opened up to fraud" then
why do they say this is? Oh yeah, because they want to make it hard for us
"small people" to make any changes in their big, bad government.
In no time our elections will be just like California...thousands of signatures
and no way to verify them.
The conservatives are Wrong again!
From these post, obviously, there are those that believe an appointed judicial
aristocracy is more representative of the people, than the elected executive
officers. Strange, indeed, especially given the opinion was not just from the
Lt. Gov, but also the Attorney General. And, to Utah Dem, the Supreme Court
action in the Florida 2000 election was just the opposite of this in which they
rule that the State's court could not overturn the elected officials ruling as
to valid votes in that state. One wonders how Utah is considered a Conservative
state given its activist court system.
Did anyone notice that Farley Anderson is an extreme right-wing candidate, and
that his position was defended by the ACLU?Does this mean the court
ruling was a victory for the right or for the left? Or does it mean it's a
victory for common sense over rules that no longer have a purpose?
Thanks to the South Carolina elections we know there is massive fraud in the
voting system. I also know there is massive fraud with collecting signatures
(i.e. tell you one thing at your door but really are using he sigantures for
another). I'm opposed to e signatures unless they can be proven and validated as
coming from that individual.
One more time, the conservatives are Wrong again!
It helps to actually read the decision. The Court ruled that the legislature was
quite clear in allowing for electronic signatures and that it was Shurtleff and
Bell who misconstrued the plain language. While no one wants courts to overstep
their bounds, we also don't want our elected officials ignoring the law,
particularly when the result is keeping keeping people and issues off the
For those of us in rural areas, electronic petitions may be the only way we can
sign without driving for long distances to get to a paper petition.
What about hackers?? Especially since this may have national implications,
there ought to be some means of validating online votes or of proving who you
are. I don't think we want hackers deciding our elections.
"The court ordered Bell's office to recount the signatures and place
Anderson's name on the November ballot if 1,000 signatures are found to be
valid."Thats the point!!! How can you validate E-signatures?!!
Good decision. It gives people a good way to be able to participate in the
political process. There must be proper protections against abuse, of course
(such as requiring the signer's voting ID number), but this is a big step
forward in the political process. Good job, Justices.
I honestly don't understand how the Lt. Gov and AG thought they were going to
win this argument. They themselves have set precedence for the use of electronic
signatures by allowing multiple state and legal affairs to be handled
electronically (i.e. registering to vote, registering your vehicle, paying
taxes).Someone earlier commented that requiring a voter ID number in
combination with your name when signing a petition or supporting someone to be
placed on a ballot is a good way to combat against fraud. Besides - these are
preliminary activities that only get certain people or issues on a ballot. People still actually have to go to the polls or submit ballots in
absentia or by mail before any of these ballot issues have real effect. There is
no reason for a government that is supposed to be 'for and by' the people to be
inihibiting any citizen's ability to participate in the political process
whether it be by running for office or signing a petition.
There actually is a validation system in place...the court ruled that electronic
signatures may actually be easier to verify than handwritten signatures.
Welcome to the 21st Century! It's about time! I hope this is upheld and makes
precedent for the entire country. Way to go Utah Supreme's!
This will change how things are done politically in Utah. Watch for people
submitting al sorts of ballot measures. A new Industry has just sprouted.
This will change how things are done politically in Utah. Watch for people
submitting all sorts of ballot measures. A new Industry has just sprouted.
Good for the people!
It's secure. Even Lt Gov. Mark Thomas' office had input into the process BEFORE
they began to use it.They are collecting e-signatures for the
unaffiliated Lt Gov candidate Steve Maxfield right now.But then
again, I guess if just anyone out there knows your name, address, birthdate and
the last 4 numbers of your driver's license, they can "forge" your e-signature.
Oh, not to mention the IP address is recorded, so they will need to change
computers and ISP providers pretty often not to be red-flagged. So yeah, go
ahead and try it out. See if you can open the phone book and get a random name
approved. I dare you.
Overuling this will be the first order of business in the very next session of
the Utah Legislature.
The electronic age has changed many laws and rights of individuals. They even
use electronics (televised) trials of accused criminals from their jail cells
and they never see the inside of the courtroom. Legislators pass laws through
e-signatures and may have never seen or read the legislation they vote on.However in this case where e-signatures are gathered to make proposals
should be allowed, it's not a vote but an approval to allow public vote in the
polls on a person or petition.The only problem is how secure the
state keeps the names of registered voters so they don't get in the wrong hands
for the wrong reasons. The list could be used to harass individuals or allow
illegal aliens and other non americans to interfere with our processes. The key
to the e-signature process is the security of the registered voters list that is
used to verify e-signatures. Anyone working on them should have FBI background
checks and sworn to secrecy and non disclosure.The population of the
state is so spread out it's near impossible for a few to reach all interested
parties face to face.
Working for the Feds and in health care we use E-signatures all the time. BUT
the process is not the same as the processed used when one is doing regualr
business online. To be able to do E-signatures that hold up in court actions
our computers are setup with certain security software and assigned various
rights on the server. The whole system only works when our Common Access Card
is in that computer and we go through a long process to just get a CAC issued in
the first place.I really doubt that the civilian workforce will want to go
through all of this to do e-signature correctly. I certainly do not want this
done without security in place to verify the signatures. If the state takes up
the issue I would hope they put certain security requirements on the
e-signatures.Do it right or don't do it at all.