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Audit vs. Recount

Over the last two weeks, there has been much discussion of the recounts requested by the Green Party in Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin.   Some of this request is based on discrepancies in results depending upon the type of voting technology use, but others think that those discrepancies can be explained by the demographics of the counties.  Historically, the gap in the states in which the recounts are being requested is larger than the typical swing from a recount.

What these requests do demonstrate is the need for a regular and public audit process for the election.  Many states do have an audit or verification process, but it needs to be public.  (One of the few states that do have such a process is Arizona which not only does an audit but requires the counties to submit the results to the state and the state publishes that information on-line.)   Saying that there should be an audit does not however define what a proper audit should do.

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