Creating an Exit Poll Ballot

This is part 3 of my “How-to-Run-an-Exit-Poll-Series.

The exit poll survey ballot is important, but not complicated. The only question of interest, other than their ballot choices, is the method of voting.   Data will be available at the end of the day with separate totals for the machine cast votes and the scanned paper votes.  There will be no official count of provisional votes at this station, so we can only compare those votes to overall total for the polling station. But that comparison allows us to evaluate whether the giving people provisional votes amounts to a voter suppression tactic.

Since space on our survey form is at a premium, and because including that information makes their response less anonymous, I do not recommend including questions about age, race or gender.  Generally speaking, you want to keep the words to minimum.  (Not an easy task for me.)

Here is an example survey I have developed for exit polls in Sedgwick Co.  I included a short paragraph at the top because I feel it’s important to let people know why you want this information and reassure them that results are anonymous, just like their vote.

Sample Exit Poll Survey

The first question is really too long, but I wanted to be as clear as I can about this question.  In Sedgwick County Kansas there are three possible options:  A vote cast via electronic voting machine, a paper ballot that the voter feeds into a scanner for on-site electronic counting or a provisional ballot – a paper ballot that is sealed into an envelop to be counted later (maybe).

Asking about the specific races is straightforward.  State the office and then list the candidates.  Circling answers reduces the need for a blank or box to check.  It saves space on the page.

Staggering the answers for questions with more than one line of answers (ex: Pres) makes it easier to discern the voters intent.  When they are stacked one above another, the answer may easily become ambiguous.

Since a single polling location will have multiple precincts voting there, it’s a problem asking about races where different precincts will be voting  for different candidates.   Generally, I want to confine the questions to races that will appear on every ballot at the polling location.   On the other hand, my site managers for the SW Wichita location are very interested in the county commissioner races.  We arrived at the following:

Who did you vote for your County Commissioner Race? (Select one for District 2 OR  District 3)   –  sw-wichita-nov-8-exit-poll-ballot

I have hopes that we won’t get too many voters identifying their choices for both district 2 and district 3, but I expect we will get some.   OTOH, it’s the only question that would be spoiled and I’m reasonably comfortable in assuming that such mishaps are equally likely to occur regardless of which candidate they support.  I think we will get good data from this exit poll.

How to Run an Exit Poll Part 1

How to Run an Exit Poll Part 2

 

 

One thought on “Creating an Exit Poll Ballot”

  1. Thought I should post this to your most current article:
    Please pardon me again. Though short of publicly hand counted paper ballots, this intermediate potential solution involves saving scanned ballot images from Scanning Machines which I decried previously. The only recourse for being wrong, is trying to correct:

    Since Clinton is preemptively blaming Russia for any election hacking, and Trump is saying a Rigged Election is possible, then they both should openly call for following solution:

    http://trustvote.org/latest-updates/the-solution-to-vote-fractionalizing/

    A few days ago, we told you about the problem of fractionalizing votes. I mentioned that we would be sending you a letter with a really good solution that has worked once before and could work again. Although votes can be fractionalized while adding them up, the ballot images (pictures taken of the ballots) can not be reduced to fractions. The solution is to issue temporary restraining orders in swing state counties so that the ballot images can be preserved. The act of issuing TRO’s will also be a deterrent in itself to fractionalizing votes in an effort to steal the election. This process could apply to all elections, presidential, state and county elections as well as bond issues and propositions.

    If you are interested in getting involved in making this happen, if you are a lawyer and if you know a lawyer or lawyers who might also be interested in preserving ballot images using TRO’s, please contact us at TrustVote.org as soon as possible, as we will need to issue these TRO’s for the most part BEFORE the election. And, as you might expect, organizing this effort will require money. So please DONATE WHATEVER YOU CAN to support to fight election fraud in our country.

    THANK YOU SO MUCH on behalf of TrustVote and our challenged democracy!

    ………..

    Bev Harris has been studying how votes are fractionalized. She call it “Fraction Magic” When adding up votes, the tabulator can fractionalize the votes if it is programmed that way. She has been working with John Brakey on how to PRESERVE BALLOT IMAGES. Bev Harris has happily discovered that images of the ballots CANNOT BE FRACTIONALIZED. That is why they must be preserved. Please read more by clicking on the following link: http://blackboxvoting.org/fraction-magic-part-6/
    
……..

    In any election where scanners are used, these systems could create a higher level of transparency and reliability if we prevent the ballot images from being destroyed and prevent the audit file system called Cast Vote Record (CVR) from being disconnected. Many states currently have these systems, now capable of capturing ballot images and numbering ballots. This leaves an opening for easier verification of election results.

    States that have these ES&S scanners in some of their counties include Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Utah, Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming and others. California has some Dominion scanners that take ballot images.

    These scanners are also approved of by the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC).
    To find out what type of voting equipment your county is using, click on “The Verifier” and find your county: https://www.verifiedvoting.org/ Please note, that information is over a year old. To be certain of the machines used in our own back yard, call your election department to find out what machines are being used in this election cycle.
    
……….

    WHAT CAN VOTERS DO TO RECTIFY THESE PROBLEMS:


    Election activist John Brakey and attorney William Risner assert that destroying ballot images is against Federal law: Federal law 52 U.S.C § 20701 requiring retention of federal election materials, provides a penalty of up to $1,000 fine and one year in jail for premature destruction of that material (was formerly 42 U.S.C § 1974).

    For the November elections, Brakey and Risner recommend the following strategy:

    • File a public record request (ASAP) asking for ballot images for the last and the next election. The request should include other critical documents like the Cast Vote Record (CVR). We can provide a draft of what to request.


    • If ballot images are or have been destroyed then file a special action Temporary Restraining Order (TRO), which is usually easy to request.

    
• If they refuse your public records request for “ballot images,” then file another special action in the form of a Mandamus Act. When you win they have to pay all expenses and legal fees.

    Additional efforts that may be necessary and are suggested by AUDIT-AZ member Mickey Duniho, a retired former NSA Cryptologist for 37 years. His recommendations are being added to our TRO.

    • Do not transfer results from the DS850 to the central count computer until election day; 


    • Print the cast vote record serial number on each ballot so that an audit can link back to the original ballot as per how the system was federal certified by EAC; 


    • Mark every storage box containing ballots with the range of serial numbers contained in the box, so that an audit can easily find the box containing a ballot of interest.

    
There is a lot of reliable evidence if ballot images are not destroyed and if recounts are initiated using the ES&S audit file. With respect to this election, there are many of these scanners in the swing states.

    In the interest of fair and transparent elections, it is our hope that citizens and interested attorneys will call upon their states to retain the ballot images and invite citizens and interested election officials to do recounts when they are concerned about their results

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