By Brad Friedman on 1/8/2005, 10:38pm PT  

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports...

The Pennsylvania Department of State will open an examination of electronic voting system problems that plagued balloting in three counties and led to the resignation of an election director, agency officials said.

Voters using the new machines in Mercer, Greene and Beaver counties on Nov. 2 complained that their votes were voided when they tried to review their choices, which led to long lines at some balloting locations.

Eight counties used the same machines made by UniLect, based in Dublin, Calif., but the voting difficulties were limited to the three counties in Western Pennsylvania.

Misprogrammed electronic voting machines malfunctioned in 4th Congressional District precincts in Shenango Township, West Middlesex, Wheatland, Farrell and Hermitage.

A pencil and a piece of paper hardly ever malfunction.

Not to be a luddite or anything.

UPDATE 1/9/05: From an emailer...for whatever you may decide it's worth...

Look at the stats on the counties that had problems in PA:

MERCER COUNTY PENNSYLVANIA
VOTER REGISTRATION FACTS AS OF 10/26/2004
REGISTERED VOTERS IN MERCER COUNTY

DEMOCRATIC 36,749
REPUBLICAN 31,621
LIBERTARIAN 219
GREEN 105
OTHER 7,379
TOTALS 76,073

MERCER COUNTY, COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA

DEMOCRATIC JOHN F. KERRY . . . . . . . . . . . 47.71%. . 22761
REPUBLICAN GEORGE W. BUSH. . . . . . . . . . . 51.45%. . 24545

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Greene County historically registers Democrats at a 2:1 ratio to Republicans, this year the registration was slightly less than a 2:1 Democratic advantage.

COUNTY OF GREENE

DEMOCRATIC JOHN F. KERRY/JOHN EDWARDS . . . . . . . . . . 49.30%. . 7674
REPUBLICAN GEORGE W. BUSH /DICK CHENEY . . . . . . . . . . . 50.02%. . 7786

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Beaver County

Same goes for this county, registration for Democrats is just less than 2:1 advantage over Republicans.

DEMOCRATIC JOHN F. KERRY/JOHN EDWARDS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51.06%. . 42146
REPUBLICAN GEORGE W. BUSH/DICK CHENEY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 48.36%. . 39916