Thursday, December 4, 2008

Required Reading

Professor Charles Seife on the recount in MN and how it won't really determine the winner.
In an ordinary race, errors this tiny wouldn’t be a problem. But the Coleman-Franken race is so close that this error rate is more than double the margin between the two camps. And that’s just taking into account the precincts where there are no challenges. Throw in the weirdo ballots with lizard people, stray marks and indecipherable dots, and the error rate grows even more. Throw in the missing ballots, and the situation is hopeless. In truth, the counting errors dwarf the tiny numerical difference in votes between the two candidates.
Professor Seife argues that to be fair, the election must be determined by the flip of a coin, which is in fact allowable in MN law. Amazing.

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