No voting machines anymore

The Bundesverfassungsgericht (federal constitutional court) of Germany has just ruled that electronic voting machines are not legal.

There's in theory a small gap in this - voting machines and other computer-based elections are legal if the principle of publicity is in effect.
Publicity means here not that somebody can see how somebody else voted, but that interested citizens can check the votes and the published results.
Even voting machines with printer are very unlikely to meet this criterion because even these were manipulated in a test of the German hacker/electronic security organization.
(Aktenzeichen: Bundesverfassungsgericht 2 BvC 3/07 und 2 BvC 4/07)

There's no reason for voting machines anyway - we manage to have more than 90% of the results at the end of the election day after six hours of counting with the old paper method.

Germany has one internal threat to its democracy less today, I'm relieved.

Sven Ortmann


  1. Will that include elections for the European Parliament? I always wondered why there is even a need for electronic voting. I assisted in elections and we were always through with counting in less than an hour after closing. And that was not dependent on number of votes given.

  2. I'm quite sure that this includes European elections.

    The German people express their sovereignty through elections (and ballots) according to our constitution.
    The election of the European parliament is such a vote, and thus needs to match the legal requirements of the German state. It needs to meet the constitutional court's requirements.

    I doubt that any community or state in Germany will spend for storing the voting machines safely and operating them and keep the regulations enforced just for the rare European elections anyway.

  3. Clear points: these devices do not help in saving time nor money and do not increase security or transparency. Trash them!

  4. Next, down with ATMs and debit cards! These new-fangled computers are totally untrustworthy.

    You guys sound like my grandpa.