News Releases

October 17, 2007

Secretary of State Deb Markowitz Testifies in Washington, D.C., on Early and Absentee Ballots

Washington, D.C. Vermont Secretary of State Deb Markowitz was in the nation’s capital today to testify before the Elections Subcommittee of the Committee on House Administration on Vermont’s experiences with early and absentee voting.

Markowitz said, “Our experience shows that Vermont voters like the convenience of voting early in person or by mail; our election administrators like no excuse absentee voting because it reduces lines on election day; we have had few issues with voter fraud; and there are steps states can take to help reduce voter error and to deter fraud.”

Secretary Markowitz noted that in the 2006 election over 20 of Vermont voters chose to vote by early or absentee ballot, up from five percent in the early 1990s. Markowitz also discussed how the Secretary of State’s Office has ensured the integrity and security of absentee ballots. She said, “In Vermont we have procedures in place that are designed to prevent problems that could arise from the use of early and absentee voting.”

Markowitz, immediate past president of the National Association of Secretaries of State, was invited to testify before the subcommittee by Chairwoman Zoe Lofgren of California. The committee's jurisdiction over federal elections requires it to consider proposals to amend federal election law and to monitor congressional elections across the United States. The committee was instrumental in the passage of the Help America Vote Act of 2002, which provided more than $3 billion dollars for the improvement of voting equipment and procedures to make the voting process more accessible and to guard against fraud.

Secretary Markowitz’s testimony is available on the Secretary of State’s website at http://www.sec.state.vt.us/secdesk/commentary/2007comm.html.

Source: Secretary of State
Last Updated at: October 17, 2007 09:33:25