Ross: Lawsuit challenges election officials for a better process

Nov 29, 2022, 8:15 AM | Updated: 10:38 am
A machine is used for automated signature verification as mail-in ballots for the California Recall election are processed at the Los Angeles County Registrar building at the Fairplex in Pomona, California on September 9, 2021. (Photo by Frederic J. BROWN / AFP) (Photo by FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images)
(Photo by FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images)

Right now, there are 26,933 ballots statewide being challenged for signatures that don’t match.

And because of that, three community groups and three individual voters are suing for an injunction that would prohibit county elections departments from rejecting ballot envelopes just because the signatures don’t match.

More from Dave Ross: Another year without any major election fraud issues in sight

If the courts agree, every ballot with a signature would be counted whether it matches or not.

This may sound crazy. But the three voters in this lawsuit allege that when their signatures were first rejected, they did everything they were asked to do – filled out the forms, signed several times, presented ID, and still, their votes were not counted.

Even though there was no indication of fraud.

And I find that disturbing.

The plaintiffs argue that the signature – however sloppy – can still serve as a binding affirmation that the vote is legal, under penalty of perjury. And so, they believe that any legal ballot envelope whose bar code checks out should be accepted whether or not that signature is a match.

Unfortunately, the lawsuit doesn’t suggest a better way of proving who you are.

It does mention DNA as far more reliable than a signature – but nobody’s going to sign their ballot envelope with a DNA sample.

However, if I may resurrect one of my own ideas here – I think there is a way to keep the signature-matching requirement – while at the same time providing some justice to those victimized by it.

Here’s what I suggest.

If any voter – like the three voters in this lawsuit, who were all qualified to cast a ballot – is denied their right to cast that ballot solely because of a mismatched signature, that voter is exempt from all state and local taxes until the next election.

It’s a principle most of us would recognize – no taxation without representation.

That’s real money — especially if we end up with an income tax.

And I think this would work because it would give counties a lot more incentive to be very careful about how many signatures they reject. And you may say, Dave – won’t people just start sloppy signing just to get out of paying taxes?

Maybe. But if they do, I predict that with all that tax money on the line, counties will suddenly find that your signature matches pretty well after all.

Listen to Seattle’s Morning News with Dave Ross and Colleen O’Brien weekday mornings from 5 – 9 a.m. on KIRO Newsradio, 97.3 FM. Subscribe to the podcast here.

Dave Ross on KIRO Newsradio 97.3 FM
  • listen to dave rossTune in to KIRO Newsradio weekdays at 5am for Dave Ross on Seattle's Morning News.

Dave's Commentary

Dave Ross

Dave Ross

Ross: Was it a Chinese spy balloon, or luxury space travel prototype?

The defense department says it has been tracking a huge Chinese balloon over Montana
9 hours ago
Dave Ross

Ross: ‘Police used as substitute for properly funding social services’

The reason we keep seeing abuses like the fatal beating of Tyre Nichols in Memphis. It’s rooted in American culture.
1 day ago
Dave Ross

Ross: More millennials need their parents help, but for how much longer

Dave was shocked to hear about the latest statistics from Money.com on the number of millennials being subsidized by their parents.
2 days ago
Dave Ross

Ross: Morning people have the ideal lifestyle, it’s just science!

When I took this morning job, there wasn’t much competition. It was basically, "we need someone who can be here at 4:45 a.m.”
3 days ago
tiktok challenge kia...
Dave Ross

Ross: Kia is getting sued for thefts, but why not TikTok?

According to Seattle City Attorney Ann Davison, Hyundai and Kia thefts are so out of control in Seattle that its a public nuisance.
4 days ago
Dave Ross

Ross: An odyssey of awe, a leaky ceiling and the power of self-confidence

Three weeks ago, Colleen and I interviewed researcher Dacher Keltner on the subject of Awe – which he defines as follows.
8 days ago

Sponsored Articles

safety from crime...

As crime increases, our safety measures must too

It's easy to be accused of fearmongering regarding crime, but Seattle residents might have good reason to be concerned for their safety.
Comcast Ready for Business Fund...
Ilona Lohrey | President and CEO, GSBA

GSBA is closing the disparity gap with Ready for Business Fund

GSBA, Comcast, and other partners are working to address disparities in access to financial resources with the Ready for Business fund.

Medicare open enrollment is here and SHIBA can help!

The SHIBA program – part of the Office of the Insurance Commissioner – is ready to help with your Medicare open enrollment decisions.
Lake Washington Windows...

Choosing Best Windows for Your Home

Lake Washington Windows and Doors is a local window dealer offering the exclusive Leak Armor installation.
Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
Ross: Lawsuit challenges election officials for a better process