The old Datavote punch-card voting system worked fine since the '70s UNTIL they were PURPOSELY sabotaged in Florida. Dan Rather's documentary shows 7 printing plant employees saying that they were FORCED to use inferior paper they'd already rejected and FORCED to mis-register the perforations which became the "chad" problem:
This "failure" caused Congress to pass HAVA (Help America Vote Act) which resulted in $100s of millions for Republican-connected voting machine companies and all the havoc we've had since.
It's a crying shame that Dan Rather lost his network job before putting out this, his best expose ever. It's a shame that HDNet titled it "The Trouble with Touchscreens, Part 2" instead of "How our Elections and Treasure are Stolen, Part 1"
As a longtime voting reform activist, I think the only thing wrong with the old Datavote machines was that the software was proprietary instead of open-source (public), which could be easily remedied by legislation. If anyone knows if any of these machines are warehoused somewhere, let me know!
The Trouble with Touchscreens, Part 1 shows how inferior that method of voting is. But carefully filling a square with ink on fragile paper then fed into delicate optical scanners is a pathetic way to signal a computer! Punch cards are way faster and more robust, while leaving a paper trail for real hand recounts.