City lawmaker pushes for New York to adopt mobile voting for next year's election

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By WCBS Newsradio 880

NEW YORK (WCBS 880) — A New York City lawmaker on Friday called on city officials to allow New Yorkers to begin casting ballots via their mobile devices, or computers during future elections.

Bronx City Councilman Ritchie Torres was among those calling for mobile, or internet, voting in New York, pointing to the fact that he had to wait six weeks for the result of his three-way primary race for Congress in June.

“This is a broken system and instead of fixing the system with patchwork, we need to reimagine elections for the 21st century,” Torres said.

He won after paper ballots were counted, but he believes change is overdue.

“New Yorkers need and deserve a third option,” he said.

The councilman was joined by Bradley Tusk, a venture capitalist who has financed more than a dozen mobile voting programs in the country through his non-profit, Tusk Philanthropy.

He says when voters are given the option to vote electronically from their own homes, the turnout is always much greater.

“Turn out doubled on average, so we know mobile voting works, we know it's available. We know the technology is here and we need the political leadership in New York to make it available,” Tusk said.

His company has worked with six states to implement mobile voting for certain constituents, such as oversees military personnel.

Tusk presented the idea to City Hall in 2016, but notes it is a hard sell.

The non-profit, Verified Voting Foundation, has taken a hard line against internet-based voting saying the security concerns are just too great – and it appears many lawmakers agree.

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