The December 29 issue of the Albany Times-Union has this editorial, condemning New York state’s present law for recounts, which sets out no objective standards on when a recount should be held. The editorial was responding to the decision of the highest state court, ruling that no recount should be held in the race for State Senate, 7th district. The margin was 451 votes out of 85,405 cast. The control of the State Senate rested on that one race.
One of the strongest points in the editorial is that it is absurd that New York switched to a system that has an audit trail, if no one is going to use the audit trail. The old voting system in New York was mechanical voting machines. Recounts are impossible in places that use mechanical voting machines. One can double-check the tallies shown on the back of the machine, but one can’t recount anything because there is nothing to recount. But in 2010 New York switched to paper ballots, which can be recounted.