Presidential Andrew Yang established himself as the blockchain Democrat back in April, when he added a call for clear regulation of cryptocurrencies to his policy proposals months before Facebook’s Libra stablecoin proposal made it a hot topic. Now he wants to bring voting onto the blockchain.
Take one sultry Russian agent, a middle-aged tech CEO nearly twice her age, and add in the FBI, Hillary Clinton, allegations of election interference, and vague comments about the “deep state” and “Men in Black,” and you’ve got the makings of Netflix’s next hot series. Or, the reason the CEO of Overstock.com resigned on August 22 from the dot-com company he built into a major online retailer.
Eighteen years after the Florida hanging chads debacle cast the legitimacy of an American president into doubt, the voting technology introduced to fix those problems remains so vulnerable to hacking that the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine in September urged a return to paper ballots and an end to Internet voting. That’s a problem blockchain developers think they can fix.
In the wake of its federal primary elections last week, West Virginia now bears the distinction of having hosted the country’s first blockchain-enabled voting process. If you’re just tuning in, this was a relatively lightweight application of blockchain voting technology. This technologically-enabled voting process was limited to eligible UOCAVA voters (“Uniformed and Overseas Absentee Voting Act”) and their families in two West Virginia counties: Harrison and Monongalia. That said, the ability to vote using a mobile app had some serious appeal for those who were eligible. It was facilitated by Boston-based technology company Voatz, and a company spokesperson filled us in on how it all went. “One particular overseas voter…