UNM study lauds Bernalillo County elections

The most populous county in New Mexico can now boast the most innovative, modern and professional polling jurisdictions in the nation, according to a new report.

The report from the UNM Center for the Study of Voting, Elections and Democracy, Bernalillo County is at the forefront of election administration nationally.

The 2016 Bernalillo County Election Administration Report also notes the efficiency, cost-effective and high-integrity of the county’s federal elections.

The research looks at the November 2016 general election to assess the experiences of voters and poll workers. The center began looking at the Bernalillo County election systems in 2006, releasing six reports over the past 11 years.

The last installment marks the county as the only one in the nation to have undergone such sustained and independent assessment during the course of multiple elections.

The report evaluates the quality and integrity of the election process, including poll monitoring and a review of poll worker training. It looks at what is working, and what needs to be adjusted and improved upon when training poll workers.

The report also addresses the attitudes and experiences of a random voter sample – including factors associated with the voting experience, experience with the ballot, the polling locations, voter interaction with poll workers and voter confidence and satisfaction.

It also asserted the 2016 general election was one of the best-administered that the group has reviewed — resulting in higher voter confidence.

Finally, the report outlines suggestions for the county to improve upon, including amending the current multi-layered voter identification law and changing the implementation of voting centers to allow voters to cast their ballot anywhere in their state — not just their county or precinct.

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