Oregon Senate OKs Internet voting study

Pressure on Oregon lawmakers to act in final weeks

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — The Oregon Senate says the state should look into the possibility of letting Oregonians vote online.

Lawmakers approved a bill on Thursday that would order the secretary of state to name a work group to examine the idea of statewide Internet voting and report its findings to the Legislature by December.

Supporters say the study is necessary to understand the possible advantages of online voting, such as increased voter turnout, and the shortcomings, such as security vulnerabilities.

Critics of the idea point to the state’s struggles to get the Cover Oregon website operating as an argument against tackling another large and complicated Internet technology project.

Many U.S. states allow voters to return scanned ballots electronically, but none allow direct online voting statewide.