Explaining quick polls and exit polls

August 16, 2004

Now I understand a little better what Carter and Gaviria said. Let me explain. You vote in an electronic machine. At the end of the day the machine has a total that is transcribed and then transmitted to the CNE. There were three exit polls performed and there were various quick polls performed.

In an exit poll you ask voters how they voted. In the quick poll you check that the total at the machine level is the same registered at the CNE after transmission. What the Carter Center did was quick polls and they say they coincide with the results. Moreover, Carter said that Sumate also did a quick poll and it also coincides with the results, although the difference is smaller.

What does not coincide is that the results of the three exit polls does not correspond to what the quick polls say in the sme centers. Supposedly, 1% of the machines were going to be checked manually, by counting the paper ballots printed by the machines when you voted and comparing with the results of the machines. This was not done. There is a 15-18% difference between the two types of poll.

All exit polls agree with each other within error. The CD is asking that 2-3% of the polling stations be checked and the number of paper ballots coincide with the results of the machines. Thus, if fraud took place it took place at the machine level.

If this is not done within the next two days, this will simply remain a mistery for years to come. For the peace of mind of the country the CNE should do this and if possible do all polling stations to remove any lingering doubts.

(Daniel has a graph of the voting process explaing the various steps)

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