Paper or electronic ballots: Who decides?

April 5, 2022

Since our last election I’ve heard a lot of people asking how we can bring back the paper balloting we used to have for all Delaware elections. In 2020, we switched for the first time to the electronic voting system with the ES&S system. I hear people asking this question, but no one seems to know who to direct this question to. Is it our local representatives, the governor, the board of elections? Who? Well, there is an answer! In 2019, our General Assembly passed a bill, HB38: An act to amend Title 15 of the Delaware Code relating to early voting. “This act also charges the state election commissioner with determining whether such voting should occur by voting machine or paper ballot.” Aha! It is the state election commissioner who decides whether we vote in the traditional manner Delaware is accustomed to voting, paper ballots, or the new electronic voting.

And who is the state election commissioner? It is Anthony Albence. But how does this one man decide such an important and crucial policy that affects every single voter on Election Day? Does he form a committee? Does he take in opinions from the public? Does he take orders from someone else, and who is that? I don’t know, but we should find out and ask the question! I know I have.

I have called Mr. Albence’s office and emailed him asking him this question, but I have heard nothing back. I did not give my opinion whether I think we should have paper or electronic balloting, I just inquired as to how Mr. Albence will make his decision. And I think we all have a right to know how he will make this decision for the 2022 mid-term election and the 2024 general election. And you can ask him too! As a matter of record, the contact information for the Board of Elections and Anthony Albence can be found at So now you don’t have to wonder who to ask and how this decision of paper versus electronic balloting in Delaware is made. You can ask the person who decides directly yourself! If you care about our elections, I suggest you do. 

Michelle Parsons


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