We are one of the most civilized and technology advanced countries in the world, so why can’t we fix the voting problem? It appears less developed nations have the answer. Twenty five countries including the Bahamas, the Philippines, India and others use a special, non-toxic, indelible ink as a record of who has voted. This ink is applied to a voter’s finger as proof they voted. Originally, voters dipped their finger in a jar. Today, they use a marking pen. A poll worker paints a stripe on the finger of the voter, from the first knuckle, to the tip of the finger.

Election ink stays on the skin for 72 to 96 hours, and can only be removed as external skin cells are replaced. Although chemicals are available that can remove this ink from the skin, it will last from 2 to 4 weeks on the fingernail and cuticle area. It can take up to 4 months for the stain to be replaced completely by new nail growth.

This process would eliminate dead people voting and people voting more than once.

The ballots will be the same style for every state, and each poll location would have the same machine to read ballots. All registered voters will have their ballots mailed to them. They will fill them out at home, and bring them to the polls in person. There will be no mail in voting. The polls can be open for several days to eliminate long lines. The voter will drop off their ballot and get their finger inked by pulling up to the drive-thru station, or coming inside.

For those confined to their homes or in nursing homes, arrangements can be made to have election staff personnel in pairs—one from each party—visit them. By allowing several days to vote, nobody will be left out.
The blue ink on the finger will replace the “I voted” sticker. Just drop off your ballot, and get your finger inked. Can it really be this easy?

—Wally Maslowsky,