Recently, it was reported that the city of Colorado Denver is set to become the second United States jurisdiction to pilot a Blockchain-powered mobile voting platform in its upcoming municipal election. The announcement came almost exactly one year later the first initiative of this kind of deployment of the mobile voting solution in West Virginia primaries and then midterm elections, which was made public in last March. This time of voting was spearheaded by the Tusk Philanthropy foundation, while Boston-based technology company Voatz took care of the software side of it. The partnership also included the National Cybersecurity Center, a nonprofit that works to raise awareness of cyber threats to the integrity of election systems.
While in West Virginia elections last year just about 150 people opted in to cast ballots through their mobile devices, the Denver campaign in May could see much wider use of the technology. According to the reports, the target voting population is both service members and overseas citizen voters from the city and county of Denver, totaling around 4,000 people. The idea of utilizing Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) to record the expression of citizens’ electoral preference is still met with near-universal suspicion. This trial might become the largest Blockchain-facilitated campaign to fill political offices in the U.S. to date. As Tusk Philanthropies is on a mission to fix American democracy through radically boosting voter turnout, which in turn improve the quality of political representation. Additionally, they believe in mobile voting as a shortcut to more inclusive elections.
Since last year, the Tusk Philanthropies leadership started talking with the city of Denver and the National Cybersecurity Center regarding deploying mobile voting. The foundation was then lured by the city’s strong reputation in the area of elections and saw the opportunity to move mobile voting ahead.