Bringing Voting to the 21st Century

When we were visiting the civil registration office in centralQuito, I didn’t understand why it took so long to get Grace’s paperwork.  Later, I discovered that the country was getting their citizens ready for their annual election with the use of new technology.  Just as drivers’ licenses, passports and other identification documents have become digitalized, so have the Ecuadorian registration papers. 

When we were in the office, there were many Ecuadorian citizens there getting their registration cards redone, so that they would contain the digitalized image that could be scanned into a machine.  Although everyone got sick in the process of getting Grace’s papers done, I’m glad that we completed that process in early April.  If not, we would have been stuck in line with all the people trying to get their registration I.D. done before the elections.

Ecuadorians are required to vote or pay a fine.  For a while, it was understood that all Ecuadorian citizens needed the new digital registration card in order to vote this year. However, my nanny told me that she didn’t have time to go get her registration card done and thought she could vote with the old card.  The nurse who was checking on Grace said the same thing.

Fortunately for them, they were able to use their old cards.  On May 14, all citizens of the country got to vote on changes being made inEcuador’s Constitution.  By the end of the election process, the “yes” votes once.

As for me, I won’t worry about the vote outcome.  I’ll just take my two registration cards fromEcuador.  Luke’s card has the old non-digital card and Grace has the new one.  And that’s the way it is going to stay for a while.

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