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$$$ for voting machines?

If two congressional critics of electronic voting machines get their way.

Rep. Rush Holt, D-N.J. is proposing a bill that would reimburse state and local governments that scrap their electronic voting machines in favor of paper ballots. The bill would even cover states like Florida, which moved last year to give up the electronic machines in the face of widespread concerns over their reliability.

Holt, joined by Rep. Robert Wexler, D-Boca Raton, cited the disputed congressional race in Florida in 2006 to make his point.

"The questions about that election can never be resolved satisfactorily," said Holt, noting that Congress is investigating the case in which 18,000 ballots showed no vote for either Republican Vern Buchanan, who won the race by fewer than 400 votes, or for Democrat Christine Jennings, who lost and is challenging Buchanan for re-election.

Holt said he's got no promise from House leadership that it will come up with the proposed $500 million to reimburse the states, but is "confident it will be available."