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Archive: 5/06 - 10/06
Voters challenged in NY state race 10/31/2006 AP: "The Stewart-Cousins campaign said more than 5,000 of the challenges filed during this election were to Democrats - mostly blacks, Hispanics and other minorities. Ciampoli said that the challenged voters were from every political party but that he did not know how many were Democrats.
Stewart-Cousins, who is black, set up a telephone hot line for any challenged voter to call. Spano is white.
"They cannot win in a fair fight, so they are trying to scare registered voters into staying away from the polls," Stewart-Cousins said."
Will a shocking new GOP court victory and Karl Rove's attack on Ohio 2006 doom the Democrats nationwide? 10/30/2006 Columbus Free Press: "With a major GOP federal court victory, the Ohio 2006 election has descended into the calculated chaos that has become the trademark of a Karl Rove election theft, and that could help keep the Congress in Republican hands nationwide.
Through a complex series of legal maneuvers, and now a shocking new decision from the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, the GOP has thrown Ohio's entire process of voting and vote counting into serious disarray. The mess is perfectly designed to suppress voter turnout, make election monitoring and a recount impossible, and allow the Republican Party to emerge with a victory despite overwhelming evidence the electorate wants exactly the opposite.
The disaster in Ohio began immediately after the theft of the presidential election here in 2004. Though the majority of Ohioans are registered Democrats, the gerrymandered state legislature is overwhelmingly Republican. Soon after John Kerry conceded, it passed House Bill 3, a draconian assault on voter registration drives, voting rights and the ability to secure reliable recounts of federal-level elections.
In brief, HB3 stacked a virtually impossible set of requirements onto the voter registration process. As elsewhere nationwide, voting has traditionally involved citizens coming to the polls and signing a poll book. Upon a signature check from a poll worker, a ballot has been given. A similar process has been in effect for absentee ballots. There is no recent evidence this method has encouraged significant voter fraud.
But the GOP's HB3 has imposed a series of draconian requirements for voter ID, including the demand for certain documents very difficult to obtain by many poor, homeless, elderly or other largely Democratic demographic groups."
"Progressive" Nonprofit Repped by Bush-Cheney Vet 10/30/2006 Muckracker
GOP Push-Poll Operation Calling Voters in 5 States 10/30/2006 Muckracker: "Yesterday at TPM we brought you news of a "push poll" operation in Maryland in which voters were reportedly asked whether they supported medical research experiments on unborn babies. This afternoon, Paul spoke with the man responsible for those calls and similar ones against at least four other Senate Democratic candidates.
Zeke Smith, the executive director of the non-profit "Common Sense Ohio," said his group was behind thousands of calls to voters in Maryland, Ohio, Tennessee, South Dakota and elsewhere -- oh, right, Ohio. He defended his group's questions ("Do you want your taxes raised?"). "Push polls" are used to spread negative information about a candidate, and are rarely used to collect respondent's answers."
Shadowy Nonprofit Attacks PA Dem from Left 10/30/2006 Muckracker
Twelve Arrested In Orange County Voter Fraud Scheme 10/30/2006 NBC: "Orange County's top prosecutor Monday defended his delay until a week before the election in outlining charges filed against a dozen people accused of switching registered Democrats to Republicans without their knowledge.
The registration fraud cases were filed last Tuesday, and at least three of the defendants were arrested on Wednesday and Thursday. The arrests were revealed last week by Orange County's Democratic leadership."
A way to restore confidence 10/30/2006 Sun Sentinel: "Widespread concern over recent reports from Princeton University on Diebold machine susceptibility to tampering, and from New York University on e-voting more generally, confirm what computer scientists have long known and contended: There is little reason for confidence in election results obtained from electronic voting machines.
Yet voters in the United States are denied the one powerful technique that might restore confidence in election results -- an independent exit poll… Unlike exit polls that we are used to seeing on election night, a transparent exit poll would not be designed to predict and analyze election results in a hurry. Instead, this poll could be designed from the ground up to check on the validity of election results.
Rigorous statistical design would separate bias in the polling from errors in the count. Such a survey could also resolve specific allegations of fraud in political jurisdictions and with voting technologies known to have a history of irregularities. The entire process -- survey design, raw data and all analysis -- would be open to public scrutiny."
U.S. Investigates Voting Machines’ Venezuela Ties 10/29/2006 NYT: "The committee’s formal inquiry into Smartmatic and its subsidiary, Sequoia Voting Systems of Oakland, Calif., was first reported Saturday in The Miami Herald.
Officials of both Smartmatic and the Venezuelan government strongly denied yesterday that President Chávez’s administration, which has been bitterly at odds with Washington, has any role in Smartmatic.
“The government of Venezuela doesn’t have anything to do with the company aside from contracting it for our electoral process,” the Venezuelan ambassador in Washington, Bernardo Alvarez, said last night.
But Smartmatic was a little-known firm with no experience in voting technology before it was chosen by the Venezuelan authorities to replace the country’s elections machinery ahead of a contentious referendum that confirmed Mr. Chávez as president in August 2004.
Seven months before that voting contract was awarded, a Venezuelan government financing agency invested more than $200,000 into a smaller technology company, owned by some of the same people as Smartmatic, that joined with Smartmatic as a minor partner in the bid."
Gallup: Only 1 in 4 Americans Very Confident Votes Will Be Counted Accurately 10/27/2006 Editor & Publisher: "Gallup reports today, less than two weeks from the midterm elections, that a new poll finds that only about one in four Americans are "very confident" that votes across the country will be accurately cast and counted and that workers at voting facilities will be capable of resolving any problems. "The public places equal trust in electronic or computerized ballots and paper ballots to correctly record its votes this year," Gallup relates.
"Republicans and Democrats differ in their overall confidence in the country's voting system, with Republicans much more likely than Democrats to express confidence in the accuracy of the vote counts, in the workers at polling facilities, and in the trustworthiness of electronic ballots.""
Vote Count Protection Project 10/27/2006 electionintegrity.org: "Here are the components of the vote count protection project. As of 9/2006, we are ready to implement exit polls and data collection in a limited geographical region. Expanding the project (both the number of components and the geographical region) depends on adequate funding.
Election Day Exit Polls. An exit poll will be designed to serve the purpose of election protection. A sufficient sample of voters at each of several precincts would be asked, as they leave the polls, to tell interviewers how they voted. Although news organizations commission exit polls, these results are not made public. An exit poll whose results are in the public domain is a crucial piece of election protection. This requires professional expertise in polling methods and statistical analysis, and extensive election day manpower for interviewing. Read the Transparent Exit Poll plan details (PDF, 104Kb).
Election Data Forensics. An electronic database of precinct-level election results, including the separate tallies for regular, provisional and absentee ballots, is fertile ground for statistical analysis both for short term use (finding anomalies) and long term use (targeting precincts for the next election). Creating such a database will be quite labor-intensive. This initiative will require training volunteers to collect data both at precincts and at central tabulation locations, as well as development of web tools to consolidate data collected by many different people. Finally, statistical experts should use the most sophisticated techniques available to analyze the data. Read the Data forensics plan details (PDF, 128Kb)."
US warned of ballot box chaos as elections near 10/27/2006 Guardian: "The rollout of the new systems has been far from smooth. In Maryland, earlier this autumn, voting was delayed for hours across an entire county because election officials forgot to bring in the electronic cards that activate the touch-screen machines.
During the 2004 elections in North Carolina, polling officials failed to notice the constant flashing of a warning light on the voting machine indicating that its memory was full. More than 4,400 votes were lost as the result of their inattention. In that same election year, a software error in Texas polling stations led to a vote overcount, with 100,000 more votes registered than had been cast.
The Electionline study predicts 10 states could face similar fiascos this time around because of computer security, inexperienced or elderly poll workers, and a network of new regulations meant to prevent illegal immigrants from voting."
A talk with Mark Crispin Miller about what voters can do to prevent another stolen election 10/26/2006 Columbus Free Press
Direct material proof of massive election fraud in Ohio in the 2004 U.S. presidential election 10/26/2006 Columbus Free Press: very detailed
GOP "Southern Strategy" Alive and Well Republicans Refuse to Take Down Racist Ads 10/26/2006 DNC: "...the RNC has once again resorted to the same despicable, racist tactics in the Tennessee senate race. "To make matters worse, once they got caught, Mehlman and the RNC further misled Americans with false claims that the RNC had no ability to have the ad taken down, knowing full well that with one word from Mehlman it could have stopped immediately. Now we learn that Mehlman and the RNC misled us again when they said the ad was off the air."
Will Ken Blackwell find the ways to steal Ohio 2006 as he did in 2004? 10/26/2006 OpEd News: "Overall, Blackwell currently trails Strickland by 20 points and more in state polls. Ohio Democrats have begun to crow that Blackwell's defeat is a done deal, just as they celebrated John Kerry's "victory" in 2004.
But Blackwell's push polls, voter elimination campaigns and ballot attacks cannot be underestimated. At very least, they could tip the balance in the state's hard-fought U.S. Senate and Congressional races, any one of which could help determine whether the Democrats re-take control of the Congress. Local pundits are already talking about a last-minute shift toward the Republicans, and bracing for thousands of alleged fundamentalist voters who will supposedly swarm the polls at the last minute.
In-depth studies of the 2004 ballots now cast serious doubt on the actual existence of such alleged voters, then or now. But unless Americans truly committed to tangible democracy are careful, J. Kenneth Blackwell just might find the ways to steal Ohio 2006, as he did in 2004."
Voter chaos predicted at US polls 10/24/2006 FT: "A combination of new voting technologies, changed rules for voters and a tight battle for control of Congress threatens to result in widespread troubles during the US midterm elections, according to a report to be released on Tuesday."
Electronic Voting Machines Could Skew Elections 10/22/2006 ABC: "Diebold, the company that makes the voting machines, told ABC News, "These discs do not alter the security of the Diebold touch-screen system in any way," because election workers can set their own passwords.
But ABC News has obtained an independent report commissioned by the state of Maryland and conducted by Science Applications International Corporation revealing that the original Diebold factory passwords are still being used on many voting machines.
The SAIC study also shows myriad other security flaws, including administrative over-ride passwords that cannot be changed by local officials but can be used by hackers or those who have seen the discs."
Baltimore lagging in preparation for election - Training, posting of poll workers is going slowly 10/22/2006 Baltimore Sun
Schwarzenegger ramps up pressure over Orange County mailing 10/22/2006 LA Times: He says GOP candidate Nguyen should quit House race if he knew of his office's threatening letter to immigrants.
Calif. Candidate's Office, Home Raided 10/21/2006 AP: "For two days, a Republican congressional candidate had promised to explain how a threatening letter was sent by his campaign without his knowledge to thousands of Hispanic immigrant voters. As about 200 people gathered Friday in front of his campaign headquarters seeking answers, Tan D. Nguyen was a no-show at his own news conference. Instead, 10 uniformed California Department of Justice police officers arrived with a search warrant and pounded on the glass of Nguyen's storefront headquarters.
Agents spent two hours sifting through cabinets, boxes and computers. They left carrying several boxes and plastic bags of evidence."
Diebold source code leaked again - Another breach on the e-voting front as elections near 10/21/2006 ComputerWorld
Problems Plague Election Administrators 10/20/2006 AP
Supreme Court upholds Arizona's photo ID law for elections 10/20/2006 Arizona Republic: "The new voter ID rules were passed, in part, to keep illegal immigrants and other non-citizens from voting. Opponents have argued that legal voters, especially the poor and the elderly, might also be disenfranchised because of the rules.
In order to cast a ballot at the polls, voters must show a photo ID with current street address or two forms of identification, such as a utility bill or car registration, with name and street address."
Officials Probing Possible Theft of Voting Software in Md. - Ex-Delegate Says FBI Contacted Her About Disks She Received 10/20/2006 Washington Post: "The FBI is investigating the possible theft of software developed by the nation's leading maker of electronic voting equipment, said a former Maryland legislator who this week received three computer disks that apparently contain key portions of programs created by Diebold Election Systems.
Cheryl C. Kagan, a former Democratic delegate who has long questioned the security of electronic voting systems, said the disks were delivered anonymously to her office in Olney on Tuesday and that the FBI contacted her yesterday. The package contained an unsigned letter critical of Maryland State Board of Elections Administrator Linda H. Lamone that said the disks were "right from SBE" and had been "accidentally picked up."
...In an unrelated development, Maryland state auditors said in a report yesterday that the State Board of Elections is not properly controlling access to a new statewide database of registered voters or verifying what changes are made to it. The report comes at a time of heightened concern over the security and effectiveness of electronic voting systems."
CHICAGO TRIBUNE FRONT PAGE: 'Voting Glitches Feared on Nov. 7' - BRAD BLOG FRONT PAGE: They're Not 'Glitches', And They're Not the Fault of the Poll Workers! Stop Blaming Them! 10/19/2006 Brad Blog
A loaves & fishes/Holy Ghost victory for the GOP in November? 10/19/2006 Columbus Free Press: "It will take just two Biblical fixes for the GOP to keep the Congress, and thus solidify their power in this country, possibly forever: a loaves and fishes vote count, a Holy Ghost turnout.
We coined the phrase "loaves and fishes vote count" to describe the tally in Gahanna, Ohio, 2004. This infamous precinct in suburban Columbus registered 4258 votes for George W. Bush where just 638 people voted. The blessed event occurred at a fundamentalist church run by a close ally of the Reverend Jerry Falwell.
These numbers were later "corrected." But they reflect a much larger reality: the 2004 election was stolen with scores of dirty tricks for whose second coming the Democrats have yet to fully prepare.
In the two years since the fraudulent defeat of John Kerry, we've unearthed an unholy arsenal by which that election was stolen. They include: outright intimidation, wrongful elimination of registered voters, theft, selective deployment of (often faulty) voting machines, absentee ballots without Kerry's name on them, absentee ballots pre-punched for Bush, absentee ballots never mailed, touch screens that lit up for Bush when Kerry was chosen, lines for black voters five hours long while white voters a mile away voted in fifteen minutes, tens of thousands of provisional ballots pitched summarily in the trash, alleged ex-felons illegally told they could not vote, Hispanic precincts with no Spanish-speaking poll workers, deliberate misinformation on official web sites…and that's not even the tip of an iceberg whose bottom we may never see."
Powerful Government Accountability Office report confirms key 2004 stolen election findings 10/19/2006 Columbus Free Press: published 10/26/05 - "The government's lead investigative agency is known for its general incorruptibility and its thorough, in-depth analyses. Its concurrence with assertions widely dismissed as "conspiracy theories" adds crucial new weight to the case that Team Bush has no legitimate business being in the White House.
Nearly a year ago, senior Judiciary Committee Democrat John Conyers (D-MI) asked the GAO to investigate electronic voting machines as they were used during the November 2, 2004 presidential election. The request came amidst widespread complaints in Ohio and elsewhere that often shocking irregularities defined their performance.
According to CNN, the U.S. House Judiciary Committee received "more than 57,000 complaints" following Bush's alleged re-election. Many such concerns were memorialized under oath in a series of sworn statements and affidavits in public hearings and investigations conducted in Ohio by the Free Press and other election protection organizations.
The non-partisan GAO report has now found that, "some of [the] concerns about electronic voting machines have been realized and have caused problems with recent elections, resulting in the loss and miscount of votes." "
OH-Sen: GOP knows it's lying, but keeps ads up on the air 10/19/2006 Daily Kos: "The Republican Party last night refused to cancel commercials that claim Sherrod Brown was a longtime tax scofflaw - even though the state of Ohio says the ad's claim is untrue.
Brown, the Democrat running against incumbent Mike DeWine, paid the tax bill years ago, soon after receiving a tax lien, according to newly released records from the Brown campaign and authenticated by the state.
But the Republican National Committee, supporting DeWine's reelection bid, is running commercials saying that Brown "didn't pay his unemployment taxes for 13 years.""
Federal Efforts to Improve Security and Reliability of Electronic Voting Systems Are Under Way, but Key Activities Need to Be Completed 10/19/2006 GAO: dated 9/05
Recipe for a Cooked Election 10/19/2006 Greg Palast: "This is the hidden presidential count, which, with the exception of the Census’s whispered footnote, has not been reported. In the voting biz, most of these lost votes are called “spoilage.” Spoilage, not the voters, picked our President for us. Unfortunately, that’s not all. In addition to the three million ballots uncounted due to technical “glitches,” millions more were lost because the voters were prevented from casting their ballots in the first place. This group of un-votes includes voters illegally denied registration or wrongly purged from the registries.
Joe Stalin, the story goes, said, “It’s not the people who vote that count; it’s the people who count the votes.” That may have been true in the old Soviet Union, but in the USA, the game is much, much subtler: He who makes sure votes don’t get counted decides our winners."
Ohio Lawsuit to Reinstate hundreds of thousands of Purged Democratic Voters to be Filed Fri or Monday 10/19/2006 OpEd News: "Ohio voting rights activist and attorney, Bob Fitrakis, says the Ohio elections may have already been won, responding to reports of massive voter purges in Democratic precincts.
Dr. Fitrakis, told OpEdNews, "Essentially, by purging these rolls, the Republicans, by shrinking the electorate, have already won in Ohio. If they can't win, which is what the polls show among registered voters, the way to win is to use their nuclear option-- to target black voters, young voters and the working poor-- by purging them so they can't vote.
Reports indicate that starting as early as shortly after the 2004 presidential elections, but particularly recently, hundreds of thousands of voters-- mostly urban apartment dwellers (likely black) and students-- who are primarily Democratic-- were sent notifications that they would be purged from the eligible voter lists if they did not respond the letter. But, reportedly, the letter was designed to be easily overlooked, perhaps treated as junk mail. Failure to send in a response caused the voter to be removed from the voting roll.
Fitrakis observes, "They aren't challenging voter eligibility in Republican areas. This is coming from the republican party. They're not targeting their own base."
Putting a halt to grassroots democracy 10/19/2006 Progresso Weekly: "“And the winner is … me” The New York Times recently wrote in its editorial pages on a political situation that may get stickier. It deals with the governor’s race in Ohio – the state which guaranteed George W. Bush’s presidential victory in 2004.
The person with the power in his hand is Kenneth Blackwell, Ohio’s secretary of state, who may end up deciding if his opponent in the governor’s race, Congressman Ted Strickland, a Democrat, is not qualified to run for office in that state. This is the same Mr. Blackwell who in 2004 emulated Katherine Harris in Florida four years earlier and as the state’s chief election officer also served as the President’s Ohio co-chair in his reelection bid. Numerous studies clearly illustrate how Ohio 2004 had many things in common with Florida 2000. But that’s in the past and we’re looking ahead.
For anyone who may have doubts, Mr. Strickland does live in Ohio. The mess started when someone discovered that the address under which he is registered to vote is that of a condominium he owns, but which some claim is not his home. He happens to be one of those lucky persons who own more than one home in the state. The law clearly states he has a right to register to vote in either one of them.
If this situation sounds surreal, believe it. A decision whether to allow Strickland to run or not has yet to be reached. Party politics and dirty politics in general may put the decision in the hands of the secretary of state. Did I mention Secretary Blackwell trails in the polls by more than 20 percentage points? "
ACTION ALERT: Blackwell purged Ohio Voter Rolls Oct 1st.- Vote Early. 10/18/2006 Daily Kos: "A friend, in a position to be present at lunches of GOP insiders here in DC called me on Thursday, they know of my ongoing efforts to make hackable voting end. My friend was present as a group of Moderate GOP members with Ohio ties lamented how far the party had strayed. There was consensus at the table there was no way they should retain control. The table conversation began with the assumption they party would lose control in this election. The moderates started planning how to take back control of the GOP from the extremists.
Then, one insider, probably an extremist, but certainly very close to Mr. Ken Mehlman abruptly stopped the conversation. He told table that it was impossible they would lose either house. He also predicts an Ohio GOP sweep. He informed the group that over the last year, in four critical states the GOP needs to hold huge purges of the voter rolls have just been finished.
The insider did not say which four states, but did say Ohio was among them. His claim was a new Diebold voter registry system had been installed over the last year. The last week of July and the first week of August a "test run" was made of the systems ability to purge ineligable voters. The purge generated names and test letters sent out to 1.2 million Ohio addresses with a focus on University's, Apartment addresses with high turnover. He claims they made the letters seem just functionary, but they have an action component to avoid being purged from the rolls."
Note Warns Calif. Hispanics on Voting 10/17/2006 AP: "The state attorney general's office is investigating a letter received by some Southern California Hispanics that says it is a crime for immigrants to vote and tells them they could be jailed or deported if they go to the polls next month.
"It's a very malicious and degrading letter. It's to pull Latinos down and make them afraid," said Benny Diaz, who is running for City Council in Garden Grove. He said his wife and five other people he knows had received the letter."
EXCLUSIVE: FIRST BUSH-APPOINTED CHAIR OF U.S. ELECTION ASSISTANCE COMMISSION SAYS 'NO STANDARDS' FOR E-VOTING DEVICES, SYSTEM 'RIPE FOR STEALING ELECTIONS'! 10/17/2006 Brad Blog
State race signals big defeat for Mexican leftist 10/17/2006 CSM: "Andrés Manuel López Obrador jolted Mexico City when he moved protesters to close down main streets in the wake of the nation's disputed July 2 presidential election. The dissent reached its peak when supporters named the defeated leftist president of a "parallel government" at a mass demonstration this fall.
But a month later, his supporters have packed up their tents, traffic is flowing, and many are wondering if his protest movement - which emerged amid allegations of massive electoral fraud - is now losing steam. This weekend, a gubernatorial race in Tabasco - which voted heavily for Mr. Obrador, a native of the southern state - ended in defeat for the Democratic Revolution Party (PRD) candidate, despite Obrador having campaigned hard for his fellow party member. The loss is being viewed as a referendum on the future of Obrador's national protest movement."
MEXICO’S PRESIDENTIAL SWINDLE 10/16/2006 New Left Review: "When balloting stopped on the evening of July 2nd at the end of Mexico’s 2006 presidential election, the eyes of the nation turned to the two main tv networks to await the result of exit polls. Most unusually, Televisa and tv Azteca both announced they would not reveal their figures. At 11pm the chairman of the Federal Electoral Institute (ife), Luis Carlos Ugalde, appeared on screens across the country to say he would be withholding the agency’s own ‘fast result’ tally. But the ife’s ‘preliminary results’ were made available on the internet and constantly updated throughout the night. According to these data, the presidential candidate of the ruling National Action Party (pan), Felipe Calderón, initially led by five points, but with each new update the tally of votes for Andrés Manuel López Obrador of the centre-left Party of the Democratic Revolution (prd) rose steadily, while Calderón’s sank in equal proportion. By 1.20am, the difference was 1.4 per cent. Had those trends continued, López Obrador would have been in the lead by 4am. But the next morning, the ife announced a razor-thin lead for Calderón, ‘with 98 per cent of precincts reporting’. Here was the electoral agency’s first obvious lie: it had withheld more than 8 per cent of precincts—3.5 million votes—from its ‘98 per cent’ tally.
Over the next few days, a pattern of fraud began to emerge. Journalists, mathematicians, internet bloggers and ordinary citizens began poring over the ‘preliminary results’ and found hundreds of cases in which pro-Calderón precincts had been counted twice. Photographs of official precinct tally sheets began to circulate on the web, revealing dozens of discrepancies with the results posted by the ife: votes had repeatedly been ‘shaved’ from López Obrador—two here, four there, in some cases even 100 or 200 votes were misplaced—while Calderón’s total had been ‘padded’. On July 4th, 10 ballot boxes, supposedly guarded by the armed forces, were found in a garbage dump in Ciudad Nezahualcóyotl, a poor area outside of Mexico City; more ballots were found in another dump in Xalapa, Veracruz. The next day, a data-entry employee at the ife’s office in Saltillo, Coahuila, resigned, saying that his boss had forced him to enter only results favourable to Calderón into the computer."
Who can observe elections? by Pamela Smith, Nationwide Coordinator, Verified Voting Foundation 10/16/2006 Verified Voting
George W. Bush's "Svengali" Karl Rove seems very sure that the GOP will not lose control of the House and Senate in the mid-terms 10/16/2006 Wayne Madsen Report: scroll down to 3rd story for October 16, 2006 - "Rove's name has come up in the Mark Foley scandal at a time the furtive presidential counselor has been busy traveling around the country, obviously attempting to tamper with the election process at the municipal, ward, and precinct levels. Rove, who allegedly knew about Foley's problem with underage male pages, pressured and possibly blackmailed the Florida congressman into running for re-election in 2006. Rove's cross-currents with the GOP "Velvet Mafia," the closeted gay network within the Republican leadership is nothing new. The editor was the first to disclose the homosexuality of Rove's adoptive father in a June 4, 2006 article."
DNC Voting Rights Institute Chair Donna Brazile Calls on Election Assistance Commission to Release Study 10/13/2006 Buzzflash: "This afternoon the Chair of the Democratic National Committee's Voting Rights Institute (VRI), Donna Brazile, testified before the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights on issues of voter fraud and voter intimidation. During her testimony Brazile called on the Election Assistance Commission (EAC) to release a report that proves there is little evidence of the polling-place fraud that is used to justify Voter ID around the country. Donna Brazile discouraged the new wave of Republican voter intimidation tactics and modern poll taxes enacted through restrictive Voter ID laws.
Brazile also discussed the findings of the VRI's Ohio report which outlined voting irregularities in Ohio during the 2004 election. She also sited numerous other reports that provide evidence of "scurrilous attempts to impede citizens' voting rights." Brazile commended the recent renewal of the Voting Rights Act and called on the Republican Congress to do more to ensure that discriminatory practices at the poll are stamped out and that civic participation is fully encouraged."
The VoTexas Bus of Mis-Information 10/13/2006 Vote Rescue: "The Secretary of State is making a propogranda tour around texas to try to explain why the electronic voting machines are "easier, faster and more secure." VoteRescue is countering this action with the truth of the failures, issues, and problems with electronic voting machines."
Voteless In Alabama 10/12/2006 Tom Paine: "Judge Robert Vance, Jr., of the Circuit Court of Jefferson County, issued a decree that the blanket disenfranchisement of felons in Alabama violated the state’s constitution. A few weeks later, at the urging of the state’s attorney general, Vance agreed to put most of his order on hold until after the November elections. The delay would, he said, give the state’s Supreme Court a chance to weigh in on the question.
Vance’s initial ruling was a brave one and ought to have been applauded by all who care about voting rights in America. Yet, even before political pressure led to his backtracking, Vance’s decision was founded almost on a technicality, rather than on a principled objection to disenfranchisement per se."
Dear Black Box Voting: What is it going to take to get the SOS in every state to say hell no to these machines? 10/11/2006 Black Box Voting
Penn professor concerned about fraud in upcoming election 10/10/2006 Capital Times, WI: "Mayer of the UW-Madison says there's a good reason the political science community has been mostly silent.
"The reason nobody has paid attention to (Freeman's) results is that he's wrong. Plain and simple," he said in an e-mail from Canberra, Australia, where he is serving as Fulbright Distinguished Chair in American Political Science at Australian National University.
"The arguments - which rely on inaccurate depictions of what the exit polls actually said, ignore widely known evidence about why they were wrong and rely on alleged instances of fraud that have been repeatedly debunked - have failed to persuade anybody in the public opinion research community because they don't meet the standards of quality social science research."
The worst example, Mayer says, is not Freeman's work, but Kennedy's piece in Rolling Stone, "which was filled with so many inaccuracies and half-truths that it was embarrassing."
Kennedy, he says, "places great weight on the fact that Bush beat Kerry in several Ohio counties that also voted for an African-American, Democratic, pro-gay marriage Supreme Court candidate. The idea being that it is cosmically unlikely that Bush would actually do well in places that would vote for a minority judge who is a Democrat and favors gay marriage. Ergo, fraud."
Except for one thing, Mayer says. "Judicial elections in Ohio are nonpartisan - candidates do not run under a party label. So any arguments about relative strengths are irrelevant (leaving aside the low visibility of most judicial elections).
"RFK never tells you this in the article, which is but one symptom of dishonesty.""
DOCUMENTED ELECTION LAW AND SECURITY VIOLATIONS IN SHELBY COUNTY, TENNESSEE 10/6/2006 Black Box Voting: "Shelby County candidates Shep Wilbun, Sondra Becton, Vernon Johnson and Otis Jackson have performed a valuable service for their community in exposing some of the most irregular and illegal electronic voting procedures in America. Shelby County ran its August 3, 2006 election in a fashion that violated all basic security procedures. The multiple breaches of security call into question the results and cast doubt on the legality of elections processing."
Democrats say 2004 election data was altered 10/5/2006 Anchorage Daily News: "Alaska Democratic Party officials say the 2004 election data they sued the state to get may have been changed this year, and they want to know why.
Party Chairman Jake Metcalfe says a review of the central tabulator file containing that year's raw election results by precinct showed activity on the database between July 12 and 13 of this year. In a letter to Alaska Division of Elections director Whitney Brewster, Metcalfe said he does not understand why the data would be changed after the party petitioned for its release."
How to Steal an Election: The Inside Story of How George Bush's Brother and FOX Network Miscalled the 2000 Election and Changed the Course of History 10/5/2006 Buzzflash: "This book, by a career pollster who lost his job at Gallup for writing it, returns to the scene of the primal crime: the theft of the presidency from the votes of the American people in 2000.
Through his professional contacts as a polling expert, David Moore pieced together how the calling of the election for George W. Bush by FOX News in 2000 was not motivated by data, but by a phone call to John Ellis -- a first cousin of George W. Bush -- from Jeb Bush, also Ellis's first cousin.
It has been known for years that Ellis -- who just "coincidentally" headed the FOX election team that called the 2000 elections -- bragged about talking with George and Jeb throughout that chaotic election night. But what has not been revealed until now is that Ellis made the decision to declare Florida for Bush on the basis of Jeb telling him that George had won."
Oaxaca on Maximum Alert - "Federales" preparing to intervene militarily 10/3/2006 Aztlan: "At issue is the corrupt Oaxacan state government led by Governor Ulises Ruiz of the PRI political party. Governor Ruiz is a lackey of foreign interests who has allowed the plunder of the state's rich natural resources by US and other foreign corporations. Among these corporations is Rio Tinto, a subsidiary of Kennecott, that has plundered for decades the uranium in the Loxicha region of southern Oaxaca. Although rich in mineral resources such as silver, gold, coal, uranium, oil and onyx, and with fertile soil, Oaxaca's corrupt state government makes it one of Mexico's poorest states.
The people of Oaxaca have stated that they want Governor Ruiz to resign and leave the state immediately. He has been hiding but last week returned prompting a shootout in the capital. Today, Governor Ruiz has recruited and organized a 2,000 strong "state police force" that is waiting just outside the city for orders to attack the insurgents camping out at the zocalo in the capital's center.
The plunder of the state's natural resources by foreign interests, with the cooperation of a local corrupt state government, has left very few alternatives for the mostly Indigenous population. Many, out of economic need, have immigrated north of the border. Among the saddest situations is the many Oaxacans who live in makeshift camps in North San Diego County, California and who work in the area's many nurseries and tomato fields. In July of 2000, a group of 8 racists viciously attacked 5 elderly workers living in a migrant worker's camp located in the brush in McGonigle Canyon. Two nights before this incident, an immigrant from Oaxaca was lynched and dragged behind a vehicle in the same area. The story is published at: http://www.aztlan.net/lynched.htm "
Our Rigged Elections: The Elephant in the Polling Booth 10/3/2006 Washington Spectator: "If we get millions out to vote, without informing them they may well "lose" anyway, the blow will devastate them, just as Kerry's abrupt concession did in 2004. It took two years to get Americans mobilized again. If Bush and his allies steal the next election, we won't have years to start resisting. The resistance must start on Day One, just as in Ukraine and Mexico; and so the people must be ready for the fight—and so they need to know enough to wage it, and to win it."
Is Your Vote Being Counted? 10/2/2006 Seattle Times: "Polls show confidence in the integrity of elections, overseen in 36 states by secretaries of state, has plummeted from pre-2000 levels. In 1996, there were just 108 cases of challenged elections around the U.S.; by 2004, the number had tripled, to 361, according to a survey by election expert Richard Hasen of the Loyola Law School in Los Angeles.
The Florida 2000 debacle and the "Bush v. Gore" court case decided by a partisanly divided Supreme Court have unleashed a wave of court suits in close elections — "election law as political strategy," Hasen suggests.
Adding to the perils: More than 80 percent of voters will be using electronic voting machines, a third of precincts for the first time, this autumn. The replacement of outdated voting machines with computer-based equipment, pushed along by federal assistance under the Help America Vote Act of 2002, is good news. But suspicions of manipulation run high and there has been little time for careful ironing out of computer bugs. In Maryland's September primary, technological glitches played a role in long lines and delayed vote counts."
20 Damning Facts About Voting In The USA 9/27/2006 Rense: "Jeff Dean was Senior Vice-President of Global Election Systems when it was bought by Diebold. Even though he had been convicted of 23 counts of felony theft in the first degree, Jeff Dean was retained as a consultant by Diebold and was largely responsible for programming the optical scanning software now used in most of the United States."
Officials Wary of Electronic Voting Machines 9/23/2006 NYT: "A growing number of state and local officials are getting cold feet about electronic voting technology, and many are making last-minute efforts to limit or reverse the rollout of new machines in the November elections.
Less than two months before voters head to the polls, Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. of Maryland this week became the most recent official to raise concerns publicly. Mr. Ehrlich, a Republican, said he lacked confidence in the state’s new $106 million electronic voting system and suggested a return to paper ballots.
Dozens of states have adopted electronic voting technology to comply with federal legislation in 2002 intended to phase out old-fashioned lever and punch-card machines after the “hanging chads” confusion of the 2000 presidential election.
But some election officials and voting experts say they fear that the new technology may have only swapped old problems for newer, more complicated ones. Their concerns became more urgent after widespread problems with the new technology were reported this year in primaries in Ohio, Arkansas, Illinois, Maryland and elsewhere."
SURVEY INDICATES HOUSE BILL COULD DENY
VOTING RIGHTS TO MILLIONS OF U.S. CITIZENS
Low-Income, African American, Elderly, and Rural Voters at Special Risk 9/22/2006 Center on Budget and Policy Priorities: "On September 20 the House passed a bill (H.R. 4844) that would, starting in 2010, effectively deny the vote to any U.S. citizen who cannot produce a passport or birth certificate (or proof of naturalization). Although the bill’s supporters present it as a measure intended to prevent non-citizens from voting, the bill’s main impact will be on U.S. citizens themselves. A national survey finds that approximately 11 million native-born citizens currently lack the required documents. A substantial number could have difficulty obtaining or affording them."
Anger and Irregularities at the Voting Booth 9/22/2006 NYT: "Interviewing Congressional leaders, journalists and regular voters, Mr. Inaba begins by addressing the Florida debacle of 2000, arguing that behind the exhaustive coverage of hanging chads and faulty voting machines lies an underreported and more complex story of black disenfranchisement. In a strong middle section, the movie examines the political troubles of Representative Cynthia McKinney, a vocal critic of the Bush administration, suggesting that her ouster in 2002 was engineered by Republican crossover voting. A particularly powerful segment shows how at least one of Ms. McKinney’s statements about the Sept. 11 attacks was edited by some commentators to appear infinitely less reasonable than the original.
By the time we reach the 2004 general election, the anger in “American Blackout” is palpable. As we listen to voters complain about roadblocks and false felony records, and watch the endless lines of black voters standing patiently in the rain in Ohio, it’s impossible to ignore the gravity of the film’s claims. Though occasionally inflammatory — one interviewee talks about being “slingshotted into slavery” — “American Blackout” isn’t a conspiracy rant. It’s a methodical compilation of questions and irregularities that deserves a wider audience."
GOP Makes Nice With Harris in Florida 9/21/2006 AP: "President Bush came to Florida on Thursday and publicly complimented Rep. Katherine Harris for the first time since she won the GOP Senate nomination over the opposition of her own party."
Maryland May Scrap Machines Used at Polls 9/21/2006 AP: "Gov. Robert Ehrlich proposed that Maryland scrap new electronic machines that check voter registrations at the polls in November, instead returning to a paper system."
New RFK Jr. article will explore if 2006 election can be hacked 9/21/2006 Raw Story
Will The Next Election Be Hacked? 9/21/2006 Rolling Stone: "Fresh disasters at the polls -- and new evidence from an industry insider -- prove that electronic voting machines can't be trusted
-- ROBERT F. KENNEDY JR."
“Hotel Minibar” Keys Open Diebold Voting Machines 9/18/2006 Freedom to Tinker: "The access panel door on a Diebold AccuVote-TS voting machine — the door that protects the memory card that stores the votes, and is the main barrier to the injection of a virus — can be opened with a standard key that is widely available on the Internet."
Texas voter fraud law under fire 9/17/2006 San Antonio Express News: "Willie Ray, 69, said she thought she was teaching her granddaughter civics lessons in democracy, but instead the two black women in Texarkana ended up with criminal records for voter fraud.
Gloria Meeks of Fort Worth, also 69, said she stepped out of her morning bath last month and screamed. Two voter fraud investigators from Attorney General Greg Abbott's office were peeking in the bathroom window, Meeks said in a sworn statement... At issue for the three North Texas women and others investigated by Abbott is a 2003 Texas law that makes it a crime to put other voters' absentee ballots in the mail or deliver them to election officials. Backers of the law say it's needed to prevent election fraud by paid political operatives who take advantage of the elderly or even steal their votes. Detractors say the law is overly broad, goes too far in criminalizing legitimate political activity and infringes on voters' rights to assistance in casting ballots."
Diebold rebuts Princeton study 9/14/2006 Chicago Tribune: ""The unit has security software that was two generations old, and to our knowledge, is not used anywhere in the country," said Dave Byrd, president of Diebold Election Systems in a written statement.
"Normal security procedures were ignored," said Byrd. "Numbered security tape, 18 enclosure screws and numbered security tags were destroyed or missing so that the researchers could get inside the unit. A virus was introduced to a machine that is never attached to a network.”
“By any standard - academic or common sense - the study is unrealistic and inaccurate,” he said."
Election glitches 'could get ugly' 9/14/2006 USA Today: "Eight weeks before elections that will decide control of Congress, a rush by state and local governments to prepare new voting machines and train poll workers is raising the possibility of trouble reminiscent of the 2000 presidential election standoff.
Problems range from delayed delivery of new equipment to an insufficient supply of trained technicians to fix anticipated problems, voting experts say.
Already this year, glitches have occurred in Arkansas, California, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas and West Virginia. Maryland became the latest on Tuesday, when technical problems, human errors and staff shortages led officials to keep some polls open an extra hour.
The fall elections shape up as the most technologically perilous since 2000, election officials say, because 30% of the nation's voting jurisdictions will be using new equipment. They include large parts of Missouri, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virginia, scenes of key Senate races. "If you're ever going to have a problem, it's going to be that first election," says Kimball Brace, president of Election Data Services."
HACKED: VIRUS IMPLANTED, SPREAD ON DIEBOLD TOUCH-SCREEN VOTING MACHINE! 9/13/2006 Brad Blog: "A vote for George Washington could easily be converted to a vote for Benedict Arnold on an electronic voting machine and neither the voter, nor the election officials administering the election would ever know what happened. It wouldn't require a "conspiracy theory" or a "conspiracy" at all. It could be done by a single person with just a few moments of access to the voting systems.
Those new findings are detailed, and illustrated on video-tape, in a new first-of-its-kind study released today by computer scientists and security experts at Princeton University's Center for Information Technology Policy."
Block the Vote: The 10 Worst Places to Cast a Ballot 9/13/2006 Mother Jones
Ohio Republican fund-raiser sentenced to prison 9/12/2006 Reuters: "A top Republican fund-raiser who is the leading figure in an Ohio political scandal was sentenced to 2 years and 3 months in prison on Tuesday for funneling money to President George W. Bush's 2004 reelection campaign."
"Smoking gun" evidence uncovered in Ohio of massive vote fraud in 2004 election. 9/7/2006 Wayne Madsen Report: scroll to the first entry for Sept. 7, 2006 - "The reason the Ohio GOP was anxious to destroy the ballots and records is that they are rife with prima facie evidence of massive vote fraud. Dr. Richard Hayes Phillips, a researcher who uncovered the evidence of vote fraud, submitted an affidavit to the U.S. federal court in Columbus outlining details of the vote fraud. Along with the affidavit, Phillips provided evidence of vote fraud, including "documentation of ballot tampering in . . . eleven counties." The most startling evidence of ballot tampering is a punch card ballot that show tape affixed over votes for Kerry/Edwards. Other "stickered ballots" were apparently destroyed during an FBI investigation. The affidavit states:
"In Clermont County, eleven weeks of negotiations with the County Prosecutor’s office were required in order to gain access to the public records, and even then we were actively discouraged from completing our tasks in an expeditious manner. On each scheduled visit we were denied access to certain records and told to return another day. In the aftermath of the recount of December 2004, sworn affidavits were signed by three witnesses stating that they observed, on some ballots, white oval stickers over the Kerry-Edwards mark, and the Bush-Cheney oval filled in. The County Prosecutor’s office confirmed this in writing, stated further that there were fewer than 100 such ballots countywide (out of 89,822 ballots cast), and claimed that there had been an FBI investigation into the matter upon the request of Congressman John Conyers, but that the FBI report could not be located."''
Court rules against voters supervising elections, attorney tells Raw 9/6/2006 Raw Story: "A judge has dismissed a challenge filed to California’s hotly contested 50th Congressional race, in which the House seated Republican Brian Bilbray just 7 days after the election -- before the race was certified and before all votes were counted. RAW STORY has followed the case in earlier reports.
According to the official count, Bilbray nosed out Democrat Francine Busby in the special election to fill a vacancy left by disgraced Republican Duke Cunningham, who was convicted of bribery and other charges.
For the controversial ruling, Judge Yuri Hofmann relied on arguments brought by attorneys representing Bilbray and San Diego’s Registrar of Voters to dismiss the case, relying on Article 1, section 5 of the Constitution to find that only the House of Representatives has jurisdiction over its members' races.
Now a Nevada court has extended House powers even further, ruling on Friday that citizens and courts have no power to object in a Republican primary election – even though neither candidate is an incumbent currently serving in Congress."
Kerry reignites 2004 battle over Ohio
He accuses GOP governor candidate of partisanship 9/1/2006 SF Chronicle
Public Outcry Forces Ohio to Delay Destruction of Presidential Ballots 8/31/2006 Democracy Now: "Allegations of fraud and disenfranchisement in the state continue to cause people to question the results which declared Bush the winner by a 130,000 vote margin. Just yesterday Senator John Kerry- who lost to Bush-sent an email to Democratic supporters. He stated that the Secretary of State of Ohio, Kenneth Blackwell, used his office to "suppress the Democratic vote."
A lawsuit will be filed in a Federal court in Ohio today that seeks to preserve those ballots so that voting problems in that election can be fully investigated and understood. The suit is being filed by the Center for Constitutional Rights and several Ohio civil rights attorneys."
Americans Concerned About Election Transparency and Security 8/23/2006 Zogby: ''A majority of Americans—61%—are aware of news reports of flaws in electronic voting machines and want members of the general public to be able to watch votes be counted following an election, a new Zogby International poll shows. The telephone survey of 1,018 likely voters was conducted Aug. 11-15, 2006. It carries a margin of error of +/- 3.1 percentage points. Asked whether Americans have the right to view and obtain information about how elections officials count votes, 92% of respondents concurred. "The 92% support for the public's right to view vote counting and obtain information about it is a very strong political value of transparency and against secret vote counting outside the observation of the public," said Paul Lehto, a lawyer and sponsor of the survey. "To put this figure in context, support for election transparency exceeds the support for tax cuts, exceeds the approval of Pres. Bush immediately after 9-11, and virtually all other political values being measured." Mr. Lehto is counsel in the 50th Congressional District election contest in California.''
Tape revives Mexican conspiracy theory 8/20/2006 Houston Chronicle: Though imprisoned on various charges, Ahumada has been something of a hovering presence throughout this year's bitter election season. Many people suspected — and not a few feared — that new incriminating videos would appear in time to influence against Lopez Obrador. Indeed, Ahumada announced new videos implicating other Lopez Obrador allies would be released in early June. Those plans changed a few days later when gunmen allegedly shot up the car in which his wife and children were riding in a posh Mexico City neighborhood. Police investigators said the shooting, in which no one was injured, appeared to be staged. No charges were filed, and the investigation was dropped. No further bribery videos appeared. And Ahumada faded from public interest.
Pull The Plug 8/19/2006 Forbes: You don't like hanging chads? Get ready for cheating chips and doctored drives.
Ballot backstop 8/19/2006 Houston Chronicle: "Texas should join the states mandating a paper trail to verify the accuracy of electronic voting machines"
Top vote counter becomes prize job 8/17/2006 USA Today: The political battle for control of the federal government has opened up a new front: the obscure but vital state offices that determine who votes and how those votes are counted. The state post of secretary of State was a backwater until 2000, when Florida's Katherine Harris became a central figure in the presidential recount controversy. groups and White House prospects, unhappy about Harris' decisions and those of Republican Kenneth Blackwell in Ohio two years ago, are pouring resources into contests for the job. At least three Democratic political action committees are spotlighting secretary of State candidates, most of them in states where they expect the presidential vote to be close. Colorado, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada and Ohio top their lists. Secretaries of State control most voting regulations and influence state purchases of voting machines. Looking ahead to 2008, Democrats say they want people they trust in those offices.
Ohio steams towards the Iceberg 8/16/2006 AP: "Problems with elections in Ohio's most populous county are so severe that it's unlikely they can be completely fixed by November, or even by the 2008 presidential election, a report commissioned by Cuyahoga County and released Tuesday says."
CNN's Lou Dobbs: An Electronic Voting Machine Debacle In Ohio's 2006 Primary Election 8/16/2006 Brad Blog: Tonight Lou revisits the world of electronic voting in Ohio, where the evidence points to voting machine problems, but the vendors, especially Diebold, and the state want everyone to believe that the poll and election workers are just too dumb to do the work and all of the problems are their fault.
REVIEW OF DIEBOLD DEVICES
Voting machines risky, study concludes 8/16/2006 Columbus Dispatch: "A new study raises serious questions about whether Diebold touch-screen voting devices used in more than half of Ohio’s counties produce accurate results, but Diebold insists the machines can be trusted and that the study is flawed.
A three-month review of Diebold electronic voting machines used in Cuyahoga County during the May primary concluded that the votes recorded electronically and on paper receipts did not always match."
Salon's shameful six 8/15/2006 Salon: Opinion polls show that a majority of the public wants a Democratic Congress, but whether potential voters -- black and Latino voters in particular -- will be able to make their voices heard on Election Day is not assured. Across the country, they will have to contend with Republican-sponsored schemes to limit voting. In a series of laws passed since the 2004 elections, Republican legislators and officials have come up with measures to suppress the turnout of traditional Democratic voting blocs. This fall the favored GOP techniques are new photo I.D. laws, the criminalizing of voter registration drives, and database purges that have disqualified up to 40 percent of newly registered voters from voting in such jurisdictions as Los Angeles County. States that are hostile to voting rights have -- intentionally or unintentionally -- created laws or regulations that prevent people from registering, staying on the rolls, or casting a ballot that counts," observes Michael Slater, the election administration specialist for Project Vote, a leading voter registration and voting rights group. And with roughly a quarter of the country's election districts having adopted new voting equipment in the past two years alone, there's a growing prospect that ill-informed election officials, balky machines and restrictive new voting rules could produce a "perfect storm" of fiascos in states such as Ohio, Florida, Arizona and others that have a legacy of voting rights restrictions or chaotic elections… Arizona, Indiana, Ohio, California, Florida, Missouri ...The Democratic National Committee and nonpartisan voting rights organizations, including Common Cause, have launched an assortment of initiatives to increase voter participation and challenge onerous laws in court. When the Democratic National Committee announced its expanded voter protection program last week, chairman Howard Dean said, "For Republicans, nothing is more important than their partisan interests, not even the American people's most cherished right to vote and have that vote counted." True enough, perhaps, but outside of filing lawsuits and telling some voters about their rights, it's not at all clear whether progressives are going to offer enough practical help so that the victims of legalized Republican vote-robbing, people like Eva Steele stuck in her room in Mesa, Ariz., can actually have their votes count."
Mexico’s Partial Vote Recount Confirms Massive and Systematic Election Fraud 8/14/2006 NarcoNews: With Less than 9 Percent of Precincts Recounted, More than 126,000 Votes Are Found to Have Been Disappeared or Illegally Fabricated… In other words, if the Supreme Electoral Court determines that only half of the problematic precincts are to be annulled, López Obrador would still be declared the presidential victor. To continue to impose Calderón, at this point, would require the court’s endorsement of results from at least 4,000 precincts that the recount has demonstrated were scenes of the electoral crimes of ballot-stuffing and ballot-theft. By failing to annul those precincts, the court would, in effect, annul the legitimacy of the Mexican State, lighting the fuse on a social conflict much larger than anything that has yet occurred in the wake of the fraudulent election.
Mexico leftists extend vote protests beyond capital 8/12/2006 Reuters: Hundreds of leftists, claiming fraud in Mexico's presidential election, spread their protests out from the capital on Saturday by occupying major highways to stop the government from collecting toll fees… It was an escalation of protests that have so far centered on Mexico City, and organizers vowed even more in coming days. We have to toughen up the campaign. It is going to be spread across the country because this is a national problem," said Gerardo Fernandez, a spokesman for the left-wing Party of the Democratic Revolution. Activists swung open toll barriers for a couple of hours on several main highways serving Mexico's three biggest cities -- Mexico City, Guadalajara and Monterrey. Also hit were highways to the Pacific coast beach resort of Acapulco and Nuevo Laredo on the U.S. border."
Dems Allege Broad Conspiracy among New Hampshire GOP 8/10/2006 TPM Café: As part of their ongoing law suit against the New Hampshire Republicans regarding the jamming of Democratic phone banks on Election Day, 2002, the Democrats alleged a deliberate cover up" by the GOP in a filing earlier this week. Notes from FBI interviews indicate that that a number of senior officials with the New Hampshire Republican State Committee [NHRSC] knew of the jamming and consciously covered it up, they say. The FBI's 2003 interview with NHRSC Executive Director Chuck McGee is especially revealing in this regard [we've posted it here]. McGee, who has said he originally hatched the plan to jam Democrat's phones, told the FBI that he'd discussed the jamming before Election Day with the NHRSC's Chair, the Vice Chair, Finance Director, and four other senior level Republican staffers in the state. McGee pled guilty for his role in the jamming and has already served his time."
Scratch-and-Vote System Could Help Eliminate Election Fraud 8/9/2006 Tech Review
Report From GA Dem Primary: McKinney's Name Is Not On All The Ballots — But Her Opponent's Name Is!!" 8/8/2006 Brad Blog: [details numerous irregularities] "We've reported on McKinney's troubles in the first round of the primary (here and here) and we have also mentioned the smear campaign being waged against her — and against opponents of electronic voting in general — by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, a so-called "newspaper" which is part of the so-called "Cox media empire". Judging from their coverage of the first round of the primary, we should not expect the AJC to pay any attention to the claims of irregularities in this election, regardless of how well documented they might be."
McKinney campaign claims name left off ballots 8/8/2006 Raw Story
McKinney campaign claims name left off ballots 8/8/2006 Raw Story
The Smoking Volcano 8/8/2006 The Nation: The TRIFE's decision to open some ballot boxes is a stinging blow to the IFE's integrity. Under fire since July 2, the Federal Electoral Institute, backed by a leading business federation, has been airing prime-time spots in which actors impersonating citizens object indignantly to the suggestion that the presidential election was anything but pristine
Voters in the Georgia Fourth Congressional District Democratic primary 8/8/2006 Wayne Madsen Report: scroll down to 5th entry for Aug. 8, 2006 - "Voters in the Georgia Fourth Congressional District Democratic primary runoff between Rep. Cynthia McKinney and Hank Johnson, the Karl Rove candidate, will be voting with computer voting machines with no paper backup. The fix is obviously in. Early reports from the Georgia Fourth: "Less than one hour into the voting day, multiple problems with the electronic voting machines have arisen. McKinney precinct watchers are reporting machines down already, unsecure machines, and at least one 4th Congressional District precinct without McKinney's name on the ballot, but with her opponent's name on it. Midway Elementary School, at 7:20 am, one voter came into vote and went through the check-in procedure, she put the card in the machine and went to the poll manager; the poll manager did not address the issue. The voter left in disgust. The McKinney campaign has the voter's name. And an eyewitness report, too. At Hooper Alexander, one machine not operational. Another location had to redo the zero report because the machine did not initiate at a zero count. And at yet another location, the voting machine where the voting card is inserted is not secure.""
“WE DON’T NEED NO STINKIN’ RECOUNT” 8/7/2006 Greg Palast: In the six years since I first began investigating the burglary ring we call “elections” in America, a new Voting Reform industry has grown up. That’s good. What’s worrisome is that most of the effort is focused on preventing the installation of computer voting machines. Paper ballots, we’re told, will save our democracy.
How to Hack a Diebold Voting Machine 8/1/2006 Huffington Post: ''It is highly amusing how Americans have allowed the electoral process to be turned into farse. That you haven't gone to the streets, irate with rage, when you heard the phrase "no verifiable paper trail" the first time, is your effing problem. The same company that claims it's hard to supply paper trails for the U.S. market, is selling the same machines abroad, paper-trail enabled. No wonder Rove is so smug.''
Blowing the Whistle on Diebold 7/17/2006 In These Times: "On July 13, the Pensacola, Fla.-based law firm of Robert F. Kennedy Jr. filed a “qui tam” lawsuit in U.S. District Court, alleging that Diebold and other electronic voting machine (EVM) companies fraudulently represented to state election boards and the federal government that their products were “unhackable.”
Kennedy claims to have witnesses “centrally located, deep within the corporations,” who will confirm that company officials withheld their knowledge of problems with accuracy, reliability and security of EVMs in order to procure government contracts. Since going into service, many of these machines have been linked to allegations of election fraud."
The Coming Ballot Meltdown 7/17/2006 The Nation: "Anyone wondering where America's next electoral meltdown will take place--and it can only be a matter of time--might do well to turn back to the scene of the last one. Ohio was, of course, ground zero of the 2004 presidential election, and now it's the battleground of one of the most hotly contested governor's races in the country. The Republican candidate this November is none other than Kenneth Blackwell, Ohio's Secretary of State, a man vilified by voting rights activists for a string of baffling and, to all appearances, nakedly partisan rulings in the 2004 presidential race, when he also doubled as co-chair of George Bush's state re-election campaign. Now he's at it again--issuing draconian guidelines on voter registration that carry the threat of felony prosecutions against grassroots get-out-the-vote groups, especially in Democratic-leaning urban areas, for even the slightest procedural irregularity. Despite denials from Blackwell's office of any malicious political intent, the guidelines have had an immediate chilling effect on groups like the activist community organization ACORN, which has suspended registration efforts pending urgent consultations with its lawyers. Several leading Democrats have urged Blackwell to step aside from all election-supervising responsibilities, a proposal his staff has greeted with near-derision."
Ohio's Odd Numbers 7/15/2006 Vanity Fair: By CHRISTOPHER HITCHENS, published 2/14/05
FIRST RFK JR. VOTING MACHINE WHISTLEBLOWER LAWSUIT NOW FILED IN FEDERAL COURT! NEW DETAILS! 7/13/2006 Brad Blog
Hand Counted Paper Ballots in 2008 6/18/2006 Tikkun
African-American Voters Scrubbed by Secret GOP Hit List 6/15/2006 OpEd News: "The Republican National Committee has a special offer for African-American soldiers: Go to Baghdad, lose your vote.
A confidential campaign directed by GOP party chiefs in October 2004 sought to challenge the ballots of tens of thousands of voters in the last presidential election, virtually all of them cast by residents of Black-majority precincts.
Files from the secret vote-blocking campaign were obtained by BBC Television Newsnight, London. They were attached to emails accidentally sent by Republican operatives to a non-party website."
Evidence of Fraud and Disenfranchisement in Ohio, 2004 : A Partial List 6/13/2006 Ohio Election 2004
How They Stole Ohio - The GOP 4-step Recipe to 'Blackwell' the USA in 2008 - Abracadabra: Three Million Votes Vanish 6/2/2006 Buzzflash
Was the 2004 Election Stolen? 6/1/2006 Rolling Stone: by ROBERT F. KENNEDY JR. - "The complete article, with Web-only citations, follows. Talk and read about it in our National Affairs blog, or see exclusive documents, sources, charts and commentary."
Poll: 2004 Election Was Stolen; according to viewers of all news networks except Fox News 5/11/2006 OpEd News
Votergate: More details emerge 5/10/2006 On Line Journal: published 12/1/04, remains topical - "Five Star Trust, the entity that, according to well-placed business and U.S. intelligence sources, is tied to the financing of a scheme to pay individuals posing as U.S. law enforcement and electronic voting machine technicians to rig the vote in favor of George W. Bush in at least four key states–Florida, Texas, Ohio, and California -- represents a Byzantine network of offshore shell corporations and individuals tied to various Bush and Saudi-connected business enterprises."
Texas to Florida: White House-linked clandestine operation paid for “vote switching” software 5/10/2006 Wayne Madsen Report: published 12/6/04, remains topical
The Ohio Election Backwash 5/9/2006 Black Box Voting: "The greatest number of machine, poll worker and technical problems were reported in Cuyahoga, the state's most populous county. Cleveland area citizens are outraged and won't tolerate any more free passes. Many believe the responsibility lies directly with Diebold Election Systems and Cuyahoga Elections Director Michael Vu. Responsibility is also being attributed to Ohio Secretary of State J. Kenneth Blackwell."
Ohio’s largest county finishes tabulating primary votes 5/9/2006 Fort Wayne Journal Gazette: "The state’s largest county finished tabulating votes Sunday night, five days after its first election without punch-card ballots was plagued by widespread voting problems, officials said… Touch-screen and optical-scan equipment was used statewide for the first time in Tuesday’s primary, when only 13 percent of voters went to the polls. Millions more voters are expected to cast ballots electronically in November.
Election officials blamed voting-machine manufacturer Diebold Inc. for not conducting tests on the optical-scan devices. Diebold said the issue appeared to be the fault of the county, which used a new company to print ballots that could not be read electronically."
Diebold Developments, here, there, everywhere: Utah, Pennsylvania, CA 5/7/2006 OpEd News
DIEBOLD DISASTER: Company Gets 'F' From Election Board Chairman as Machines Fail All Over Cuyahoga County, OH on Primary Day 5/3/2006 Brad Blog
Electronic voting switch threatens mass confusion 5/1/2006 Financial Times: "With about 8,000 separate election authorities managing approximately 175,000 polling places and perhaps as many as 150,000 different ballot forms that include choices for everyone from senator to dogcatcher, American elections are complex even when all goes well. But this cycle sees many states and smaller jurisdictions making last-minute efforts to switch to electronic voting, and early signs of trouble are appearing."