Remember Vote Fraud: A Review - Part 1
Remember Vote Fraud: A Review - Part 1
Election Time, Don’t Let Your Guard Down
May 29, 2006
By Mark S. Tucker
First published - http://www.opednews.com
On January 15, 2006, in OpEdNews, which has not been loathe to cover the issue, I wrote “Vote Fraud: Our #1 Concern - Exposing Lies Kills ‘The Fruit of the Poison Tree’ “, which can be read here (LINK).
As June 6 draws near, however, the absolute silence in mainstream media on this issue should be causing extreme anxiety in most everyone. Not only is it the most important subject in our country, bar none (because nothing can proceed properly without a clean vote...nothing), but the indications of past prolificities of the debacle and the drop-dead likelihood of it occurring once again, when the conservative boat is in so precarious a position, is nearly 100%. The matter left to address, then, is: how widespread will it be?
This we cannot know until after all is said and done. Though I’m hoping for some scandalous exposés of fell activities caught amidships the very day of the elections, brought forth by zealous election watchers, with Republicans hip to the fact their scam is known, how much more sophisticated can we imagine the new wave of attack will be?
Here in my district, Congressional candidate Marcy Winograd is leaving nothing to chance. She’s organizing observation teams to monitor polling places throughout the day, from the moment they open until the second they close. Her plan is well thought out, disciplined, all inclusive, and with good reason: her opponent is Jane Harman, a self-confessed “Republican Democrat” and a woman fighting for her political life in every possible way (Nancy Pelosi recently came out squarely against Harman). Many of us here in the 36th have no doubt that there may very easily be an attempt to pull more of the Vote Fraud of the past and we’re preparing for it, with Winograd as the focus point. After all, Harman has been a key Intel affiliate and the Intel community has been extraordinarily cowardly about the VOTE FRAUD issue, consummately so, remaining stolidly silent, refusing to comment or investigate something they have cardinal knowledge about and which should shock them to the depths of their carnivorous souls.
John Perkins’ unbelievable exposé, Confessions of an Economic Hit Man, directly and by implication leaves no doubt that Vote Fraud would be a hit man activity, a crucial one. We’re presently under attack through it. The evidence is abundant once one stops being programmed by Rupert Murdoch & Co. (Hillary’s new bestest bud). What all that really means, I’ll leave for another time, that it’s even present should be more than alarming. That it needs to be expunged is paramount.
There’s still time to look after your own district and I cannot recommend highly enough that you do. Just follow the Winograd Method: 1) any campaign can send reps to monitor and check against its roles who has and has not voted, 2) it can check voter rolls and call those who haven't voted, and 3) it can also just poll watch. This last may be the most important.
Toward addressing this, what can be done pre-emptively is to remind everyone of many of the details uncovered to this point in Vote Fraud. Herewith, then, a decent, but perhaps occasionally somewhat duplicative, selection of overviews (credited where I could):
In “Kerry Won”, by Greg Palast (Nov. 4, 2004 - TomPaine.com), we read that:
* Kerry won...Tuesday, in Ohio and New Mexico, it was John Kerry...CNN's exit poll showed Kerry beating Bush among Ohio women by 53 percent to 47 percent. Kerry also defeated Bush among Ohio's male voters 51 percent to 49 percent. Unless a third gender voted in Ohio, Kerry took the state...Although the exit polls show that most voters in Ohio punched cards for Kerry-Edwards, thousands of these votes were simply not recorded.
* ...in Florida in 2000. Exit polls showed Gore with a plurality of at least 50,000, but it didn't match the official count. That's because the official, Secretary of State Katherine Harris, excluded 179,855 spoiled votes...Expert statisticians investigating spoilage for the government calculated that 54 percent of the ballots thrown in the dumpster were cast by black folks.
* In Ohio, Wisconsin, and Florida, the GOP laid plans for poll workers to ambush citizens under arcane laws-almost never used, allowing party-designated poll watchers to finger individual voters and demand they be denied a ballot. The Ohio courts were horrified...But our Supreme Court was prepared to let Republicans stand in the voting booth door.
* New Mexico. Hispanic voters in the Enchanted State, who voted more than two to one for Kerry, are five times as likely to have their vote spoil as a white voter. Counting these uncounted votes would easily overtake the Bush 'plurality.'
Peter Schurman in “Subject: Investigate the Vote” (MoveOn.org - Nov. 11, 2004) wrote:
* Six prominent members of Congress have requested an investigation into the integrity of the vote.
* In Broward County, Florida, electronic voting machines counted backwards: as more people voted, the official vote count went down.
* In one Columbus, Ohio, suburb, election officials have acknowledged that electronic voting machines credited Bush with winning 4,258 votes, even though only 638 people voted there.
* There were also lots of reports of people being denied ballots on Election Day.
Palast then penned “Kerry Won Ohio - Just Count the Ballots at the Back of the Bus” (In These Times - Nov. 12, 2004):
* In a typical presidential election, two million ballots are simply chucked in the garbage, marked "spoiled" and not counted...In a careful county-by-county, precinct-by-precinct analysis of the Florida 2000 race, the US Civil Rights Commission discovered that 54% of the votes in the spoilage bin were cast by African-Americans...The other million in the no-count pit come mainly from Hispanic, Native-American and poor white precincts, a decidedly Democratic demographic.
* In Florida in 2000, federal investigators determined that Black voters' ballots spoiled 900% more often than white voters, mainly due to punch card error. Ohio Republicans found those racial odds quite attractive. The state was the only one of fifty to refuse to eliminate or fix these vote-eating machines, even in the face of a lawsuit by the ACLU.
* The [ACLU]'s expert testimony concluded that Ohio's cussed insistence on forcing 73% of its electorate to use punch card machines had an "overwhelming" racial bias, voiding votes mostly in Black precincts.
* For the first time in memory, the Secretary of State has banned counting ballots cast in the "wrong" precinct, though all neighborhoods share the same President. Over 155,000 Ohio voters were shunted to these second-class ballots. The election-shifting bulge in provisional ballots (more than 3% of the electorate) was the direct result of the national Republican strategy that targeted African-American precincts for mass challenges on election day.
* We found that every single address of the thousands on these Republican hit lists was located in Black-majority precincts.
* ...Kerry became the first presidential candidate in history to break a campaign promise after losing an election. The Senator waited less than 24 hours to abandon more than a quarter million Ohio voters still waiting for their provisional and chad-spoiled ballots to be counted...Given the odds and the cost to his political career, Kerry bent, not to the will of the people, but to the will to power of the Ohio Republican machine.
Steven Rosenfeld’s “The Perfect Election Day Crime” (Nov. 12, 2004) noted:
* ...the big unanswered question of Nov. 2, 2004, is which tactic, technical breakdown, or error lost the most votes.
* Across Ohio’s minority-rich cities, there were fewer voting machines than during past elections, including March’s presidential primary. The lack of voting machines was a disaster...The shortage of voting machines didn’t just create long lines. It kept thousands of new and longtime voters from casting ballots in the state’s minority communities - the Democratic strongholds.
* "It’s interesting to note that the inner-city precincts where we spent most of our time working, turnout was about 50 percent higher than it was in 2000," Clark said. "Yet the Franklin County Board of Elections moved voting machines from the inner city precincts out to the suburbs...."
I have no clue as to this one’s origin, but it’s necessary to know:
* For meticulous calculations and a clear, scholarly analysis of the election exit poll anomalies, please read this treatise by Professor Steven Freeman, Ph.D., a statistician at the University of Pennsylvania, which conclusively proves that there is only 1 chance in 250 MILLION that the 3 main exit polls (OH, FL, PA) could all be wrong. In essence, it is virtually impossible. The inescapable conclusion is that fraud was the cause and the election was stolen: http://truthout.org/unexplainedexitpoll.pdf
* Another compelling analysis of exit polls was conducted by Colin Shea, who looks at a variety of factors. He focuses on an analysis of Florida by Kathy Dopp, which revealed one over-riding factor: whether the county used electronic touch-screen voting, or paper ballots which were optically scanned into a computer. ALL of those with touch-screen voting had results relatively in line with expected results, while ALL of those with extreme variance were in counties with optical scanning and ALL that had unexpected results favored Bush: http://ustogether.org/
* More important proof from Bev Harris on HOW the Diebold system was hacked is at: http://www.blackboxvoting.org
Even the normally wimpy Center for American Progress (11/10/04) said:
* EXTRA VOTES: Ever since election night, the evidence has mounted that computer glitches in electronic voting machines caused substantial errors. In a suburban Columbus precinct in Ohio, “An electronic voting machine added 3,893 votes to President Bush's tally…even though there are just 800 voters there.”
* MSNBC's Keith Olbermann reported that “in Cuyahoga County, that is greater Cleveland, the official records of 29 different voting precincts show more votes than registered voters to a total of 93,000 extra votes in that county alone.”
* Similar glitches were discovered in e-voting machines across the country. In Broward County, FL, “software subtracted votes rather than added them.” There were as many as 10,000 extra e-votes cast in Nebraska and 19,000 mysterious “extra ballots” were added on electronic machines elsewhere in Florida.
* In North Carolina's Carteret County, “more than 4,000 early votes were lost because the electronic voting system could not store the volume of votes it received.”
Allen L Roland’s “How The Election Was Stolen” showed this chilling stat chart:
* You may have seen the associated press story about the precinct in Cuyahoga county, Ohio that had less than 1,000 voters, and gave Bush almost 4,000 extra votes. But that turns out to be only the tip of a very ugly iceberg...In last Tuesday's election, 29 precincts in Cuyahoga County, Ohio, reported votes cast IN EXCESS of the number of registered voters - at least 93,136 extra votes total. And the numbers are right there on the official Cuyahoga County Board of Elections website:
Village............................13,710 registered voters
/ 18,663 ballots cast
Beachwood..........................9,943 registered voters / 13,939 ballots cast
Bedford.................................9,942 registered voters / 14,465 ballots cast
Bedford Heights..................8,142 registered voters / 13,512 ballots cast
Brooklyn................................8,016 registered voters / 12,303 ballots cast
Brooklyn Heights.................1,144 registered voters / 1,869 ballots cast
Chagrin Falls Village..........3,557 registered voters / 4,860 ballots cast
Cuyahoga Heights..............570 registered voters / 1,382 ballots cast
Fairview Park .......................13,342 registered voters / 18,472 ballots cast
Highland Hills Village.........760 registered voters / 8,822 ballots cast
Independence......................5,735 registered voters / 6,226 ballots cast
Mayfield Village.....................2,764 registered voters / 3,145 ballots cast
Middleburg Heights.............12,173 registered voters / 14,854 ballots cast
Moreland Hills Village.........2,990 registered voters / 4,616 ballots cast
North Olmstead....................25,794 registered voters / 25,887 ballots cast
Olmstead Falls.....................6,538 registered voters / 7,328 ballots cast
Pepper Pike...........................5,131 registered voters / 6,479 ballots cast
Rocky River............................16,600 registered voters / 20,070 ballots cast
Solon (WD6)..........................2,292 registered voters / 4,300 ballots cast
South Euclid.......................... 16,902 registered voters / 16,917 ballots cast
Strongsville (WD3)................7,806 registered voters / 12,108 ballots cast
University Heights.................10,072 registered voters / 11,982 ballots cast
Valley View Village.................1,787 registered voters / 3,409 ballots cast
Warrensville Heights.............10,562 registered voters / 15,039 ballots cast
Woodmere Village.................558 registered voters / 8,854 ballots cast
Bedford (CSD)........................22,777 registered voters / 27,856 ballots cast
Independence (LSD).............5,735 registered voters / 6,226 ballots cast
Orange (CSD).........................11,640 registered voters / 22,931 ballots cast
Warrensville (CSD)................12,218 registered voters / 15,822 ballots cast
Alan Waldman’s 11/18/04 “Was it hacked?”, from the Orlando Weekly, showed:
* Consider that The Wall Street Journal recently revealed that "Verified Voting, a group formed by a Stanford University professor to assess electronic voting, has collected 31,000 reports of election fraud and other problems."
* Unlike Europe, where citizens count the ballots, in the United States employees of a highly secretive Republican-leaning company, ES&S, managed every aspect of the 2004 election. That included everything from registering voters, printing ballots and programming voting machines to tabulating votes (often with armed guards keeping the media and members of the public who wished to witness the count at bay) and reporting the results, for 60 million voters in 47 states, according to Christopher Bollyn, writing in American Free Press. Most other votes were counted by three other firms that are snugly in bed with the GOP.
* In Georgia, in November 2002, Democratic Gov. Roy Barnes led by 11 percent and Democratic Sen. Max Cleland was in front by 5 percent just before the election, the first ever conducted entirely on touch-screen electronic machines, and counted entirely by company employees, rather than public officials, but mysterious election-day swings of 16 percent and 12 percent defeated both of these popular incumbents.
* In Minnesota, Democrat Walter Mondale (replacing beloved Sen. Paul Wellstone, who died in a plane crash), lost in an amazing last-moment 11 percent vote swing recorded on electronic machines.
* Then, in 2003, what's known as "black box voting" helped Arnold Schwarzenegger - who had deeply offended female, Latino, and Jewish voters - defeat a popular Latino Democrat who substantially led in polls a week before the election.
* Florida Democratic congressional candidate Jeff Fisher charged that he has and will show the FBI evidence that Florida results were hacked; he also claims to have knowledge of who hacked it -- in 2004 and in the 2002 Democratic primary...
* On a CNBC cable TV program, Black Box Voting exec Harris showed guest host Howard Dean how to alter vote totals within 90 seconds, by entering a two-digit code in a hidden program on Diebold's election software. Harris declared, "This is not a 'bug' or accidental oversight; it is there on purpose."
* A quartet of companies control the U.S. vote count. Diebold, ES&S, Sequoia, and SAIC are all hard-wired into the Bush campaign and power structure. Diebold chief Walden O'Dell is a top Bush fund-raiser. According to "online anarchist community" Infoshop.org, "At Diebold, the election division is run by Bob Urosevich. Bob's brother, Todd, is a top executive at 'rival' ES&S. The brothers were originally staked by Howard Ahmanson, a member of the Council For National Policy, a right-wing steering group stacked with Bush true believers. Ahmanson is also one of the bagmen behind the extremist Christian Reconstruction Movement, which advocates the theocratic takeover of American democracy." Sequoia is owned by a partner member of the Carlyle Group, which is believed to have dictated foreign policy in both Bush administrations and has employed former President Bush for quite a while.
* Kathy Dopp's eye-opening examination of Florida's county-by-county record of votes cast and people registered by party affiliation (http://ustogether.org/florida_election.htm) suggests systematic and widespread election fraud in 47 of the state's 67 counties.
* Colin Shea of Zogby International analyzed and double-checked Dopp's figures and confirmed that optical-scan counties gave Bush 16 percent more votes than he should have gotten.
* In 47 Florida counties, the number of presidential votes exceeded the number of registered voters. Palm Beach County recorded 90,774 more votes than voters and Miami-Dade had 51,979 more, while relatively honest Orange County had only 1,648 more votes than voters. Overall, Florida reported 237,522 more presidential votes (7.59 million) than citizens who turned out to cast ballots (7.35 million).
Someone noted that:
* Columnist and editor of the Chicago Tribune Media Service, Robert Koehler's article on election fraud was rejected, for first time in his career.
In Mother Jones, Andrew Gumbel Interviewed By Julian Brookes in “Steal This Vote” (10/18/05):
* Gumbel, an award-winning U.S. correspondent for the London Independent, was one of the first journalists to sound the alarm about electronic voting machines. He recently spoke with Mother Jones by phone from his home in southern California.
* Well, the first thing was the impeachment of Bill Clinton, which didn't strike me as being grassroots democracy at its finest. And then there was the 2000 election, and the very weird, utterly baffling 36-day battle in Florida...
* The short answer is that it has fundamentally to do with the two-party system and the way it has developed. Both the Republicans and the Democrats over the past century have shown more interest in preserving than reforming a system that does not involve all of the voters. The US has had a low turnout rate for the past 100 years, and the parties are much more interested in controlling the voters they know than in expanding the electorate or having other parties crashing in on their duopoly.
* You don't have to go very far back in time to see a period where it's the Democrats who were the greater perpetrators. I reject the idea that the Republicans are the bad guys and the Democrats the good guys. It tends to be much more structural than that, more a question of how high the stakes are and who has the opportunity.
* Well, there isn't really an open market in voting machines. They tend to be sold very much on a local basis. There is no oversight of the technical standards, nor is there oversight of the prices that are being charged for these machines....The problem with the certification process is that it is done on a very informal basis. Essentially, it's carried out by private, independent testing labs, which aren't as independent as the name suggests, because they compete for the vendors' business and are paid directly by them. There is no congressional oversight of them. There is a sort of volunteer body called the Election Center, a private foundation based in Texas that agrees on behalf of state election directors to keep an eye on whoever is doing the certification, but it also receives money from voting machine companies. So the whole situation is rife with lack of accountability and conflict of interest.
* My argument about Ohio in the end is that, for all the problems, this was not an exceptional instance of how elections are conducted in the United States; rather, it's a very well documented instance of how they almost always are conducted...What you've got to focus on is that the system has allowed this to go on for a very long time.
* From a strictly technical point of view, there's no mystery about what needs to be done. Many, many experts who have looked at the question, and they've all come to broadly the same conclusions. If you look globally, the system of casting and counting votes that works best is, strangely enough, hand-marked paper ballots counted by hand.
NEXT: Part 2. If you’re not already paranoid...we’ll see if we can’t remedy that.
Mark S. Tucker, a critic, has written for numerous national indie and newsrack magazines and websites over the past 20 years: Sound Choice, i/e, Progression, Expose, On Reflection, Camera Obscura, OPtion, Perfect Sound Forever, and others, as well as for this forum. He was co-founding editor for E/I and can be reached at progdawg @ hotmail.com. This article is originally published at opednews.com. Copyright Mark S. Tucker, but permission is granted for reprint in print, email, blog, or web media so long as this credit is attached.