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Latest Featured Reports | Monday, May 25, 2015
Gov. Don Siegelman's Son on Father's Case; 'Bin Laden's Bookshelf': 'BradCast' 5/22/15
GUEST: Joseph Siegelman; Plus: Was al-Qaeda hoping to hack a US election?...
'Bin Laden's Bookshelf' Contained Classic Book on Hacking Computer Elections
Reading material said to have been on the al-Qaeda leader's shelf when he was killed may not be a surprise to BRAD BLOG readers...
GOP State Sen. on Nebraska's 'Veto Proof' Death Penalty Ban: 'BradCast' 5/21/15
Guest: State Sen. Al Davis (R); Plus: Siegelman appeal denied; Jeb still rewriting Iraq history; Goodbye, Dave; MORE...
'Green News Report' 5/21/15
  w/ Brad & Desi
Major oil spill off CA coast; New settlement in 2010 BP Gulf Oil Spill; Fossil fuels subsidized $5 TRILLION/year; PLUS: Obama to Coast Guard cadets: climate threatens NatSec...
Previous GNRs: 5/19/15 - 5/14/15 - Archives...
BREAKING: Appeals Court Denies Siegelman Retrial
AL's former Dem Governor's request denied. He remains in federal prison as Repubs who orchestrated 'political prosecution' (including 'wife-beating' Judge Mark Fuller) remain free...
Walker, Christie, GOP, FCC, Untethered From Reality: 'BradCast' 5/20/15
Facts and reality matter; Journalist turned media-activist Sue Wilson helps explain...
Rep. Hank Johnson (D-GA) on Obama's Executive Order to Demilitarize the Police: 'BradCast' 5/19/15
Plus: A spate of new voting laws, good and bad, around the country...
'Green News Report' 5/19/15
  w/ Brad & Desi
'The Paddle in Seattle' to stop Shell's Arctic drilling; Study finds new emmissions rules will save lives...so GOP blocking them; PLUS: Indigenous tribe nixes natural gas billions...
Previous GNRs: 5/14/15 - 5/12/15 - Archives...
Walker and GOP Turn First Amendment On Its Head
The FCC's blow to free speech rights you probably never heard about, and how, if Walker and Republicans have their way, it may soon get even worse...
People v. Shell in Seattle; Truth v. Iraq Lies on Fox:
'BradCast' 5/18/15
Guest: Seattle Councilman Mike O'Brien; Now Rubio trips over Iraq; TX shootout; Antarctica ice shelf disappearing; MORE...
The 'Br'er Rabbit Strategy' To Fend Off A Sanders-Led Democratic Revolution
Wall Street and the corporate MSM tell us they fear Bernie Sanders could 'pull Hillary to the left'. But is there more to their strategy?...
Sunday Toons: Off the Rails
From the TPP deal to tragedy in Philadelphia to the GOP 2016ers on Iraq to drilling in the Arctic and marriage equality in Texas, common sense continues to be derailed...
Learning From History
& GOP Rewriting Iraq's: 'BradCast' 5/15/15
Guest: Journalist Peter Dykstra, formerly of CNN, on how enviros should learn from the past; GOP 2016ers trying to rewrite Iraq...
Texas Republicans Hoping to Block Even More Legit Voters With New ID Scheme
New law, if adopted by state, would take already unconstitional Photo ID voting restrictions to new level...
NSA Spying & 'USA Freedom Act'; Dumb Jeb Still Between Iraq, Hard Place: 'BradCast' 5/14/15
Guest: Marcy Wheeler; Plus: Feingold's back! OH GOP still suppressing voters; 600th GNR...
'Green News Report' 5/14/15
  w/ Brad & Desi
OUR 600th EPISODE! -- Hours after Amtrak crash, GOP votes to cut Amtrak budget; FBI spied on Keystone XL protesters; PLUS: Hawaii to be 1st in nation to go 100% renewable...
Previous GNRs: 5/12/15 - 5/7/15 - Archives...
CIA Drugging of 9/11 Detainees? & Jeb Too Dumb to Run: 'BradCast' 5/13/15
VICE News' investigative reporter Jason Leopold on his new exclusive CIA documents; MORE...
Dems: 'No' to Obama on TPP
'BradCast' 5/12/15
Salon's David Dayen joins us to discuss Dems' refusal to go along with their President (for now); Plus: First election lawsuit of 2016; Jeb on Iraq, Allen West on 'Sharia Law'; MORE...
'Green News Report' 5/12/15
  w/ Brad & Desi
Fire & oil spill at NY nuke plant; Shell approved for Arctic drilling; More CA water cuts; GOP slashes NASA Earth research; PLUS: Solar-powered plane's most dangerous journey...
Previous GNRs: 5/7/15 - 5/5/15 - Archives...
NY Nuke Plant Fire, Oil Spill; NC's Mysteriously Vanishing Voter Registrations:
'BradCast' 5/11/15
Guests: Tyson Slocum of Public Citizen; 'DocDawg' of Daily Kos...
Bernie Who? 'Meet the Press' Ignores Sanders
Media watchdog documents NBC's Chuck Todd snubbing Sanders' entry into 2016 Presidential primary, while covering GOP also-rans dozens of times...
Sunday Toons: 'Loon Star State' and Beyond
It's getting crazy in Texas and in the GOP 2016 race and...oh...just pick a place...
Unverifiable Voting Machines (& How to Hack Them): 'BradCast' 5/8/15
Guest: Computer scientist Jeremy Epstein of Verified Voting on the decertification of 1/5 of Virginia's voting machines; MUCH MORE...
Broken Political Machines (& How to Fix Them): 'BradCast' 5/7/15
Guests: TX blogger Perry 'PDiddie' Dorrell on Rick Perry's felonies; Ernie Canning on Bernie Sanders and the 'democracy deficit'; & MORE...
'Green News Report' 5/7/15
Huge, political win for progressives in Alberta; New rules for oil 'bomb trains'; C02 emmissions milestone; PLUS: Elon Musk and Tesla revolutionize batteries...again...
Rep. Bob Inglis (R-SC) and the Conservative Case for Climate Action: 'BradCast' 5/6/15
Finally! A Republican on The BradCast! Plus: Fox 'News' v. RWers; Another oil train explosion in ND and more!...
Perry's Ace in the Hole in Felony Trial
The former TX Governor is preparing to run for President, even while facing felony charges. He doesn't seem worried. Maybe this is why...
Equal Justice for All?: 'BradCast' 5/5/15
Constitutional law expert and reporter Ian Millhiser on last week's oral hearings in the landmark marriage equality case at SCOTUS. Plus: 'BridgeGate'; Huckabee; more...
'Green News Report' 5/5/15
2016 GOP nomination race just doubled in size with Carson, Fiorina, Huckabee (deniers all) all jumping in; PLUS: The Pope's moral message on climate change...
'Free Speech' Versus 'Hate Speech': 'BradCast' 5/4/15
Brad and comedian Jimmy Dore continue debate they've had since 'Charlie Hebdo' following another 'Mohammed cartoon' shooting; Plus: FEC dysfunction & more...
NATIONWIDE STUDY FINDS ALMOST NO VOTER FRAUD
Just 10 cases of in-person impersonation in all 50 states since 2000...
VIDEO: 'Rise of the Tea Bags'
Brad interviews American patriots...
'Democracy's Gold Standard'
Hand-marked, hand-counted ballots...
Brad's Upcoming Appearances
(All times listed as PACIFIC TIME unless noted)
Media Appearance Archives...
'Special Coverage' Archives
GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal 2012...
VA GOP VOTER REG FRAUDSTER OFF HOOK
Felony charges dropped against VA Republican caught trashing voter registrations before last year's election. Did GOP AG, Prosecutor conflicts of interest play role?...

Criminal GOP Voter Registration Fraud Probe Expanding in VA
State investigators widening criminal probe of man arrested destroying registration forms, said now looking at violations of law by Nathan Sproul's RNC-hired firm...

DOJ PROBE SOUGHT AFTER VA ARREST
Arrest of RNC/Sproul man caught destroying registration forms brings official calls for wider criminal probe from compromised VA AG Cuccinelli and U.S. AG Holder...

Arrest in VA: GOP Voter Reg Scandal Widens
'RNC official' charged on 13 counts, for allegely trashing voter registration forms in a dumpster, worked for Romney consultant, 'fired' GOP operative Nathan Sproul...

ALL TOGETHER: ROVE, SPROUL, KOCHS, RNC
His Super-PAC, his voter registration (fraud) firm & their 'Americans for Prosperity' are all based out of same top RNC legal office in Virginia...

LATimes: RNC's 'Fired' Sproul Working for Repubs in 'as Many as 30 States'
So much for the RNC's 'zero tolerance' policy, as discredited Republican registration fraud operative still hiring for dozens of GOP 'Get Out The Vote' campaigns...

'Fired' Sproul Group 'Cloned', Still Working for Republicans in At Least 10 States
The other companies of Romney's GOP operative Nathan Sproul, at center of Voter Registration Fraud Scandal, still at it; Congressional Dems seek answers...

FINALLY: FOX ON GOP REG FRAUD SCANDAL
The belated and begrudging coverage by Fox' Eric Shawn includes two different video reports featuring an interview with The BRAD BLOG's Brad Friedman...

COLORADO FOLLOWS FLORIDA WITH GOP CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION
Repub Sec. of State Gessler ignores expanding GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal, rants about evidence-free 'Dem Voter Fraud' at Tea Party event...

CRIMINAL PROBE LAUNCHED INTO GOP VOTER REGISTRATION FRAUD SCANDAL IN FL
FL Dept. of Law Enforcement confirms 'enough evidence to warrant full-blown investigation'; Election officials told fraudulent forms 'may become evidence in court'...

Brad Breaks PA Photo ID & GOP Registration Fraud Scandal News on Hartmann TV
Another visit on Thom Hartmann's Big Picture with new news on several developing Election Integrity stories...

CAUGHT ON TAPE: COORDINATED NATIONWIDE GOP VOTER REG SCAM
The GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal reveals insidious nationwide registration scheme to keep Obama supporters from even registering to vote...

CRIMINAL ELECTION FRAUD COMPLAINT FILED AGAINST GOP 'FRAUD' FIRM
Scandal spreads to 11 FL counties, other states; RNC, Romney try to contain damage, split from GOP operative...

RICK SCOTT GETS ROLLED IN GOP REGISTRATION FRAUD SCANDAL
Rep. Ted Deutch (D-FL) sends blistering letter to Gov. Rick Scott (R) demanding bi-partisan reg fraud probe in FL; Slams 'shocking and hypocritical' silence, lack of action...

VIDEO: Brad Breaks GOP Reg Fraud Scandal on Hartmann TV
Breaking coverage as the RNC fires their Romney-tied voter registration firm, Strategic Allied Consulting...

RNC FIRES NATIONAL VOTER REGISTRATION FIRM FOR FRAUD
After FL & NC GOP fire Romney-tied group, RNC does same; Dead people found reg'd as new voters; RNC paid firm over $3m over 2 months in 5 battleground states...

EXCLUSIVE: Intvw w/ FL Official Who First Discovered GOP Reg Fraud
After fraudulent registration forms from Romney-tied GOP firm found in Palm Beach, Election Supe says state's 'fraud'-obsessed top election official failed to return call...

GOP REGISTRATION FRAUD FOUND IN FL
State GOP fires Romney-tied registration firm after fraudulent forms found in Palm Beach; Firm hired 'at request of RNC' in FL, NC, VA, NV & CO...
The Secret Koch Brothers Tapes...


(Not that we have any particularly strong feelings about the race)
By Brad Friedman on 11/8/2006 9:46am PT  

UPDATED 10:38am PT: AP is now reporting that Debra Bowen has won the Secretary of State's race in California! This is a huge win for those of us who care about Election Integrity in America! Perhaps the most important race in the nation on that front! More on this later today!

The California Sec. of State's website reports the disingenuous, lying, Diebold-loving, democracy-hating California Sec. of State Bruce McPherson trails freedom-loving, voter-supporting State Senator Debra Bowen in the race for California Sec. of State. As of this moment, Bowen reportedly leads 48.5% to 44.7%.

It's currently the only statewide race that's yet to be called by AP. We hope that conpsiracy theorist McPherson doesn't cry fraud and he soon realizes, for the good of the state, that it's time to concede, get over it, and move on.

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Voters in Predominently Dem Areas Unable to Vote, Some Voting on Paper Ballots in Chinese and Vietnamese as English Ballots Not Available...
By Brad Friedman on 11/7/2006 2:24pm PT  

I just got off the phone with Steve Young, the Democratic candidate in CA-48 (Orange County). He reports that his office is receiving calls from at least 8 precincts of voting machines down with no paper ballots available for voters. All, he says, in strongly Democratic areas of the otherwise conservative Orange County. I believe they use ES&S voting machines down there. Several Emailers have contacted us to let us know it's Hart Intercivic machines in use down there, not ES&S.

He says voters were either being turned away without being able to vote at all, or voting on Chinese and Vietnamese paper ballots --- since English ones are not available --- just so they are able to vote!

By the time we were done with the call, a staffer came in with a report from machines down in a Republican area, but said the machines were fixed quickly, whereas one of the reports you'll see below (transcribed during our quick phone conversation) shows poll workers repeatedly trying to get help from the Registrar to no avail.

NOTES FROM PHONE CALL WITH STEVE YOUNG (CA-48)

Calls coming in to our office, 8 reports all in highly Democratic precincts...

8:35am - Two precincts in an elementary school (#59100 and #59102) had no machines working, no paper ballots, at least 15 people were seen leaving the polls without voting.

8:40am - All machines down in polling place with two precincts in it (#'s 59058 & 5916) all machines down, no English paper ballots, people voted on Chinese and Vietnamese ballots just to vote!

9:10am - Same precincts and also #59161 is completely out of paper ballots.

9:30am - Another precinct (I didn't get the number) had two of the machines down, line is out the door (at least 40 people reported to be in line)

Within the hour - Prcts #59075 and 59076, machines down, poll workers tried six times to get attention to fix the machines.

We're in contact with the Registrar, they promise they're going to deliver English paper ballots to all of the precincts. They claim they are telling poll workers that folks should vote on paper and that they don't have to vote on the machine....if there are such ballots available of course.

Please note, a memo from the CA Sec. of State last month had said all voters who wished to vote on paper in California may do so, but he left it up to them how many would be "an adequate supply." He also said they should be counted as "normal ballots" and not as provisional ballots which are usually counted days later, if ever. None of those orders seems to be being enforced anywhere in CA, as far as I can tell.

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Registrar Mikel Haas's Promise to Defy the SoS and NOT Count Paper Ballots Until Thursday Moves Forward...
VelvetRevolution.us Helping to Fund Appeal
By Brad Friedman on 11/6/2006 9:18pm PT  

The lawsuit brought last week in San Diego to force Registrar Mikel Haas to obey an order from the Secretary of State's office that paper ballots should be counted as "normal ballots" was denied in San Diego Superior Court today.

The writ, originally filed in Appeals Court last week, was denied on jurisdictional grounds and refiled in the Superior Court. Due to time constraints at that point, the section of the complaint seeking to stop voting machine "sleepovers" (which have now been ongoing for a full three weeks in the county) was dropped when the case was re-filed.

The denial today, which had also sought to force Haas to inform San Diego voters at the polls of their right to vote on a paper ballot, will be appealed, according to Carlsbad, CA, attorney Ken Simpkins. Election Integrity organization VelvetRevolution.us' Strike Force continues to raise money to fund such court actions, as it did with the original filing and several others --- including the contested Francine Busby/Brian Bilbray special U.S. House election last Summer.

I spoke with Simpkins earlier today about the court ruling and the judge who didn't seem to understand the differences between provisional, absentee and "normal ballots." Paper ballots, requested by any California voter, are supposed to be counted as "normal ballots" on election night, according to a memo from the CA SoS.

As time is way short for me right now, here's a quick transcript of my notes of the conversation I had with Simpkins, describing the judge, who reportedly made his feelings known early on during the questioning when he referred to E-Voting as "the appropriate wave of the future"...

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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Sends Thousands of Hackable Diebold Machines Home with the Students on 'Sleepovers' for Weeks on End!
By Brad Friedman on 11/6/2006 2:27pm PT  

This just in from poll worker Patti Newton from San Diego, where Registrar Mikel Haas has been sending all of their pre-programmed, election-ready, hackable Diebold touch-screen systems home with poll workers on "sleepovers" since Oct. 16th.

Newton reports the machines have been going to high-school kids who have also been recruited to be in charge of those machines tomorrow! Have we mentioned that San Diego's Mikel Haas is amongst the worst most irresponsible Election Administrator's in the country?! From Newton...

I just got off the phone with one of the (San Diego) North County Poll Worker Recruitment Specialists (PWRS) --- I vented my frustration at being teamed with three (3) teenagers with no election experience. To add insult to injury, I am relegated to the job of ASSISTANT Precinct Inspector (this is my third election this year)!

The PWRS told me that Mikel Haas directed recruiters to place every single teenager who applied. I believe they were actively recruited because they are receiving extra credit (in high school classes) in addition to being paid. She did not confirm or deny the answer to my question, "Did Haas put the teenagers first in line as Touchscreen Inspectors?" Her evasion was answer enough. I asked her if teens having voting machines in their custody for three weeks made her nervous. "Yes, a little." She stated she was "just a peon" and following directions from ROV Haas.

It is obvious my PI has not cracked the cover of her election guide and made no attempt to contact me or the others to arrange to set up the poll tonight. She has not contacted the other workers. The two phone numbers I've (not my PI) actively sought for one worker are both wrong numbers.

These kids have no sense of urgency nor do they seem to take any responsibility. Perhaps Mikel Haas is smarter than we think.

But wait, she followed up with more!

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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PLUS: LA Times Reports its Very First E-Voting Story Ever! (As far as we can tell)
By Brad Friedman on 11/3/2006 10:06pm PT  

Gosh...maybe there's a pattern here or something. Is there something to be concerned about here?...Here are just a few of the headlines from the National section (much more in the state-by-states) of today-only's 'Daily Voting News' from John Gideon...

  • Leaked 2003 Report On Maryland's Diebold Voting System Reveals Serious Security Concerns Were Withheld From Election Board, Governor, Public LINK
  • HBO hacked about Diebold's docu claims LINK
  • Delays loom in counting ballots LINK
  • U.S. Attorney's Office: We're ready to investigate election fraud LINK
  • Columnist – Ellis Henican - A vote for old-fashioned poll method LINK
  • E-voting may be scarier than hanging chads LINK
  • Distrust of voting machines is running high LINK
  • Electronic voting: Cure or a bigger problem? LINK
  • Rage against the machine LINK
  • Voting system raises security questions LINK
  • Voting machines vulnerable, says report by UConn faculty LINK
  • LOU DOBBS: Avalanche of Last Minute Problems with E-Voting Machines LINK
  • Electronic Voting Machines Under Scrutiny LINK
  • E-voting problems still exist, critics say LINK
  • How to restore trust at the ballot box
    Problems with high-tech machines have some voters feeling left out LINK
  • This list is also notable because it contains the very first story ever on e-voting concerns (at least that I could find in a quick search) from the completely useless Los Angeles Times! Waytago, guys! Just in time! You win the BRAD BLOG's "Most Useless and Irresponsible Big City Newspaper in the Country" Award!

    Their very first article comes today despite a mountain of problems for years, not to mention the last few months, across California, including the myriad disasters ("sleepovers" and everything else) just down the road in San Diego; a hapless Sec. of State who has approved one hackable, malfunctioning electronic voting machine after another (offering an ersatz blessing for the rest of the states from "the country's largest voting market," as Diebold calls us); and one of the most important Sec. of State races ever, with a real democracy champion, Debra Bowen, running against the inveterate liar and democracyhater, SoS Bruce McPherson.

    Add to that list of reasons why the LA Times should be utterly ashamed of themselves is this comment in their own article today from one of the top scientists on McPherson's own team of voting systems advisors:

    "This issue is a matter of national security," said computer scientist David Jefferson of the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. "The legitimacy of government depends on getting elections right."

    Of course, Jefferson's been saying that for months. But has the LA Times bothered to report any of it? Little wonder they haven't devoted a single article to this issue until just three days before the election. Nothing to see here at all. Move along. Don't read those headlines above. Everything's still just fine.

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    New Vulnerability Discovered on Touch-Screen Systems Made by One of Country's Largest Voting Machine Companies Will Affect Elections in Dozens of States!
    California's Secretary of State Bruce McPherson Denies Knowledge of Vulnerability Well After His Office Had Been Notified...
    By Brad Friedman on 11/2/2006 3:32am PT  

    "Just push the yellow button and you can vote as many times as you want," Tom Courbat, an Election Integrity advocate from Riverside County, California informed The BRAD BLOG tonight. Not that we're in any mood to report more such stories, but this seems to be a big one. A very big one.

    It seems there's a little yellow button on the back of every touch-screen computer made by Sequoia Voting Systems, that allows any voter, or poll worker, or precinct inspector to set the system into "Manual Mode" allowing them to cast as many votes as they want.

    Concerns about the flaw were first reported some thirty days ago to California Secretary of State Bruce McPherson's office by Ron Watt, a Tehama County, CA precinct inspector who has been a poll worker in the county for the last fifteen years. And yet, as recently as a radio interview last Tuesday, McPherson --- who has been crowing about having the country's most stringent security process for voting systems --- denied he was aware of any security issues with Sequoia systems.

    "They didn't care about it," Watt told us tonight about his "late September or early October" discussion with McPherson's voting systems chief Bruce McDannold. "He said he didn't think it was an important issue. He said I don't believe this is really a vulnerability."

    Watt and Courbat disagreed and placed another phone call to the SoS' office on Friday after Watt received a copy of Sequoia's "Poll Workers Guide, Booklet #5: Troubleshooting" via a public records request in Tehama. On pages 19 through 22 of the booklet --- which is marked as "Confidential and Proprietary" --- he confirmed the simple manual override to the system. He'd learned about it years earlier and the new manuals confirmed that button was still in place. Even in the latest models of the Sequoia Edge voting systems (both models 1 and 2).

    The complete sequence to override the system and enter manual voting mode, along with the Sequoia booklet received via Watt's public records request, is now posted here at BlackBoxVoting.org.

    Watt had been taught to be a poll worker trainer by De La Rue, the former parent company of Sequoia, years ago when the systems were first brought into the county. The two men placed a conference call with McDannold last Friday after receiving the booklet. McDannold again reportedly downplayed the concerns, but said "he'd look into it," according to Courbat.

    He called Courbat back on Monday afternoon to say Sequoia technicians had been in the SoS office and had confirmed the vulnerability. (A complete transcript of McDannold's Monday phone message left on Courbat's cell phone, confirming the security issue and describing the actions --- or lack thereof --- being taken, is at end of this article.)

    Sequoia's voting machines are perhaps the most widely used in California, in some 19 different counties, including both Tehama and Riverside, which is known as the "Home of E-Voting" as it was the first county in the nation to deploy such systems. But identical Sequoia machines are also used in dozens of other states around the country including Florida, Illinois and elsewhere.

    Thanks to the diligence of Watt and Courbat, it is now confirmed that all such systems are completely vulnerable to virtually anyone who wishes to cast as many votes as they please.

    "I can do it in 18 seconds," says Watt. "I can train you to do it in 3 minutes. Just push the yellow button, wait 3 seconds and it chimes. Push the yellow button again, wait 3 seconds and it chimes again. Then it's all on the screen prompts. You're asked 'Do you want to enter manual mode?' and you push 'Yes'...And then you're on your way."

    "You can then vote as many times as you want. You won't ever have to stop until someone physically restrains you from voting," he explained.

    "But wouldn't someone hear the chime?" we asked...

    --- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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    Complaint Filed Against Registrar Mikel Haas in CA's Court of Appeals on Behalf of Plaintiff by Busby/Bilbray Election Contest Attorney Ken Simpkins
    Suit Funded by Velvet Revolution's 'Election Protection Strike Force' Effort...
    By Brad Friedman on 11/1/2006 10:35am PT  

    A lawsuit naming San Diego County Registrar of Voters Mikel Haas as defendant has been filed in the California Court of Appeals seeking to compel Haas --- whom we've previously described as one of the nation's worst Elections Administrators --- to follow the orders of the California Sec. of State and supply Paper Ballots to all voters who request one. Further, the suit demands that Haas actually count those ballots on Election Night, in accordance with the State order, rather than create an "unequal class of voters" by reporting only touch-screen voting results that night.

    As The BRAD BLOG reported yesterday, Haas has announced that he plans to defy the SoS order to count such paper ballots as "normal ballots" by refusing to count them at all until the Thursday after the election. He has also instructed poll workers not to inform voters of their right to vote on paper if they so choose and, according to the lawsuit, has failed to ensure that an adequate supply of paper ballots will be available for voters who wish or need them.

    As well, the lawsuit --- funded by the VelvetRevolution.us Election Protection Strike Force --- seeks in its third action a peremptory writ regarding the current "sleepovers" of Diebold electronic voting machines, now underway in San Diego where poll workers will have kept the pre-programmed, election-ready touch-screen systems in their homes and cars for a full three weeks prior to the November 7th election.

    -- Download the full complaint here [PDF]...
    (Link fixed! The complaint is very very good, btw, and charges, correctly in our opinion, that Haas has failed in and abused his role as Registrar of Voters.)

    Carlsbad attorney Ken Simpkins's suit, filed on behalf of San Diego County voter Kathy Peterson, seeks appropriate security logs and precautions to be instituted, since Haas has failed to do so via his "sleepovers," which lack apppropriate security measures. A recent blog item at Velvet Revolution (VR) has described Haas as "apparently preferring plausible deniability of scattering the voting machines to innumerable volunteers" over actual accountability.

    The "sleepovers" are also in violation of both state and federal laws and security requirements, effectively decertifying them for use before the election even begins. San Diegans should have no basis, at this time, for confidence in any results reported from San Diego's election on November 7th, due to Haas's failures.

    Haas, in an article on the lawsuit in the North County Times, says that complying with the SoS order to count paper ballot votes as "normal ballots" would be impractical.

    "We can't count these ballots on election night," he told the NC Times. "They will be counted during the canvas period, which allows us 28 days. We can't count two things at the same time. We'll have our hands full just uploading the results from the precincts where people will be voting on touch screens."

    By refusing to count paper ballots on Election Night, "Mr. Haas risks skewing the early visibility of San Diego election results, which could impact public perceptions and lead to premature concessions by candidates," according to a statement by Ken Simpkins.

    The NC Times quotes Haas as saying there is no reason for candidates to concede prematurely. "It isn't over until I certify the election, and that's usually around 28 days after an Election Day," he said. "What any candidate does within those days is their business."

    Haas' claim that "it isn't over until I certify the election" is in direct contradiction to the facts on the ground, revealed by last June's U.S. House Special Election to replace disgraced Rep. Randy "Duke" Cunningham in San Diego. In that matter, a contest was filed after certification of the election, as per state law, but was thrown out by a San Diego judge who ruled the U.S. House, not the courts or voters of California, had jurisdiction over any election challenges or recounts once the "winner" in the race, Brian Bilbray, had been sworn in by the House just seven days after the election. At the time of the swearing-in --- a full two weeks prior to Haas's certification --- thousands of ballots remained wholly uncounted.

    By law, no contest or recount could be filed until after Haas's certification. And yet, Superior Court Judge Judge Yuri Hoffman found the plaintiffs no longer had the right to challenge or recount the election results in any way.

    Simpkins was one of the attorneys who filed the Busby/Bilbray lawsuit last summer along with attorney Paul Lehto. In that case --- as The BRAD BLOG originally broke on June 7th, followed with extensive special coverage thereafter --- Haas had also sent home both optical-scan and touch-screen voting systems made by Diebold on poll worker "sleepovers," despite new emergency security mitigation requirements made by both State and Federal oversight bodies after it had been discovered that Diebold voting systems contained a type of programming code making them particularly susceptible to tampering. That type of programming code, known as "interpeted code," is also in violation of both state and federal law.

    During the June contest it was discovered that Haas's chain of custody security logs were virtually non-existent. The dismissal of that case is currently being appealed.

    As we reported on Tuesday, the Democratic Sec. of State candidate, Debra Bowen, released a short video ad on her campaign website revealing the extraordinary dangers and, indeed, the serious national security threat presented by such "sleepovers."

    A request has been made for an expedited decision from the court in the latest case due to the pending election. Hopefully decisions on these matters will be forthcoming.

    Your help in fighting for accountability in such cases around the country is paramount. Please donate to the VR Strike Force effort so we can help hold the bad guys accountable and fight for clean elections! Our work is funded entirely by "we the people" so your support is crucial!

    The VR Election Protection Strike Force website can be found at: http://VelvetRevolution.us/ElectionStrikeForce. Please pass that address around!

    As well, the VR Strike Force is offering a $250,000 reward for tips concerning Election Fraud (details here, tip-line here: 888-VOTE-TIP)

    The BRAD BLOG is a co-founder of VelvetRevolution.us. We hope to announce news concerning a special VR Strike Force Radio broadcast on Election Night, in conjunction with a number of other individuals and organizations. More details on that, hopefully, very soon...

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    In Hilarious Statement, Company Claims Documentary --- Which They Haven't Seen --- Has Facts Wrong...But They're Referring to a Completely Different Documentary!
    Feature Article on Film Should Be Published by ComputerWorld Tomorrow...
    By Brad Friedman on 10/31/2006 10:32pm PT  

    I've written a feature article for ComputerWorld on HBO's upcoming Hacking Democracy, the superb documentary on the many insidious lies of Diebold scheduled for airing beginning Nov. 2nd. We posted a preview article on the film's release several weeks ago. That article should be posted in full Wednesday morning if the continuing delays are worked out (CW had said they'd hoped to publish it Monday).

    In the meantime, Diebold seems to be embarrassing itself yet again by issuing a statement calling for HBO to pull the documentary, or at least run disclaimers before, after, and throughout the film. I've seen it. If I were them, I'd try to do everything I could to keep America from seeing the film, as well.

    "Truth and accurate reporting are the biggest casualties of the film," Diebold Election System President David Byrd is quoted as saying in the media release.

    But ironically, as The Hollywood Reporter is reporting tonight, Byrd has not only never seen the film, but his claims that the film is "Riddled With Errors and Slipshod Reporting" apparently refer to a completely different film!

    Confusing a different film called VoterGate with the short film called VoterGate, which was an early version of the film now known as Hacking Democracy, Byrd writes a two page letter [PDF] to HBO refuting several points in the other film!

    While Diebold's letter from Byrd claims that the film is "so egregious that HBO should pull the documentary," the letter itself is not only riddled with errors and slipshod reporting, it also makes a sad attempt at playing the partisan card, which Diebold has been trying to deny for years! Note this graf...

    "Hacking Democracy" is directed by the directors of "VoterGate" and contains much of the same material. "VoterGate" was produced with special thanks to Susan Sarandon and The Streisand Foundation.

    Never mind that the VoterGate Diebold refers to is the wrong VoterGate, but what the hell do either Susan Sarandon or The Streisand Foundation have to do with Diebold's claim that the film is inaccurate?

    Not disingenuous enough for you? Byrd has more...

    Harri Hursti is shown attacking a Diebold machine in Florida. But his "attack" proved later to be a complete sham. Hursti was invited by California Secretary of State's office to demonstrate his supposed ability to "hack" a Diebold optical scan system. He declined...

    Of course, we know that Byrd never saw the Hursti Hack in Hacking Democracy (it hadn't occurred by the time either VoterGate film was released), the disingenuous claim that it "proved later to be a complete sham" is itself a complete sham:

    Not only did the California Secretary of State's own technical advisory board at UC Berkley write that "Harri Hursti's attack does work" and that it was "definitely real" in their report [PDF] on the hack, but they also found "more serious vulnerabilities...that go well beyond what Mr. Hursti demonstrated, and yet require no more access to the voting system than he had. These vulnerabilities are consequences of bugs–16 in all."

    We would later learn that the invitation to which Diebold refers, from the CA SoS "inviting" Hursti to try his hack out in California, was drafted by a Diebold employee and disinformation operative by the name of Rob Pelletier, and sent to Hursi on CA SoS stationery!

    As revealed by this investigative report [PDF] released over the Summer by BlackBoxVoting.org (one of the film's main subjects) entitled "The Diebold Pursuasion Machine," it appears that Pelletier drafted the letter for CA SoS McPherson's office. The "invitation" would later come to be regarded as a "setup" using special Diebold machines and designed for Hursti to fail.

    In the same report, it was revealed that Diebold employee Pelletier had been spreading disinformation under several phony names at various Internet sites, as well as here at BRAD BLOG as a commenter using the name "Wally O'Diebold."

    As Barney Gimble wrote yesterday in a terrific piece on the history of Diebold in Fortune, about a "five-step plan guaranteed to make an obscure company absolutely notorious":

    First get into a business you don't understand, selling to customers who barely understand it either. Then roll out your product without adequate testing. Don't hire enough skilled people. When people notice problems, deny, obfuscate and ignore. Finally, blame your critics when it all blows up in your face.

    Hey Diebold: It's blowing up in your face. Stop blaming the critics. You're just making a continuous jackass out of yourselves. And, trust me, you've got far worse problems coming your way that you ought to be worrying about.

    ReddIt this story!



    Video by Democratic Sec. of State Candidate in California Critical of CA SoS Bruce McPherson's Certification and Lack of Security Requirements for Diebold Touch-Screen Systems...
    By Brad Friedman on 10/31/2006 3:08pm PT  

    Democratic Secretary of State candidate, Debra Bowen has released a new video ad on her campaign website showing how easy it would be for hackers to break into a garage where pre-programmed, election-ready Diebold touch-screen systems are now being "stored securely" by poll workers around the state.

    Such a break-in could allow them to easily manipulate a single Diebold touch-screen machine to implant a virus on it would could then pass itself from machine to machine, resulting in an entirely flipped election. Nobody would ever know.

    We have long since been critical of CA Sec. of State Bruce McPherson's re-certification of Diebold voting systems after his own technical advisory board at UC Berkley had advised him the machines could be tampered with in dozens of ways.

    His further lack of enforcement of security requirements for the use of the systems --- he has sat by and allowed them to be sent home for weeks ahead of the election with poll workers on so-called "sleepovers" --- is both an outrage and a violation of his own state requirements and federal law.

    Yesterday, we detailed (with photographs) how San Diego County Registrar Mikel Haas has been handing thousands of such hackable voting machines to poll workers in his county since October 16th of this year. Those irresponsible "sleepovers" now allow those poll workers --- or anyone who may wish to access the machines in their garage --- a full 3 weeks prior to the election to find the 60 seconds needed to flip every race in San Diego County.

    Bowen's Diebold "sleepover" break-in ad can be viewed at her campaign website. It's also posted in full below...


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    One of the Country's Worst Places to Vote, Led By One of the Country's Worst Election Administrators, Mikel Haas, Instructs Poll Workers to NOT Tell Voters They May Vote on Paper Ballots if They Wish
    An EXCLUSIVE First-Hand Account and Photos of Delusional Election Director's Irresponsible Scheme...
    By Brad Friedman on 10/30/2006 2:46pm PT  

    More than 10,000 pre-programmed election-ready Diebold touch-screen voting machines, to be used for the first time across the entirety of San Diego County this November 7th, are now in the cars, garages, homes, and hands of poll workers and lord knows who else across one of Southern California's largest voting regions.

    As reported in several first-hand accounts from San Diego poll workers just after recent training sessions (see end of article for one of those first-hand accounts), the voting machines were sent home on so-called overnight "sleepovers" with temporary poll workers beginning on October 16th, allowing for a full three weeks prior to the election for poll workers to find the 60 seconds they might need to hack a single machine. One tampered machine could affect the results on every single voting machine, in every race in the county.

    San Diego Registrar Mikel Haas --- easily one of the country's worst and most irresponsible election administrators --- is unconcerned. He's also instructing poll workers not to give out paper ballots despite a recent order from the California Secretary of State.

    The ability to easily insert malicious viral code onto Diebold's touch-screen systems has been proven, and video-taped by Princeton University and others. A single person could hack an entire election, flipping votes undetectably, and no trace would be left behind after the election.

    But it's not just tampering that should be of concern to the voters of San Diego. It's the fact that these particular systems are amongst the most unreliable in the country. They simply do not work.

    Diebold touch-screen voting systems are innacurate. Their screens freeze. Their printers jam and fail to create reliable "paper trails" and frequently they simply fail to start up at all. All of which occurred during Primary Elections in states across the country earlier this year, resulting in thousands of legally registered voters being disenfranchised, or turned away without being able to cast a ballot.

    Incredibly, Haas has ordered these systems to be used for the first time in this November's general election, without even a test run during the June 6th Primary & Special Election, when a blended system of both Diebold optical-scan (paper-based) and touch-screens was used.

    The few touch-screen systems in place during the June election (one per polling location) went almost completely unused. And yet Haas has ordered them for use across the entire county this November, despite notorious failures by these same unreliable systems in states like Georgia and Maryland and --- perhaps most notably --- Cuyahoga County, OH, where the systems in first-time use failed monumentally during the Buckeye State's Primary Election.

    USA TODAY wrote Friday about the aftermath of Cuyahoga's Primary Elections and the extraordinary measures now being taken to turn the county's temporary poll workers into rocket scientists able to trouble-shoot the many expected problems with the systems. After some 300+ recommendations were made by an independent audit of that particular train wreck, elections officials are scrambling and bracing for the worst.

    Haas, however, has taken no such measures and, indeed, his poll worker training has reportedly consisted of instructing folks to sing the praises of electronic machines and avoid handing out paper ballots to voters despite the recently unearthed memo from the California Secretary of State's office instructing all Registrar's that all California voters may vote on paper if they wish.

    An account of one such training class by Ken Simpkins, the Carlsbad attorney who filed an election contest to challenge the results of the Francine Busby/Brian Bilbray Special Election sleepover fiasco last June, reports that workers are being told not to give paper ballots to voters even if machines are unavailable when voters show up to vote.

    "If the machines were not ready at the opening of the polls and voters were there," Simpkins writes about instructions given at a training class he attended, "voters should be asked to wait until the machines are ready." His full description of that and other stunning moments from Haas's training is at the end of this item.

    In an accidental fit of reporting, the far-right San Diego Union Tribune yesterday asked Haas about the ongoing "sleepovers" in an article on concerns about the county's upcoming beta test election. As usual, his obnoxious answer was just another "fuck you" to the voters of San Diego:

    Taking the machines home has been condemned widely by those who fear hacking. Some believe the "sleepovers" used in San Diego and other counties effectively invalidate election results, because the "chain of custody" of election results cannot be ensured.

    Haas disagrees. "We know exactly who has the machines," he said. "We know where they live."

    Never mind that we've previously reported first-hand accounts from poll workers who took voting machines home with them during the June 6th election, where they admitted that family members, and any number of neighbors, may well have had easy access to the machines in the "secure storage space" known as their garage or their car. But Haas knows "where they live." So rest easy, San Diegans!

    Also, never mind that such sleepovers are in violation of state and federal law. But, hey, it's San Diego! Mikel Haas territory! He makes the rules and can do whatever he wants!

    --- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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    GOP Workers Changed Registration Forms for Dems, Greens, and Even a Non-Citzens into Republican Registrations!
    County Dem Chair Announces Indictments and Steals Thunder From Republican Sec. of State...
    By John Gideon on 10/27/2006 5:32pm PT  

    Guest Blogged by John Gideon

    Today the Associated Press reported that 11 people who worked for a firm hired by the Republican Party were indicted for voter fraud. The workers were paid as much as $10 per Republican registration so they signed-up anyone they could and changed their party affiliation to Republican.

    "Fraudulent voter registration charges were filed this week by prosecutors who said Democrats were unwittingly signed up as Republicans. Central Orange County includes the district represented by Democratic Rep. Loretta Sanchez.

    "There were at least 37 instances in which Democratic, Green Party voters and a noncitizen were registered as Republicans. Each defendant was charged with felony counts of fraudulent completion of registration affidavits."

    ...and they report:

    "The recruiters worked for the Newport Beach petition circulating firm Bader & Associates as well as a subcontractor. Company owner Tom Bader said Thursday that his firm cooperated in the investigation.

    "Subcontractor John Burkett of Lake Elsinore said he discovered problems with his recruiters' work during random checks of submitted forms and he notified his clients.

    "The 11 defendants charged Tuesday weren't identified and details of the charges weren't disclosed by District Attorney Tony Rackauckas."

    In a truly brilliant move the chairman of the Orange County Democrat Committee leaked the news of the indictments stealing the thunder from Secretary of State McPherson who wanted to wait until Monday to have a press conference. Reporters attempted to contact the Secretary but calls were not returned.

    ReddIt this story!



    California Secretary of State Has Difficult Relationship With the Truth
    McP Squares Off, Falls on Face, Against Non-Lying Opponent Debra Bowen in Live Debate
    By Brad Friedman on 10/19/2006 11:35am PT  

    We spoke about the Democratic, and actually qualified candidate for California Sec. of State Debra Bowen yesterday.

    So, equal time. Let's talk about the completely unqualified, partisan mouthpiece, the current Schwarzenneger-appointed California Secretary of State and accomplished liar, Bruce McPherson.

    Oh, and as the end of yesterday's debate revealed, he's also a loathsome human being.

    The two debated before the San Francisco Chronicle editorial board. It was broadcast live --- now available to watch on the web --- and very informative. Here are some thoughts of ours on several of McP's obfuscations lies comments during the debate.

    NOTE: Quotes of his below aren't always exact, but damned near. With one of McP's quotes, however, we had to go back and check three times, just to make sure we heard him right. We did. And we're appalled.

    He actually said, "Under Secretary of State Bowen, if that ever happens, I will tell you, the blind and disabled will not be eligible to vote privately and independently."

    Bowen replied gracefully by saying his comment was "shameful" and "not [McPherson's] finest moment."

    Our personal replies to that appalling comment, and McP's host of other lies, follow below, and are far less charitable. As you may know, the election for California SoS may prove to be the most important race for the future of the nation's electoral system. Our snarky, point-by-point rebuttal to the truth-challenged McP --- who is working for the voting machine companies, not the voters of California --- follows in full...

    --- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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    Debra Bowen States the Obvious...Necessarily...
    By Brad Friedman on 10/18/2006 5:30pm PT  

    Is this sort of thing actually necessary? Apparently it is.

    While the following 10 items seem painfully obvious, apparently these no-brainer items need to be issued as a "Voter Bill of Rights" by CA Secretary of State candidate Debra Bowen, given the mess we currently face (made possible, in no small part, by the hapless, duplicitous current CA SoS Bruce McPherson)...

    1. The Right To Register To Vote.
    2. The Right To Vote.
    3. The Right to Vote In A Tamper-Proof Election.
    4. The Right To Vote On Paper.
    5. The Right To Have Each Vote Counted Accurately.
    6. The Right To Have Election Results Properly Audited.
    7. The Right To An Open, Transparent, Public Process.
    8. The Right To Elections Officials Who Operate Free of Partisan Influence.
    9. The Right To Know that Elected Officials Are Free From the Influence of Campaign Contributions From Voting Machine Vendors.
    10. The Right To Find Out How Money Is Being Raised And Spent In The Political Process.

    Have we mentioned that Bowen's victory in defeating McPherson is perhaps one the most important elections in the country if we hope to ever see Electoral Integrity in this country again? Sign on to support here...

    UPDATE 10:28pm PT: Bowen and McPherson debated today. Video here. Haven't gotten to watch it yet, but McP would never out and out lie would he? Not before an important editorial board, right?

    UPDATE 10:33pm PT: Whoops! Just watched the first five minutes and he already did! Go figure...I suspect there are many more to come.

    UPDATE 10/18/06 4:37pm PT: Holy cow! Lies o' plenty! And more! Full coverage of the debate now here...

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    Disabled-Accessible Paper Ballot Device Torpedoed as State Changes Testing Procedures, Refuses to Certify System
    Company Files Suit with California Victim Compensation and Government Claims Board
    By John Gideon on 10/18/2006 9:32am PT  

    Guest Blogged by John Gideon

    In August Vote-PAD learned that the California Secretary of State had decided to deny them certification that would allow Vote-PAD's voting assistive devices to be used in the state of California. They did this even though some counties had already contracted for Vote-PAD or were in the purchase process and even though Vote-PAD showed clear and convincing evidence that the testing process was biased. This denial by Bruce McPherson and his underlings led to the now famous "Off With Their Heads" blog here at The BRAD BLOG.

    On Monday Vote-PAD issued a press release to inform the public that they had filed a formal complaint with the California Victim Compensation and Government Claims Board. According to the press release, Vote-PAD "asserts that the Secretary of State violated a number of State and Federal protections during the Vote-PAD certification process: 'a violation of the due process and equal protection clauses of the Constitutions of both the United States and the State of California, a breach of contract, a violation of the California Administrative Procedures Act, a violation of the Election Code provisions governing voting system certification and an abuse of discretion in the Secretary's authority to certify voting systems.'"

    The full press release follows...

    --- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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    Internal Memo from SoS Office to County Election Officials Informs That Any CA Voter is Entitled to Choose Paper over Plastic!
    Apparent Response by Republican State Officials to Our National Call for Emergency Paper Ballots Causes Concern for Some...
    By Brad Friedman on 10/16/2006 6:35am PT  

    Every California voter who wishes to vote on a paper ballot in this year's general election may do so, The BRAD BLOG has learned, according to an October 3rd, 2006 memo issued by the California Secretary of State's office!

    The terse, single-page internal memo, sent to "All County Clerks/Registrars of Voters/Vendors" on CA SoS stationery (download complete memo here [PDF]) instructs elections officials across the state that they should "have an adequate supply of paper ballots" if electronic voting machines should break down or "if a voter chooses not to vote on electronic equipment."

    Written by CA's Asst. SoS, Susan Lapsley, the memo was issued in apparent response to our recent call for Congress to introduce and pass immediate "Emergency Paper Ballot" legislation. While bills were subsequently introduced in both the House and Senate, neither chamber succeeded in voting on the legislation before adjourning for the election recess. Eagle-eyed BRAD BLOG readers may remember Lapsley as the one behind the Busby/Bilbray fax to Congress, declaring the Republican Bilbray the winner of the recent CA50 U.S. House Special Election to replace "Duke" Cunningham weeks before it was certified, while thousands of votes remained to be counted --- and well after we had already exposed that the tainted election included voting machine "sleepovers" with poll workers in the days and weeks prior, in contravention of both state and federal law.

    Lapsley's memo was written just after Congress adjourned and prior to the letter [PDF] we sent last week, along with more than 50 other Election Integrity organizations and leaders, to all 50 Secretaries of State and Governors calling on them to institute immediate plans and procedures for Emergency Paper Ballots.

    The good news here, as we see it, is that all California voters across what Diebold refers to as "the country's largest voting market" may now demand paper ballots when they go to the polling place this year. This will be crucial in counties such as San Diego and San Joaquin, where the Registrars of Voters have chosen to side with the voting machine companies instead of the voters by supplying only hackable touch-screen Diebold voting machines for their citizens this year.

    In enormous Los Angeles County, which includes some 8 million voters, such dangerously unreliable touch-screen systems are used only for early voting. It seems clear, however, from Lapsley's memo, that even early voters in LA County may now choose to vote on paper ballots instead!

    From the CA SoS' memo...

    [A]ll county elections officials shall have an adequate supply of paper ballots, as determined by the elections official, available at the voting locations for use in the event of a temporary loss of the ability to use electronic equipment, or if a voter chooses not to vote on electronic equipment.

    This back-up supply can be absentee ballots or other option as determined to be reasonable by the elections official. If absentee ballots are used at the polls the voter need NOT apply for an absentee ballot in order to be able to use it to vote at the polls. You may also use paper provisional ballots to satisfy voters wishing to vote on paper in the event that DRE counties do not have a sufficient supply of absentee ballots to satisy the needs of the precinct voters. In such instances, the ballots of verified eligible voters who wish to vote on paper and are provided a provisional ballot to do so should not be treated as a provisional ballot cast but, rather, as a regular ballot.

    Seems clear enough to us. And, we believe, it's very good news for the voters of California in general.

    With that in mind, however, some Election Integrity Advocates have expressed concern about the vagaries and other dangers of the Lapsley memo, including the Democratic Secretary of State candidate Debra Bowen and election attorney Paul Lehto, both of whom we have immense respect for...

    --- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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