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Latest Featured Reports | Sunday, April 20, 2014
More Good 'Obamacare' News for Terrified Dems
Will Democrats continue to run scared, or will they embrace the unrelenting string of encouraging Affordable Care Act successes as we head into the 2014 mid-terms?...
'Green News Report' 4/17/14
  w/ Brad & Desi
One year since West, TX disaster; New 'habitable' planet!; Air pollution in poor areas; Record warm March; PLUS: 'Bombshell' study: CA drought caused by global warming...
Previous GNRs: 4/15/14 - 4/10/14 - Archives...
The Climate Is Invading the Earth! To Battle Stations!
If only the climate was a person that could be defeated with guns -- the world might finally take the threat that climate change now poses with the seriousness it deserves....
'Green News Report' 4/15/14
  w/ Brad & Desi
GNR Special Coverage: The UN Inter- governmental Panel on Climate Change Report on Mitigation: costs, risks, and opportunities. Is it too late avoid climate catastrophe?...
Previous GNRs: 4/10/14 - 4/8/14 - Archives...
'Conservative' RW 'Legal' Blogger Defends Freeloading Nevada Rancher
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What part of "national security' does the National Security Agency not understand?!...
Destroying America: 'Obamacare' Kills Another Business
Free medical clinic in rural Arkansas to close doors after health insurance reform law leads to lack of customers...
'Green News Report' 4/10/14
RW Heartland Institute says 'climate change will be good for you!'; Russia threatens natural gas supplies to Ukraine, Europe; PLUS: Attack of the Tumbleweeds! (No, really!)...
'Green News Report' 4/8/14
Study: CNN, Fox 'News' FAIL on climate; CNN looks for plane, finds ocean of garbage; PLUS: Energy co. receives record fine for 85 years of toxic waste (& couldn't be happier about it)...
Christie's E-Cig 'Sin Tax' Due to 'Public Health' Concerns?
After slashing anti-smoking programs, 'conservative' Christie admin offers absurd reason for massive new tax, but NJ Star-Ledger ain't buyin' it. And neither are we...
Judge to TX Repubs: Turn Over the Docs!
Courts rules TX legislators must provide email related to passage of polling place Photo ID restrictions which may prove discriminatory intent of the GOP law...
'A New Kind of Liberty' for the Kochs and Anyone Else Who Can Afford to Buy It
Have the rightwing judicial activists on the Supreme Court made you feel freer yet?...
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
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GOP REGISTRATION FRAUD FOUND IN FL
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The Secret Koch Brothers Tapes...


DoJ Staff Attorneys Now Barred From Offering Opinions in VRA Cases After WaPo Exposed Political Appointees Overruled Civil Rights Division Staffers
By Brad Friedman on 12/10/2005 1:15pm PT  

The beloved 40 year-old Voting Right Acts, implemented by Lyndon B. Johnson after violence and death to Voting Rights activists in Selma, Alabama in 1965 has been all but gutted by the George W. Bush administration. The VRA celebrated it's 40th anniversary this summer, even as Bush's Department of Justice was destroying one of its most important measures by covert political caveat.

That gutting now appears to be becoming a still greater threat to our democracy as it is being institutionalized by recent policy changes which bar career Voting Rights staffers and attorneys in the DoJ from offering opinions on new laws that fall under the jurisdication of the VRA.

Two recent reports by Dan Eggen of the Washington Post revealed that Bush political appointees in the DoJ has overruled the recommendations of career staffers and attorneys in the Voting Rights division tasked with determining the legality of two separate laws sent to the department for "pre-approval" under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act.

Section 5 requires that states with a history of discriminatory election practices --- like Texas and Georgia --- must receive pre-approval from the DoJ before implementing any changes to their voting systems. It prohibits "retrogressive" changes to voting laws, or laws that would bring harm to minority voters.

In the last several weeks Eggen has reported on remarkable memos leaked by DoJ staffers showing that they had recommended against approval of new laws both in Georgia, where the legislature had insituted a new Photo ID requirement at the polls, and in Texas, where then Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-TX) had helped to redistrict the state to allow for more Republican representatives after the GOP gained control of the state house in 2002.

Georgia's law has since been ruled unconstitutional by two Federal Courts who deemed the law to be a "Jim Crow-era Poll Tax". Texas' law has resulted in 7 additional Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives. The fallout from the DeLay led gerrymander of Texas districts has resulted in several indictments for DeLay and his cronies who helped force it through the legislature and allegedly conspired with the Republican National Committee to launder money in support of GOP candidates running for the new seats. The Texas law, which had been unanimously recommended against by 8 DoJ staffers, including the lead attorney in the Voting Rights Act division, still stands.

Today Eggen reports that such staff opinions are now completely banned in Bush's Department of "Justice"!

The Justice Department has barred staff attorneys from offering recommendations in major Voting Rights Act cases, marking a significant change in the procedures meant to insulate such decisions from politics, congressional aides and current and former employees familiar with the issue said.

Disclosure of the change comes amid growing public criticism of Justice Department decisions to approve Republican-engineered plans in Texas and Georgia that were found to hurt minority voters by career staff attorneys who analyzed the plans. Political appointees overruled staff findings in both cases.

The one ray of hope that Eggen offers is that Sen. Arlen Spector (R-PA) is considering Senate Judiciary Committee Hearings...at least on the Texas redistricting case.

We often bristle when we hear those on the Left criticize the Bush Administration as Fascistic. It's simply too easy to ascribe to them the worst possible traits as a blunt political weapon. But if the issues discussed above don't send a shiver down the spine of every democracy-loving American it's either because they don't understand what's actually at stake --- and being dismantled in the process --- or they simply don't give a damn about this country's most important legacy to the world: A free and fair electoral system where all citizens are given an equal voice in the selection of our leaders...or at least a system as close to that as we can possibly muster.

Our Republic is in grave danger.

Another in our series of occassional and annoying reminders that it is your support that allows us to keep going. Please help support The BRAD BLOG with a donation if you can. It means the world.
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Measure Approved by Attorney General Even After 4 of 5 Staffers Wrote 51-Page Memo Advising Against Law
(Election-Related News Actually Makes WaPo's Front Page!)
By Brad Friedman on 11/17/2005 1:57pm PT  

A page one story in today's Washington Post reports that a 51-page memo obtained by the paper, shows Dept. of Justice staffers had rejected a controversial new Photo ID requirement law for voters in Georgia, but that their recommendations were overruled and the measure was approved anyway by the Bush appointed Attorney General.

Georgia's new law was recently rejected as unconstitutional by two Federal Courts who equated it to a "Jim Crow-era poll tax" after its approval by the DoJ despite the recommendation against it by 4 out of 5 staffers in the DoJ's Voting Rights Act division.

The law would have required all voters to present a Photo ID at the poll, available for $20 to those who did not have one. The measure, which, like all such measures currently being pushed around the country by Republicans, is alleged to be disproportionately disenfranchising to minority (read: Democratic-leaning) voters.

Despite a complete dearth of evidence to demonstrate that Photo ID requirements are useful in combatting the non-existent epidemic of "Voter Fraud" in America, Republican legislators in Georgia and other states are attempting to ramrod such measures through their state legislatures. Even the creators of the Georgia law were unable to cite a single example of fraud in the state which would have been held off by the new legislation.

Indeed, the self-described "non-partisan" GOP front-group calling itself the American Center for Voting Rights has been fervently attempting to perpetrate the hoax of a "Voter Fraud" epidemic on voters for at least the past six months. They've made the cause their number one plan in attempting to further disenfranchise millions of minority, elderly, poor and urban-dwelling voters, all of whom are far more likely to vote Democratic and not own drivers licenses.

The Voting Rights Act of 1965, parts of which are up for renewal by this Justice Department in 2007, requires states such as Georgia to have any such new laws that may effect voters to be "pre-cleared" by the DoJ.

According to WaPo...

State Rep. Tyrone L. Brooks Sr., a Democrat and president of the Georgia Association of Black Elected Officials, said he was not surprised by the Justice Department's position in the case.

"Some of my colleagues told me early on that, because of politics in the Bush administration, no matter what the staff recommendation was, this would be approved by the attorney general," Brooks said. "It's disappointing that the staff recommendation was not accepted, because that has been the norm since 1965."

UPDATE 12/2/05: Bush DoJ does it again! This time with a unanimous decision against Tom DeLay's Texas redistricting! Turns out that too was overruled by his DoJ cronies!

UPDATE 12/10/05: Now the DoJ has barred staffers from offering opinions at all! Democracy crumbles...

For more information on the "non-partisan" tax-exempt ACVR scam and the snakeoil salesmen who invented it, Bush/Cheney '04 National General Counsel Mark F. "Thor" Hearne and RNC Communications Director Jim Dyke, please see BRAD BLOG's full Special Coverage of the "American Center for Voting Rights" at http://www.BradBlog.com/ACVR.
This is another in our series of occassional and annoying reminders that it is your support that allows us to keep going. Please help support The BRAD BLOG with a donation if you can. It means the world.
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Kept From Inspecting Voting Machines as Promised
Process So Far Has Revealed Votes Changed from One Candidate to Another, Disappearing All Together...
By Brad Friedman on 11/12/2005 5:19pm PT  

We've failed to report too terribly much on it to date, but there is a very important lawsuit quietly proceeding in New Mexico which is challenging the results of the 2004 Presidential Election there. The final result of that election was very close, and Election Reform advocates --- and indeed a great deal of evidence --- suggest that something was amiss there. Michael Collins wrote a good article about the suit a couple of weeks ago for New Zealand's SCOOP.

Yesterday, VoterAction.org sent out an email about some roadblocks that the plaintiffs are suddenly facing in the discovery phase of the trial. They were supposed to have been allowed to have experts inspect --- for the first time --- the Electronic Voting Machines that were used in the '04 Election, along with the actual results that they gave.

All of a sudden, Voter Action says, the county clerks have flat-out refused to permit the inspections by the plaintiffs' experts. That, after some interesting evidence has already been found by the experts during discovery, like tests where they were able to see votes for one candidate being registered for their opponent (as has been so widely reported as happening in so many elections of late!) and ballots being confirmed with NO choice for President at all, which wasn't supposed to have been possible on at least one of the machine types being looked at.

Voter Action didn't post the article from their email on their website, so we'll post it here in its entirety. Check it out...

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

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Conyers: GA Legislature Should Have Never Passed 'Modern Day Poll Tax'
By Brad Friedman on 10/18/2005 3:11pm PT  

A federal judge has just issued an injunction to keep the new Photo ID requirements at polling places in the state of Georgia from moving forward. As reported many times on The BRAD BLOG, the requirement for photo ID at the polls would disenfranchise anywhere from 10 to 20 million Americans who do not have driver licenses --- mainly the elderly, minorities, the poor and other urban dwellers.

The call for Photo ID at the polling place is the latest attempt by Republicans who hope to further disenfranchise Democratic-leaning voters across the country. The effort has been pushed hard by the self-declared "non-partisan" phony GOP "voting rights" group calling themselves the American Center for Voting Rights and was called for by the shameful Baker/Carter National Election Reform Commission, which was led by disenfranchisement expert and Bush family crony James A. Baker along with high-level GOP operatives from the ACVR.

This just in from AP...

ATLANTA (AP) --- A federal court has barred Georgia from enforcing a new state law requiring voters to show photo identification at the polls.

In the ruling issued today, the U.S. District Court in Rome agreed with critics who claimed the law amounts to an unconstitutional poll tax.

The U.S. Justice Department approved the law in August. The department said that while Attorney General Alberto Gonzales did NOT object to the state's voter I-D requirement, the federal agency's approval did NOT preclude lawsuits against it.

The Republican-backed measure sparked racial tension during the state's legislative session last spring. Most of Georgia's black lawmakers walked out at the state Capitol when it was approved.

In a news release just issued to The BRAD BLOG, Congressman John Conyers (D-MI), ranking minority member of the U.S. House Judiciary Committee, lauded the decision to stop what he referred to as "a modern day poll tax."

Says Conyers in the release: "Truth be told, the issue should have never reached this point - the Georgia Legislature should never have passed this modern day poll tax, the Governor should not have signed it, and the Justice Department should have intervened to stop it. That is why 21 Members and I asked the Department to prevent this law from taking effect."

The full press release from Conyers office follows...

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

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Whether Those Who Hate America and Democracy Like it Or Not.
PLUS: A Song to Fight for Democracy By...
By Brad Friedman on 10/8/2005 11:05am PT  

{Blogged by Brad on the road...}

The fight for democracy in America --- even as we still scratch our head with continued wonder that a "pro-democracy" movement is actually necessary in the United States of America in 2005 --- continues to be a difficult one. But the fight is well worth it. Even as our victories tend to come in small, but continually accruing pieces.

We're not supposed to be talking about this issue at all, 11 months after November 2nd, 2004...and yet more and more are doing so every day. The Mainstream Corporate Media may not get it yet. But the ranks of great patriots who give a damn about their country continues to burgeon as the noise in favor of an accountable democracy increases every day due to the folks like the good readers of The BRAD BLOG who take their civic duty to heart.

Here are just a few of the latest positive signs in the continuing fight for a free, fair, verifiable and transparent democracy that many would prefer we simply didn't even discuss. We will continue to do so nonetheless. The burden is well worth carrying. The rewards for doing so are well worth the effort.

Debra LoGuercio, editor of Winters Express and columnist in Daily Republic and elsewhere, makes it a hat trick with her third column in as many weeks on our tenuous Electoral System. She was haunted by the siren sounded by our first article on the Diebold insider we dubbed DIEB-THROAT, who alerted us to the Dept. of Homeland Security website where a Cyber Alert was issued last year prior to the election about the vulnerability to hackers in Diebold's central tabulator software. That vulnerability has, by Diebold's own admission, never been addressed.

In her latest column titled "E-voting fraud is an American issue" LoGuercio joins the ranks of those of us who continue to be stunned at the remarkable indifference by the Mainstream Corporate Media to what DIEB-THROAT refered to as "one of the greatest threats democracy has ever known":

So many topics, so little column space. And yet soooooo much e-mail. In the media, we talk of a story having �legs,� meaning that it just keeps running. It seems the topic of electronic voting fraud is a centipede.

I've accumulated a mountain of studies and reports on Diebold's electronic voting machines since I wrote the Dieb-Throat columns, all pointing to the same conclusion: The software can be hacked - undetected - relatively easily by someone with the technology skills.
...
Why isn't the national media all over this topic like stink on a monkey? Why are we hearing about Brad and Angelina rather than a story that may shatter the foundation of American democracy if it's true? Maybe it's just not sexy enough. Maybe it won't move enough Viagra. Or maybe the grotesquely wealthy owners of the national media don't want this issue to come to light.
...
Maybe that's why people are frantically encouraging me to keep pushing the issue, as if they're pinning their hopes on me. If that's the case, we're in big trouble. In the media world, I'm not even a small fish in a small pond. I'll keep on splashing, but it's hard for a guppy in a mud puddle to make waves.

However, it brings to mind a children's story about Swimmy, a little fish that encouraged all the other little fish to swim together in the formation of one large fish. Working together, they survived the perilous waters among the sharks. That's what all us little fish must do - swim together.

Again, read her full column to find out about her response from AP and NBC affiliates when she contacted them about all of this, and see if you can find a way to help swim together with her efforts. It's well worth it, and the support means the world to folks like us who go out on a limb on these matters...even when doing so may be neither popular nor the easiest thing to do.

In the meantime, there are signs that more and more folks are taking notice of what is going on and walking out on that limb as well. C-NET's News.com ran an article yesterday by Declan McCullah headlined "E-voting hobbled by security concerns".

The first couple of grafs:

It's been nearly five years since Americans received a painful education on the perils of traditional voting machines in Florida and almost one year since the 2004 election revealed perplexing irregularities in Ohio's vote tabulation methods.

Yet no uniform security standards exist for electronic voting machines. Even though they were used to tabulate a third of the votes in last year's presidential run, nearly all electronic voting machines in use today remain black boxes without external methods of verifying that the results have not been altered or sabotaged.

The article covers both the ongoing concerns, and the internal debates --- even amongst election reformers --- about how and when to produce and count paper ballots...or "receipts" as they are regrettably becoming known in many circles.

On the point of the difference between reformers on these issues, I hope to produce a one-page "Declaration of Democracy" in the next couple of weeks, a page on which we worked diligently at the Portland Election Reform summit. I believe we can bridge the differences between reformers on these matters to get everyone on the same page. I've been working hard on that effort personally behind the scenes, and hope to have something to show for it in the next couple of weeks. Just by way of a heads-up...So that perhaps we may be able to "swim together" on these issues.

A second article from News.com published yesterday over at ZDNet covers a similar discussion on the problems with E-Voting vulnerability and the need to open the software for inspection:

Overlooked bugs and malicious code pose a plausible threat to software on electronic voting machines, a panel of election experts said Friday.

And finally, there it was yesterday...smack dab in the middle of The New York Times: a full-page ad that asks the the too-obvious questions, "Would you trust a bank that refused to issue ATM receipts? Will you trust your democracy to voting machines without them?"

The ad calls for support of Rep. Rush Holt's (D-NJ) H.R. 550 "Voter Confidence and Increased Accessibility Act of 2005" which we generally support as a good first step towards accountability. (You can send your words of support as well to your folks in congress quickly by using Velvet Revolution's easy Email generator here.)

Here's the very welcome ad, signed by many election reformers. Amongst them, our friend the heroic Robert Koehler (listen to our interview with Koehler at the Portland Summit as broadcast on The BRAD SHOW by clicking here and selecting HOUR 3.)

To read the full text of the ad in PDF format, click it, or click here.

Let's all keep swimming...together...

If you need some added inspiration to keep up the fight for democracy, we'll strongly recommend this great song [mp3], courtesy of Victoria Parks. "It's well worth fighting for..."

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Finally...Someone in America Has Found a Case of Actual Potential Voter Fraud!
Registered to Vote in Texas Despite Not Actually Living There!
By Brad Friedman on 10/7/2005 10:25am PT  

{Blogged by Brad on the road...}

Well, whaddaya know...Despite the unsupported ravings of Republican operatives and cynics hoping to paint "Voter Fraud" as an actual issue of great concern in this country to deflect from the very real concern of Election Fraud, it looks as if an actual case may have been found.

The alleged fraudulent voter: Karl Rove!

Political watchdog organization, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), announced the latest news yesterday:

Washington, DC ? Today, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) announced that Frances Lovett, a registered voter in Kerr County, Texas, sent a complaint this week to Kerr County District Attorney, E. Bruce Curry, urging an investigation into whether Karl Rove, Deputy Chief of Staff to President Bush, violated Texas state law by illegally registering as a voter in Kerr County, despite never residing there.
...
"I have lived in Kerr County for the past 15 years and have never even heard that Mr. Rove or his wife lived in the area," Frances Lovett said today. "Reading about Mr. Rove's illegal voter registration in the paper, and knowing that a complaint could not be filed unless a Kerr County resident took action, I resolved to take this next step and send a letter to District Attorney E. Bruce Curry."

According to a report in The Washington Post on September 7, 2005, Mr. Rove and his wife, Darby, registered to vote in Kerr County in 2003 after they sold their Austin, Texas home. County property records show that Mr. Rove and his wife have owned two tiny rental cottages in Kerr County since 1997, the largest of which is only 814 feet and is valued by the county at $25,000. In contrast, the Roves' Washington, D.C. home is valued at over $1.1 million. Other local Kerr County residents have stated that they have never seen Mr. Rove in the area.

Texas law requires that a "qualified voter" be a resident of Texas and the county in which the application for voter registration is made.

Of course, such laws only apply to those who are actually bound by "the rule of law," which, as we all know, ceased applying to Republicans as of January 20, 2001. Just ask Ann Coulter.

In the meantime, we'll remind readers unfamiliar with the issue that Voter Fraud, though it undoubtedly happens in the United States, is far from an epidemic rocking our election system. A recent study by the League of Women Voters in Ohio, for example, of more than 9 million votes in the last two national elections there, found four cases of actual Voter Fraud (voters voting twice, or the spouse of a dead registered voter sending in an absentee ballot for them). More info on the phony hype over Voter Fraud here.

On the other hand, hundreds of thousands, if not millions of votes in America are routinely ignored, thrown out, not counted, or voters are disenfranchised by not being allowed --- by various means --- to cast their vote in the first place.

Nonetheless, we're happy to see all cases of Voter Fraud properly prosecuted. Including that of the the most insidious, anti-American, anti-democracy advocate of them all: Karl Rove. (Though in most states, felons aren't allowed to vote anyway...so Rove's voting rights may not be long for this world anyway.)

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Further Disenfranchises Democratic Voters, Doesn't Guarantee Accuracy of Results...
Clint Curtis: 'Feeney Trying to Protect His Fixed Voting System'
By John Gideon on 10/5/2005 12:09pm PT  

Guest blogged by John Gideon of VotersUnite.Org

In a move that some people found amazing and others expected, Rep. Tom Feeney (R-FL) has filed a new elections bill. HR-3910 ? Verifying the Outcome of Tomorrow's Elections Act of 2005 does nothing to verify the outcome of "tomorrow's" elections, but it does further the RNC's wish to keep as many poor, elderly, disabled, and people of color (in other words ? normally Democratic voters) away from the polls as they possibly can.

And who is this Rep. Feeney? If you recall, he was the person alleged to have asked for a programmer to write software to switch the touch-screen votes, undetected, in Florida. Clint Curtis, whose story was originally broken here at BRAD BLOG, was the programmer. When asked about this latest step by Feeney, he responded via email simply: ?Appears that Mr. Feeney is still trying to protect his fixed voting system?.

Around the water coolers on ?The Hill?, there has been talk that Rush Holt's Voter Confidence and Increased Accessibility Act (HR 550) would be going to mark-up sometime in October. It is timely that suddenly Rep. Feeney would produce a bill that will now allow the House leaders to blend the two bills and make one bill that represents their view of privatization of elections.

This bill provides for a voter verified paper audit trail but it leaves to the states how that audit trail will be used, if at all. No verification there.

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

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Lots of Stuff! Way Too Little Time!
By Brad Friedman on 9/30/2005 1:12pm PT  

{Blogged by Brad from Portland, OR}

Cramming all of this into a single item, since I'm way up against it here in Portland where I'm speaking tonight (and all weekend) at the National Summit to Save Our Elections. If you're in the 'hood! Please come on by and say hello!

UPDATE: Our erstwhile engineer from our BRAD SHOWS in Crawford, Otie Mclay is here, and informs me he's currently streaming as much of the conference as possible LIVE right now at KPFTX.org! Go listen in!

Doing tons of media up here, trying to get the word out about the Summit and the grave need for Election Reform in America. (You can listen to two hours with me battling it out with "Conservative" Lars Larson yesterday, in studio, by way of example. Thanks for posting it, David!)

Got a call from the Ron Isana radio show folks inviting me to debate with ANN COULTER tomorrow morning at 9am PT (12noon ET). That should be fun. On Delay and Frist, etc. Will try to find a minute or two to bone up on it all late night tonight I guess! :-) --- Insana is nationally syndicated all over the place.

UPDATE:See this item for listening links to hear the tape-delay version as it streams live again Saturday @ 3pm ET (Noon PT), and then for the archive posted thereafter.

It was nice to be in-studio, as well, this morning with Thom Hartmann up here. He's agreed to appear on The BRAD SHOW tomorrow (LIVE Saturday, 7p-11p ET or 4p-8p PT, with reBRADCast on Sunday at Noon ET). We'll have tons of stuff from the conference, loads of guests, including, but not limited to David Cobb, Clint Curtis, Robert Koehler, Ellen Theisen, and many more Election Reform All-Stars! We won't have phone lines, however, so you'll need to play along here at The BRAD BLOG in our Open Thread during the show.

Finally, and speaking of Election Reform All-Stars, Debra LaGuercio of the Daily Republic --- who picked up last week on our initial DIEB-THROAT story --- follows up with more on it this week!

It's a great column, that deserves to be read in its entirety, headlined, "Sadly, Dieb-Throat doesn't disappoint". It starts this way...

When I wrote last week's Dieb-Throat column about a whistleblower revealing security risks in Diebold touch-screen voting machines, I was deliberately setting myself up for a sucker punch. Go ahead, clean my clock. Make me see stars.

I awaited a deluge of feedback, ridiculing me for believing anything posted on a blog (www.bradblog.com), along with mountains of evidence showing that Diebold's machines are perfectly reliable and completely tamper-free, and that our election results were never and could never be secretly altered.

LaGuercio did receive "a deluge of feedback," but it wasn't what she had expected. Read the entire thing to find out how it came out. Wish I had more time to cover it today! But suffice to say, a new Election Reform All-Star is born in the media and her article ends simply "America - 1776-2004. R.I.P."

I'm reminded of the old Native American (I think) saying, "A path is laid one stone at a time."

Laying stones from Portland, OR...one at a time...and with your help...Talk to ya on the air tomorrow night! Brad

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By Winter Patriot on 7/8/2005 5:05pm PT  

Guest Blogged by David Cobb.

INTRODUCTION {by Winter Patriot}: We are thrilled to announce that David Cobb will be with us for some live blogging on Saturday morning [late Saturday morning in the East, early Saturday morning in the West]. As most of you probably know, Mr. Cobb represented the Green Party in the 2004 Presidential 'Election'. He has indicated that he wishes to blog about two subjects, and he has sent us some very interesting links and text. So there's plenty to absorb before Mr. Cobb takes the hot seat as the first live blogger of the weekend.

Mr. Cobb's first subject:

The growing "New Voting Rights Movement" demands that we fully "democratize" US elections by implementing the Voter Bill of Rights. (This will necessarily include a discussion of the need for multi-party democracy and why the progressive movement actually *needs* the Green Party).

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

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By Brad Friedman on 7/8/2005 9:30am PT  

Andy Stephenson lost his fight with cancer last night. He was a great fighter but, apparently, this was one he couldn't win.

I only recently got to know Andy over the past year, but he instantly became a friend. As if I'd known him my whole life. I know there are thousands out there who feel the same about him.

He was a great supporter of this blog, of The BRAD SHOW (he helped us get our first show on the air, and appeared as a guest that night) and was one of the original advisors at Velvet Revolution.

His loss is a tremendous blow to the Election Reform movement, and to America.

He will be missed...but he will never forgotten.

Godspeed, Andy...

UPDATE 7/11/05:

  • Just before he passed, Seattle Weekly outlined Andy's battle against cancer and the despicable folks that challenged the credulity of his illness even while he was under the knife and fighting for his life.
  • Seattle Weekly's article on Andy's passing. Including information about the memorial for Andy to be held at Town Hall in Seattle at 1119 Eighth Ave., on Saturday, July 16, at 2 p.m.
  • Some moving words of tribute to Andy by William Rivers Pitt.
  • Some well placed rage from William Rivers Pitt on the loathsome Freeper ghouls who helped push Andy into his grave.
  • Attorney Paul Lehto, who, with Andy, was part of our original "Divestiture for Democracy" campaign team at VelvetRevolution.us, eulogizes and rages as well.
  • The BRAD SHOW tribute to Andy [MP3] from last Saturday night's show. (Last half-hour of the MP3 file)
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    Condemns E-Voting, Outlines a Litany of What Went Wrong in 2004 Election Fiasco!
    By Brad Friedman on 4/13/2005 12:12pm PT  

    The drumbeat of the pro-democracy movement in America (who could have ever imagined there'd be a need for one in this country?!) seems to be growing louder as more and more Mainstream Media folks get into the game!

    Following on the heels of yesterday's Miami Herald piece about Miami-Dade's possible return to paper ballots, Herald columnist, Robert Steinback jumps in with a damning condemnation of Electronic Voting today pointing out that, "Nothing is more important, for the world's pre-eminent democracy, than assuring the sanctity of each vote."

    Steinbeck goes on to say:

    Worst of all, computer voting machines deny critics, reporters, attorneys general and historians the chance to recheck results --- which undermines the confidence any citizen can have in what are billed as free and fair elections.

    Indeed. Clearly there are still a few in the MSM who get it. It may just take them a while to figure it out.

    Moreover, Steinbeck --- for the first time that we know of --- mentions the Clint Curtis / Tom Feeney vote-rigging scandal in the pages of The Herald, along with a litany of reasons for returning to paper ballots [emphasis added]:

    Paper ballots can be forged or lost, for example, but attempting to swing elections using such methods almost surely requires a team of conspirators, and likely would leave a trail of evidence. With computerized voting machines, a hacked line of code can instantly alter thousands of votes.

    We may never find out what Walden O'Dell, CEO of touch-screen voting machine manufacturer Diebold Inc., meant when he told Republicans in a 2003 fund-raising letter that he was ``committed to helping Ohio deliver its electoral votes to the president [Bush] next year.''

    We may never learn the truth behind the affidavit of computer programmer Clinton Curtis alleging then-Florida Rep. Tom Feeney --- now a U.S. congressman --- asked the software company for which he worked in 2000 to design an undetectable computer program for flipping touch-screen machine votes.

    We may never know for sure if Nov. 2 exit polls that projected John Kerry winning several states he ultimately lost were themselves biased --- or whether they were accurate, exposing tampered election results. The victors, after all, never question the score --- or the scoring.

    And tomorrow, The BRAD BLOG has learned, syndicated Tribune Columnist, Robert Koehler will also go on record about the pitfalls of E-Voting, a condemnation of what went wrong in 2004, and some terrific coverage about those of us who are out there trying to fight the good fight to save our endangered democracy...even while the rest of the MSM continues to yawn.

    Perhaps things are changing, however. We'll see. But at The BRAD BLOG, hope always springs eternal. And so we press on...

    ...CONTACT...
    Robert Steinback and the Herald Editors

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    By Brad Friedman on 3/24/2005 1:13pm PT  

    So much crime fighting, so little time. I've fallen desperately behind on posting some of the radio appearances I've done of late. (Along with falling behind on everything else...so my continued apologies for unreplied email, unread comments, and un-everything I wish I had more time in each day for! I'm doing my best however, and will keep chasing to get caught where it's possible.) To make up for the unposted radio spots, here's a collection of some freshly minted ones of which you may choose to listen at your liesure...Or not.

  • 3/23/05: 35 Minutes yesterday on Michelangelo Signorile's Sirius OutQ show. Guest-hosted by our good buddy John Aravosis of AMERICAblog! Good fun this one! Covering just about everything! And, on the usually gay-themed show, John calls me a "heterosexist"! Check it out...Streaming RealPlayer, Windows Media Player, or MP3 Download.
  • 3/23/05: Just over 23 minutes yesterday on Atlanta, Georgia's "Wednesday World Party" on WFRG. On BRAD BLOGGING, Velvet Revolution and Georgia's new return to Jim Crow voter ID laws. Live and local, baby! Streaming RealPlayer, Windows Media Player, or MP3 Download.
  • 3/22/05: 20 minutes from our weekly Tuesday gig with our new buddy, Don Grady of Louisiana Live. Always fun. On the latest BRAD BLOG goings on, Raymond Lemme and more... Streaming RealPlayer, Windows Media Player, or MP3 Download.
  • 3/21/05: 30 easy-goin' minutes from a 3/21/05 interview on Guy Rathbun's KCBX show, "An Evening With..." In this case, it was an evening with yours truly. On VR et al. I think it was a nice interview. Enjoyed it very much. Guy is good. The show won't actually air until 3/30/05, but Guy was kind enough to post the recorded interview on his archives today. So kind, in fact, that I'll let him us to the bandwidth for the MP3 of the interview. ;-)
  • 3/21/05: About 15 minutes last Monday on Lila Garrett's Connect the Dots show on KPFK, Pacifica Radio's Los Angeles affiliate. On Velvet Revolution, and Los Angeles registrar Connie McCormack's fight to keep her best friend --- who sells machines for Diebold in Southern California --- in da money. Streaming RealPlayer, Windows Media Player, or MP3 Download.
  • ReddIt this story!



    (Published by Tom Tomorrow on 11/2/04!)
    By Brad Friedman on 11/14/2004 10:19pm PT  

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    While 150,000 Votes Already Miscounted or Lost!
    By Brad Friedman on 11/10/2004 11:50am PT  

    Yesterday Bev Harris' BlackBoxVoting.org site began issuing "Bandwidth Exceeded" messages to users attempting to access the site. Such a message generally occurs when more users are attempting to access the site than the server can comfortably handle or when the bandwidth allocated by the domain's Internet Provider is exceeded.

    Today, attempts to access the site now simply return a "Cannot Find Server" page, leading me to believe that hack attempts and/or Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks have been successful for the time being. [UPDATE: BlackBoxVoting.org is now finally back online. At least for now.]

    We have had such attacks here at the BRAD BLOG for the last three days which have taken us similarly down and/or greatly slowed page retrieval at various times. Given the much higher profile BBV has had, it's little surprise that folks who'd rather see patriotic efforts like theirs discontinued would work feverishly to disrupt it.

    Ms. Harris and BBV has been spearheading a huge "Freedom of Information Act" filing to collect and review audit logs and other materials from the election in some 3,000 US counties, and thus, her group has attracted quite a bit of attention in the past week. BBV has been attempting to warn Americans for at least the past year about the ticking time-bombs of unregulated, unauditable, and privately owned Electronic Voting machines and their corporate owners (the vast majority of them very closely tied to the Republican party).

    Attempts to silence and/or disrupt sites like hers and ours, I believe, speak volumes in support of the underlying charges that we've been making. If there was nothing to fear in examining the inner-workings of these companies, and the way that our votes our counted --- specifically in last week's election --- there would be no reason to attempt to silence and disrupt those who are attempting to do so.

    In other words, if the election was clean and fair, what's the fear of giving it a close inspection?

    Now perhaps the problem at BBV really is simply related to an overage of bandwidth demand, however, given past attacks the site has received, similar attacks here, and the message changing from "Bandwidth Exceeded" to "Cannot Find Server", I'm inclined to believe that the problem is hostile attacks.

    To those who claim that the roughly 150,000 (so far) documented votes that have been reported and confirmed by Election Officials as being mis-allocated would not have changed any election results, I'd point out:

    1) Those are just the numbers reported by a mainstream media which by and large went "on vacation" after Kerry's "concession" last Wednesday.

    2) Many of those mistabulated and/or lost votes discovered were due to software errors that likely exist on many other identical computers in many other counties in America where they may not yet have been noticed and/or reported.

    3) The results of at least one ballot initiative last Tuesday has already been reversed when 70,000 previously mis-counted votes due to "software error" were "discovered" in Broward County, FL!

    4) There has been a long record of elections in this country being mis-tabulated and/or reversed due to Electronic Voting Machine error in recent history.

    Chapter 2 of Bev Harris' book, Black Box Voting outlines tons of those recently overturned elections. Here's the PDF version of Chapter 2, but since it's currently offline as of this posting, here's a summary of just a few such recent incidents summarized courtesy of Hunter over at DailyKos:

    In the 2002 general election, a computer miscount overturned the House District 11 result in Wayne County, North Carolina. Incorrect programming caused machines to skip several thousand partyline votes, both Republican and Democratic. Fixing the error turned up 5,500 more votes and reversed the election for state representative.
    ...
    Voting machines failed to tally "yes" votes on the 2002 school bond issue in Gretna, Nebraska. This error gave the false impression that the measure had failed miserably, but it actually passed by a 2 to 1 margin. Responsibility for the errors was attributed to ES&S, the Omaha company that had provided the ballots and the machines.
    ...
    An Orange County, California, election computer made a 100 percent error during the April 1998 school bond referendum. The Registrar of Voters Office initially announced that the bond issue had lost by a wide margin; in fact, it was supported by a majority of the ballots cast. The error was attributed to a programmer's reversing the "yes" and "no" answers in the software used to count the votes.
    ...
    Software programming errors, sorry. Oh, and reverse that election, we announced the wrong winner. In the 2002 Clay County, Kansas, commissioner primary, voting machines said Jerry Mayo ran a close race but lost, garnering 48 percent of the vote, but a hand recount revealed Mayo had won by a landslide, receiving 76 percent of the vote.
    ...
    In the November 2002 general election in Scurry County, Texas, poll workers got suspicious about a landslide victory for two Republican commissioner candidates. Told that a "bad chip" was to blame, they had a new computer chip flown in and also counted the votes by hand --- and found out that Democrats actually had won by wide margins, overturning the election.
    ...
    In 1986 the wrong candidate was declared the winner in Georgia. Incumbent Democrat Donn Peevy was running for state senator in District 48. The machines said he lost the election. After an investigation revealed that a Republican elections official had kept uncounted ballots in the trunk of his car, officials also admitted that a computerized voting program had miscounted. Peevy insisted on a recount. According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution: "When the count finished around 1 a.m., they [the elections board] walked into a room and shut the door," recalls Peevy. "When they came out, they said, `Mr. Peevy, you won.' That was it. They never apologized. They never explained."
    ...
    A software programming error gave the election to the wrong candidate in November 1999 in Onondaga County, New York. Bob Faulkner, a political newcomer, went to bed on election night confident he had helped complete a Republican sweep of three open council seats. But after Onondaga County Board of Elections staffers rechecked the totals, Faulkner had lost to Democratic incumbent Elaine Lytel. Just a few hours later, election officials discovered that a software programming error had given too many absentee ballot votes to Lytel. Faulkner took the lead.
    ...
    In a 1998 Salt Lake City election, 1,413 votes never showed up in the total. A programming error caused a batch of ballots not to count, though they had been run through the machine like all the others. When the 1,413 missing votes were counted, they reversed the election.

    If an official investigation doesn't take place immediately, there is little hope of determing the correct winner of any number of races from last week's election. Not the least of which is the race for President of the United States. And I would think, especially after four years of questions about George W. Bush's legitimacy as "President" that even the Right Wingnuts would like to be able to demonstrate once and for all to the American People that he was, in fact, legitimately elected this time.

    For more on the suddenly silent Right Wingers, see my recent BuzzFlash Editorial. And be sure to sign this Online Petition calling for an immediate investigation!

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    To the Owners Go the Spoils.
    By Brad Friedman on 11/6/2004 11:31am PT  

    In the previous article, I outlined a report from July 2003 that described how to steal an election in America in 2004. Virtually everything in that list was "done" in time for the 2004 election.

    The items concerning the corporate privatization of the vast majority of our "public" balloting and counting systems by companies who are very closely tied to the Republican party are described in this new article yesterday by Thom Hartmann in the Baltimore Chronicle & Sentinel. Read the whole thing if you can. Here's just a few of the troubling highlights:

    As more and more analysis is done of what may (or may not) be the most massive election fraud in the history of the world, however, it's critical that we keep the largest issue at the forefront at all time: Why are We The People allowing private, for-profit corporations, answerable only to their officers and boards of directors, and loyal only to agendas and politicians that will enhance their profitability, to handle our votes?
    ...
    About two years ago, I wrote a story, "If You Want To Win An Election, Just Control The Voting Machines," that exposed how Senator Chuck Hagel had, before stepping down and running for the US Senate in Nebraska, been the head of the voting machine company (now ES&S) that had just computerized Nebraska's vote. The Washington Post (1/13/1997) said Hagel's "Senate victory against an incumbent Democratic governor was the major Republican upset in the November election." According to Bev Harris, Hagel won virtually every demographic group, including many largely black communities that had never before voted Republican. Hagel was the first Republican in 24 years to win a Senate seat in Nebraska, nearly all on unauditable machines he had just sold the state. And in all probability, Hagel will run for President in 2008.

    In another, later article I wrote at the request of MoveOn.org and which they mailed to their millions of members, I noted that in --another state that went all-electronic-- "USA Today reported on Nov. 3, 2002, 'In Georgia, an Atlanta Journal-Constitution poll shows Democratic Sen. Max Cleland with a 49%-to-44% lead over Republican Rep. Saxby Chambliss.' Cox News Service, based in Atlanta, reported just after the election (Nov. 7) that, "Pollsters may have goofed" because 'Republican Rep. Saxby Chambliss defeated incumbent Democratic Sen. Max Cleland by a margin of 53 to 46 percent. The Hotline, a political news service, recalled a series of polls Wednesday showing that Chambliss had been ahead in none of them.'" Nearly every vote in the state was on an electronic machine with no audit trail.
    ...
    In the years since those first articles appeared, Bev Harris has published her book on the subject (Black Box Voting), including the revelation of her finding the notorious "Rob Georgia" folder on Diebold's FTP site just after Cleland's loss there...
    ...
    Congressman Rush Holt introduced a bill into Congress requiring a voter-verified paper ballot be produced by all electronic voting machines, and it's been co-sponsored by a majority of the members of the House of Representatives. The two-year battle fought by Dennis Hastert and Tom DeLay to keep it from coming to a vote, [insured] that there will be no possible audit of the votes of about a third of the 2004 electorate.

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