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Latest Featured Reports | Wednesday, October 22, 2014
'Mercy', 'Rehabilitation' and 'Restorative Justice'
Sentencing of South Africa's Oscar Pistorius offers stark reminder of concepts that seem to have gone missing from the justice system in the U.S...
'Green News Report' 10/21/14
  w/ Brad & Desi
GOP candidates still dodging climate Qs; Mountaintop removal coal mining promotes lung cancer; 2014 on track as hottest year on record; PLUS: LEGO breaks up with Shell Oil...
Previous GNRs: 10/14/14 - 10/16/14 - Archives...
Everything Old is Texas Again
On the upside though, even if they successfully violate the Constitution by keeping some 600,000 legally registered, disproportionately minority voters from voting this year, they can save some money on signage...
Congresswoman Sets Impeachment Deadline for Federal Judge Mark Fuller
ALSO: Court unseals divorce docs from first marriage, Fuller attorney dismisses abuse allegations as 'rhetorical questions'...
SCOTUS ALLOWS TEXAS' DISCRIMINATORY GOP PHOTO ID LAW TO USED IN MIDTERMS
Despite uncontested findings striking down the law as a racially-motivated, 'unconstitutional poll tax', it will be implemented this year...
'Dead Heat' and 'Dirty Tricks': The Nightmare Scenario
Maddow warns: 'With this many top of ticket races tied, turnout will be everything...Now we watch for the ways that people will try to stop voters from turning out or from having their votes counted, by hook or by crook'...
Judge Fuller's Attorney Says Wife Beating Thing No Big Deal; 911 AUDIO and Gov. Don Siegelman Disagree
Standalone video of 911 call; First comment on case by imprisoned former AL Gov.; MORE...
Emergency Appeals Filed at SCOTUS to Restore Voting Rights to 600,000 in TX
GOP Photo ID law, which lower court found intentionally discriminatory, is different from recent cases before High Court, say plaintiffs...
'Green News Report' 10/16/14
Ryan backs away (sort of) from climate change denial; NatGas isn't a bridge to lower-emissions; PLUS: Did Lockheed-Martin really invent a compact nuclear fusion reactor?...
Bloomberg on BRAD BLOG on Judge Richard Posner on Photo ID Voting Laws...
'By the sounds of it, the floor that supported voter-ID laws has just given way'...
'BradCast': WI, TX, AR Photo ID Rulings
Trouble keeping up with the on-again/off-again court rulings on GOP voter suppression laws? Brad tries to make sense of it all for ya...
WTF?!: FL Gov. Rick Scott Refuses To Appear at Debate With Gov. Charlie Crist
Watch the video. They're calling it 'FanGate'. We're just calling it Florida...
Arkansas Supreme Court Strikes Down State GOP's Photo ID Voting Law
Court determines law, passed over Dem Governor's veto, violates explicit right to vote in state Constitution...
5th Circuit Appeals Panel Restores Texas GOP's 'Discriminatory' Photo ID Law
While not contesting law's unconstitutionality, judges cite SCOTUS rule on last minute voting changes...
'Green News Report' 10/14/14
Coal wins U.S. Senate debate in KY!; Pentagon: climate change threat to NatSec; Wind power cheapest source of energy; PLUS: September 2014 was hottest ever...
Repub Judge Who Approved Nation's 1st Photo ID Law in 2008 Writes Devastating Dissent Against Them
Reagan-appointed Richard Posner pens best case ever against Photo ID voting restrictions...
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
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'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...


UPDATE: By all measures, Santorum has been found to have received the most votes...
By Brad Friedman on 1/19/2012 4:54pm PT  

Even the GOP establishment --- which had long decided that Mitt Romney was their best hope to win back the White House in 2012 among those currently running --- could not overcome the intent of the voters as transparently expressed on publicly hand-counted, hand-marked paper ballots.

At the end of a January 3rd's Caucus Night in Iowa, our headline, written initially when Rick Santorum was momentarily up over Romney by just 4 votes, was "Santorum 'Wins' Iowa, Everyone Else Doesn't". An hour or so after we'd called it a night, the Iowa GOP stepped forward to declare Romney, not Santorum, had actually "won" by a slim 8 votes out of some 122,000 cast.

Finally today, the GOP has been forced to admit that Santorum was indeed the winner. Though our headline three Tuesday's ago was just slightly more accurate than the GOP's declaration for Romney that night. In truth, there was another winner in Iowa: The Voters.

It took just over two weeks for the GOP to admit it, but the party's final reported results from the hand-marked paper ballots cast on January 3rd, hand-counted in front of the public on Election Night (cast by voters who were not turned away for lack of a state-issued Photo ID) are there to tell the tail of who really won the all-important "First-in-the-Nation" Iowa Caucuses. The GOP couldn't have successfully lied about it if they'd wanted to. Oh, they could have tried. In fact, they did as Iowa's GOP chair Matthew Strawn announced just after 1p ET "Congratulations to Governor Mitt Romney, winner of the 2012 Iowa Caucuses." And the corporate media would have gone along with them --- and, in fact, they did, ever since the GOP's attempted lie on Election Night --- but the truth would have always been there for the public to see nonetheless.

Nobody ever had to rest their faith on a single source, like a political party or a candidate or a voting machine company --- though the media was all too happy to do so before moving on to New Hampshire. There was always a transparent, overseeable, system of checks and balances --- just as our Constitution envisions for the nation's governance as a whole --- there to assure that self-governance had a fighting chance to be more than a bumper sticker slogan hauled out when convenient, ignored when not.

Because the Iowa GOP allowed the people to oversee the counting of their own election, right then and there at the caucus sites, before ballots were moved anywhere, it was next to impossible for them to successfully game the system --- just as Edward True had proven two nights after the Jan 3rd Caucuses.

And speaking of Edward True, the Republican Party of Iowa owes this man, this patriot, this Ron Paul supporter a huge apology...

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

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With Brad Friedman & Desi Doyen...
By Desi Doyen on 1/19/2012 2:31pm PT  


TWITTER: @GreenNewsReport
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IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: White House wins GOP Keystone XL pipeline game - for now; Perry's Texas tough-guy talk on EPA fails; Snowmageddon in Seattle; Snow No-show in California; PLUS: Climate change, now with slightly less apocalypse! ... All that and more in today's Green News Report!

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IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): TX to unlock secrets of fracking; 'No evidence' that Wind Turbine Syndrome exists; Bush speechwriter slams 'culture war' over climate change; Should we only have rules coal lobbyists agree to?; Bat deaths a catastrophe in the making; New mileage standards save money immediately; Coral reef disease hits Hawaii; Breakthrough material 'eats' CO2 in the air ... PLUS: 5 myths about the Keystone XL pipeline ... and much, MUCH more! ...

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

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Activist right-wing judge threatens to thwart democracy by legislating from the bench in favor of Walker...
By Ernest A. Canning on 1/18/2012 1:13pm PT  

Guest blogged by Ernest A. Canning

Fed up with the hard-right's oligarchic, union busting agenda, on Tuesday, opponents of Wisconsin's Gov. Scott Walker (R) delivered a Recall petition to the state's Government Accountability Board (G.A.B.) containing more than one million signatures --- approximately 459,792 more than the 540,208 valid signatures required to trigger a statewide gubernatorial recall under WI law.

Those one million signatures are about to run into an attempted roadblock, however, courtesy of two questionable rulings by Republican Waukesha Circuit Judge J. Mac Davis in the Friends of Scott Walker vs. Brennan case.

The Judge's first questionable ruling was to deny the state Democratic Party's motion to intervene as defendants in the case. The second ruling, issued orally, also found in favor of the GOP, aspiring to force a significant delay in the process of validating signatures (and, therefore, the recall election itself) by shifting the statutory burden for challenging the validity of signatures from Walker to the G.A.B. That second ruling is in direct contradiction to decades of recall history in the Badger State and upends existing law --- a law that went unchallenged by Republicans previously, and worked rather well, even as recently as last year's recall elections of 6 GOP state Senators and 3 from the Democratic Party.

Both rulings, currently the subject of an appellate challenge by the Democrats, may border upon judicial misconduct by a partisan jurist with disturbing ties to a previous statewide scandal...

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

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With Brad Friedman & Desi Doyen...
By Desi Doyen on 1/17/2012 2:46pm PT  


TWITTER: @GreenNewsReport
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IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: The owners of the Keystone XL pipeline confirm the Republican/Fox 'News' lie about the number of jobs it will produce; Italian cruise ship crash threatens to become an environmental disaster as well; Two offshore oil disasters for Nigeria; PLUS: Despite concerns from the U.S. Coast Guard, it's full speed ahead for drilling in the Arctic ... All that and more in today's Green News Report!

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IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Peak coal: a 'crisis in the making'; ‘Congress is effectively controlled by climate change deniers’; Unlocking the secrets behind fracking; Bulgarians protest fracking; Scientists link farm pesticides to mass death of bees; Loggers 'burned Amazon tribe girl alive' ... PLUS: 'Half a degree': good news for the climate ... and much, MUCH more! ...

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

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TONIGHT: All of your worst 2012 nightmares, plus great news out of Wisconsin!
LIVE! 9p-Mid ET (6p-9p PT), Call-in#: 877-520-1150
By Brad Friedman on 1/13/2012 3:58pm PT  

[Now UPDATED with tonight's nightmarish audio archives below! Enjoy!!!]

Mike has the night off! So we're back! Guest hosting the nationally-syndicated Mike Malloy Show on Friday the 13th! It's a Nightmare on Malloy Street!...

We'll be BradCasting all the horror LIVE from 9pm-Mid ET (6p-9p PT), coast-to-coast and around the uprising globe from the studios of L.A.'s KTLK am1150 in beautiful downtown Burbank. Join us by tuning in, chatting in, Tweeting in and calling in! Our LIVE chat room will be up and rolling right here at The BRAD BLOG, as usual, while we are on the air. Please stop by and join the fun while you're listening! (The Chat Room will open at the bottom of this item a few minutes before airtime, see down below, just above "Comments" section.)

Scheduled tonight (so far):

  • YOUR WORST NIGHTMARE! Me! With three hours over our public airwaves to talk about Iowa, New Hampshire & South Carolina voting nightmares! The nightmare that is Election 2012! And other related and unrelated nightmares!
  • GRAEME ZIELINSKI, Spokesman from the Wisconsin state Democratic Party, with some late breaking news on the "Recall Scott Walker" effort in the Badger State!
  • PLUS! The fraud that is James O'Keefe; the "cold" War against Iran; the failure that is the NY Times; the GOP wants more corporate money in campaigns; and all the nightmares on your minds, via your calls over your public airwaves at 877-520-1150 and your tweets to @TheBradBlog!...

The Mike Malloy Show is nationally syndicated on air affiliates across the country and also on SiriusXM Ch. 127. You may also listen online to the free LIVE audio stream at affiliate KPTR 1450 in Palm Springs or at WhiteRose Society or via MikeMalloy.com.

* * *

POST-SHOW UPDATE: Tonight's show was a NIGHTMARE! Don't believe me? You can now listen to the full show, sans commercials, in the archives posted below. (You can also read the nightmarish chat room archives below too!) Be afraid...Be very afraid!...

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

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83% of whites approved November's ballot initiative, 75% of non-whites voted against...
By Ernest A. Canning on 1/13/2012 1:48pm PT  

Guest editorial by Ernest A. Canning

I am old enough to remember not only the civil rights movement but that, amongst all the Southern Jim Crow states, Mississippi had absolutely the worst reputation. It was the state where, in 1955, Emmett Till, a 14-year old African-American from Chicago was lynched, burned and so badly mutilated his own mother couldn't recognize his corpse --- all because he whistled at a white woman (we'll spare you the horrific photo, but it's available here if you'd like to see it); where, in 1963, the NAACP's Medgar Evers was gunned down outside his home; where, in 1964, three civil rights workers attempting to register voters were lynched.

I have no doubt that the 83% of MS whites who, this past November, as we now learn in a new analysis, voted in favor of a state constitutional amendment that would mandate polling place photo ID restrictions as a prerequisite to voting --- as compared to more than 75% of non-whites who voted against polling place photo ID --- would vehemently deny their vote was racially motivated. They would do so even though African-Americans are more than three times more likely to lack photo IDs than whites and even though study-after-study has exposed the lie in the GOP's baseless claims that such laws are needed to prevent "voter fraud."

But I am also relatively certain that race played a role in the inability of so many of the children and grandchildren of formerly Jim Crow Mississippi to appreciate what it is that photo ID truly seeks to accomplish...

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

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Unnamed donor paid $50k to fund his 'voter fraud' project...
By Brad Friedman on 1/12/2012 5:18pm PT  

Just one quick update to our full dismantling of James O'Keefe's latest hoax video, this one purporting to show "voter fraud" in NH (as carried out by O'Keefe and his co-conspirators!). As ThinkProgress details today, the liberal Democrat Mayor of ... I mean, the conservative Republican Mayor of Manchester is now calling for O'Keefe and his pals to be "arrested and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law"...

After James O'Keefe's latest video, released yesterday, featured individuals committing voter fraud during Tuesday's New Hampshire primary, two prominent Granite State officials are calling for their arrest and prosecution. Ted Gatsas, the Republican Mayor of Manchester, told the New Hampshire Union Leader, "They should be arrested and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law." Similarly, Nashua City Clerk Paul Bergeron told ThinkProgress by phone that what these individuals did "is a crime, regardless of what the intent might be. What they did was wrong." Bergeron said he hopes the case gets prosecuted because it "appears to be a violation of the state's wiretapping code for one thing, which is a Class B felony in New Hampshire, in addition to a possible violation election fraud."

TPM reports tonight that others are now piling on, furious at O'Keefe and calling for accountability. Moreover, as TPM's Ryan Reilly notes, O'Keefe's latest fund-raising plea touts that he received $50,000 from an unnamed "extremely generous funder," to create this two-bit "voter fraud" scam, and now he's asking for more to help float further projects and line his own pockets. As his ironically-named Project Veritias has somehow been approved as a tax-exempt, "non-partisan," non-profit 501(c)3, he'll have to disclose who that "generous" funder is eventually though it'll take a while. (Anybody wanna place some guesses what that is in the meantime? There are plenty of suspects here!) In the meantime, O'Keefe previously disclosed on his application for tax-exempt, non-profit status that his salary is scheduled at $120,000/year for heading the propaganda outfit.

Oh...and by the way. Please note that O'Keefe has been pimping yesterday's video as "part one of the Voter Fraud investigation" with a promise of "More to come!" Um, what do you suppose the odds are that "Part One" will prove to be the only part of this particular O'Keefe "investigation"?

Read our complete dissection of O'Keefe's latest scam from earlier today here.

* * *

UPDATE 1/13/2012: Bev Harris of BlackBoxVoting.org in BRAD BLOG comments on our previous article on O'Keefe's latest fraud scam:

Nailed it, Brad. Great work.

And for those who like to do math, with 247,000 votes in the NH Republican primary, you'd need to recruit, persuade, and pay 2,470 different people, all over the state, to walk into polling places and impersonate dead persons.

Not an efficient (or in any way plausible) way to commit election fraud.

She goes on to point out that had those 2,470 different people been paid to commit felonies across the state, to vote on Election Day as "dead people" (assuming there are even enough recently deceased people who hadn't yet been removed from the voter rolls), the effort would have yielded, at best, a 1% tamper rate. Yes, that's just the way to defraud an election! Better to risk one person getting caught in a huge conspiracy, than simply paying off, say, one or two guys to remove legal voters from the voter rolls or change the results in the computer tabulators with just a few keystrokes or --- well, just institute polling place Photo ID restrictions and keep thousands of your opponents' legal voters from being able to cast a vote at all..."legally"!

* * *
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With Brad Friedman & Desi Doyen...
By Desi Doyen on 1/12/2012 2:32pm PT  


TWITTER: @GreenNewsReport
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IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: GOP planning end-run around Obama on Keystone XL pipeline?; 2 years after massive earthquake, Haiti still devastated; Big polluters in your neighborhood? There's a map for that; PLUS: While Obama talks clean energy, Germany actually does it ... All that and more in today's Green News Report!

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IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Cow (poo) Power for Seattle; Deaths in Nigerian oil subsidy riots; Oil prices rise on Iran tensions; Federal judge reinstates EPA boiler rule; Thomas Edison's revenge?; Improving TV energy efficiency saves money; Lesions on gulf fish linked to BP oil spill; NASA's Hansen: extreme heat in TX, OK, Russia "caused by global warming ... PLUS: "Profound cascading consequences" as Rocky Mountains lose snowpack ... and much, MUCH more! ...

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

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By Brad Friedman on 1/12/2012 6:05am PT  

Long ago discredited, federally convicted criminal, Rightwing con-artist, pretend journalist, and accomplished liar James O'Keefe is pimping another secretly-taped and selectively-edited video sure to be a sensation on Fox "News" and at other Republican propaganda venues. It purports to show several voters showing up at polling places during New Hampshire's primary on Tuesday and giving the names of recently deceased voters to poll workers before procuring ballots to vote under those names.

The video, about which O'Keefe lies on his own website, is certain to add more phony fuel to Republicans' long-unsupported claims that people are regularly impersonating dead people at the polling place in order to vote illegally, an allegation which has absolutely no evidence to support it. The aim of the video is clearly is to shore up GOP attempts to institute polling place Photo ID restrictions, meant to do little more than disenfranchise Democratic-leaning constituencies such as the elderly, minorities and student voters, under the fraudulent guise of curbing "voter fraud."

As New Hampshire does not require a Photo ID before one is allowed to cast a legal vote, O'Keefe uses the video to try and create the impression that voting under the name of a recently deceased person is both simple and regularly done. It isn't. But that's his scam this week.

As usual, O'Keefe's video looks as if it represents something that is damning. That's his stock in fraudulent trade, and that's usually more than enough to reinforce the biases of the incurious who've been long-brainwashed, through a well-organized and well-funded GOP effort, into believing that something Rightwingers say is happening certainly must be happening --- despite a dearth of evidence to show that it actually is happening.

The video was released Wednesday morning at the website of O'Keefe's ironically named Project Veritas organization. It was also published "exclusively" by Tucker Carlson's rightwing pretend news site, Daily Caller. Naturally, the websites of Andrew Breitbart, a fellow professional liar, as well as O'Keefe's employer and a co-conspirator on his phony ACORN "Pimp" Hoax videos, quickly followed suit in publicizing the same misleadingly-edited version of the video.

At the Project Veritas site, O'Keefe lies about the video, claiming at the end of his short article accompanying it, that "the unedited videos from part one of the Voter Fraud investigation" have been made available as well. They haven't. He has lied about that. Again. Moreover, as several other sites reported on Wednesday, it's possible that O'Keefe and his band of merry fraudsters have also broken both federal and state laws.

But setting his various lies and possible criminal actions aside for now, let's first look at the supposedly "unedited" version of the videos O'Keefe offers up, and then I'll be happy to dismantle the underpinnings of this ruse below it...

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

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With Brad Friedman & Desi Doyen...
By Desi Doyen on 1/10/2012 1:57pm PT  


TWITTER: @GreenNewsReport
VIA SMART PHONE: Stitcher Radio!

IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Rick Santorum knows science better than "some people" ("some people" who are actually scientists); Grand Canyon is safe --- at least for awhile; Obama Administration's historic move to protect the nation's fisheries; No snow in Colorado; Too much snow in Alaska; PLUS: Republican presidential climate deniers visit a very warm New Hampshire ... All that and more in today's Green News Report!

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IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): BP Oil Spill: Oil is more toxic than previously thought; Oil prices rise on Iran tensions, supply crunch; Nigerians protest rise in oil prices; Your car helps cause tornadoes; US coal plant wants new pollution rules; OH decides to stop fracking; Canada minister calls opponents of tar sands "foes of Canada"; Ducks doomed by global warming ... PLUS: Big Ag freaks out over tighter limits on toxic dioxin in food ... and much, MUCH more! ...

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

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Minor reporting errors a tribute to - NOT indictment of - public, citizen-overseeable system of hand-counted paper ballots...
By Brad Friedman on 1/9/2012 6:35am PT  

Before we move on to the nightmare of democracy and secret, concealed "trust-me" vote-counting which will comprise the bulk of the "First-in-the-Nation" primary in New Hampshire, I'd like to offer a few final thoughts, for now, and for the record, on last Tuesday's "First-in-the-Nation" GOP Caucuses of Iowa. What happened there ought to remain firmly in all of our memories as we move into what is likely to be a nightmare of democracy and secret, concealed "trust-me" vote-counting across almost the entirety of the nation in this important Presidential Election year.

I had planned to post this article (or one like it) on Friday, when I was suddenly side-tracked by the report from Ron Paul supporter Edward True that he had noticed a mis-reported tally on the Iowa GOP's caucus results website. It was a small mis-report to be sure, but in a race that had previously been "called" for Mitt Romney by just 8 votes out of some 122,000 cast at 1,774 different caucus sites, the 20 vote error noticed by True and called to the attention of the media (and since confirmed by the Appanoose County GOP Chair) could prove to be decisive in the final certified total promised a week or so from now.

The discovery of the error --- a reporting error, apparently, as opposed to a counting error --- and the ability to quickly and independently verify the real tally of that particular precinct through a number of different, independent sources, is a tribute to the way the Republicans allowed their own voters to vote and those votes to be publicly counted.

As we spent some time detailing over the last week or two, the Iowa GOP, in a remarkable display of almost indescribable hypocrisy, allowed their voters to use processes they fight virulently against allowing for almost everybody else, particularly in elections where non-Republicans will be participating. In the Iowa Caucuses, however, where the party, not the state, sets all of their own rules for access, vote-casting and vote-counting, caucus-goers were allowed to register and vote on the same day, without disenfranchising Photo ID restrictions, on hand-marked paper ballots which were immediately and publicly hand-counted at the caucus site with results announced to all before they were called in to the central party headquarters and before the ballots were moved anywhere.

That is largely the essence of Democracy's Gold Standard for elections and it is because of that process that there are so few questions about the overall results today.

It's important to make this point, loudly and clearly, before we get lost in what is to come. It's one that even MSNBC's Rachel Maddow --- whose political analysis, whether you agree with her personal perspective or not, is usually spot-on --- missed by a country mile on Friday night while reporting on this issue. She was broadcasting from New Hampshire on the True incident back in Iowa, and on one other quickly-cleared-up question that came up about the results late night on Tuesday, when she offered an assertion that seemed more cheap-shot at Republicans than supportable assertion. It was far beneath her usually excellent standards of fact-based analysis...

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

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Transparent count process may have revealed reporting error...
By Brad Friedman on 1/5/2012 9:31pm PT  

[UPDATED mid-story with screenshots from True's original Facebook postings of his recorded results on caucus night, and UPDATED AGAIN at bottom with the affidavit True has filed, and a few additional details from GOP officials and elsewhere on the current status of results. UPDATED YET AGAIN at bottom after we spoke at length with True late this afternoon and after GOP county chair confirms True's numbers.]

* * *

Thanks to the transparent, open counting process at Tuesday's night's Iowa GOP Caucuses, and a Ron Paul supporter who was paying close attention to the results, we may now be learning that Rick Santorum, not Mitt Romney, actually won the "First-in-the-Nation" Iowa Caucuses this week.

According to a report tonight from television station KCCI NewsChannel 8 in Des Moines, Edward True, a supporter of Paul's says he participated in the counting at the Washington Wells caucus in Appanoose County and wrote down the results he witnessed there on a piece of paper which he posted to Facebook that night. Later, in comparing his totals to the precinct results made available on the Iowa GOP website [CSV version here], he noticed that Romney is shown as receiving 22 votes at that precinct, rather than the 2 that True recorded him as receiving that night at the caucus.

If True is correct, and if no other anomalies are discovered in the coming days, it would mean that Santorum will have won the Iowa Caucuses by 12 votes, rather than lost it to Romney by 8, as reported by the GOP in the early morning hours on Wednesday...

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

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With Brad Friedman & Desi Doyen...
By Desi Doyen on 1/5/2012 2:13pm PT  


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IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): December 2011 setting heat records; Is there really 100 years’ worth of natural gas beneath the United States? [NO.]; Insurance payouts point to climate change; U.S. coasts unprepared for higher seas; The end of real maple syrup?; EPA regs create more jobs than Keystone XL pipeline; Low income kids exposed to more pollution; Future of a stable climate depends on the 2012 Presidential Election: report ... PLUS: ZOMG! Zomb-bees! ... and much, MUCH more! ...

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By Brad Friedman on 1/4/2012 5:00pm PT  

I've been busy doing a lot of media and a lot of digging today. So until I can get free to follow up here on some Iowa Caucus issues, here's my latest appearance on The Big Picture with Thom Hartmann, from last night...

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By Brad Friedman on 1/3/2012 11:15pm PT  

[UPDATED 1/4/12, 10:30am]

The music has stopped, and the long game of musical chairs --- otherwise known as the 2011 Republican Iowa Caucuses --- has finally ended. Mostly.

Twitterer Steve King may have put it best when he said on Tuesday as the results we're coming in: "By tomorrow morning Santorum will be on the lips of every American." And it's true. If you don't believe him, just Google it.

With 100% of the results now reported, Mitt Romney is said to have defeated Rick Santorum, a late comer, but one who finally surged from behind, by just 8 votes. 8 votes.

With his "victory," however, Romney seems to have failed to even reach his own 2008 Iowa numbers. Then, when he came in second, he had 30,021 votes. Last night --- a full four years and who-knows-how-many millions of dollars later --- Romney's total was almost identical, at 30,015. He fell by a total of 6 votes from four years ago. 6 votes.

While we've been told --- largely by Fox "News" and the Republican candidates --- how invigorated the Republican electorate is and how they're chomping at the bit to defeat President Barack Obama, the turnout on Tuesday night doesn't seem to suggest as much. Turnout was approximately 122,000 voters --- just about 3,000 more than in 2008. The lackluster turnout and the lack of a decisive winner resulted in commentary on Fox last night which resembled a funeral procession, as opposed to their usually (overly) upbeat coverage.

In the meantime, Santorum reportedly "spent only $120,000 on direct mail and advertising in Iowa versus over $4.5 million by outside groups backing Romney alone." Former RNC Deputy Research Director Matt Moon reports that, when SuperPAC money is included, Romney will have paid $140 per Iowa caucus vote, while Santorum got a steal at just $21 a pop. Without SuperPAC money included, reports Moon, Romney paid $49/vote in Iowa, Santorum spent just $0.73. Some businessman that Romney is.

But once again, with the reported results as close as they are, we're reminded again that every single vote counts. Or at least it should. While every vote was cast on a hand-marked paper ballot at the GOP Iowa Caucuses (with Republicans requiring no Photo ID to vote), and those ballots supposedly counted publicly by hand at each caucus site where results were supposedly announced then and there before being phoned into Republican HQ, Bev Harris of BlackBoxVoting.org reports that at least one large caucus in Des Moines was unwilling to release their results to CNN before phoning them in to the GOP.

As we were watching reported results on Yahoo's news site very late last night, the number of "reported" suddenly went backwards from 99.86% "REPORTING" back to 99.45%. It doesn't look like numbers changed all that much in the bargain at the time. Santorum was still on top, but only by a handful of votes. Shortly afterwards the reported percentage became 100%, and Romney was announced the "winning" by just 8 votes.

[NOTE: Harris will be my guest on my KPFK/Pacifica Radio show today at 3:30p PT to discuss these matters, and concerns about next week's "First-in-the-Nation" primary in NH. If you're not in the Southern California area, you can listen live online right here. - BF]

We're trying to learn more about the issues mentioned above, and a few other related concerns about the late-night announcement of final results at this wee hour of the morning. And its worth a reminder here that, as ever, problems at the "polls" (or caucuses in this case) or concerns about reported elections results don't always emerge until days, weeks or sometimes even months later.

But for now, no matter who is ultimately determined to be the winner of the 2012 Iowa Republican Caucuses, Santorum's "victory" in the Hawkeye State is no small thing. Just ask President Huckabee.

* * *
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