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By Brad Friedman on 5/3/2011 7:50pm PT  

Wisconsin is no Minnesota.

Where Minnesota's post-election hand count of the 2008 U.S. Senate election between then Sen. Norm Coleman and now Sen. Al Franken was, as we wrote at the UK's Guardian at the time, "one of the longest and most transparent election hand-counts in the history of the US," Wisconsin has made it extremely difficult (putting it nicely) to know what the hell is actually going on in their statewide "recount" of the April 5th, 2011, state Supreme Court election between Justice David Prosser and Asst. Attorney General JoAnne Kloppenburg.

Where Minnesota's chief election official, Sec. of State Mark Ritchie, oversaw a process to ensure that updated and accurate numbers were easily tracked and transparently shared with the media on a daily basis, Wisconsin's chief election authority, their Government Accountability Board (G.A.B.), has posted (and even sometimes removed) confusing, misleading, and unclear updates, often with inaccurate information, on various schedules, and frequently with little or no explanation for wholesale changes and deletion of data.

Where Minnesota counted every vote by hand with full public scrutiny, including photographs and video cameras, Wisconsin is tabulating ballots, often by the same oft-failed, easily-manipulated computer systems that counted them in the first place, behind barriers that preclude broad public oversight, under an agreement between both campaigns which disallows the use of video cameras by observers.

The count, which began last Wednesday, often feels as if it's happening in virtual darkness, at least to those of us trying to observe from afar, but the same sentiment has been shared with us by many we've spoken to who are there on the ground. There is an alarming lack of transparency to help the citizenry oversee the process in order to ensure accountability and an accurate count. To make matters worse, if that's possible, chain of custody issues for the ballots appear questionable in a number of reported cases, after ballots have been kept in the same darkness by election officials --- sometimes securely, sometimes not --- for the three weeks following the election and prior to the "recount."

One person we've spoken to who has also been trying desperately, as we have, to closely follow along with the progress, described the situation over the weekend by saying: "Let's call it 'fascinatingly unacceptable.' There are other 'f' words I could use, but we'll leave it at that."

Another Election Integrity veteran was forced to reach for a "bright side" by saying: "It may be worse than Minnesota, but, hey, at least it's no Florida!"

We've not written here about WI's Supreme Court "recount" since it began last Wednesday, largely because we've had such a difficult time making heads or tails of the progress, the accuracy, the integrity of the ballots or the counting, or even of the various reports of bizarre anomalies which continue to occur, often with little explanation for their resolution...

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

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By Brad Friedman on 4/26/2011 7:26pm PT  

Wednesday morning at 9:00am Central Daylight Time, County Clerks in 72 counties across the state of Wisconsin will convene to oversee just the third statewide election "recount" in Badger State history. Kathy Nickolaus, the embattled Waukesha County Clerk, GOP activist, and former colleague of Justice David Prosser during their tenure in the Assembly Republican Caucus fraught with criminal felony charges and corruption, will not be one of them.

The two previous statewide recounts in Wisconsin were carried out in 1989 and, before that, in 1865.

By agreement of both campaigns, just 31 of the 72 counties will see some of their paper ballots counted by hand in the state-sponsored contest of the April 5th Supreme Court election between the incumbent Republican Prosser and his independent challenger JoAnne Kloppenburg. All other ballots are scheduled to be counted once again by the same oft-failed, easily-manipulated machines made by companies like Diebold, ES&S, and Sequoia, which tallied them originally. Each machine-tallied ballot may be examined --- though they may not be touched --- by representatives of each campaign, prior to being run through the machine again.

Waukesha County --- where some 14,000 votes were said to have been discovered by Nickolaus as unreported Election Night --- resulting in a subsequent reversal of fortunes for Prosser, and a 7,316 vote lead in the unofficial, unverified vote count --- will see all of its paper ballots counted by hand.

Unlike her counterparts in the rest of the state, Nickolaus, who is still under investigation for her actions in this election and several prior, will not oversee that count...

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

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The hornets' nest of corruption binding the embattled WI Supreme Court Justice with Scott Jensen, Kathy Nickolaus and the criminal misuse of state employees for partisan gain...
By Ernest A. Canning on 4/25/2011 11:58am PT  

Guest blogged by Ernest A. Canning with Brad Friedman

"This was a decisive election about judicial independence," WI Supreme Court Justice David Prosser said at a press conference in Madison last Monday, declaring victory and explaining his opposition to a recount of the April 5th Wisconsin Supreme Court election.

"The people realized that judges should be much more than partisan politicians who wear black robes. Judges should be impartial in theory and in fact. They should faithfully apply the law without fear, and without favor," he told the assembled media.

However, as an investigation by The BRAD BLOG reveals, there is a stunning gap between the lofty ideals of "independence" espoused by the incumbent Justice as quoted above, and the sordid reality of his own personal record as a hard-Right partisan official in Wisconsin, with the state's GOP caucus, and even during his role as a justice on the state's highest court.

It is a reality, well-documented through court records and other sources, finding Prosser and his former Republican colleagues in the WI Assembly enmeshed in a criminal scheme to utilize state employees and resources at taxpayer expense in order to finance and organize WI GOP political campaigns. A reality which includes an astounding legal filing by this same sitting Supreme Court Justice in which he not only acted as an advocate for the accused, but even confessed to his own participation in the alleged crime.

In short, it's a reality which led The BRAD BLOG to wonder whether Prosser was truly better characterized as an 'independent' jurist, as per his self-description, or a partisan criminal in a robe...

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

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Kloppenburg filing for special investigator alleges Prosser met privately with Walker on night after election, Nickolaus may have committed felonies
Both camps agree to hand counts in parts of 31 counties...
By Brad Friedman on 4/22/2011 2:47am PT  

On Wednesday, Wisconsin's Asst. Attorney General JoAnne Kloppenburg announced that she will be exercising her right to file for a statewide "recount" following the April 5th election for state Supreme Court against the incumbent Justice David Prosser. She also said that she intended to ask for a special investigator to be named to look into a number of still-unanswered questions about election results that were misreported by Waukesha County's Clerk Kathy Nickolaus, a former employee of Prosser's when both served in the state's Assembly Republican Caucus.

Kloppenburg's complaints have now been filed, and The BRAD BLOG has been reviewing both them, and several additional points of note since yesterday's dramatic presser, in advance of the count which is scheduled to begin next Wednesday, April 27, according to the WI Government Accountability Board (G.A.B.), the state's top election agency.

Details included in Kloppenburg's request for a special investigator in Waukesha --- including the curious point that Prosser "was observed entering the Governor's Office late in the evening and attending a private, one-on-one meeting with Governor Scott Walker" on the night following the election, on the very same day in which the controversial new GOP Governor publicly stated that there might be "ballots somewhere, somehow found out of the blue that weren't counted before." --- are certainly compelling.

Moreover, information and questions about the "recount" process itself have naturally emerged --- including a noteworthy, video-taped exchange between a citizen activist and the head of the G.A.B. on Wednesday, as well as concerns about which districts will hold court-ordered hand-counts, and which will simply run ballots through oft-failed, easily-manipulated optical-scan computers again (or worse, simply push a button to produce the same printed reported by the same 100% unverifiable touch-screen voting machines)...

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

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With guests Leslie 'Buzz' Davis and Sarah Manski in Madison...
By Brad Friedman on 4/20/2011 7:23pm PT  

On my KPFK/Pacifica show today (which we may be calling "The BradCast" thanks to suggestions here, but still open to others!), we covered the breaking news out of Wisconsin today, naturally. Asst. AG JoAnne Kloppenburg's unflinching announcement that she would be filing for a statewide "recount" in her state Supreme Court election against the incumbent Justice David Prosser, happened in a press conference just prior to air time. So we had to scramble, but think we covered things well (given what we have to work with over here.)

One of my guests was WI's former union organizer, former state planner and former elected official Leslie "Buzz" Davis, a Kloppenburg supporter who spent some 20 minutes with her at her home last night, after she'd invited him in to chat when he went there to deliver 1000 signatures on a petition asking her to recount the state.

I was also joined by Sarah Manski of WisconsinWave.org who, with her group and her husband Ben (who I worked with years ago during another recount, when he worked for the campaign of Green Party Presidential candidate David Cobb in 2004), is raising funds to support Kloppenburg's efforts.

Again, our written coverage of today's breaking news is here. Our audio coverage for KPFK follows below...

Download MP3 or listen online below [appx 28 mins]...

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Will ask for hand count in several districts; Calls for special investigator in Waukesha County...
By Brad Friedman on 4/20/2011 2:36pm PT  

Wisconsin's Asst. Attorney General JoAnne Kloppenburg has filed paperwork for a statewide, state-sponsored "recount" in the controversial April 5th State Supreme Court election. She has also called for a special investigator be named to examine questions about election results in Waukesha County, where the County Clerk's procedures have come under fire both before and since the election.

Speaking to supporters at a press conference moments ago in Madison, Kloppenburg pointed to a number of reported irregularities around the state, including in Waukesha County, as well as Racine and Milwaukee and a number of other areas, which helped lead to her decision to ask for such a count. She also mentioned unusually high undervote rates in a number of districts that the campaign had examined.

"A recount may change the outcome of this election or it may confirm it, but when it is done, a recount will have shed necessary and appropriate light on an election that right now, seems to so many people to be suspect," Kloppenburg said.

In response to a question from reporters, she added, "I've asked for a recount to determine what the right count is, and also to preserve confidence in the electoral process."

Kloppenburg stated that her campaign would be asking for a hand count of ballots in several districts, and will work with the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board (G.A.B.), the state's top election agency, to determine which areas should be hand counted. State recount procedures allow for a machine recount of paper ballots unless a hand examination is ordered by a court.

In response to critics of such a post-election examination of results, including from the campaign of her opponent, Justice David Prosser, Kloppenburg was unflinching in her response, saying they've called it "a drama and a circus. Actually, it's called American Democracy."

During her remarks, she also called for on the G.A.B. "to appoint a special investigator to professionally, thoroughly and completely investigate the actions and words of the Waukesha County Clerk." That County Clerk, Kathy Nickolaus, a GOP activist and former employee of Prosser's while in the Assembly Republican Caucus, has become the focus of a number of anomalies that have emerged in election results since Election Night.

"The recount will reveal if there were discrepancies in the Waukesha vote count, but going forward, an independent investigation needs to determine what the clerk did there and why," she explained, while pointing to a number of still-unanswered questions about post-election vote tallies in Waukesha, including why it is that "conservative bloggers" were told about those adjustments before they were announced publicly.

"I don't know what will happen in the recount, but we're asking for a recount to determine what the proper count should be, and to help, from this point forward, to assure that elections are fair," Kloppenburg said, stressing her belief that the count should move forward for the benefit of all voters in Wisconsin...

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

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Investigation did not examine accuracy of results, only checked to ensure computer-reported tallies correctly included in County Clerk's final report to state...
By Brad Friedman on 4/19/2011 7:49pm PT  

The Wisconsin Government Accountability Board (G.A.B.), the state's top election authority, found "no major discrepancy" during its four-day investigation of Waukesha County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus' handling of the contentious April 5th state Supreme Court race.

The state probe, however, did not examine the accuracy of elections results as reported by the county's electronic tabulation systems.

According to an initial report released by the G.A.B. in time for the tomorrow's 5pm deadline for Asst. Attorney General JoAnne Kloppenburg to decide if she will request a state-sponsored "recount," officials carried out a "thorough onsite examination of the documentation submitted from all the reporting units within Waukesha County ... to determine whether the official canvass results certified by the Waukesha County Board of Canvassers matched the returns provided by the municipalities."

Though they found a number of seemingly minor "discrepancies [in] the Waukesha County election returns that could not be explained based upon the documentation reviewed," the officials said that while there were "some anomalies identified, the G.A.B. found no major discrepancies between Waukesha County's official canvass report and the documentation provided by the municipalities." The discrepancies included what appeared to be one provisional vote for the incumbent Justice David Prosser, and two write-in votes for Kloppenburg which were not included in the canvass report turned into the state by Clerk Nickolaus.

The agency said their probe determined no corrections to the canvass were necessary "absent any post election proceedings," and added that "A more thorough discussion of these anomalies will be provided in the agency's complete report" promised within the next 60 days. [The G.A.B.'s complete, one-and-a-half page report, is posted at the end of this article.]

The state's investigation did not, however, appear to include examination of computer vote tabulators or paper ballots to determine the accuracy of optical-scan results reported by the electronic systems used in the county. The report suggests that paper work, such as the "Total Votes Cast Report from Voting Equipment" and "Security Documentation of Voting Equipment Memory Devices," was examined along with "Ballot Container Security Seals/Documentation" and a reconciliation of poll lists and other logs.

As The BRAD BLOG has noted since unofficial results of the election --- which had become a proxy battle between supporters and opponents of Republican Gov. Scott Walker's union-stripping legislation --- the optically-scanned paper ballot results, tallied by oft-failed, easily-manipulated computer tabulators in Waukesha, as well as the rest of the state, have not been verified for accuracy by human beings. Rather, the state's post-election canvass procedures rely only on computer-reported totals as checked against poll books and the number of ballots cast as reported by the computer counters...

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

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Incumbent Republican Justice declares 'decisive' victory over Kloppenburg in state-wide race said to have been won by 0.488%...
By Brad Friedman on 4/18/2011 3:14pm PT  

Via Eric Kleefeld at TPM...

Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice David Prosser held a press conference at the state Capitol on Monday, in which he declared victory in his reelection race --- and at which his campaign advisers said they would object to any recount that might be requested by Prosser's opponent, Assistant Attorney General JoAnne Kloppenburg.

The Prosser campaign went on the offensive at the presser in hopes of keeping a state-wide examination of ballots, meant to ensure the true winner of the 10-year term on the state's high court, from taking place at all.

As Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's Patrick Marley reports Prosser campaign attorney Jim Troupis said, "We will take every and any step to prevent this frivolous matter going forward."

In other words, they will do everything they can to block the verification of the unverified vote tally for a 10-year term on the state Supreme Court --- despite state law which allows for such a verification if opted for by one of the candidates in such a close race.

"Reporters asked multiple times what grounds the Prosser campaign would use to object to a recount, given that state law entitles a candidate losing by less than 0.5% to request one at state and local expense," writes Kleefeld. "When a reporter bluntly asked Troupis whether he would say what grounds would be listed in an objection to a recount, compared to what is in state law, Troupis simply responded: 'No.'"

The article also quotes Prosser himself, in all his Orwellian wonder announcing, "This was a decisive election about judicial independence." Then, just minutes later, the long-time partisan Republican who had, during the campaign, signaled his intention to help facilitate the political agenda of Gov. Scott Walker and the GOP state legislature, thanked his voters for their support of "the advancement of conservative values as the way to address and ameliorate our many problems."

Talk about your "judicial independence"!...

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

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Computer results of paper ballots remain unverified by humans...
By Brad Friedman on 4/15/2011 2:27pm PT  

Milwaukee County has finally turned in their official canvass [XLS] of last week's Supreme Court election in Wisconsin, giving the almost entirely unverified results of the largely paper-ballot election to Justice David Prosser over Asst. Attorney General JoAnne Kloppenburg by 7,316 votes, according to the Wisconsin State Journal:

A conservative justice has weathered attempts to link him to Wisconsin's governor and a divisive union rights law and won re-election, according to county vote totals finalized Friday.

Tallies from each of the state's 72 counties show Justice David Prosser defeated challenger JoAnne Kloppenburg by 7,316 votes. State election officials said they will wait to declare an official winner until the deadline for Kloppenburg to seek a recount passes. She has until Wednesday to call for one.

If Kloppenburg decides to opt for a "recount" the costs would be paid for by the state, since the canvassed results have her trailing by less than 0.5% statewide. Prosser's margin of victory, according to the currently reported numbers, should they become official, would be just 0.488%.

The official canvassing process in Milwaukee (and, indeed, the bulk of Wisconsin), is little more than a reconciliation of the number of voters who signed into poll books, plus the number of voters who registered at the polls on Election Day, plus any absentee ballots not scanned at the polling place (as in Milwaukee, where absentees are now scanned centrally, instead of at the polling place) plus a few provisional ballots later verified and counted, as matched against the number of votes reportedly cast, according to results tapes printed out by optical-scan computers such as those made by Diebold, ES&S, Sequoia and Populex.

Actual results reported by those computers are not verified by human beings as being accurate during the canvass process. Only the number of ballots cast is reconciled, not the actual votes for each candidate, in general. That, despite the fact that hand-marked paper ballots exist --- and could be counted for accuracy --- for the vast majority of the votes cast across the state on April 5th...

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

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By Brad Friedman on 4/14/2011 9:18pm PT  

Guess what? As per our story published a few hours ago on the still-unexplained anomalies found in past Waukesha County, WI elections, it looks like the state's Government Accountability Board (the body which oversees elections in the state) can't understand County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus' explanations for the anomalous 2006 results either, where some 20,000 more votes were tallied than "ballots cast", according to her own reports.

Just in tonight from the Wisconsin State Journal: "State investigating vote irregularities in Waukesha County going back 5 years"

Our report from earlier this evening offers a great deal more detail on the anomalies in question, and includes explanation (of a sort) and comment from Nickolaus who, the Journal reports, "was unavailable for comment Wednesday and Thursday." She did, for whatever reason, manage to offer The BRAD BLOG comment on these concerns both yesterday and today, terse as it was. FWIW.

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Trying to get to the bottom of new anomalies discovered in County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus' bizarre election results...
By Brad Friedman on 4/14/2011 3:07pm PT  

Waukesha County, Wisconsin's County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus was already known, for some time, to be among the nation's worst elections official. And that's saying quite a bit. But new information being discovered over the past several days suggests she may be even worse than previously known --- which is also saying quite a bit.

We noted last Friday that the stunning 14,000+ "new" votes she announced as having discovered in the state's Supreme Court election from the city of Brookfield last Thursday actually weren't "new" at all. In fact, they were independently reported late on Election Night by Lisa Sink of the Brookfield Patch, exactly as they were eventually included in Nickolaus' final canvass report [XLS].

If anything, as we indicated in the same article, it is perhaps more troubling that the city of Brookfield's numbers didn't change at all from Election Night, suggesting that the ballots have never been examined by any human beings in order to assure the accuracy of the oft-failed, easily-manipulated optical-scanners used to tabulate the paper ballots in Waukesha (and across most of the state.)

That's just one reason why a complete public hand-count of all paper ballots should be carried out in Waukesha right now, presuming the chain of custody for those ballots can be demonstrated as having been secure since Election Night. Given the razor-thin margin of the still unofficial final results in the race between Justice David Prosser (a partisan Republican and avowed Gov. Scott Walker supporter) and the independent Asst. Attorney General JoAnne Kloppenburg, a similarly public hand-count of all paper ballots across the entire state should be a no-brainer at this point in order to achieve some form of confidence in the results of the, reportedly, incredibly close contest.

The "Protect Our Elections" campaign of VelvetRevolution.us has now publicly called for exactly that --- a public hand-count of all paper ballots across the entire state. [DISCLOSURE: The BRAD BLOG is a co-founder of VR.]

Last week, The BRAD BLOG also detailed some of Nickolaus' horrific record as County Clerk, and just a few of the embarrassments she's caused for her county, including her practice of keeping election results only on a circa 1995 personal computer in her office; using the same user ID and password for all of the employees allowed to access it; and refusing to release city-by-city, much less ward-by-ward election results on Election Night. (The latter is one of the reasons the "missing" 14,000+ votes weren't noticed by anyone in the media or citizenry earlier.) Those were just a few of the troubling concerns highlighted in an independent audit carried out on behalf of the County Board of Executives last year after they'd discovered many serious deficiencies and security concerns in Nickolaus' election procedures.

But now, thanks to some great citizen oversight --- to be sure, not easy to do in Nickolaus' county, as she makes it as absolutely as difficult as possible for citizens to oversee their own elections --- from a blogger at the Daily Kos, we learn still more troubling facts about elections and their administration in the very Republican-leaning Waukesha, including evidence suggesting 20,000 more votes than "ballots cast" were tallied by Nickolaus in the county's 2006 general election, and a remarkable 97.63% voter turnout there in the 2004 Presidential election.

We've been trying to get to the bottom of these anomalies since they were first discovered a few days ago, and we've been going back and forth with Nickolaus to try and clear them up. Here's what we've been able to figure out...

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

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By Brad Friedman on 4/13/2011 9:54pm PT  

My show on KPFK/Pacifica today follows below. We featured a quick word on Obama's fiscal speech today at George Washington University; quick updates on both the Fukushima nuclear crisis (with the lovely Desi Doyen) and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce plot to use tools developed for the "War on Terror" against progressives (including me and my family!)

The main segment is detailed coverage of the Wisconsin Supreme Court election debacle, including some fresh news with my guest John Washburn of Fair Elections Wisconsin, himself a Justice David Prosser voter, a self-described "Ron Paul Republican" and someone who has even spoken on behalf of the hapless Waukesha County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus in the past.

Even Washburn, as you'll hear, is unable to explain the holes in Nickolaus' explanation for the reason she failed to report 14,000+ votes from the city of Brookfield on Election Night, and for a number of newly discovered anomalies from previous elections in her county. (Though, since air time, we've finally been contacted by Nickolaus, and may soon have an explanation for some of those new anomalies as discussed during today's show.)

Download MP3, or listen online below [appx. 28 mins]...

P.S. We're still trying to decide on a name for my weekly, half-hour KPFK show (Wednesday's at 3:30pm PT). "The BradCast" has been suggested by a number of folks, and it's not bad. Whaddaya think? Got any other ideas? Still open, pondering...

P.P.S. Here's the podcast RSS feed for the KPFK show each week, in case you'd like to subscribe (for free) and get notifications or downloads of new archives often sooner than I'm sometimes able to post them here!

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TONIGHT: WI Debacle, DC Shutdown, David Dayen & Nicole Sandler!
LIVE! 9p-Mid ET (6p-9p PT), Call-in#: 877-520-1150
By Brad Friedman on 4/8/2011 5:00pm PT  

[Now UPDATED with audio archives from tonight below.]

What? The week is over already?! It's our last night for a while sitting in as guest host for nationally syndicated Mike Malloy Show. It's been a great, if exhausting week since we began last Friday. (We're schedule to return in June, if not before.)

Tonight, as ever, we'll be BradCasting LIVE 9pm-Mid ET (6p-9p PT), coast-to-coast and around the 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 and lively 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):

The Mike Malloy Show is nationally syndicated on air affiliates across the country and also on Sirius Ch. 146 & XM Ch. 167. You may also listen online to the free LIVE audio stream at affiliate GREEN 960 in San Francisco or via MikeMalloy.com.

* * *

POST-SHOW UPDATE: Thanks all for a great, if exhausting week on the Mike Malloy Show! We're scheduled to be back for Mike in June (if not before). See ya then! Tonight's fun Friday audio (and chat room) archives follow below...

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

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By Brad Friedman on 4/8/2011 4:28pm PT  

Here is an update, along with some important thoughts on the WI Supreme Court election debacle which exploded out of Waukesha County yesterday, plunging that important election into utter disarray --- an election seen by many as a referendum on Gov. Scott Walker and the state GOP's legislating away many of the rights of state citizens to collectively bargain.

I am writing quickly as I scramble, once again to get to the studio on time to finish up my week tonight as guest host of the nationally syndicated Mike Malloy Show. I will, of course, speak again about these matters in greater detail on air this evening. So please forgive any typos or lack of clarity in the following for now.

First, some of the latest related news of note, and then some quick thoughts on this entire fine mess.

The campaign of Asst. Attorney General JoAnne Kloppenburg, now said to be trailing incumbent Justice David Prosser by some 7,500 votes, announced their intention last night to file an open records request "for all relevant documentation related to the reporting of election results in Waukesha County, as well as to the discovery and reporting of the errors announced by the County."

That's good. In addition, they ought to apply for an immediate court order for the quarantine, sequestration, and confiscation of all ballots, electronic voting systems (optical-scanners, Direct Recording Electronic machines, tabulators, etc), memory cards, and the computer systems of County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus as well, in hopes of assuring a complete, independent, transparent forensic investigation of the entire election by an independent party.

At the same time, the State Government Accountability Board (GAB) has announced today they are "dispatching officials to the Waukesha County Clerk's Office Friday afternoon to review procedures used in tallying results of Tuesday's Supreme Court election."

That's good too, and if they have the authority to confiscate the election materials as described above, they should exercise it immediately as well. Nickolaus should no longer be allowed anywhere near this election (or, frankly, any other, given her years of reckless behavior in her role as County Clerk.)

Others, including Citizen Action of Wisconsin, have called for a full federal investigation into "irregularities" in Waukesha County's vote-counting system. That would be both welcome and appropriate as well in this case.

With all of that said, and with full recognition of the absolutely shameful way the Right would have behaved had 14,000+ votes suddenly "appeared" in a Democratic stronghold, as they did in the heavily Republican Waukesha enclave (and as they had already begun to do prior to yesterday's stunning announcement, as can be seen in the Fox "News" appearance yesterday of the always shamefully irresponsible liar John Fund), there are reasons to regard the "new" numbers announced yesterday as "legitimate." Or, at least as "legitimate" as any of the other results announced based on ballots counted only by oft-failed, easily-manipulated computer systems in the state. (See our detailed explanation about those systems, and the very serious concerns about them, as we published on Wednesday, when the unofficial results had the race at a 204 vote margin.)

Here's why I feel that way. (Though, mind you, how I feel has nothing to do with what should or shouldn't be done here to restore integrity and appropriate oversight to the woeful election system in place in Waukesha. To be sure, there are many remaining questions that demand answers at this time in both Waukesha and elsewhere in the state.)...

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

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TONIGHT: Dave Weigel on the DC Budget Battle; Breaking (& Stunning!) WI Election News; Fukushima Update & MORE!
LIVE! 9p-Mid ET (6p-9p PT), Call-in#: 877-520-1150
By Brad Friedman on 4/7/2011 4:45pm PT  

[Now UPDATED with audio archives below.]

Late breaking news out of Wisconsin, and the continuing fight over a federal government shutdown in DC means we're going to have an even busier night than usual as my week guest hosting on the nationally syndicated Mike Malloy Show continues.

As usual, we're BradCasting LIVE 9pm-Mid ET (6p-9p PT), coast-to-coast and around the 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 and lively 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):

  • DAVE WEIGEL Slate.com journalist/blogger and MSNBC contributor with the latest on the DC budget standoff.
  • JOHN WASHBURN Award-winning Wisconsin election integrity citizen advocate (and self-professed 'Ron Paul Republican' and Justice David Prosser voter!) of Fair Elections of WI with the latest news out of WI today and on GOP-floated rumors about "fraud" in the Supreme Court election. .
  • TYSON SLOCUM Director of Public Citizen's energy program on the latest out of Fukushima and the dangers and pitfalls of nuclear power and other fossil fuels. Award-winning Wisconsin election integrity citizen advocate (and self-professed 'Ron Paul Republican') with the latest news out of WI today and on GOP-floated rumors about "fraud" in the Supreme Court election. .
  • PLUS: Isn't that enough? Yes, there will be more! Plus your calls at 877-520-1150 and tweets to @TheBradBlog!...

The Mike Malloy Show is nationally syndicated on air affiliates across the country and also on Sirius Ch. 146 & XM Ch. 167. You may also listen online to the free LIVE audio stream at affiliate GREEN 960 in San Francisco or via MikeMalloy.com.

* * *

POST-SHOW UPDATE: Wow. What a show. Especially on Wisconsin revelations tonight. The audio (and chat) archives all follow below...

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

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