Blogged by Brad from Phoenix, AZ...
Enjoy that one? If so, be sure to check out this modern satirical classic from The Onion, as posted a week or two ago!
w/ Brad & Desi
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...
GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal 2012...
The Secret Koch Brothers Tapes...
|MORE BRAD BLOG 'SPECIAL COVERAGE' PAGES...|
Blogged by Brad from Phoenix, AZ...
Enjoy that one? If so, be sure to check out this modern satirical classic from The Onion, as posted a week or two ago!
New Mexico Secretary of State Mary Herrera said her office is working closely and quickly with the state Attorney General’s Office to finish the investigation into the state Republican Party’s vote-buying scandal.
The agencies want the investigation completed before the state GOP’s statewide convention on Saturday, Herrera said late Tuesday in an exclusive interview with this blog.
Herrera also said she was troubled by the allegations that the campaigns --- including Congresswoman Heather Wilson’s U.S. Senate campaign --- had paid people to attend the Bernalillo County, NM GOP’s ward conventions on Feb. 17 and vote for certain delegates.
“It’s something new --- people being paid to get to conventions. I’ve never heard of it. I’ve been attending (Democratic Party) ward and state conventions since I’ve been 18 and I’ve never heard of anything like this. Now we have paying people to do it. It seems very odd,” Herrera said during the face-to-face interview in Albuquerque.
New evidence emerged in the case that offers a reason why Wilson’s campaign was suddenly forced to admit that they paid for at least five people to attend the conventions, after initially refusing to comment on the allegations of vote-buying at the Feb. 17 Bernalillo County GOP’s ward conventions: A paper trail...
Guest Blogged by Dennis Domrzalski of f-brilliant...
After waiting nearly a week, the Albuquerque Journal on Sunday finally published a story about Laura MacCallum quitting her job as KKOB Radio’s afternoon drive time anchor.
What a pathetic story it was, though. It shows why the blogosphere is daily becoming more powerful and why more and more people are turning away from traditional media sources for their news. The fact is, those traditional sources can’t be trusted to tell us what’s really going on, especially when it comes to their own industry.
MaCallum quit because KKOB News Director Pat Allen pulled her stories about allegations of vote buying at the recent sate Republican Party’s pre-primary conventions. Allen caved after getting complaints from Heather Wilson’s U.S. Senate campaign and from state Republican Party officials. (See BRAD BLOG's Special Coverage Page on the scandal here.)
The Journal's --- this newspaper is the largest media outlet in the state --- seven-paragraph story, buried on page B4, fails to mention that it was Wilson’s campaign that did the complaining. It didn’t go into detail about the vote-buying scandal, and it said nothing about Allen’s memo to MacCallum that he didn’t think the stories were valid because other media outlets and bloggers hadn’t picked them up...
Blogged by Brad Friedman from the road...
We've been on the road for the last several days, so haven't been able to keep you up to date with some of the latest beats in the NM GOP/Rep. Heather Wilson "Vote-Buying" story, since our on-air audio interviews with some of the key players on Friday. (see our Special Coverage Page here for the full background.)
New Mexico journalist and TV host Dennis Domrzalski --- who broke the story in the blogosphere first, including the not-insignificant detail that coverage of the original allegations had been spiked by NM's largest news/talk radio outlet KKOB-AM 770, leading to the resignation of their award-winning news anchor, Laura MacCallum, who had originally both witnessed and aired the charges --- has been advancing it smartly over the last several days. As The BRAD BLOG reported exclusively in detail last week, KKOB's news director Pat Allen has been having a difficult time keeping his stories straight about why exactly he spiked the stories after the Wilson campaign contacted him to complain about them several times.
Domrzalski will have a guest blog for us here shortly on the latest latest, but to quickly catch you up with notable developments over the last several days...
Blogged by Brad Friedman from the road...
The insidious nexus between phony GOP charges of "voter fraud" and the U.S. Attorney Purge scandal will finally be explored in a Senate Hearing on "In-Person Voter Fraud: Myth and Trigger for Disenfranchisement?" this Wednesday in Sen. Dianne Feinstein's (D-CA) Rules Committee. The complete witness list and press release from Feinstein's office, announcing the hearings, is posted at the end of this article.
Witnesses will include, among others, former NM U.S. Attorney David Iglesias, believed to have been fired for his unwillingness to bring phony voter fraud charges in the state despite pressure from folks such as Sen. Pete Domenici (R-NM), Rep. Heather Wilson (R-NM), and a representative of Republican operative Thor Hearne's now-defunct "American Center for Voting Rights," (ACVR) which The BRAD BLOG originally outed as a White House/GOP front group in a long series of investigative reports dating back to 2005, which began just after the supposedly non-partisan group (co-founded by two very high level White House/GOP operatives) first appeared on the scene...
Guest Blogged by Alan Breslauer
The BRAD BLOG's own Brad Friedman and other Election Integrity advocates spoke at the historic Joint Informational Hearing Discussion Of Problems Faced By Voters At The 2008 Presidential Primary Election held in Los Angeles on Friday (Brad covered one aspect of the hearing on the L.A. County "Double Bubble" ballot debacle quickly last week; our full body of coverage on the matter is posted here). However, Brad almost did not get a chance to say his piece as the Sergeant-at-Arms almost tossed him out of the hearing on multiple occasions for applauding (video below, 2:20):
Despite his "disruptive" antics, Brad was eventually allowed to speak to the panel about the Los Angeles County "Double Bubble" problem (video below, 2:23)
More video from the Election Integrity advocates' testimony at last week's hearings follows below...
Another Election Day, another Diebold election "failure" or two.
And a few other quick Election Integrity items of note as I try to get outta here today to head to Arizona where I'll be appearing next week at Q&A's for a couple of Uncounted screenings. (See the "Media Appearances" box on top-right for details, if you're in Phoenix or Tuscon, or thereabouts!)...
Backatcha from the road (see below if you feel like helping us with some gas money! We could much use it!)...
UPDATE FROM THE ROAD, FROM SOME MOTEL 6 SOMEWHERE... The Democratic candidate, Bill Foster has been announced as the winner of Hastert's once formidable seat (yes, pun intended.) Good. Now it's time to impound those machines and memory cards from DuPage County immediately. Both the machines that flashed "REPUBLICAN" and those that didn't need to be impounded by the AG, so they can be tested to find out what happened and why it happened.
And because the Dem candidate won, Election Integrity advocates can't be labeled as "sore losers" for taking this action immediately. Hopefully the good folks at IBIP will take swift action. Lord knows the DuPage County Election Commission won't.
ANOTHER UPDATE: Related. It looks like Foster's Democratic Primary Election opponent, John Laesch is asking for a recount of the February primary. Haven't gotten to speak to him or his camp, so not familiar with what the issues of concern are yet, but thought I'd drop a quick link here to put it on your radar. The BRAD BLOG, of course, supports any and all recount requests deemed necessary by any candidates or their supporters who feel they need to find confidence in any given election results, particularly as we currently --- and absurdly --- use so many non-transparent, wholly faith-based voting systems which have robbed the country of the ability to have the oversight needed to ensure confidence in our democratic system.
We spent many hours yesterday at a joint legislative hearing, at the California State Ronald Reagan Building downtown, where CA SoS Debra Bowen, former L.A. County Registrar Conny "Condoleezza" McCormack, current acting Registrar Dean Logan, who was "greeted...with boos", and others all testified on the "Double Bubble" Ballot Fiasco. It went on for more than three and a half hours before the actual aggrieved parties (the voters of L.A. County) were allowed to testify for "30 seconds to a minute" each.
Our own Alan Breslauer was also there taping and may have some video here soon (including, perhaps, my quick testimony, and the continuing amusing threats of the Sergeant-at-Arms to throw me out.)
The BRAD BLOG overheard Logan in the hallway, desperately working to be bumped from "acting" to actual Registrar, as he slimed an Election Integrity advocate who had just testified against him. Logan was heard telling the top aide to one of the L.A. Board of Supes that one of the local, volunteer EI advocates was "a pathological liar." That, just minutes after Logan had attempted to take some responsibility for the fiasco --- when the media's cameras were rolling --- during his actual testimony. As we know the EI advocate in question, and know him to be an exceptionally stand-up guy, we informed Logan, and the aide, that he was incredibly out of line, and flat-out wrong. Again.
But it was McCormack who was met with the most derision, by audience and Legislative inquisitors alike, as she dissembled to the panel and attempted to blame Bowen's "Top-to-Bottom Review" of voting systems for her own failure, disingenuously saying the SoS's efforts to do the job she was elected to do was the reason that McCormack couldn't have fixed the problem before it disenfranchised thousands of legal voters again this year...
[Updated Post-Show. Audio now available below...]
During my regular weekly Friday guest appearance on the syndicated Peter B. Collins Show at 5pm PT tonight (that's 6pm in Albuquerque), we were joined by guests...
As you may have guessed, there continues to be much developing on this story. The trick will be continuing to cover it all as I must head out to the road again beginning tomorrow, for a couple of weeks. As always, I'll do our best, even from there, to continue coverage. Your help is much appreciated! (See bottom of this post for one way you can help us immediately!)
POST-SHOW UPDATE: Was a great hour, I think. Both MacCallum and Cargo did a great job of covering the meat and potatoes of it all, along with the always top-notch PBC. I was on live from the California State Ronald Reagan building downtown where I just finished attending and testifying at a hearing on the L.A. County "Double Bubble" ballot debacle. More on that when I can catch my breath (which you'll see I'm quite out of, at the beginning of the hour).
"This is why blogging doesn’t get any respect," New Mexico blogger Heath Haussamen wrote in his blistering response to the emerging Republican vote-buying allegations in New Mexico. He wrote that the entire matter was a "non-story," based on "rumors," before going on to mercilessly blast reporter Dennis Domrzalski, who broke several key elements in the story, and us, by reference, as "shameful" and "disgraceful" for covering it at all.
About the website of Domrzalski, who says he was not contacted by the indignant Haussamen for comment before the scathing story ran, he wrote "This is not a reputable journalistic site."
Yet, incredibly, Haussamen failed to disclose, in his article on this yesterday, that Rep. Heather Wilson's campaign spokesperson, Whitney Cheshire, wrote a weekly column at his blog site until October of last year, when she stopped to go to work for the Congresswoman.
In fact, it was Cheshire who forwarded Haussamen's article, defending her boss, via email to the News Director at Albuquerque radio station KKOB, after reports had surfaced that they had spiked the vote-buying stories, broken by one of their own news anchors initially, reportedly after pressure from Cheshire herself. That News Director, in turn, forwarded Haussamen's article, sent by Cheshire, to us late last night.
We took pains to include Haussamen's criticism, even of us, quoting it at some length, in the detailed report on the allegations that we posted last night...
KKOB's now-resigned, award-winning news anchor Laura MacCallum offers a full statement, in her own words, in the wake of the station having pulled her stories on allegations of vote-buying by New Mexico's U.S. Rep. Heather Wilson's campaign at a recent GOP Delegate Nominating Convention in the state.
Though she wrote it prior to our speaking with her at length yesterday, the full statement was not posted until today. (Many of her comments from that exclusive interview, in which she replies to new explanations by the station's News Director for having pulled her stories, were included in our detailed report last night)
A few notable snippets from her full statement --- in which she blasts KKOB, charging "This is not journalism. It is extortion," and "Honesty and guts in journalism, print or broadcast, is becoming a thing of the past." --- are posted below...
[Story Summary: Via extensive BRAD BLOG interviews, New Mexico's former Republican Governor repeats and adds fresh details to his allegations of Republican vote-buying by Congresswoman Heather Willson, tells us that the AG and SoS offices are now investigating the charges, and says he recently confronted Wilson, in person, about the allegations and was "stunned" by her response. KKOB's News Director Pat Allen offers a new reason as to why he spiked reporter Laura MacCallum's stories on the scandal and she dismisses the argument as being without merit. We also post the scripts of radio station KKOB's yanked stories, which led to MacCallum's resignation from the station last week.]
32-year award-winning news veteran and New Mexico's ABC field producer, Laura MacCallum, quit her job as afternoon anchor at Albuquerque's 50,000-watt blowtorch KKOB-AM 770, after she read an email from her News Director, Pat Allen, which said, among other things, "if there was anything to it the bloggers would have picked this up, let alone other news agencies."
Allen was referring to MacCallum's on-air investigative reports covering allegations of a vote-buying scheme by New Mexico's U.S. Rep. Heather Wilson at a recent Republican Delegate Convention. The 1st Congressional District Congresswoman is vying for her party's nomination to run for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated this year by outgoing Pete Domenici. MacCallum ran the stories about the charges on KKOB several times, in several different variations --- including several different interviews and sound bites from both the former Republican Governor of New Mexico, David Cargo, an eye-witness to the story, and a current spokesman for the state GOP, Scott Darnell.
The stories ran, five different versions in all, over a two day period before they were spiked by station management allegedly after pressure from Wilson's office. The BRAD BLOG has obtained the scripts of those original spiked reports (posted at the end of this article), though the complete audio is said to have been "dump[ed]...to make room for new stuff," according to Allen tonight.
In the email to MacCallum, sent last week by the News Director after he'd received several phone calls from Wilson campaign spokesperson, Whitney Cheshire, he informed his afternoon drive news anchor that he'd "pulled" the stories from the station's on-air news rotation. After reading the email from Allen, MacCallum told us she became livid. "I probably had flames coming out of my ears," she explained this afternoon during a long phone call. She immediately resigned in protest.
The BRAD BLOG has now spoken at length to Allen, MacCallum, and NM's former Gov. Cargo, as well as several others involved with the story and/or looking into it for further details. Suffice it to say, contrary to Allen's memo, "the bloggers" have now picked this up, and, according to MacCallum and other sources, so have several of those "other news agencies" that Allen referenced in his email.
Moreover, Cargo tells us today that the charges of felony vote-buying are now under investigation by both the Secretary of State's office as well as the state Attorney General. Further, he told us of his confrontation with Wilson about the allegations some weeks ago. Her response to the charges left the former Governor "stunned"...
Reporter Dennis Domrzalski's terrific scoop deserves to be read in full, so I won't quote much of it here.
The short version, however: New Mexico's ABC field producer and KKOB afternoon drive news reporter, Laura MacCallum, a 32-year news veteran, has quit her job after her stories on an alleged vote-buying scheme by Republican Rep. Heather Wilson at the recent delegate nominating convention in Bernalillo County, New Mexico, were scrubbed from her station's
website hourly news cycle by the News Director, after alleged pressure from Rep. Wilson.
The sitting Congresswoman is angling for an upgrade, as she hopes to be the state's Republican nominee to fill the Senate seat being vacated by outgoing Republican Pete Domenici. MacCallum's report, sourced by at least three different people, including herself, said that voters showed up to the delegate convention and claimed they were being "paid $35-an-hour (for two hours)" by Wilson's senate campaign and the congressional campaign of Bernalillo County Sheriff Darren White, "and that the campaigns had also paid their $30 registration fees."
I just spoke with Domrzalski, and he underscored again, as he did in his story, that "Wilson’s spokeswoman flat out refused to answer the question" when asked if he asked her if the reports were true.
Such a scheme, if true, would be a fourth-degree felony, according to New Mexico law. But as remarkable as those charges are, even if having the ring of truth, given what we already know about Wilson, the response, including the memo sent from KKOB News Director Pat Allen to MacCallum, is almost as remarkable...
The ever-necessary caveat: Most problems and failures with election systems don't fully begin to reveal themselves until the night of, and, more often, the days and weeks following the elections.
That said, this from RAW STORY's compilation article of various reports of trouble so far today, coming out of Ohio...
"About 40-50 people in line and 1 of the voting machine were down," one commenter wrote. "Waited to 7:00 AM and the line didn’t move 3 more machine went down, now 4 0f the 8 machine not working. The poll worker didn’t offer paper ballot and seemed overhelmed by the process. Let get rid of these Diebold machines and get something that works! I will be back tonite to vote, hope the machines are working by then."
"The district I am in had a line the full length of the gymnasium and there were 4 voting machines down that had been report[ed] 1 1/2 [sic] before but no one had been there to look at [them]," said a commenter from Beavercreek, Ohio. "I talked to several people in line, and everyone seemed to be enthusiastic."
On the other hand, for some good news --- at least for now --- Cuyahoga County (Cleveland)'s new Election Director Jane Platten reports that things were going well there so far today, in the county which has been the center of much controversy for a number of reasons, not the least of which was its recent switch from Diebold touch-screen machines to paper ballots to be scanned at the county by ES&S machines. As of noon today, Platten said things were going "exceptionally good" and that all precincts had been able to open on time. For a change.
In Dayton's Montgomery County, where the report of Diebold touch-screen machine failures above comes from, things are not going quite as well...
As we wait for the next round of thousands of disenfranchised voters to emerge from OH, TX, VT, RI, or beyond, Los Angeles County has finally finished counting its infamously disastrous "Double Bubble" ballots from the Feb. 5th Super Tuesday Primary in California.
The final numbers, in just in time to meet today's local certification deadline, are supposed to hearten us because the county Registrar's office chose to not count only some 12,000 valid, legally cast votes in the state's open Democratic Primary.
What a victory! It's kinda like celebrating the great success of the troop "surge" in Iraq where "coalition" fatalities have plummeted from pre-surge levels of 2.39 dead troops per day all the way down to 2.37 dead troops per day.
As we predicted, many of the districts counted resulted in very lopsided results. That was likely due to the horrible, unfair counting scheme the Registrar's office decided to use. The scheme disproportionately, and almost randomly, tossed out thousands of votes for some candidates, but tallied all of those for others --- even when they were all cast in the very same precinct, by the very exact same method. According to the results of this "supplemental count," as posted at the Registrar's website [PDF], it looks like our fears have come to pass in that department as well.
But there is a bit of actual good news in all of this, small comfort though it may be. Our concerns about the newly discovered uncounted provisional "Double Bubble" ballots, that we reported on Friday, were heard, even if our other concerns --- as attributed to us by name in today's Whittier Daily News coverage of the final tabulation --- were summarily dismissed by acting Registrar Dean Logan for unspecified "legal" reasons, according to that news report...
A Few Great Blogs
· Baghdad Burning
· Brilliant at Breakfast
· Crooks and Liars
· Dan Froomkin
· Fired Up! Missouri
· Freedom's Phoenix
· Freeway Blogger
· Glenn Greenwald
· Huffington Post
· Jesus' General
· Juan Cole
· Washington Monthly
· Media Matters
· Nashua Advocate
· Oliver Willis
· RAW STORY
· Sanoma State's
Project Censored Sites:
· Daily Censored
· Media Freedom
· Project Censored
· Scholars & Rogues
· Skippy the Bush Kangaroo
· Talking Points Memo
· Think Progress
· Tom Tomorrow
· TV Newser
· Ben Sargent
· Bill Deore
· Bob Gorrell
· Cagle's Index
· Chan Lowe
· Don Wright
· Doug Marlette
· Glenn McCoy
· Jeff Danziger
· Joel Pett
· Mike Luckovich
· Non Sequitur
· Not Banned Yet
· Pat Oliphant
· Paul Conrad
· Ted Rall
· This Modern World
· Thomas Burns
· Tom Toles
· Tony Auth
· Stuart Carlson
Or by Snail Mail
Make check out to...
7095 Hollywood Blvd., #594
Los Angeles, CA 90028