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Latest Featured Reports | Wednesday, September 28, 2016
Trumpwreck: The First Presidential Debate: 'BradCast' 9/27/16
Smart and, at times, hilarious coverage of the Trump/Clinton Hofstra debate, with journalists Heather Digby Parton and David Dayen...
'The Most Audacious Political Heist of Our Time':
'BradCast' 9/26/2016
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Guest: Linda Flynn of Charlotte Spirituality Center was 'feet away', believes police activity sparked violence at peaceful demonstration...
'Green News Report' 9/22/16
  w/ Brad & Desi
U.N. climate pact reaches crucial threshold; White House orders NatSec planning for climate change; Good/bad news in the Arctic; PLUS: Obama to world: Time to step up...
Previous GNRs: 9/20/16 - 9/15/16 - Archives...
Caller Debate Questions
for Trump and Clinton:
'BradCast' 9/21/16
Plus: Police shootings and protests in NC, OK; Earth smashes more heat records; Trump leads Clinton in new national poll...
Trump Charity Scam; Warren v. Wells CEO; TX Defies Court: 'BradCast' 9/20/16
A whole lotta liars, cheats and scam artists on today's show! (So what else is new?)...
'Green News Report' 9/20/16
AL pipeline spill; Court reprieve for Dakota Access; U.N. trying to 'Trump proof' climate pact; PLUS: Leonardo DiCaprio wants you to watch over the oceans...
Terror Attacks in NY, NJ, MN; Massive Pipeline Spill in AL: 'BradCast' 9/19/16
What we know (and don't) in both cases. Guest: Alabama Media Group's natural resources reporter Dennis Pillion...
Sunday Toons of the Slightly Queasy Moment
'Slightly'?! ... 'PDiddie' may need a moment to see if it passes...
Trump's (Latest) Trap; Voting Rights Rulings in KS and OH: 'BradCast' 9/16/16
Also: Nat'l polls tied; Trump leads in OH; Sanders warns against 3rd-party voting; Colbert cheers us up...
'Green News Report' 9/15/16
Dakota Access pipeline fails climate test; House Comm probes state AGs on Exxon; Lead paint maker bought WI immunity; PLUS: LA floods U.S. 3rd costliest disaster...
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'Democracy's Gold Standard'
Hand-marked, hand-counted ballots...
Brad's Upcoming Appearances
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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
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DOJ PROBE SOUGHT AFTER VA ARREST
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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...

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'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...

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The Secret Koch Brothers Tapes...


Or, Counting Voters' Ballots in American Elections, and Other 'Conspiracy Theories'
Or, the Mainstream Media and the 'Progressive' Blogworld...One Big Happy Family...With Liberty and Democracy for None...
By Brad Friedman on 1/14/2008 10:53am PT  

-- By Brad Friedman, The BRAD BLOG

Counting ballots is not done to find out what went wrong, but rather, to assure the results are right.

ATMs are fairly reliable. But I have a feeling if you get $300 from one of them, you'll likely count, by hand, all three hundred dollar bills to make sure they are there. Right? You'd be an irresponsible fool to do otherwise.

But with election results? Um, not so much.

Mahjoun at "Drunkard’s Lamppost" --- a blog which brands itself as "Politics with a spreadsheet and a calculator" --- offers a concise and easy to read summary of the results, as reported, in Diebold vs. Hand-Counted precincts in New Hampshire, along with a very sober analysis (notable for such a "Drunkard") of what may, and may not, be taken away from such an analysis.

Writes Mahjoun:

There are so many variables in an election result that to put Hillary’s win down to jiggery-pokery without any real evidence is over the top.

We concur. Although earlier in his piece, perhaps inadvertently, Mahjoun does a bit of "jiggery-pokery without any real evidence" himself, by stating:

In the end, Clinton won because she was more popular in the large precincts which happen to be tallied by Diebold machines.

Did she? Is there any evidence for that?

As they like to say over at Daily Kos, after all, "extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence." But that only seems to work one way. So, what exactly is the "extraordinary evidence" for the "extraordinary claim" that for the first time in United States history, a woman has won a Presidential Primary Election, while staring down the barrel of dozens of independent pre-election polls, all predicting she would take a thumping?

Mahjoun's point might have been more accurately stated as "In the end, Clinton won because Diebold machines reported having tallied the ballots more in her favor in large precincts."

That can be proven, after all. The Diebold machines did report, after they, and they alone, counted the paper ballots, without examination or independent verification, that Clinton received more votes in enough precincts to be announced the winner of the election. But unless there's something I'm missing, that's the only thing in this whole matter which can proven.

Some democracy, huh?

In conclusion though, Mahjoun gets it dead right, by pointing out what is, perhaps, the most important take-away from this entire mess, unless you are the sort, unlike me, who enjoys seeing these nightmares and questions repeated over and over again, in election after election in this country:

For democracy to work, the system must be transparent and maintain the confidence of its participants. Proprietary voting machines fail both these tests. Americans, as far as I know, are still capable of counting, so should return exclusively to the paper ballot.

Bingo. Buy that drunkard another drink!

But such responsible coverage, from the mainstream media --- or, more disappointingly, the supposedly-Progressive blogosphere, which has had no shortage of new epithets for The BRAD BLOG and its founding father, Brad Friedman, over the past week --- has not been easy to come by.

Rigging the Coverage...

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




Election Officials Confirm that Employees from LHS Associates, Diebold's Sole Programmer, Vendor, and Service Provider in NH, Were Allowed to Access Vulnerable Optical-Scan Systems Throughout Election Day
Attorney General's Office Offers Conflicting Information...
By Brad Friedman on 1/12/2008 9:57pm PT  

Special to The BRAD BLOG by Dori Smith of Talk Nation Radio

Early research into New Hampshire wards and towns which used Diebold's AccuVote Optical-Scan voting machines during last week's Primary reveals that chronic problems continue with the company's infamous paper-ballot voting machines.

As well, the preliminary investigation reveals a great deal of confusion and conflicting information from local election clerks and a high-ranking official in the state Attorney General's office regarding protocols and security procedures for voting systems and memory cards, and how they are to be handled during Election Day failures.

All four counties I contacted on January 10th that had used Diebold's electronic machines last week reported problems during the election with the machines. Two other calls that same day turned out to have been to areas where electronic voting is not in use, where hand counts are done instead. If the small sampling is any indication, a statewide study would likely reveal that voting machines failed many times during the 2008 Presidential Primary across the entire state.

Problems with the systems were quickly revealed during all of my calls to officials who had used the optical-scan systems in Hanover, Exeter, Nashua, and Manchester.

Little reporting or inquiry into such problems has been done so far by the mainstream media. Reports of machine failures in Stratham, leading to hand counting of votes after a "glitch" was discovered in the optical-scan systems used there, were buried in a local article on Primary results in SeaCoast Online on Thursday. The bulk of media reporting on the anomalous results from the election has focused, instead, on speculation as to what might have gone wrong with pre-election polls. Little if any coverage has been given to whether the results themselves were correct as reported, or whether voting machine errors or tampering may have occurred.

The paper ballots cast by 80% of the state's voters have never been examined by anyone to determine the mechanical vote-counting accuracy. The computer counting of those ballots is overseen by a single, private company which is routinely granted extraordinary access to the systems, and interviews with a number of state officials indicate they all seem to have different understandings of what, if any, rules exist to regulate that access...

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




Failure Caused Officials to Hand Count Ballots, While Questions Remain About Details of the Problems
Similar Reports Discovered Elsewhere, More on That Soon...
By Brad Friedman on 1/12/2008 6:07pm PT  

VotersUnite.org's John Gideon calls our attention to this snippet, from this recent story at NH's SeaCoastOnline [emphasis ours]:

So many Democrats turned out in Stratham that Town Clerk Shirley Daley said she had to photocopy 87 ballots. Hartson said she began printing extra Democratic ballots at 6 p.m. when they began running low. Because of a glitch in the machines, clerks there had to hand count all of the extra ballots.

Gideon follows up by asking: "They had to hand-count all of the extra ballots. What about the ballots that had already been run on the machines (note the plural)? How many other machines across the state had the same 'glitch'?"

We tried to contact Town Clerk Daley on Friday, in order to find out, what came of the ballots counted before the problem was discovered, but their offices close at 12noon on Fridays.

As to further such incidents across the state, it seems there were far more than anyone has so far reported. We will have another article shortly, concerning such reports of problems on Diebold voting machine across the state during last week's Primary Election. 80% of New Hampshire votes were counted on such machines. To date, none of those ballots have been counted, verified or audited by any human being to our knowledge.

UPDATE 9:56pm As promised, further reports on problems with voting machines in other NH towns, now published here...

For related coverage, please see our index of notable New Hampshire-related BRAD BLOG articles, since the '08 Primary.



Says 'Election All for Naught if We Can't Trust Results'
Catherine Crier: 'Glad This Controversy's Come Up, Will Elevate Voting Machine Issue In Minds of American People'...
By Brad Friedman on 1/11/2008 11:23pm PT  

From tonight's Real Time with Bill Maher, with guests Catherine Crier of CourtTV, Mark Cuban of HDNet, and Tony Snow of Fox "News"/White House. On the topic of concerns about the New Hampshire primary results, and Diebold's sole-control over 80% of the ballots in the state...


Some key quotes from the video...

MAHER: I'm not saying something went wrong, but it does bother me that a private company runs the polling machines and that only they certainly, seem to know what went on in that [New Hampshire election].

CRIER: What I'm glad about is that whole controversy's come up and that they're going to go back and take a look. It's going to elevate the whole voting machine issue in the minds of the American people before the elections

[APPLAUSE]

MAHER: We have so much debate, and there's so much interest in this election…but it all comes to naught if we can't trust what the result is.

Tony Snow then immediately brings up Photo ID, completely and entirely out of context, and suggests, incorrectly, that the issue is "voter fraud." It's not. It's election fraud. The voters are doing fine. Leave them alone.

Thankfully, Maher quickly destroys Snow in return. As does Crier.

Cuban raises key points about the stunning Dan Rather investigative report, (complete video here) on "The Trouble with Touchscreens," which ran on Cuban's HDNet network last year (and which the entirety of the corporate mainstream media subsequently ignored.)

The Real Time clip was very good.

Hey Bill - If ya ever need me, I live about 5 minutes from your studio, and would be happy to share more with your viewers on all of this, if you really believe what you suggest about elections coming "to naught if we can't trust what the result is." You are, of course, absolutely right. Thanks for mentioning it.

For related coverage, please see our index of notable New Hampshire-related BRAD BLOG articles, since the '08 Primary.



Says 'Anything Of Value Should Be Auditable And We Know Votes Are Valuable'
Steps Necessary 'To Give Voters The Confidence That They Deserve That Their Votes Will Be Counted As They Intended'
By Alan Breslauer on 1/11/2008 6:22pm PT  

Guest Blogged by Alan Breslauer


IMPORTANT NOTE FROM BRAD: In the above clip, Rep. Rush Holt (D-NJ) speaks about the necessity of a paper ballot for every vote cast, that can be "audited" after an election to ensure voter intent was recorded accurately. It should be noted, however, that while he plans to introduce a small "emergency bill" next week, which would give money to jurisdictions who wish to provide paper ballots to voters in the November 2008 election only, his larger Election Reform bill (HR811) that he has previously been pushing (and refers to near the end of the segment) does not, despite what the Congressman says, require paper ballots be used.

HR811 would continue to allow for DRE (usually called touch-screen) voting systems to be used, as long as they have a so-called "paper trail" printer. DRE "paper trails", however, do not provide a reliable, auditable record of voter intent. Only voter-marked paper ballots --- such as the ones used in New Hampshire --- provide such assurances of an auditable election result. See this Special Coverage page for more info on HR811.

DREs with or without so-called "paper trails" cannot be used safely in any American election. Period.




By Brad Friedman on 1/11/2008 3:58pm PT  

As you might have guessed, I'm buried for the moment in a blizzard of incoming calls, emails, and more (such as bad, and misleading, articles and blog items about all of this), even while trying to both learn more details on a number of fronts and keep up with media appearances to discuss the issues so Americans might better understand what's really going on here, and what the concerns really are.

So I'll have much more on all of this tonight, as I get caught up with a number of related items that I've been working on at the same time, while trying to keep up with all of the above.

Until then, consider this an Open Thread. And I hope you'll help me, by continuing to spread the facts about the questions at hand.

Those questions begin with this concern:

While pollsters and the MSM and even theoretically-Progressive bloggers are speculating about what might have gone wrong in dozens of different, independent, transparent pre-election polls --- almost all of which found precisely the same information --- very few seem to be questioning whether the completely unverified results, from 80% of New Hampshire, counted on hackable, error-prone Diebold machines, completely programmed, controlled, and operated by a single, private, less-than-respectable company (LHS Associates), were actually accurate in the first place.

At the same time, evidence exists that even the Exit Polls showed Obama was winning throughout the day, and there have been a number of eyebrow-raising questions about the reported results themselves, as discovered so far, during independent analysis of them. Not enough anomalies have yet been found, in my opinion, to raise any large red flags, but certainly a still-growing number of anomalies for yellow ones.

I'll add that even if the ballots, if they are ever actually counted, turn out to reveal a different result than reported, it could be due to error, not fraud, and if fraud, it needn't have been committed by anybody related, in any way, to the Clinton camp.

I believe we all deserve to know if the results, as reported, were accurate beyond a shadow of a doubt. That is the sensible and responsible question for the moment. And anybody who offers you reasons for why Clinton won (perhaps she did, we cannot know for sure at this time) or why Obama lost (perhaps he did, we cannot know for sure at this time) is doing nothing but irresponsibly speculating.

Discuss. More tonight...

(UPDATE: Okay, more tomorrow instead...promise. Lots going on.)

For more, please see our index of notable New Hampshire-related BRAD BLOG coverage, since the '08 Primary. And please consider supporting the work of The BRAD BLOG with an ONLINE DONATION. Our support comes almost solely from readers like you. Seriously.



Cites Concerns About 'Unexplained Disparities' in Hand and Diebold Machine Counted Ballots
Says 'It’s about establishing whether 100% of the voters had 100% of their votes counted exactly the way they cast them'
By Brad Friedman on 1/10/2008 6:10pm PT  

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




Discussing NH, and the 'Progressive' Crackpots Who Don't Believe Ballots Should Actually be Counted in Primary Elections...
By Brad Friedman on 1/10/2008 12:05pm PT  

10 minutes on this morning's Stephanie Miller Show. Discussing why things like actually counting the ballots in New Hampshire would have been a great idea. And on the lunacy and self-destructiveness of progressives (like this uninformed front-pager over at dKos, and his even lesser-informed followers, such as Markos himself) buying into the conspiracy theory that the dozens of verified, independent, multiple-sourced pre-election polls were wrong, but the unverified and uncounted election results, as announced, are somehow magically known to be accurate.

The results might well be right. But unlike the transparent and verifiable polls, no human being has actually bothered to count or even examine 80% of the ballots in NH. So whose the irresponsible crackpot here? Some of these folks are digging their own November grave.

We stay up all night without sleeping and go on Steph's show, you decide...




'Even Our Own Exit Polls, Taken as People Came Out of Voting, Showed Him Ahead'...
By Brad Friedman on 1/10/2008 2:47am PT  


Even the Exit Polls showed that Obama should have won, according to Chris Matthews on Hardball today. It's the first specific indication that we've seen that the raw, unadjusted Exit Poll data, which only corporate mainstream media folks, not mere mortals, are allowed to see, confirmed pre-election polling which predicted an Obama win.

He introduced his segment today this way (video at right):

MATTHEWS: So what accounts for Hillary Clinton's victory in New Hampshire? What we don't know is why the victory is so much different in fact, than the polling ahead of time, including what we call the Exit Polls were telling us. Obama was ahead in those polls by an average of 8 points, and even our own Exit Polls, taken as people came out of voting, showed him ahead. So what's going on here?

Good question. And one that we asked, verbatim, all night long last night.

"Why were the polls taken, of people coming out of the booth, so off?," Matthews tries to ask his guests again and again. And again.

All of them twisted and turned and contorted and grappled and speculated, coming up with every possible unverifiable, backwards-engineered explanation, save for the one that must not be named. The 600 lb. canary in the virtual living room...the fact that no human being has bothered to check what was actually on NH's vast majority of ballots (80%) which were "counted" by error-prone, hackable Diebold optical-scan machines, all controlled by one bad, horribly irresponsible private company, who has no business being anywhere near a public election...

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




Analaysis Shows Candidates 'Positions Swapped' Where Ballots Counted by Hand Versus 'Counted' by Machine...
By Brad Friedman on 1/10/2008 1:47am PT  

It's been an exhausting day, as a few folks in the world are finally beginning to open their eyes, and realize that not counting ballots, and trusting instead, in error-prone, hackable machines for "faith-based results" doesn't make a lot of sense. Particularly in an election for which nobody --- and I mean nobody --- has come up with a legitimate explanation for the surprising results. Oh, there's been plenty of speculation, but no actual facts. So why it's so difficult for folks to realize that the biggest unknown here --- what the ballots actually said on them --- has gone wholly unexamined in 80% of NH, continues to elude me.

That point eludes Tribune Media Services columnist Bob Koehler too. So I hope you read his eye-opening take on that for Thursday's corporate mainstream papers.

As promised, in my long, and much-updated original piece from last night, first expressing concerns and asking questions about the NH results, folks today have been looking at the precinct numbers to compare the difference between those which "counted" ballots on Diebold op-scan systems (for about 80% of NH's voters), versus those that still hand-count ballots in the Granite State (about 20% of the votes).

Ben Moseley of The Contrarian, most succinctly covers what other folks have found as well today. Namely, a 7 point overall bump for Clinton over Obama where the machines were used instead of hand-counts...

I just spent the last two hours putting together a spreadsheet of the Democratic results of the NH primary for each town with almost all but a few towns reporting, and the results were somewhat surprising.
...
I say "somewhat" because some people will say this entirely foreseeable. What the informal statistics show is that Hillary Clinton received a 4.5% boost in towns using Diebold voting machines compared to towns that didn't. Meanwhile, Obama was hurt in these towns showing a 2.5% decrease in the Diebold towns.

Moseley responsibly notes, however, that there could well be other reasons for Clinton's popularity in areas where Diebold's machines are used, in lieu of actually counting ballots. For example, hand-counting in NH is generally done in the more rural areas and smaller precincts. Perhaps Obama is more popular, or Clinton less, in such areas for any number of reasons.

The comparisons are only anecdotally useful for that reason. However, had the hand-counted results matched up similarly to those in Diebold areas, it might well have been a sign that there was little to worry about. (Even if I personally think not counting ballots is always something to worry about. But that's just me, one of those whacky pro-Democracy fellers, I guess.)

Moseley a blogger and political science student from American University, writes about Clinton's Diebold bump: "Does this show election fraud? Right now I'm not sure, but the possibility definitely remains and must not be taken off the table."

Then, in two updates, he offers a coupla more eye-brow raisers...

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




All Eyes on Diebold's Man in Franklin, the Dirty Matt Damschroeder...
By Brad Friedman on 1/9/2008 11:09pm PT  

Is Ohio Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner finally getting serious about accountability? This could be a good sign...

COLUMBUS, Ohio --- Ohio Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner said her office is investigating the Franklin County Board of Elections for possible voting problems.

The announcement was made after Franklin County Elections Director Matthew Damschroder criticized Brunner for directing counties to print additional paper ballots for the March primary voters who don't trust electronic voting machines, NBC 4's Patrick Preston reported.

Brunner told NBC 4 on Wednesday that her office is looking into several issues within Franklin County, including ballots that did not match in the November election and voting machines that could not be audited for accuracy.

Related previous BRAD BLOG coverage of Damschroder:

  • 7/16/05: Franklin County's Damschroder 'Accepts Bribe' from Diebold Lobbyist
  • 7/20/05: Damschroder 'Docked' for Accepting $10,000 Check from Diebold Rep
  • 1/3/08: OH SoS Announces Paper Ballots for All; Damschroder Objects
  • 1/3/08: Damschroder Deputy Pleads Guilty to 'Profiting from Contracts for Voting Machines'



  • Ken Hajjar, Director of Diebold's Exclusive Sales & Service Provider in New England Pled Guilty to Criminal Charges in 90's
    Does the Sec. of State of NH --- or CT or MA or VT or ME --- Even Know About It?...
    By Brad Friedman on 1/9/2008 8:47pm PT  

    Does the Secretary of State of New Hampshire have any idea that a key executive in the private firm that programs and "counts" 80% of the state's ballots on hackable, error-prone Diebold voting machines is a convicted narcotics trafficker?

    In 1990, Ken Hajjar, the Director of Sales and Marketing for LHS Associates, and childhood friend of company owner John Silvestro, was arrested and pled guilty to charges of "Sale/CND" (Sale of Controlled Narcotics/Drugs) which earned him a 12 month sentence, according to documents received via a public records request and posted this evening at BlackBoxVoting.org.

    LHS Associates, as BBV's Bev Harris points out, programs "every single voting machine in New Hampshire, Connecticut, almost all of Massachusetts, Vermont, and Maine."

    Hajjar himself is also the the guy who showed up in BRAD BLOG comments, at one point last summer, to let us know we are "totally full of shit" and "deluded...paranoid...looney idealogues" to boot. Well, maybe. But at least we don't have a secret felony conviction, even while owning almost complete control over every vote cast and "counted" in New England.

    The newly-revealed felon's impolitic rant here earned him the boot from the Secretary of State of Connecticut, where he is now barred from working, as guest blogger Dori Smith pointed out in another BRAD BLOG story last November, detailing the horrors that are LHS Associates, Silvestro and Hajjar.

    When Smith asked Hajjar about his admission that he and his company regularly replace voting machine memory cards (the keys to the kingdom!) at will, in the middle of elections, he told her, "I mean, I don't pay attention to every little law."

    We'll say!

    Go check out Harris' new article tonight, which includes more details and the arrest record --- along with the note that "until recently, LHS employees were listed on the company Web site. Now the pages identifying who programs New England voting machines have been taken down."

    Now ya know why.

    Even if you still don't know who actually won the New Hampshire Primary.

    (What say we actually count the ballots and put the questions to rest? Just sayin'...)

    For good measure, we'll also post again below the rare video footage of Silvestro, along with the first-hand BBV footage of the infamous and stunning Leon County, FL hack of a Diebold optical-scan machine --- the very same ones used across NH on Tuesday --- and the one originally seen in HBO's Emmy-nominated Hacking Democracy...

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




    Syndicated Columnist Robert Koehler Writes for Tomorrow's Papers: 'Possibility of Tainted Results, a Prospect Most of Media Can't Bear'
    Notes Problems With NH's Diebold Machines 'Remain Unsolved'...
    By Brad Friedman on 1/9/2008 4:35pm PT  

    Syndicated Tribune Media Services columnist Bob Koehler bumps up our serious concerns about last night's wholly untransparent, and still-uncounted (by anything but a hackable Diebold computer, and a company with an executive criminal past, to say the least) New Hampshire Primary election results, from "blogger conspiracy theory" to mainstream media concern.

    Here are the first few grafs of his column, set to run in tomorrow's editions of subscribing mainstream media papers...

    PRIMARY CONCERNS
    By Robert C. Koehler
    Tribune Media Services

    As the breathless sports coverage of the presidential primaries bursts around me this morning, I’m doing my best to resist surrendering to the contrived drama about “comeback kids” and the flying shrapnel of numbers and hold onto my troubled skepticism about the electoral process, or at least most of it.

    First of all, before we get too enthusiastic about feminist solidarity or wax knowingly about New Hampshire Democrats’ traditional soft-heartedness toward the Clinton family, let’s ponder yet again the possibility of tainted results, which is such an unfun prospect most of the media can’t bear to remember that all the problems we’ve had with electronic voting machines — and Diebold machines in particular, which dominate New Hampshire polling places — remain unsolved.

    Did the Hillary campaign really defy the pollsters? She had been trailing Barack Obama by 13 percentage points, 42 to 29, in a recent Zogby poll, as election watchdog Brad Friedman pointed out. And the weekend’s “rapturous packed rallies for Mr. Obama,” as the New York Times put it, “suggested Mrs. Clinton was in dire shape.”

    So when she emerged from the Tuesday primary with an 8,000-vote and 3-percentage-point victory over Obama, perhaps — considering the notorious unreliability, not to mention hackability, of Diebold machines — the media might have hoisted a few red flags in the coverage, rather than immediately chalk the results up to Clinton’s tears and voter unpredictability. (Oh, if only more reporters considered red flags patriotic.)

    The fact is, whatever actually happened in New Hampshire voting booths on Tuesday, our elections are horrifically insecure. For instance, Bev Harris, of the highly respected voting watchdog organization Black Box Voting, recently wrote that the Diebold 1.94w optical scan machines used in some 55 percent of New Hampshire precincts (representing more than 80 percent of the state’s voters) are “the exact same make, model and version hacked in the Black Box Voting project in Leon County (Florida)” a few years ago. They haven’t been upgraded; the security problems haven’t been fixed.

    National, or at least media, denial about this situation doesn’t say much for the strength of our democracy.

    The rest of the column is just as good, in which he discusses the MSM's "inability to incorporate news of ongoing voting-machine insecurity into actual election coverage."

    Full column now posted here...




    Says We Put 'Too Much Stock' Into Something That Is Often Wrong As Was The Case In New Hampshire
    Guest Keyllyanne Conway Concurs And Points Out That Exit Polls Were Also Wrong In The 2000 And 2004 Presidential Elections...
    By Alan Breslauer on 1/9/2008 3:28pm PT  

    Guest Blogged by Alan Breslauer

    Neil Cavuto wonders why "we put a lot of stock" into exit polls when pollsters "get it wrong a lot." Republican pollster Kellyanne Conway agrees that we put "too much stock" in exit polls. Conway goes on to blame the media, "who are running their own polls" and reminds viewers that, "these are the same media who ran polls in 2000 on election night declaring Al Gore the winner, 2004 declaring John Kerry the winner according to exit polls and here we are again." And even though she claims to be a pollster, Conway strangely adds that, "exit polling is not scientific. It's illustrative. It's fun."

    Finally the conversation turns to the question of race in exit polling where, according to Conway, "people use pollster to lie to themselves". The reason for this is that people like to "make themselves sound more progressive".




    Other Pre-Election Numbers, For Republicans and Rest of Dems, Nearly Dead on the Money...
    By Brad Friedman on 1/8/2008 8:49pm PT  

    [UPDATED several times at end of article, and still developing with new updates...]

    I'm not sure why Obama would have conceded so soon, given the virtually inexplicable turn of events in New Hampshire tonight.

    What's going on here? Before proceeding, I recommend you read the third section of the post I just ran an hour or so ago, concerning the way the ballots are counted in New Hampshire, largely on Diebold optical-scan voting systems, wholly controlled and programmed by a very very bad company named LHS Associates.

    Those Diebold op-scan machines are the exact same ones that were hacked in the HBO documentary, Hacking Democracy. See the previous report, as I recommend, which also includes a video of that hack, and footage of the guy who runs LHS Associates.

    That said, the the pre-election pollster's numbers (NOTE: that's not Exit Polls, but Pre-Election Polls!) were dead-on, for the most part, on the Republican side, as well as on the Democratic side. Except in the do-or-die (for Hillary) Clinton v. Obama race. I'm watching MSNBC right now, and they all seem to agree that the results, for the moment, defy explanation.

    I concur.

    Here's a screenshot of a round up of all of the latest polls from RealClearPolitics.com tonight, and more, to get an idea of the serious concerns here...

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




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