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Latest Featured Reports | Friday, September 19, 2014
ACLU Files Emergency Petition to Halt 'Electoral Chaos' in WI
Seeks full 7th Circuit hearing after remarkable three-GOP judge ruling reinstating Photo ID restrictions just weeks before election...
'Green News Report' 9/18/14
  w/ Brad & Desi
DiCaprio takes climate role at UN; Jindal plays dumbest role yet; Fracking confirmed (again) to contaminate; Black lung coal disease on rise; PLUS: Polluter front groups newest attack...
Previous GNRs: 9/16/14 - 9/11/14 - Archives...
Oil & Water: KPFK 'BradCast'
BRAD BLOG's Desi Doyen sits in for Brad with guests Matthew Heberger on water wars, David O. Atkins on CA's latest fracking fight, and Margot Paez on Mars!...
Audio of 911 Call from Judge Mark Fuller's Wife as She's Heard Repeatedly Struck
MSNBC's Chris Hayes plays horrifying audio from the wife-beating incident of Federal Judge Mark Fuller; ALSO: calls for accountability from two Alabama U.S. Congresswoman...
Bobby Jindal: Climate Denier, Boy Genius
Louisiana's governor and pretend 2016 GOP Presidential hopeful pulls the old 'I know you are, but what am I?' maneuver by calling the Obama Administration 'climate deniers'...
'Green News Report' 9/16/14
  w/ Brad & Desi
Hottest year on record in CA, hottest Aug. on record for planet; Record hurricane hits Cabo San Lucas; Warm-water fish found in Alaska; PLUS: Burlington, VT now 100% renewable!...
Previous GNRs: 9/11/14 - 9/9/14 - Archives...
Wife-Beating Federal Judge Finally Mentioned on MSNBC
MSNBC contributor asks about lack of outrage, impeachment for federal judge Mark Fuller who beat his wife bloody in August...
Outrage Slowly Grows After Wife-Beating Federal Judge Avoids Prosecution
Fellow GOP District Court judge calls for accountability, says 'no one should trust Mark Fuller's judgment in a federal trial courtroom'...
GOP PHOTO ID RESTRICTION LAW RESTORED IN WI
Republican voter suppression laws getting huge boosts from GOP-appointed federal judges in NC, where 100s recently disenfranchised, and now in WI, in advance of critical mid-terms...
Not Taking the ISIS Bait
The media and the U.S. Government have decided to give the latest barbaric idiots to rise up in the Middle East all the publicity they crave, despite the 'exaggerated' threat posed to the U.S., or even in the region. We're not interested in playing along...
'Green News Report' 9/11/14
  w/ Brad & Desi
Greenhouse gas emissions jump at record rate; Australia's emissions soar after carbon tax axed; Oceans acidifying at historic rate; PLUS: Some good news: Ozone Hole begone!...
Previous GNRs: 9/9/14 - 9/4/14 - Archives...
Accountability for Judge Fuller?; O, Mighty ISIS!:
KPFK 'BradCast'
Will Alabama's wife-beating U.S. District Court Judge face impeachment? Plus: Callers, lots of 'em, on what to do about ISIS...
Wife-Beaters: Rice Loses Job; Judge Fuller Continues Lifetime Appointment
America was outraged by the NFL superstar. So, what about Alabama's federal judge who beat his wife bloody and is now off scot-free?...
'Green News Report' 9/9/14
Floods: Catastrophic in Pakistan, Historic in Phoenix; Hillary on Global Warming; Rand Paul dismisses; PLUS: Lobster Boat Blockade wins!...
GA GOP State Senator: Too Many Black People Will Vote in DeKalb County!
Vows to close 'election loophole' allowing convenient Early Voting in area 'dominated by African Americans'; UPDATE: Says just wants 'more educated voters'...
GOP Allows 'Citizens United' Amendment to Move Forward, Will Vote Against
Koch Brothers' beneficiary Sen. Rand Paul wouldn't even allow that much...
NYT Public Editor Calls Out Paper for Phony 'Balance' on 'Voter Fraud', Global Warming
Margaret Sullivan's no weasel (unlike a predecessor). She's calling out the 'paper of record' again for misreporting on GOP myths...
Siegelman's Judge Strikes Deal to Avoid Trial After Beating Wife Bloody
U.S. District Court Judge Mark Fuller to have record expunged following drug/alcohol evaluation, domestic abuse counseling...
ObamaCare 'Nightmare': 2015 Premiums Rates to DECLINE in Many Major Cities
This whole 'tyrannical government takeover of health care' thing is really a disaster...for Republicans...
Federal Judge Orders Restoration of Early Voting Hours in OH -- Again
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'Green News Report' 9/4/14
Accountability for BP in Gulf Oil Spill Disaster and for PG&E in deadly pipeline explosion; CA bans plastic bags, regulates groundwater for first time in history...
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GUEST: Attorney and BRAD BLOG legal analyst Ernest A. Canning...
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Brad interviews American patriots...
'Democracy's Gold Standard'
Hand-marked, hand-counted ballots...
Brad's Upcoming Appearances
(All times listed as PACIFIC TIME unless noted)
Media Appearance Archives...
'Special Coverage' Archives
GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal 2012...
VA GOP VOTER REG FRAUDSTER OFF HOOK
Felony charges dropped against VA Republican caught trashing voter registrations before last year's election. Did GOP AG, Prosecutor conflicts of interest play role?...

Criminal GOP Voter Registration Fraud Probe Expanding in VA
State investigators widening criminal probe of man arrested destroying registration forms, said now looking at violations of law by Nathan Sproul's RNC-hired firm...

DOJ PROBE SOUGHT AFTER VA ARREST
Arrest of RNC/Sproul man caught destroying registration forms brings official calls for wider criminal probe from compromised VA AG Cuccinelli and U.S. AG Holder...

Arrest in VA: GOP Voter Reg Scandal Widens
'RNC official' charged on 13 counts, for allegely trashing voter registration forms in a dumpster, worked for Romney consultant, 'fired' GOP operative Nathan Sproul...

ALL TOGETHER: ROVE, SPROUL, KOCHS, RNC
His Super-PAC, his voter registration (fraud) firm & their 'Americans for Prosperity' are all based out of same top RNC legal office in Virginia...

LATimes: RNC's 'Fired' Sproul Working for Repubs in 'as Many as 30 States'
So much for the RNC's 'zero tolerance' policy, as discredited Republican registration fraud operative still hiring for dozens of GOP 'Get Out The Vote' campaigns...

'Fired' Sproul Group 'Cloned', Still Working for Republicans in At Least 10 States
The other companies of Romney's GOP operative Nathan Sproul, at center of Voter Registration Fraud Scandal, still at it; Congressional Dems seek answers...

FINALLY: FOX ON GOP REG FRAUD SCANDAL
The belated and begrudging coverage by Fox' Eric Shawn includes two different video reports featuring an interview with The BRAD BLOG's Brad Friedman...

COLORADO FOLLOWS FLORIDA WITH GOP CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION
Repub Sec. of State Gessler ignores expanding GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal, rants about evidence-free 'Dem Voter Fraud' at Tea Party event...

CRIMINAL PROBE LAUNCHED INTO GOP VOTER REGISTRATION FRAUD SCANDAL IN FL
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Another visit on Thom Hartmann's Big Picture with new news on several developing Election Integrity stories...

CAUGHT ON TAPE: COORDINATED NATIONWIDE GOP VOTER REG SCAM
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CRIMINAL ELECTION FRAUD COMPLAINT FILED AGAINST GOP 'FRAUD' FIRM
Scandal spreads to 11 FL counties, other states; RNC, Romney try to contain damage, split from GOP operative...

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Rep. Ted Deutch (D-FL) sends blistering letter to Gov. Rick Scott (R) demanding bi-partisan reg fraud probe in FL; Slams 'shocking and hypocritical' silence, lack of action...

VIDEO: Brad Breaks GOP Reg Fraud Scandal on Hartmann TV
Breaking coverage as the RNC fires their Romney-tied voter registration firm, Strategic Allied Consulting...

RNC FIRES NATIONAL VOTER REGISTRATION FIRM FOR FRAUD
After FL & NC GOP fire Romney-tied group, RNC does same; Dead people found reg'd as new voters; RNC paid firm over $3m over 2 months in 5 battleground states...

EXCLUSIVE: Intvw w/ FL Official Who First Discovered GOP Reg Fraud
After fraudulent registration forms from Romney-tied GOP firm found in Palm Beach, Election Supe says state's 'fraud'-obsessed top election official failed to return call...

GOP REGISTRATION FRAUD FOUND IN FL
State GOP fires Romney-tied registration firm after fraudulent forms found in Palm Beach; Firm hired 'at request of RNC' in FL, NC, VA, NV & CO...
The Secret Koch Brothers Tapes...


By Alan Breslauer on 11/3/2006 12:47pm PT  

Guest Blogged by Alan Breslauer

Kitty Pilgrim covers a myriad of e-voting problems pouring in from across the country during early voting. Sequoia gets the lion's share of the coverage with the newly discovered large yellow button that, when pressed, allows voters to vote as many times as they want. Dobbs: "I keep expecting the country to just sort of go into a group scream over these e-voting machines."

The text-transcript of Thursday's segment on Lou Dobbs Tonight follows in full...

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

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Long-Sought Document Finally Surfaces Showing America's Largest Voting Machine Company, MD State Election Director, Hid Major Flaws From State, Country!
Original 200-Page Security Report --- Said to be 'The Pentagon Papers of Electronic Voting' --- Previously Released Only in 38-Page Highly Redacted Form…Until Now…
By Rebecca Abrahams on 11/2/2006 7:16pm PT  

Special to The BRAD BLOG by Guest Blogger and Freelance Network News Producer, Rebecca Abrahams

In September, 2003 Linda Lamone, the Administrator of Maryland's State Board of Elections and President of the National Association of State Election Directors (NASED) hands over a critical study on the security of the Diebold Election Systems machines that count all of Maryland's votes.

Between the time that the State of Maryland commissioned the highly respected Scientific Applications International Corporation (SAIC) to evaluate the effectiveness and security of their electronic voting machines and the time that the study is made public, critical pieces of information have been edited, omitted and, in some cases, words added, to fundamentally alter the original meaning of the report's conclusions.

The original SAIC report, coming in at nearly 200 pages, was reduced, redacted and altered such that the only version the public --- or even state officials including the Governor and the full State Board of Elections --- would ever be allowed to see was a wholly sanitized 38-page version of the report.

Until now.

For the first time, we've been able to review the complete, much sought-after, unredacted version of the SAIC report which has been kept at bay from Maryland state officials…as well as the computer science and security community…as well as the election integrity community and public at large since it was originally completed in 2003.

It has been called "The Pentagon Papers of Electronic Voting Systems" by some members of the computer science and security community.

Our EXCLUSIVE access to that document --- which we will be releasing in full shortly --- was made possible by a patriot whistleblower. The information, some of which is detailed below, could be explosive in the final days before the Midterm Elections.

UPDATE: The complete, unredacted SAIC Report is now available here for downloading.

As well, a transcript of an EXCLUSIVE unaired network interview that I carried out with Lamone --- in which she tore off her microphone and cut off the interview after I dared to confront her on some of these issues --- will follow below as well…

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

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Video Shows Hackable Memory Cards Placed by Election Workers into Laptop Computers...
By John Gideon on 11/2/2006 8:34am PT  

Blogged by John Gideon, VotersUnite.Org

A Press Release, which is copied in full on the other side of the fold, was just received from Steven Hertzberg, the Project Director of Election Science Institute that exposes the fact that in September election workers in Cuyahoga County, Ohio put every Diebold memory card into laptop computers in order to archive election information. These laptops were found laying around the office and, in some cases, were even brought from home. There is no way to know how many viruses may have now been transferred from these laptops to the memory cards. Luckily this incident was caught on video tape.

This failure on the part of county election officials is exactly the type of failure that Diebold has claimed over and over again cannot happen. In the new release, Prof. Edward Felton of Princeton University and the recent Diebold TS hack, says:

"Diebold has repeatedly stated that this type of security breach is virtually impossible due to security practices employed by the vendor and election officials. Anyone who watches the video can now see for themselves that a virus could penetrate the election system via tasks performed by election staff."

The press release from Princeton and the Election Science Institute is posted in full below...

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

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New Vulnerability Discovered on Touch-Screen Systems Made by One of Country's Largest Voting Machine Companies Will Affect Elections in Dozens of States!
California's Secretary of State Bruce McPherson Denies Knowledge of Vulnerability Well After His Office Had Been Notified...
By Brad Friedman on 11/2/2006 3:32am PT  

"Just push the yellow button and you can vote as many times as you want," Tom Courbat, an Election Integrity advocate from Riverside County, California informed The BRAD BLOG tonight. Not that we're in any mood to report more such stories, but this seems to be a big one. A very big one.

It seems there's a little yellow button on the back of every touch-screen computer made by Sequoia Voting Systems, that allows any voter, or poll worker, or precinct inspector to set the system into "Manual Mode" allowing them to cast as many votes as they want.

Concerns about the flaw were first reported some thirty days ago to California Secretary of State Bruce McPherson's office by Ron Watt, a Tehama County, CA precinct inspector who has been a poll worker in the county for the last fifteen years. And yet, as recently as a radio interview last Tuesday, McPherson --- who has been crowing about having the country's most stringent security process for voting systems --- denied he was aware of any security issues with Sequoia systems.

"They didn't care about it," Watt told us tonight about his "late September or early October" discussion with McPherson's voting systems chief Bruce McDannold. "He said he didn't think it was an important issue. He said I don't believe this is really a vulnerability."

Watt and Courbat disagreed and placed another phone call to the SoS' office on Friday after Watt received a copy of Sequoia's "Poll Workers Guide, Booklet #5: Troubleshooting" via a public records request in Tehama. On pages 19 through 22 of the booklet --- which is marked as "Confidential and Proprietary" --- he confirmed the simple manual override to the system. He'd learned about it years earlier and the new manuals confirmed that button was still in place. Even in the latest models of the Sequoia Edge voting systems (both models 1 and 2).

The complete sequence to override the system and enter manual voting mode, along with the Sequoia booklet received via Watt's public records request, is now posted here at BlackBoxVoting.org.

Watt had been taught to be a poll worker trainer by De La Rue, the former parent company of Sequoia, years ago when the systems were first brought into the county. The two men placed a conference call with McDannold last Friday after receiving the booklet. McDannold again reportedly downplayed the concerns, but said "he'd look into it," according to Courbat.

He called Courbat back on Monday afternoon to say Sequoia technicians had been in the SoS office and had confirmed the vulnerability. (A complete transcript of McDannold's Monday phone message left on Courbat's cell phone, confirming the security issue and describing the actions --- or lack thereof --- being taken, is at end of this article.)

Sequoia's voting machines are perhaps the most widely used in California, in some 19 different counties, including both Tehama and Riverside, which is known as the "Home of E-Voting" as it was the first county in the nation to deploy such systems. But identical Sequoia machines are also used in dozens of other states around the country including Florida, Illinois and elsewhere.

Thanks to the diligence of Watt and Courbat, it is now confirmed that all such systems are completely vulnerable to virtually anyone who wishes to cast as many votes as they please.

"I can do it in 18 seconds," says Watt. "I can train you to do it in 3 minutes. Just push the yellow button, wait 3 seconds and it chimes. Push the yellow button again, wait 3 seconds and it chimes again. Then it's all on the screen prompts. You're asked 'Do you want to enter manual mode?' and you push 'Yes'...And then you're on your way."

"You can then vote as many times as you want. You won't ever have to stop until someone physically restrains you from voting," he explained.

"But wouldn't someone hear the chime?" we asked...

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

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Rightwing Extremist/Hate-Monger Refused to Cooperate in Probe or Follow Rule of Law...
By Brad Friedman on 11/1/2006 5:52pm PT  

We've had some documents from Coulter's attorney concerning the below for some time, but we haven't been able to find a second to run them. Just too much going on. So for now, I'll let AP pick up the ball for the moment. Besides, it's embarrassing for them that I keep beating them to so many stories! ;-)

A search for "Ann Coulter Voter Fraud" (yes, voter fraud, the kind the Republicans say is rampant, despite evidence suggesting that it's election fraud that's the real problem) here at The BRAD BLOG will yield loads of previous coverage on this story, including an actual copy of Coulter's fraudulent felonious voter registration forms, the original complaint from the polling place where she illegally tried to vote, attorney letters, and much more more...

From AP...

Ann Coulter Says She Won't Cooperate in Voting Probe

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. Conservative columnist Ann Coulter has refused to cooperate in an investigation into whether she voted in the wrong precinct, so the case will probably be turned over to prosecutors, Palm Beach County's elections chief said Wednesday.

Knowingly voting in the wrong precinct is a felony punishable by up to five years in prison.

Elections Supervisor Arthur Anderson said his office has been looking into the matter for nearly nine months, and he would turn over the case to the state attorney's office by Friday.

Anderson added that Coulter, since the allegations surfaced, made "efforts to distract and divert focus on the process regarding this complaint. ... I did express my frustration to the state attorney in a recent meeting and warned him I may need his services," according to an article in the Palm Beach Post.

But Anderson said Coulter's voting rights would not be rescinded for next week's election.

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ComputerWorld Review of HBO's 'Hacking Democracy', Plus an EXCLUSIVE Online Video Preview!
By Brad Friedman on 11/1/2006 1:24pm PT  

My article/review of HBO's Hacking Democracy (begins airing tomorrow, Thursday, Nov 2. @ 9pm) has now been posted over at ComputerWorld. I haven't read their final edit yet, as tech probs (yes, tech probs at ComputerWorld! And we're using these machines for voting?!) held up publication until just moments ago. But I trust it resembles something along the lines of what I orginally wrote for them. You can read my take on the landmark documentary in my ComputerWorld feature article now posted here...

As well, HBO has been kind enough to send us a trailer which, thanks to BRAD BLOG video-ace Alan Breslauer, is now online. EXCLUSIVE VIDEO PREVIEW posted right here...

And, just in case you missed it, see late last night's post on Diebold's pathetic (yet hilarious!) last-minute attempt to stop HBO from running this film. Catch that late-breaking news right here...

UPDATE: ComputerWorld has now posted a complete package on E-Voting issues compiled and edited by CW's Security Section editor, Angela Gunn. Tons of stuff available that I haven't even begun to comb through, but thought you might want to know about what appears to be an excellent new resource. It's all available from right here...

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Complaint Filed Against Registrar Mikel Haas in CA's Court of Appeals on Behalf of Plaintiff by Busby/Bilbray Election Contest Attorney Ken Simpkins
Suit Funded by Velvet Revolution's 'Election Protection Strike Force' Effort...
By Brad Friedman on 11/1/2006 10:35am PT  

A lawsuit naming San Diego County Registrar of Voters Mikel Haas as defendant has been filed in the California Court of Appeals seeking to compel Haas --- whom we've previously described as one of the nation's worst Elections Administrators --- to follow the orders of the California Sec. of State and supply Paper Ballots to all voters who request one. Further, the suit demands that Haas actually count those ballots on Election Night, in accordance with the State order, rather than create an "unequal class of voters" by reporting only touch-screen voting results that night.

As The BRAD BLOG reported yesterday, Haas has announced that he plans to defy the SoS order to count such paper ballots as "normal ballots" by refusing to count them at all until the Thursday after the election. He has also instructed poll workers not to inform voters of their right to vote on paper if they so choose and, according to the lawsuit, has failed to ensure that an adequate supply of paper ballots will be available for voters who wish or need them.

As well, the lawsuit --- funded by the VelvetRevolution.us Election Protection Strike Force --- seeks in its third action a peremptory writ regarding the current "sleepovers" of Diebold electronic voting machines, now underway in San Diego where poll workers will have kept the pre-programmed, election-ready touch-screen systems in their homes and cars for a full three weeks prior to the November 7th election.

-- Download the full complaint here [PDF]...
(Link fixed! The complaint is very very good, btw, and charges, correctly in our opinion, that Haas has failed in and abused his role as Registrar of Voters.)

Carlsbad attorney Ken Simpkins's suit, filed on behalf of San Diego County voter Kathy Peterson, seeks appropriate security logs and precautions to be instituted, since Haas has failed to do so via his "sleepovers," which lack apppropriate security measures. A recent blog item at Velvet Revolution (VR) has described Haas as "apparently preferring plausible deniability of scattering the voting machines to innumerable volunteers" over actual accountability.

The "sleepovers" are also in violation of both state and federal laws and security requirements, effectively decertifying them for use before the election even begins. San Diegans should have no basis, at this time, for confidence in any results reported from San Diego's election on November 7th, due to Haas's failures.

Haas, in an article on the lawsuit in the North County Times, says that complying with the SoS order to count paper ballot votes as "normal ballots" would be impractical.

"We can't count these ballots on election night," he told the NC Times. "They will be counted during the canvas period, which allows us 28 days. We can't count two things at the same time. We'll have our hands full just uploading the results from the precincts where people will be voting on touch screens."

By refusing to count paper ballots on Election Night, "Mr. Haas risks skewing the early visibility of San Diego election results, which could impact public perceptions and lead to premature concessions by candidates," according to a statement by Ken Simpkins.

The NC Times quotes Haas as saying there is no reason for candidates to concede prematurely. "It isn't over until I certify the election, and that's usually around 28 days after an Election Day," he said. "What any candidate does within those days is their business."

Haas' claim that "it isn't over until I certify the election" is in direct contradiction to the facts on the ground, revealed by last June's U.S. House Special Election to replace disgraced Rep. Randy "Duke" Cunningham in San Diego. In that matter, a contest was filed after certification of the election, as per state law, but was thrown out by a San Diego judge who ruled the U.S. House, not the courts or voters of California, had jurisdiction over any election challenges or recounts once the "winner" in the race, Brian Bilbray, had been sworn in by the House just seven days after the election. At the time of the swearing-in --- a full two weeks prior to Haas's certification --- thousands of ballots remained wholly uncounted.

By law, no contest or recount could be filed until after Haas's certification. And yet, Superior Court Judge Judge Yuri Hoffman found the plaintiffs no longer had the right to challenge or recount the election results in any way.

Simpkins was one of the attorneys who filed the Busby/Bilbray lawsuit last summer along with attorney Paul Lehto. In that case --- as The BRAD BLOG originally broke on June 7th, followed with extensive special coverage thereafter --- Haas had also sent home both optical-scan and touch-screen voting systems made by Diebold on poll worker "sleepovers," despite new emergency security mitigation requirements made by both State and Federal oversight bodies after it had been discovered that Diebold voting systems contained a type of programming code making them particularly susceptible to tampering. That type of programming code, known as "interpeted code," is also in violation of both state and federal law.

During the June contest it was discovered that Haas's chain of custody security logs were virtually non-existent. The dismissal of that case is currently being appealed.

As we reported on Tuesday, the Democratic Sec. of State candidate, Debra Bowen, released a short video ad on her campaign website revealing the extraordinary dangers and, indeed, the serious national security threat presented by such "sleepovers."

A request has been made for an expedited decision from the court in the latest case due to the pending election. Hopefully decisions on these matters will be forthcoming.

Your help in fighting for accountability in such cases around the country is paramount. Please donate to the VR Strike Force effort so we can help hold the bad guys accountable and fight for clean elections! Our work is funded entirely by "we the people" so your support is crucial!

The VR Election Protection Strike Force website can be found at: http://VelvetRevolution.us/ElectionStrikeForce. Please pass that address around!

As well, the VR Strike Force is offering a $250,000 reward for tips concerning Election Fraud (details here, tip-line here: 888-VOTE-TIP)

The BRAD BLOG is a co-founder of VelvetRevolution.us. We hope to announce news concerning a special VR Strike Force Radio broadcast on Election Night, in conjunction with a number of other individuals and organizations. More details on that, hopefully, very soon...

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In Hilarious Statement, Company Claims Documentary --- Which They Haven't Seen --- Has Facts Wrong...But They're Referring to a Completely Different Documentary!
Feature Article on Film Should Be Published by ComputerWorld Tomorrow...
By Brad Friedman on 10/31/2006 10:32pm PT  

I've written a feature article for ComputerWorld on HBO's upcoming Hacking Democracy, the superb documentary on the many insidious lies of Diebold scheduled for airing beginning Nov. 2nd. We posted a preview article on the film's release several weeks ago. That article should be posted in full Wednesday morning if the continuing delays are worked out (CW had said they'd hoped to publish it Monday).

In the meantime, Diebold seems to be embarrassing itself yet again by issuing a statement calling for HBO to pull the documentary, or at least run disclaimers before, after, and throughout the film. I've seen it. If I were them, I'd try to do everything I could to keep America from seeing the film, as well.

"Truth and accurate reporting are the biggest casualties of the film," Diebold Election System President David Byrd is quoted as saying in the media release.

But ironically, as The Hollywood Reporter is reporting tonight, Byrd has not only never seen the film, but his claims that the film is "Riddled With Errors and Slipshod Reporting" apparently refer to a completely different film!

Confusing a different film called VoterGate with the short film called VoterGate, which was an early version of the film now known as Hacking Democracy, Byrd writes a two page letter [PDF] to HBO refuting several points in the other film!

While Diebold's letter from Byrd claims that the film is "so egregious that HBO should pull the documentary," the letter itself is not only riddled with errors and slipshod reporting, it also makes a sad attempt at playing the partisan card, which Diebold has been trying to deny for years! Note this graf...

"Hacking Democracy" is directed by the directors of "VoterGate" and contains much of the same material. "VoterGate" was produced with special thanks to Susan Sarandon and The Streisand Foundation.

Never mind that the VoterGate Diebold refers to is the wrong VoterGate, but what the hell do either Susan Sarandon or The Streisand Foundation have to do with Diebold's claim that the film is inaccurate?

Not disingenuous enough for you? Byrd has more...

Harri Hursti is shown attacking a Diebold machine in Florida. But his "attack" proved later to be a complete sham. Hursti was invited by California Secretary of State's office to demonstrate his supposed ability to "hack" a Diebold optical scan system. He declined...

Of course, we know that Byrd never saw the Hursti Hack in Hacking Democracy (it hadn't occurred by the time either VoterGate film was released), the disingenuous claim that it "proved later to be a complete sham" is itself a complete sham:

Not only did the California Secretary of State's own technical advisory board at UC Berkley write that "Harri Hursti's attack does work" and that it was "definitely real" in their report [PDF] on the hack, but they also found "more serious vulnerabilities...that go well beyond what Mr. Hursti demonstrated, and yet require no more access to the voting system than he had. These vulnerabilities are consequences of bugs–16 in all."

We would later learn that the invitation to which Diebold refers, from the CA SoS "inviting" Hursti to try his hack out in California, was drafted by a Diebold employee and disinformation operative by the name of Rob Pelletier, and sent to Hursi on CA SoS stationery!

As revealed by this investigative report [PDF] released over the Summer by BlackBoxVoting.org (one of the film's main subjects) entitled "The Diebold Pursuasion Machine," it appears that Pelletier drafted the letter for CA SoS McPherson's office. The "invitation" would later come to be regarded as a "setup" using special Diebold machines and designed for Hursti to fail.

In the same report, it was revealed that Diebold employee Pelletier had been spreading disinformation under several phony names at various Internet sites, as well as here at BRAD BLOG as a commenter using the name "Wally O'Diebold."

As Barney Gimble wrote yesterday in a terrific piece on the history of Diebold in Fortune, about a "five-step plan guaranteed to make an obscure company absolutely notorious":

First get into a business you don't understand, selling to customers who barely understand it either. Then roll out your product without adequate testing. Don't hire enough skilled people. When people notice problems, deny, obfuscate and ignore. Finally, blame your critics when it all blows up in your face.

Hey Diebold: It's blowing up in your face. Stop blaming the critics. You're just making a continuous jackass out of yourselves. And, trust me, you've got far worse problems coming your way that you ought to be worrying about.

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By Brad Friedman on 10/31/2006 4:22pm PT  

Scott Adams, the creator of the Dilbert comic strip, blogs today on Electronic Voting. Here's just one of the money quotes...

I think about the history of ATMs when I hear all the nervous Nellies wetting their pants over electronic voting machines. I believe those worries are totally misplaced. Now don’t get me wrong – there’s a 100% chance that the voting machines will get hacked and all future elections will be rigged. But that doesn’t mean we’ll get a worse government. It probably means that the choice of the next American president will be taken out of the hands of deep-pocket, autofellating, corporate shitbags and put it into the hands of some teenager in Finland. How is that not an improvement?
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New Report Said To Be As Important As Princeton Viral Hack Study of Diebold Touch-Screen (DRE) Systems...
By John Gideon on 10/31/2006 3:11pm PT  

Guest Blogged by John Gideon

Yesterday the University of Connecticut released a report of the results of a study they did of the Diebold AccuVote Optical Scan voting system the state will be using in the future. This new report, commissioned by the Secretary of State, is as scathing as the recent Princeton Report accomplished on the Diebold TS Direct Recording Electronic machines.

In his blog, Johns-Hopkins University Computer Scientist Avi Rubin says:

"Reading this report was a hair raising experience for me. Diebold has clearly not learned any of the lessons from our 2003 report, and it is startling to see that their optical scan ballot counter is as vulnerable to tampering, vote rigging, and incorrect tabulation as the DRE."
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Video by Democratic Sec. of State Candidate in California Critical of CA SoS Bruce McPherson's Certification and Lack of Security Requirements for Diebold Touch-Screen Systems...
By Brad Friedman on 10/31/2006 3:08pm PT  

Democratic Secretary of State candidate, Debra Bowen has released a new video ad on her campaign website showing how easy it would be for hackers to break into a garage where pre-programmed, election-ready Diebold touch-screen systems are now being "stored securely" by poll workers around the state.

Such a break-in could allow them to easily manipulate a single Diebold touch-screen machine to implant a virus on it would could then pass itself from machine to machine, resulting in an entirely flipped election. Nobody would ever know.

We have long since been critical of CA Sec. of State Bruce McPherson's re-certification of Diebold voting systems after his own technical advisory board at UC Berkley had advised him the machines could be tampered with in dozens of ways.

His further lack of enforcement of security requirements for the use of the systems --- he has sat by and allowed them to be sent home for weeks ahead of the election with poll workers on so-called "sleepovers" --- is both an outrage and a violation of his own state requirements and federal law.

Yesterday, we detailed (with photographs) how San Diego County Registrar Mikel Haas has been handing thousands of such hackable voting machines to poll workers in his county since October 16th of this year. Those irresponsible "sleepovers" now allow those poll workers --- or anyone who may wish to access the machines in their garage --- a full 3 weeks prior to the election to find the 60 seconds needed to flip every race in San Diego County.

Bowen's Diebold "sleepover" break-in ad can be viewed at her campaign website. It's also posted in full below...


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Information Duplicates Previous Reports of Votes Flipping on Paperless ES&S Machines in Bexar County, TX, Dallas and in Other States...
By Brad Friedman on 10/31/2006 2:24pm PT  

Reports now from yet another Texas county that votes are hopping from Democratic to Republican on paperless touch-screen ES&S systems during Early Voting. This time in Jefferson County...

Friday night, KFDM reported about people who had cast straight Democratic ticket ballots, but the touch-screen machines indicated they had voted a straight Republican ticket.

Some of those voters including Lamar University professor, Dr. Bruce Drury, believe the problem is a programming error.

Saturday, KFDM spoke to another voter who says it's not just happening with straight ticket voting, he says it's happening on individual races as well, Jerry Stopher told us when he voted for a Democrat, the Republican's name was highlighted.
...
Jefferson county clerk Carolyn Guidry says her office has checked the calibration of the machines and found no problems.
...
She says the electronic system is very sensitive.

Last night we reported similar problems as reported by a State Rep in San Antonio (Bexar County) on the same ES&S machines. As well, the problem was earlier reported occuring in Dallas.

Previous vote-hopping reports from other states (all benefitting Republicans) have so far come in from South Florida, St. Louis County, Missouri and Arkansas.

We've create a new Touch-Screen Vote Hopping category here so users can check all such reported incidents at a glance.

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Audio Interview with Texas State Rep. Jose Menendez on KTSA with Chris Duel (and Brad) Says Paperless Voting Machines Failing in Bexar County...
By Brad Friedman on 10/30/2006 11:41pm PT  

The drumbeat of reports from around the country of touch-screen voting machines failing during Early Voting continues to grow. These aren't "glitches." These are failures.

So far, the reports have all involved Democratic (or Green) votes flipping to, or otherwise benefitting, Republican candidates. In South Florida, St. Louis County, Missouri, Virginia, Arkansas, Dallas, and now San Antonio, Texas.

While I was guesting this evening on the Chris Duel show on KTSA News-Talk 550 AM, we received a call from Democratic State Rep. Jose Menendez, who reported several incidents that have come to the attenion of his office during Early Voting, which is already under way in San Antonio. The reports concern votes flipping and candidates not showing up on the summary screens of Bexar County's paperless ES&S touch-screen systems.

During the short interview (audio posted in full at end of this article) Menendez reported an incident involving a teacher in his district who noticed that one of the candidates wasn't showing up on the confirmation summary screen. I later learned off air that the missing candidate was Menendez.

Another incident involved a voter who voted for a straight party ticket only to have it flip to a straight party ticket vote for the other party.

Menendez didn't identify which parties were involved while on air. Since then, Duel followed up to let me know that the straight party ticket the voter intended to vote for was Democratic and it flipped to Republican.

Menendez said during the interview that he now plans to file legislation requiring a paper "trail" on all voting machines across the state of Texas where none are (incredibly) now required. As you'll hear, I made it clear that it's paper ballots that are needed, not uncountable and uncounted so-called paper "trails." For the moment, his efforts are unfortunately too little, too late to do anything for 2006. While he may not have realized the dangers to our democracy and national security until now, Bexar County Election Administrator Jacquelyn F. Callanen has no such excuse. She needs to be held directly accountable for her failure to provide an auditable voting system to her voters.

Callanen, however, seems to be selling Menendez and other concerned citizens the usual bill of goods, as most of the country's election directors are now doing in hopes of saving their jobs. I pointed out in no uncertain terms, hopefully, on air during the interview, that Callanen needs to be held accountable. Her office's number is: 210-335-VOTE, and their webpage is here. Here's the interview...

-- AUDIO: Brad on the Chris Duel Show with Rep. Mendendez, 10/30/06 [MP3, Appx 16 minutes]

UPDATE: Votes reported to be hopping from Democrat to Republican also now in Jefferson County, TX. Details here...

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One of the Country's Worst Places to Vote, Led By One of the Country's Worst Election Administrators, Mikel Haas, Instructs Poll Workers to NOT Tell Voters They May Vote on Paper Ballots if They Wish
An EXCLUSIVE First-Hand Account and Photos of Delusional Election Director's Irresponsible Scheme...
By Brad Friedman on 10/30/2006 2:46pm PT  

More than 10,000 pre-programmed election-ready Diebold touch-screen voting machines, to be used for the first time across the entirety of San Diego County this November 7th, are now in the cars, garages, homes, and hands of poll workers and lord knows who else across one of Southern California's largest voting regions.

As reported in several first-hand accounts from San Diego poll workers just after recent training sessions (see end of article for one of those first-hand accounts), the voting machines were sent home on so-called overnight "sleepovers" with temporary poll workers beginning on October 16th, allowing for a full three weeks prior to the election for poll workers to find the 60 seconds they might need to hack a single machine. One tampered machine could affect the results on every single voting machine, in every race in the county.

San Diego Registrar Mikel Haas --- easily one of the country's worst and most irresponsible election administrators --- is unconcerned. He's also instructing poll workers not to give out paper ballots despite a recent order from the California Secretary of State.

The ability to easily insert malicious viral code onto Diebold's touch-screen systems has been proven, and video-taped by Princeton University and others. A single person could hack an entire election, flipping votes undetectably, and no trace would be left behind after the election.

But it's not just tampering that should be of concern to the voters of San Diego. It's the fact that these particular systems are amongst the most unreliable in the country. They simply do not work.

Diebold touch-screen voting systems are innacurate. Their screens freeze. Their printers jam and fail to create reliable "paper trails" and frequently they simply fail to start up at all. All of which occurred during Primary Elections in states across the country earlier this year, resulting in thousands of legally registered voters being disenfranchised, or turned away without being able to cast a ballot.

Incredibly, Haas has ordered these systems to be used for the first time in this November's general election, without even a test run during the June 6th Primary & Special Election, when a blended system of both Diebold optical-scan (paper-based) and touch-screens was used.

The few touch-screen systems in place during the June election (one per polling location) went almost completely unused. And yet Haas has ordered them for use across the entire county this November, despite notorious failures by these same unreliable systems in states like Georgia and Maryland and --- perhaps most notably --- Cuyahoga County, OH, where the systems in first-time use failed monumentally during the Buckeye State's Primary Election.

USA TODAY wrote Friday about the aftermath of Cuyahoga's Primary Elections and the extraordinary measures now being taken to turn the county's temporary poll workers into rocket scientists able to trouble-shoot the many expected problems with the systems. After some 300+ recommendations were made by an independent audit of that particular train wreck, elections officials are scrambling and bracing for the worst.

Haas, however, has taken no such measures and, indeed, his poll worker training has reportedly consisted of instructing folks to sing the praises of electronic machines and avoid handing out paper ballots to voters despite the recently unearthed memo from the California Secretary of State's office instructing all Registrar's that all California voters may vote on paper if they wish.

An account of one such training class by Ken Simpkins, the Carlsbad attorney who filed an election contest to challenge the results of the Francine Busby/Brian Bilbray Special Election sleepover fiasco last June, reports that workers are being told not to give paper ballots to voters even if machines are unavailable when voters show up to vote.

"If the machines were not ready at the opening of the polls and voters were there," Simpkins writes about instructions given at a training class he attended, "voters should be asked to wait until the machines are ready." His full description of that and other stunning moments from Haas's training is at the end of this item.

In an accidental fit of reporting, the far-right San Diego Union Tribune yesterday asked Haas about the ongoing "sleepovers" in an article on concerns about the county's upcoming beta test election. As usual, his obnoxious answer was just another "fuck you" to the voters of San Diego:

Taking the machines home has been condemned widely by those who fear hacking. Some believe the "sleepovers" used in San Diego and other counties effectively invalidate election results, because the "chain of custody" of election results cannot be ensured.

Haas disagrees. "We know exactly who has the machines," he said. "We know where they live."

Never mind that we've previously reported first-hand accounts from poll workers who took voting machines home with them during the June 6th election, where they admitted that family members, and any number of neighbors, may well have had easy access to the machines in the "secure storage space" known as their garage or their car. But Haas knows "where they live." So rest easy, San Diegans!

Also, never mind that such sleepovers are in violation of state and federal law. But, hey, it's San Diego! Mikel Haas territory! He makes the rules and can do whatever he wants!

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

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ES&S iVotronic Machine Same as Those Reportedly Flipping Votes in Missouri Senate Race in St. Louis County...
[UPDATED: Another Report, from Tampa Bay Tribune, of Votes Hopping from Democratic Candidates to Republicans!]
By Brad Friedman on 10/30/2006 9:20am PT  

ED NOTE: BRING YOUR VIDEO AND STILL CAMS WITH YOU TO VOTE, ESPECIALLY ON TOUCH-SCREEN, TO DOCUMENT THIS STUFF!

The Miami Herald is reporting that votes on touch-screen voting systems in in South Florida are flipping from Democrat to Republican candidates.

Not a single report of a vote flipping from a Republican to a Democrat so far. As usual.

Several South Florida voters say the choices they touched on the electronic screens were not the ones that appeared on the review screen --- the final voting step.
...
Debra A. Reed voted with her boss on Wednesday at African-American Research Library and Cultural Center near Fort Lauderdale. Her vote went smoothly, but boss Gary Rudolf called her over to look at what was happening on his machine. He touched the screen for gubernatorial candidate Jim Davis, a Democrat, but the review screen repeatedly registered the Republican, Charlie Crist.
...
Joan Marek, 60, a Democrat from Hollywood, was also stunned to see Charlie Crist on her ballot review page after voting on Thursday. "Am I on the voting screen again?" she wondered. "Well, this is too weird."

Marek corrected her ballot and alerted poll workers at the Hollywood satellite courthouse, who she said told her they'd had previous problems with the same machine.

Poll workers did some work on her machine when she finished voting, Marek said. But no report was made to the Supervisor of Elections office and the machine was not removed, [Broward Supervisor of Elections spokeswoman Mary] Cooney said.
...
Mauricio Raponi wanted to vote for Democrats across the board at the Lemon City Library in Miami on Thursday. But each time he hit the button next to the candidate, the Republican choice showed up.

The Herald didn't mention it --- but we will --- the type of touch-screen voting machine reportedly failing in Broward was the ES&S iVotronic.

That's the same model of voting machine that was also reportedly flipping votes in St. Louis County from Democratic candidate Claire McCaskill to Republican Jim Talent in Missouri's extremely close U.S. Senate race as we reported late last week along with several similar incidents reported in both Texas and Arkansas as well.

Note in the Herald report linked above, the Broward Supervisor of Elections spokeswoman also admits that "it's not uncommon for screens on heavily used machines to slip out of sync, making votes register incorrectly. Poll workers are trained to recalibrate them on the spot --- essentially, to realign the video screen with the electronics inside. The 15-step process is outlined in the poll-workers manual."

A "15-step process" for recalibrating by poll workers with a few hours training? Brilliant.

And this...

Broward poll workers keep a log of all maintenance done on machines at each site. But the Supervisor of Elections office doesn't see that log until the early voting period ends. And a machine isn't taken out of service unless the poll clerk decides it's a chronic poor performer that can't be fixed.

Cooney said no machines have been removed during early voting, and she is not aware of any serious problems.

Relax, people. It's only democracy. Do you actually want it to be accurate too?! George Will's column on Sunday, --- which either supports electronic voting or doesn't, it's hard to tell --- seems to think you're probably asking way too much.

UPDATE 2:40pm PT: And more reports coming in now from Florida of votes hopping from Democratic candidates to Republicans. This one via Tampa Bay Tribune...

I twice selected the Democrat, and twice it indicated that I had voted for the Republican. I called that vote two times, and on the third attempt it accepted my vote correctly.

Upon leaving, I told the woman to whom I handed my voting card about the problem. She said, "Sometimes these things just don't work."

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