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Latest Featured Reports | Wednesday, May 27, 2015
Oil, Toil, Flooding & Trouble: 'BradCast' 5/26/2015
Science Editor Andrew Freedman on deadly TX, OK flooding; Good news out of Ireland; A 'GyroCopter Guy' update; PLUS: Our report from the Santa Barbara oil spill...
Memorial Day Weekend Toons We'd Love to Forget
Arctic drilling; Texas 'justice'; Hillary Inc.; Iraq 'whoppers' continued and more in PDiddie's latest collection...
Gov. Don Siegelman's Son on Father's Case; 'Bin Laden's Bookshelf': 'BradCast' 5/22/15
GUEST: Joseph Siegelman; Plus: Was al-Qaeda hoping to hack a US election?...
'Bin Laden's Bookshelf' Contained Classic Book on Hacking Computer Elections
Reading material said to have been on the al-Qaeda leader's shelf when he was killed may not be a surprise to BRAD BLOG readers...
GOP State Sen. on Nebraska's 'Veto Proof' Death Penalty Ban: 'BradCast' 5/21/15
Guest: State Sen. Al Davis (R); Plus: Siegelman appeal denied; Jeb still rewriting Iraq history; Goodbye, Dave; MORE...
'Green News Report' 5/21/15
  w/ Brad & Desi
Major oil spill off CA coast; New settlement in 2010 BP Gulf Oil Spill; Fossil fuels subsidized $5 TRILLION/year; PLUS: Obama to Coast Guard cadets: climate threatens NatSec...
Previous GNRs: 5/19/15 - 5/14/15 - Archives...
BREAKING: Appeals Court Denies Siegelman Retrial
AL's former Dem Governor's request denied. He remains in federal prison as Repubs who orchestrated 'political prosecution' (including 'wife-beating' Judge Mark Fuller) remain free...
Walker, Christie, GOP, FCC, Untethered From Reality: 'BradCast' 5/20/15
Facts and reality matter; Journalist turned media-activist Sue Wilson helps explain...
Rep. Hank Johnson (D-GA) on Obama's Executive Order to Demilitarize the Police: 'BradCast' 5/19/15
Plus: A spate of new voting laws, good and bad, around the country...
'Green News Report' 5/19/15
'Paddle in Seattle' to stop Shell's Arctic drilling; Study finds new emmissions rules will save lives...so GOP blocking them; PLUS: Indigenous tribe nixes natgas billions...
Walker and GOP Turn 1st Amndmnt On Head
The FCC's blow to free speech rights you probably never heard about, and how, if Walker and Republicans have their way, it may soon get even worse...
People v. Shell in Seattle; Truth v. Iraq Lies on Fox: 'BradCast' 5/18/15
Guest: Seattle Councilman Mike O'Brien; Now Rubio trips over Iraq; TX shootout; Antarctica ice shelf disappearing...
The 'Br'er Rabbit Strategy' To Fend Off A Sanders-Led Democratic Revolution
Wall Street and MSM say they fear Sanders could 'pull Hillary to left'. But is there more to their strategy?...
Sunday Toons: Off the Rails
From the TPP to tragedy in Philly to GOP 2016ers on Iraq to drilling in the Arctic and marriage equality in TX, common sense continues to be derailed...
Learning From History & GOP Rewriting Iraq's: 'BradCast' 5/15/15
Guest: Journalist Peter Dykstra, formerly of CNN, on how enviros should learn from the past; GOP 2016ers trying to rewrite Iraq...
Texas Republicans Hoping to Block Even More Legit Voters With New ID Scheme
New law, if adopted by state, would take already unconstitional Photo ID voting restrictions to new level...
NSA Spying & 'USA Freedom Act'; Jeb Between Iraq, Hard Place: 'BradCast' 5/14/15
Guest: Marcy Wheeler; Plus: Feingold's back! OH GOP still suppressing voters; 600th GNR...
'Green News Report' 5/14/15
OUR 600th EPISODE! - Hours after Amtrak crash, GOP votes to cut Amtrak budget; FBI spied on KXL protesters; PLUS: Hawaii to be 1st in nation to go 100% renewable...
CIA Drugging of 9/11 Detainees? & Jeb Too Dumb to Run: 'BradCast' 5/13/15
VICE News' investigative reporter Jason Leopold on his new exclusive CIA documents; MORE...
Dems: 'No' to Obama on TPP
'BradCast' 5/12/15
Salon's David Dayen joins us to discuss Dems' refusal to go along with Obama (for now); Plus: 1st election lawsuit of 2016; Jeb on Iraq, Allen West on 'Sharia Law'...
NY Nuke Plant Fire, Oil Spill; Vanishing NC Voter Registrations: 'BradCast' 5/11/15
Guests: Tyson Slocum of Public Citizen; 'DocDawg' of Daily Kos...
Bernie Who? 'Meet the Press' Ignores Sanders
Media watchdog documents NBC's Chuck Todd snubbing Sanders' entry into 2016 Presidential primary, while covering GOP also-rans dozens of times...
NATIONWIDE STUDY FINDS ALMOST NO VOTER FRAUD
Just 10 cases of in-person impersonation in all 50 states since 2000...
VIDEO: 'Rise of the Tea Bags'
Brad interviews American patriots...
'Democracy's Gold Standard'
Hand-marked, hand-counted ballots...
Brad's Upcoming Appearances
(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
FL Dept. of Law Enforcement confirms 'enough evidence to warrant full-blown investigation'; Election officials told fraudulent forms 'may become evidence in court'...

Brad Breaks PA Photo ID & GOP Registration Fraud Scandal News on Hartmann TV
Another visit on Thom Hartmann's Big Picture with new news on several developing Election Integrity stories...

CAUGHT ON TAPE: COORDINATED NATIONWIDE GOP VOTER REG SCAM
The GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal reveals insidious nationwide registration scheme to keep Obama supporters from even registering to vote...

CRIMINAL ELECTION FRAUD COMPLAINT FILED AGAINST GOP 'FRAUD' FIRM
Scandal spreads to 11 FL counties, other states; RNC, Romney try to contain damage, split from GOP operative...

RICK SCOTT GETS ROLLED IN GOP REGISTRATION FRAUD SCANDAL
Rep. Ted Deutch (D-FL) sends blistering letter to Gov. Rick Scott (R) demanding bi-partisan reg fraud probe in FL; Slams 'shocking and hypocritical' silence, lack of action...

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

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

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

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


Whether Those Who Hate America and Democracy Like it Or Not.
PLUS: A Song to Fight for Democracy By...
By Brad Friedman on 10/8/2005 11:05am PT  

{Blogged by Brad on the road...}

The fight for democracy in America --- even as we still scratch our head with continued wonder that a "pro-democracy" movement is actually necessary in the United States of America in 2005 --- continues to be a difficult one. But the fight is well worth it. Even as our victories tend to come in small, but continually accruing pieces.

We're not supposed to be talking about this issue at all, 11 months after November 2nd, 2004...and yet more and more are doing so every day. The Mainstream Corporate Media may not get it yet. But the ranks of great patriots who give a damn about their country continues to burgeon as the noise in favor of an accountable democracy increases every day due to the folks like the good readers of The BRAD BLOG who take their civic duty to heart.

Here are just a few of the latest positive signs in the continuing fight for a free, fair, verifiable and transparent democracy that many would prefer we simply didn't even discuss. We will continue to do so nonetheless. The burden is well worth carrying. The rewards for doing so are well worth the effort.

Debra LoGuercio, editor of Winters Express and columnist in Daily Republic and elsewhere, makes it a hat trick with her third column in as many weeks on our tenuous Electoral System. She was haunted by the siren sounded by our first article on the Diebold insider we dubbed DIEB-THROAT, who alerted us to the Dept. of Homeland Security website where a Cyber Alert was issued last year prior to the election about the vulnerability to hackers in Diebold's central tabulator software. That vulnerability has, by Diebold's own admission, never been addressed.

In her latest column titled "E-voting fraud is an American issue" LoGuercio joins the ranks of those of us who continue to be stunned at the remarkable indifference by the Mainstream Corporate Media to what DIEB-THROAT refered to as "one of the greatest threats democracy has ever known":

So many topics, so little column space. And yet soooooo much e-mail. In the media, we talk of a story having �legs,� meaning that it just keeps running. It seems the topic of electronic voting fraud is a centipede.

I've accumulated a mountain of studies and reports on Diebold's electronic voting machines since I wrote the Dieb-Throat columns, all pointing to the same conclusion: The software can be hacked - undetected - relatively easily by someone with the technology skills.
...
Why isn't the national media all over this topic like stink on a monkey? Why are we hearing about Brad and Angelina rather than a story that may shatter the foundation of American democracy if it's true? Maybe it's just not sexy enough. Maybe it won't move enough Viagra. Or maybe the grotesquely wealthy owners of the national media don't want this issue to come to light.
...
Maybe that's why people are frantically encouraging me to keep pushing the issue, as if they're pinning their hopes on me. If that's the case, we're in big trouble. In the media world, I'm not even a small fish in a small pond. I'll keep on splashing, but it's hard for a guppy in a mud puddle to make waves.

However, it brings to mind a children's story about Swimmy, a little fish that encouraged all the other little fish to swim together in the formation of one large fish. Working together, they survived the perilous waters among the sharks. That's what all us little fish must do - swim together.

Again, read her full column to find out about her response from AP and NBC affiliates when she contacted them about all of this, and see if you can find a way to help swim together with her efforts. It's well worth it, and the support means the world to folks like us who go out on a limb on these matters...even when doing so may be neither popular nor the easiest thing to do.

In the meantime, there are signs that more and more folks are taking notice of what is going on and walking out on that limb as well. C-NET's News.com ran an article yesterday by Declan McCullah headlined "E-voting hobbled by security concerns".

The first couple of grafs:

It's been nearly five years since Americans received a painful education on the perils of traditional voting machines in Florida and almost one year since the 2004 election revealed perplexing irregularities in Ohio's vote tabulation methods.

Yet no uniform security standards exist for electronic voting machines. Even though they were used to tabulate a third of the votes in last year's presidential run, nearly all electronic voting machines in use today remain black boxes without external methods of verifying that the results have not been altered or sabotaged.

The article covers both the ongoing concerns, and the internal debates --- even amongst election reformers --- about how and when to produce and count paper ballots...or "receipts" as they are regrettably becoming known in many circles.

On the point of the difference between reformers on these issues, I hope to produce a one-page "Declaration of Democracy" in the next couple of weeks, a page on which we worked diligently at the Portland Election Reform summit. I believe we can bridge the differences between reformers on these matters to get everyone on the same page. I've been working hard on that effort personally behind the scenes, and hope to have something to show for it in the next couple of weeks. Just by way of a heads-up...So that perhaps we may be able to "swim together" on these issues.

A second article from News.com published yesterday over at ZDNet covers a similar discussion on the problems with E-Voting vulnerability and the need to open the software for inspection:

Overlooked bugs and malicious code pose a plausible threat to software on electronic voting machines, a panel of election experts said Friday.

And finally, there it was yesterday...smack dab in the middle of The New York Times: a full-page ad that asks the the too-obvious questions, "Would you trust a bank that refused to issue ATM receipts? Will you trust your democracy to voting machines without them?"

The ad calls for support of Rep. Rush Holt's (D-NJ) H.R. 550 "Voter Confidence and Increased Accessibility Act of 2005" which we generally support as a good first step towards accountability. (You can send your words of support as well to your folks in congress quickly by using Velvet Revolution's easy Email generator here.)

Here's the very welcome ad, signed by many election reformers. Amongst them, our friend the heroic Robert Koehler (listen to our interview with Koehler at the Portland Summit as broadcast on The BRAD SHOW by clicking here and selecting HOUR 3.)

To read the full text of the ad in PDF format, click it, or click here.

Let's all keep swimming...together...

If you need some added inspiration to keep up the fight for democracy, we'll strongly recommend this great song [mp3], courtesy of Victoria Parks. "It's well worth fighting for..."

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Stock Fall Another 3.3% Today...
(And More Trouble Still To Come for Diebold, Our Sources Tell Us...)
By Brad Friedman on 9/27/2005 9:46am PT  

With Diebold, Inc.'s financial and ethical and political chickens perhaps finally coming home to roost, Andrew Gumbel, author of Steal This Vote: Dirty Elections and the Rotten History of Democracy in America comes out with some more troubling information on the voting machines sold by America's largest Voting Machine Company.

As we write this morning, Diebold's trouble stock prices, which fell nearly 20% over two days last week alone, continue to tumble. DBD share prices are down 2.33% so far in early trading today closed down another 3.3% today!

The trouble reported by Gumbel today, comes out of Georgia, vis a vis the Democratic Secretary of State down there and what appears to be some less-than-above-board contractual shenanigans with Diebold and their hardware and software. The report also suggest that votes may have disappeared entirely from Diebold voting machines.

Gumbel reports, in a Huffington Post blog item today based on several original documents and contracts obtained via public records requests made by CountTheVote.org's Roxanne Jekot, that recent "elections were run on software that was not only untested but also uncertified, that key components broke down during live elections, that county officials were left clueless on how to operate the new machines because of a breakdown in the training schedule, and that the cost of installing the electronic touch-screen system jumped dramatically beyond the advertised $54 million, without proper legislative oversight or approval."

While Gumbel's concerns seem to be used to question Sec. of State Cathy Cox's fitness for office as she makes a 2006 gubernatorial bid, it's Diebold's complicity in keeping security issues with their machines quiet that caught our eye. Amongst the items reported by Gumbel based on records reviewed (more links available in his original article):

� Georgia ran its first all-touch screen election, in November 2002, with software for which no evidence of legal certification had been submitted. Certification documents were still not forthcoming, in fact, as late as March 2003. Because of a meltdown in the schedule for training county election workers, Georgia ended up abdicating control of the election to Diebold technicians, who ran it on the state's behalf � without the voters being told.

NOTE: The 2002 election questioned above, was when Senator, War Hero and 3-time amputee Max Cleland (D-GA) lost his seat in a surpise victory by Republican, Saxby Chambliss who had run advertisements questioning the patriotism of Cleland, and comparing the Vietnam War hero and 3-time amputee to Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein.

Gumbel continues...

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

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By Winter Patriot on 9/22/2005 11:24pm PT  

Guest blogged by Winter Patriot

Project Censored has presented its annual compilation of the most important stories ignored by the mainstream media over the past year... and the rigged presidential election of 2004 came in at number three!

In normal times, the theft of a presidential election, and the virtual media blackout that followed it, would be an easy choice for the top spot. But then again these times are far from normal.

Here, according to Project Censored, are the top ten censored stories of the year:

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

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Charged for Violating State Law in Attempt to Assure Hand Recount Wouldn't Occur
Each Face Six Counts, 18 Months in Prison
By Brad Friedman on 8/31/2005 9:45am PT  

As The BRAD BLOG has been reporting for months, the recount of the 2004 Ohio Presidential Election was gamed by Ohio elections officials and voting machine company employees who violated state laws requiring a random recount of precincts in order to determine if a hand recount of entire counties would be necessary.

Reports that county officials and voting machine companies colluded to assure the hand recount would match with the initial machine recount have been reported for months and yesterday the first indictments were handed down.

According to today's Cleveland Plain Dealer...

Two Cuyahoga County elections officials were indicted Tuesday on charges of not handling ballots correctly during the recount of the 2004 presidential election.

Kathleen Dreamer, manager of the board's ballot department, and the assistant manager, Rosie Grier, were each charged with six counts of failing to follow Ohio laws that spell out how ballots are selected and reviewed during a recount.

The most serious charges carry a maximum of 18 months in prison.

Erie County Prosecutor Kevin J. Baxter conducted the investigation at the behest of Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Bill Mason, who recused himself from the case because his office represents the elections board.

The charges stem from a complaint first raised last December by Toledo lawyer Richard Kerger, who watched over the recount on behalf of two third-party candidates.

Kerger charged that elections officials failed to randomly select precincts that were supposed to be counted by hand and compared against ballots tabulated by a machine; conduct test-runs before witnesses; and investigate discrepancies between vote totals.

Baxter would not offer details of his investigation but said he examined allegations that officials took "measures in order to all but assure that there would not be a countywide hand count."

Amongst the reports on this matter that The BRAD BLOG has carried since last November, is the case of Hocking County election board worker Sherole Eaton, who filed a sworn affidavit that an employee from voting machine company, Triad had offered a "cheat sheet" to her and other county officials on how the recount might be carried off to assure the entire county would not need to be recounted by hand. He also allegedly removed and restored a harddrive from the county's central tabulating machine prior to the recount, according to Eaton, also in violation of Ohio state law. Eaton is currently challenging her firing as improprer.

Ohio law calls for a random selection of 3% of a county's precincts to be carried out by hand. If that random recount doesn't match the initially reported count, a full recount of the county would then be necessary. Eaton was subsequently fired from the board after making her claim public (our BRAD SHOW interview with Eaton is here [mp3]).

As well, RAW STORY had reported last January that several recount witnesses had testified to stickers having been placed over Kerry/Edwards votes on ballots before they were fed into vote tabulators during the recount in that county. (Our BRAD SHOW interview with two of those witnesses, Stephen Spraley and Eric Gifford, is here [mp3]).

(Hat tip Ray Beckerman!)

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The DNC Finally Fights Back at the Republican-run 'American Center for Voting Rights' Hoax!
PLUS: Proof that Republicans only pretend to hate Marxists and More on ACVR's Fake 'Democrat', Brian Lunde!
By Joseph Cannon on 8/15/2005 11:19pm PT  

Guest blogged by Joseph Cannon

The Democratic National Committee has responded to the false charges posted by the allegedly non-partisan American Center for Voting Rights.

As most of you should know by now, the ACVR is crawling with Republican operatives, many of whom have strong links to indicted sleazoid Jack Abramoff.

AVCR chairman Brian Lunde has a particularly troubling history...

According to Senate lobbying registrations, in 2001 Lunde registered to lobby for George Birnbaum, an associate of Republican consultant and mudthrower Arthur Finkelstein. According to his disclosure filed with the Secretary of the Senate, Lunde worked to "set up meetings for President Kabila of Congo."

According to the CIA factbook on the Congo, at the time, President Joseph Kabila had just assumed power from his father, Laurent Kabila. The older Kabila was a committed Marxist who had ruled Congo since he took forcefully took power in 1997 in a rebellion backed by Uganda and Rwanda. As President, Laurent Kabila banned all political parties except his and failed to hold long-promised elections. He also blocked an investigation into the massacre of tens of thousands of Rwandan refugees that occurred during his takeover. Today, Joseph Kabila still rules as a dictator and no elections have been held in Congo since 1984.

In addition, by claiming he worked for Birnbaum and not Kabila directly, Lunde skirted disclosure laws that would have required him to register as a foreign agent with the Department of Justice.

A lobbyist for a democracy-phobic dictator dares to give the rest of the world a lecture on voting rights? Outrageous!

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

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'Dem' ACVR Supporter Also a Bush/Cheney Supporter
(un)American Center for Against Voting Rights Continues Campaign of Lies on Behalf of GOP...
By Brad Friedman on 8/8/2005 8:47am PT  

The "Roger Ailes" blog does some fine Googling on the supposed American Center for Voting Rights (ACVR) "Democrat" who was used in last week's flurry of hoax Press Releases to promote their hoax report on "Election Fraud" in the 2004 Election attempting to hoax America into believe that "paid Democrat operatives were far more involved in voter intimidation and suppression activities than were their Republican counterparts during the 2004 presidential election."

Nonetheless, the Rightwing Blogosphere keeps attempting to flog the story, despite so much documented evidence to show that the ACVR's a complete scam run by high-level GOP operatives hoping to distract from the real Election Fraud and myriad of Irregularities last November committed by their paymasters from Team Bush/Cheney.

After finally finding a "Democrat" that the ACVR could quote from in hopes of misleading and distracting from the fact that the self-proclaimed "non-partisan" group of high-level GOP operatives is actually anything but, it turns out that the use of this "Democrat" is simply more disinformation from these disdainful anti-American, democracy-hating ratfuckers. They're still hoping to spoof the country into believing they are "Voting Rights" advocates rather than pure, unabashed Republican operatives (in the worst sense of the word) hoping to distract from the mountain of GOP "Election Irregularties" last November and further disenfranchise millions of more American voters through their insidious schemes to keep potential Democratic voters from being able to actually cast a vote on Election Day.

Ailes finds, amongst other things, that Brian Lunde, the "Democrat" in question, whose phony quotes were used in all six press releases (same quote each time with just one or two words changed, Pentagon-style) is actually a Bush 2004 supporter, and so is his wife.

In addition to thousands of dollars given to Bush by the couple in 2004, Lunde is also a member of the Zell Miller-founded "Democrats for Bush" and a funder of the G.O.P. political action committee "Freshman PAC" whose goal, Ailes points out, is to "Maintain a Republican Majority." Ailes aptly adds: "That's the dream of all true Democrats, don'tcha know?"

Read Ailes' report, and then notice that the desperate phony seaman "Captain Ed" of the wingnut blog "Captain's Quarters" still can't seem to admit that in falling for the ACVR's phony report he has made a complete, unapologetic jackass of himself. Though as previously reported, he's not the only one. (Here and here, by the way, are two other recent examples --- of many --- not previously reported. The America-hater who runs the blog at that last link is so pathetic, in fact, that while he calls himself ironically, "The Machete of Truth", apparently "truth" for that loser includes not only linking to ACVR's phony report, but actually deleting the comment we left on his little disinfo blog pointing him to the correct info about ACVR! Further, because of that, he's now requiring that all comments left on his propaganda pages be "approved" before they are posted. Can these guys get any more pathetic? We're guessing they can...)

Oh...and one more Wingnut Doofus deserves special recognition for his very hard work on behalf of the American Center for Voting Rights liars. Democracy-hating Steve Bowers, "Senior Editor" of "Pardon My English" has posted part two of what is now a promised three-part effort to help ACVR spread their un-American horseshit. The latest chapter is entitled, "DEMOCRATS CAN'T DENY THE FACTS DOCUMENTED IN ACVR REPORT," though it might more aptly be titled "STEVE BOWERS WON'T LET ANY COMMENTERS POST FACTS WHICH DEBUNK THE ACVR HOAX". Don't believe us? Click here, leave a comment pointing the lying Mr. Bowers to http://www.BradBlog.com/ACVR in a comment and wait around to see if he'll allow it to be posted (we know he hasn't allowed any of ours to be posted so far). When you're lying, and have no case, we suppose it's imperative to allow no dissenting information. But we wouldn't know. We just tell the truth and leave the bullshit to chickenshits and chickenhawks like Bowers and the "Machete of Truth" who are always welcome to leave a dissenting viewpoint on The BRAD BLOG.

For more information on the "non-partisan" tax-exempt ACVR scam and the snakeoil salesmen who invented it, Bush/Cheney '04 National General Counsel Mark F. "Thor" Hearne and RNC Communications Director Jim Dyke, please see BRAD BLOG's full Special Coverage of the "American Center for Voting Rights" at http://www.BradBlog.com/ACVR.
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Blogs and 'Journalists' Alike Fall Over Themselves to Cover Phony GOP 'Voting Rights' Group Propaganda
(6 or 7 of you may need to help correct the historical record!) --- [UPDATED SEVERAL TIMES]
By Brad Friedman on 8/3/2005 12:26pm PT  

It's likely you'll be able to find more Rightwing nut jobs out there who couldn't wait to run the phony propaganda issued yesterday by the sham "American Center for Voting Rights" than we have. But as expected, the same knuckleheads who called for Dan Rather's head for shoddy reporting and who choke themselves every day claiming "Liberal Media Bias!" have been all to pleased to run with the garbage that the ACVR released yesterday.

The good Jesse Taylor at Pandagon points out just a few of the wingnut suckers who are apparently unable to type a single word into Google or find within themselves an ounce of critical thought before they must run to their keyboards and re-type horseshit simply because they found it on the Internets and it fits squarely with their uneducated hopes and dreams:

Such illustrious non-partisan, non-profit bloggers as Betsy Newmark, WizBang, The Anchoress and Mr. Remainder stand behind this report uncritically!

Captain Ed of the Wingnut Ship/Blog calling itself "Captain's Quarters" fell for it as well, though even after being told what a chump he's been played for, he still seems to have trouble admitting when he's wrong. Like "President" like Blogger, we guess.

The jackass Steve Bowers, "Senior Editor" at "Pardon My English," trips over himself to write a long item entitled "REPORT DOCUMENTS MASSIVE DEMOCRATIC VOTER FRAUD" in which he uncritically creams in his pants at everything he's read in ACVR's scam "368-page report". The masterful conclusion of what he describes as "Part one of a two part series":

Sounds fair and balanced to me. And it's certainly doesn't appear that the ACVR is a front group for some conservative organization with an agenda.

We can't wait for "part two." Will it be titled "BLOG ITEM EXPOSES STEVE BOWERS AS A COMPLETE AND TOTAL HORSE'S ASS"?

The "Editor", Jason Saine, of "NCRumors" also fell happily for it. But at least that site has the decency to call itself for what it is, a site full of rumors. We'd expect nothing less from its "Editor".

Now citizen bloggers likely have an excuse for being non-journalistic dopes. Just because they call themselves "Senior Editor" doesn't mean they actually have a clue what journalism means. But what of the actual journalistic dopes that fell for it as well?

Arizona Republic was one of them, though to their credit they seem to have now removed the report they ran uncritically on their website yesterday. (Don't know if it ran in their carbon-based edition or not). Thanks to Steve M. of "No More Mister Nice Blog" for noticing and bothering to inform his readers rather than simply pass on unconfirmed garbage as is the wont on the Right.

News Channel 5 of Cleveland, OH, however, ran the story and it's still running! Apparently, they simply cut and pasted the ACVR nonsense about Cleveland being the "#5 Election Fraud 'Hot Spot'" onto their website and called it "reporting."

So what's their excuse?

Daniel Rubin of Philadelphia Inquirer's "Blinq" blog, fell similarly brain-dead in giving "ink" and free publicity to the ACVR this morning. Rubin, who describes himself as a "reporter at the Philadelphia Inquirer since 1988, except from 2000 to 2003, when I was Knight Ridder's European correspondent, based in Berlin," ought to know better, but apparently not. Rubin advises his readers to "Forget Ohio" as he takes the bait...or as he calls it "Election Cheese"

No, Dan. We won't. Neither will we forget you.

(UPDATE: Rubin writes to suggest that we're "nuts" because we failed to mention his link to our ACVR Special Coverage page which received a cursory mention in his blog item. He is correct in that we read his item too fast to notice the quick link, and we apologize for that. Nonetheless, we'll stand behind our criticism of his uncritical coverage/repetition of ACVR's charges and the tremendous publicity he has afforded to the snake-oiled sheisters who cynically created the hoax organization. We hope he'll soon give a similar amount of "ink" to the real evil operatives who need to be called out in this matter for the good of our democracy.)

Then there is the Cybercast News Service which, as expected, ran the ACVR crap virtually as is. CNS, of course, is a phony Rightwing extremist "News" organization who actually covered the ACVR scam after we broke the story here originally. But after the reporter who was assigned to write it filed a report which backed up the original BRAD BLOG reporting, her story was re-written so that she didn't even recognize it when it was posted online to CNS (and subsequently carried at phony GOP "News" sites like GOPUSA, Townhall.com, etc.)

All of which is little surprise, of course, since as we noted in our original article on CNS:

As it turns out, Hogenson --- the Founding and Executive Editor of CNS and also (no conflict at all here) the Radio Services Manager at the RNC Press Office! --- is the longtime compadre to one of the two known lead scheisters at ACVR, Jim Dyke.

Dyke, who has worked hand-in-hand for years in his position at the RNC with Hogenson, was the 2004 RNC Communications Director. (For example, here's a press release where Hogenson and Dyke are listed together just last year.)

We recommend you click on all of the articles and blogs linked in this item, and leave comments (at least on the sites that allow it) letting the bloggers know how you feel about their credibility. Feel free to point them to any of our ACVR reports, or our master index of Special Coverage on ACVR at http://www.BradBlog.com/ACVR. Yes, it's important to correct the record before their noise allows "conventional wisdom" to set incorrectly into place.

As to "News" Channel 5 of Cleveland, OH, their contact info is here:

Mailing Address: 3001 Euclid Avenue; Cleveland, Ohio 44115
Phone: (216) 431-5555

News Managers:newsmanagers@wews.com
Web News Staff:nn5news@newsnet5.com
Station Comments:feedback5@newsnet5.com

NewsNet5.com Staff
Colleen Seitz, Executive Producer: colleen@newsnet5.com
Darlene Dunn, Senior News Editor: darlene@newsnet5.com
Becky Sabo, News Editor: rsabo@newsnet5.com

Or, nn5news@newsnet5.com; feedback5@newsnet5.com; colleen@newsnet5.com; darlene@newsnet5.com; Email">rsabo@newsnet5.com?BCC=T...dBlog@cville.com\">Email them all at once here...

Go make noise.

UPDATE: Kudos to John Cole of the the right-leaning blog, "Balloon Juice" for calling the ACVR Report for what it is. In his words, it's "Bullshit". Thanks for being an intellectually honest conservative, Mr. Cole. There are far too few of you left in your once grand old party.

Also, kudos to Mark of "Relentlessly Optimistic" for pointing out that at least 26 "Conservative" blogs now have egg on their unabashed faces, and broken links to show for it after breathlessly linking to the now removed Arizona Republic coverage of the ACVR sham report:

BlogsNow lists the "most linked to in 7,682,537 weblogs." At number 21 and climbing as of 1:00 PM (Central) is a story (broken link) that was apparently in the Arizona Republic for some time today before being pulled.

FURTHER UPDATE: Another American democracy-hater who deserves particular notice is "Lee" of "Right Thinking from the Left Coast". He couldn't wait to make an utter asshole of himself after he read ACVR's garbage and ran to his keyboard to breathlessly advise his readers in an item titled "The Truth Comes Out":

Everyone bookmark this link and send it to every one of your whining maggot Democrat friends.
[quotes from ACVR report...and then]
But? but? Bush = Hitler! We all know that the fascists in the GOP were trying to prevent minorities from voting. Michael Moore told us it was so!

Of course, his link was to the now disowned/removed "story" from Arizona Republic. You think "Lee" will feel like admitting what a pathetic, embarrased "maggot Republican" he is? Somehow, we doubt it. The "Truth" is very subjective and not to the taste of all readers in Wingnut Land apparently.

FURTHER UPDATE STILL: Steve M. points out that Washington Times (not a surprise) is also running the story. Not that we ever expected actual journalism from that particular White House Organ.

FURTHER FURTHER UPDATES STILL STILL: We neglected to mention Joe Gandelman's coverage of all of this at "The Moderate Voice" in my initial piece. Gandelman covered the initial ACVR report nonsense, but then quickly did some footwork upon realizing that he'd been had. He made a tremendous effort to cover for his initial lapse in judgement in running with the report, and apologized profusely and correctly for the error (even though you can tell he really wanted that report to be true! But we'll not quibble with a gentleman who has enough honor to cop to a mistake and understand what credible reporting actually means.) To that end, our apology for not mentioning Joe's work earlier in this matter. We should have. But as the shit was flying, his piece was mistakenly overlooked. And it should not have been.

On the other end of the spectrum, unfortunately, we still have the desperate Captain Ed of "Captain's Quarters" who just can't stand that he's been played for a sucker. The Cap'n is still doing everything he can to try and cover his ass. He's failing. We're sure that Iraq is going great too! The Captain, it seems, has finally noticed the ACVR's inclusion of "Democrat" Brian Lunde in yesterday's ACVR Press Releases.

NOTE TO THE CAPTAIN: Ahoy Matey! Perhaps you didn't notice, but the Press Releases for that ACVR report was the first time Lunde has ever showed his face as having anything to do with ACVR during their short, discredited history. The inclusion of a phony quote from Lunde in a Press Release (the same quote re-written for each of six different press releases), hardly makes this group "non-partisan". For details on his phony quote --- which we guess you couldn't find in all your hours of research --- can be found here, in our original report from yesterday. There, that wasn't so hard was it? You'll also find that Lunde has been working hard with both Karl Rove and as well the business interests Lunde represents which support Bush Administration policies. That said, I haven't gotten comment from Lunde yet on if he even realizes he's attached to this report, or if he's even aware of what the ACVR's short but sordid history is. Have you? OVER AND OUT, CAPTAIN!

For more information on the "non-partisan" tax-exempt ACVR scam and the snakeoil salesmen who invented it, Bush/Cheney '04 National General Counsel Mark F. "Thor" Hearne and RNC Communications Director Jim Dyke, please see BRAD BLOG's full Special Coverage of the "American Center for Voting Rights" at http://www.BradBlog.com/ACVR.
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GOP Grateful, DNC Still Keeps Head in the Sand
By Brad Friedman on 8/2/2005 8:17pm PT  

In regard to my last report on the flurry of disinformation spewed forth today from the phony "Voting Rights" group calling themselves the "American Center for Voting Rights", John Gideon of the excellent --- and truly non-partisan --- VotersUnite.org group wrote to me wondering if this AP report from Virginia on Mark Dougerghty, the Republican Mayor who was tossed from office and recently indicted on 37 counts of election fraud during his recent re-election bid was included in ACVR's latest report propaganda paper.

The answer, likely to nobody's surprise, is no. There was no mention of the incident in the ACVR's comprehensive report cynical, transparent and subjective cherry-picking of "vote fraud" related incidents and rumors from 2004. The entire Virginia page of the report mentions only one matter: A Nader campaign worker who apparently plead guilty to "signing candidate petitions before a notary that he did not personally circulate, a violation of state law." No other voter fraud or election apparently occured in the state.

Don't even get me started on their pathetic Ohio page, which lists a sum total of four organizations who, the ACVR reports, engaged in some sort of voter registration malfeasance. All of the organizations named, natch, are Dem-leaning groups. Not a single mention of any GOP malfeasance in the Buckeye state, nor a single case of actual vote fraud by anybody. Not one. Perhaps that's because "Of 9,078,728 votes cast in Ohio in 2002 and 2004, only four were fraudulent," according to a June '05 report from Cleveland Plain Dealer. Election fraud, on the other hand, and massive voter disenfranchisment didn't exist according to ACVR's scam report.

For example, while ACVR Exec Director and GOP Operative "Thor" Hearne discussed Kerry campaign workers as attempting to mislead voters as to when Election Day was in the testimony he presented under false pretenses to the U.S. House Administrative Committee last March (proudly displayed in video on ACVR's own website), they seem to have forgotten to include actual evidence like this (courtesy of FreePress.org's book, Did George W. Bush Steal America's 2004 Election: Essential Documents) show just one of the myriad of dirty tricks perpetrated by GOP operatives in Ohio last year:

Nonetheless, as per the plan, Rush Limbaugh reportedly was making good use of ACVR's disinformation campaign on his radio show today, and his current homepage points to the ACVR press release claiming Philadelphia as the nation's "#1 Election Fraud 'Hot Spot'.

Mission Accomplished, ACVR!

But make no mistake. As incidious as these evil ACVR democracy haters are, they have a very clear and transparent purpose above and beyond deflecting from the real malfeasance that occured during Election 2004 which allowed George W. Bush to appear to be victorious. Their real work is to continue the massive disenfranchisement of American Voters by pounding the phony "Voter Fraud" drum in order to give credence to their call for Photo ID requirements at the polls.

Photo ID, of course, would disenfranchise still millions more American voters since the elderly, minority groups and urban dwellers --- overwhelmingly Democratic voters, in other words --- also disproportionately do not have Photo ID's and would thus be disallowed from voting in upcoming elections.

Hearne, from his "non-partisan" post at the ACVR, still sits on the Baker/Carter National Election Reform Commission's "Advisory Panel" where he continues to manipulate the sham committee to ensure their final recommendations will include Photo ID and National Computerized Voter Databases which can be easily gamed to achieve the desired results anywhere in the country.

"Thor" Hearne and Jim Dyke may be unabashedly evil and transparent in their loathing of fair and transparent democracy in America. But they are clever charlatans who know how to get the black-bag job done for their GOP paymasters. And until Democrats wake up and realize the depths to which their opponents will sink to manipulate and/or steal elections, they will continue to lose one after another to these guys. Wake up DNC!

Don't believe me? Take a look at OH-2's Special Election for the U.S. House of Representatives, the results of which were posted just moments ago.

For more information on the "non-partisan" tax-exempt ACVR scam and the snakeoil salesmen who invented it, Bush/Cheney '04 National General Counsel Mark F. "Thor" Hearne and RNC Communications Director Jim Dyke, please see BRAD BLOG's full Special Coverage of the "American Center for Voting Rights" at http://www.BradBlog.com/ACVR.
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'Non-Partisan' Republican Front Group, American Center for Voting Rights Releases Report, Six Press Releases Focusing on Democratic 'Election Fraud'
Massive Republican Voter Disenfranchisement Virtually Unmentioned, Phony Quotes by 'Democrat' Used in Releases
By Brad Friedman on 8/2/2005 11:47am PT  

In a massive new attempt today to disinform the American Voting Public and sidetrack the true bi-partisan Election Reform movement in this country, the phony "voting rights" group --- calling themselves deceptively "American Center for Voting Rights" (ACVR) --- issued a new report today charging that Democrats were "Far More Involved In Voter Intimidation And Suppression In 2004."

{UPDATE 5/15/07: Since the ACVR has now disappeared from view in the wake of the U.S. Attorney purge, and their website has been taken off line, the report referenced above is now available here via the Internet archives instead. For the historical record.}

Five different heavily Democratic-leaning cities were cited in each of six different Press Releases issued at once via US Newswire within the last hour as being amongst the "top Election Fraud Hotspots" in the country. The sixth Press Release was focused on pushing the ACVR propaganda claim: "Democrat Operatives Far More Involved In Voter Intimidation, Suppression In 2004".

The deceptively-self-described "non-partisan" ACVR, as previously exposed in a series of exclusive articles on The BRAD BLOG, is a Republican front group created by high-level GOP operatives expressly for the purpose of spreading disinformation to sidetrack the Election Reform movement in this country.

Both of ACVR's main players continue to be tied to the upper echelons of the GOP and are longtime Republican partisan operatives. Executive Director Mark F. "Thor" Hearne, has been a backroom player for years in the Missouri and national GOP parties and was most recently the National General Counsel for Bush/Cheney '04 Inc. Their Press Spokesman Jim Dyke was the RNC Communications Director during the 2004 election responsible for arranging to have operatives dress up in "Flipper" costumes at John Kerry election events.

Though they claim to be "non-partisan" and enjoy tax-exempt status as a 501(c)3 organization, they have never shared their 501(c)3 paperwork with The BRAD BLOG as requested (and as they had promised many months ago) despite what we understand is a legal requirement to do so.

Hearne was called to testify as an "expert witness" at a House Administrative Committee Hearing on the Ohio election just days after the creation of the phony group. The ACVR was the only such "Voting Rights" group called to participate in the hearings. Hearne misrepresented himself at those hearings only as a "longtime voting rights advocate," saying nothing about his ties to Bush/Cheney and the Republican Party. The hearings were chaired by Rep. Bob Ney (R-OH), who is himself now under investigation for various alleged ethics violations.

We're on the move today, so haven't yet gotten to plow through the ACVR's full report, but in an onslaught of Press Releases today, the ACVR is clearly attempting to get the message out that it's Democrats, not Republicans, who primarily engage in "Election Fraud".

Ironically, they identify "non-partisan" (yes, they use the quotes!) groups such as ACORN as inappropriately registering Democratic voters. And though the ACVR report is identified in each of the Press Releases as "the most comprehensive and authoritative review of the facts surrounding allegations of vote fraud, intimidation and suppression made during the 2004 presidential election" there are no references to the thousands of well-known allegations of Republican intimidation and vote-suppression around the country or the Voter Registration forms collected and destroyed by groups tied to Republican Operative Nathan Sproul and Associates. Those registration forms --- from Democratic voters only --- were alleged to have been shredded in key swing states including Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Minnesota, Michigan, Ohio, Florida, Oregon and Nevada.

This article from Boston University's Daily Free Press, amongst many others, details the many charges against Sproul and Associates and the phony "non-partisan" Voter Registration groups he set up around the country. Sproul was paid millions by Team Bush and attempted to hide it according to the Baltimore Chronicle and several other reports, and is the subject of a criminal investigation related to these matters in the state of Oregon. Much more on Sproul & Associates is available here.

No reference to Sproul or the many dirty tricks said to have been conducted by groups he organized are mentioned in any of the ACVR Press Releases today.

One new tactic of the ACVR's revealed in the flurry of Press Releases, is the addition of quotes from "ACVR Legislative Fund board member" Brian Lunde who was a DNC Executive Director at one point apparently. Press Reports, however, reveal Lunde as having worked closely with Bush Political Operative, Karl Rove and having represented several big business organizations which are supportive of Bush Administration initiatives.

The Press Releases, one each for the five so-called "Election Fraud 'Hot Spot'" cities, each quote Lunde as saying the same thing, but change the city referred to by Lunde in the quote.

For example, in the Release on St. Louis, claimed the "No. 3 Election Fraud 'Hot Spot'", Lunde is quoted as saying:

"Election after election, political parties, election officials and the news media act surprised when fraud, intimidation and suppression activities occur. Now everyone is on notice that there's a problem in the St. Louis area and those who don't participate in a solution will be held accountable," said Brian Lunde, ACVR Legislative Fund board member.

The city is then replaced in the Press Release on Seattle, claiming the city to be the "No. 3 Election Fraud 'Hot Spot' in America":

"Election after election, political parties, election officials and the news media act surprised when fraud, intimidation and suppression activities occur. Now everyone is on notice that there's a problem in Seattle and those who don't participate in a solution will be held accountable," said Brian Lunde, ACVR Legislative Fund board member.

The other three Press Releases referring to the top "Election Fraud 'Hot Spots'" have the same quote from Lunde, changed only to refer to the city in question: Philadelphia, Milwaukee and Cleveland.

A Washington Post article from 2003 identified Lunde as working closely with Bush political director/operative Rove:

For many on the list, the Rove connection is a mutually beneficial two-way street. Brian Lunde, former executive director of the Democratic National Committee and one of the few Democrats on the list, helped the Bush 2000 campaign round up Democratic supporters.

After Bush took office, Lunde has recommended Democrats for White House appointments, especially in cases requiring selections from both parties. During consideration of trade proposals and protective measures for the steel industry, Lunde could suggest to Rove potential Democratic supporters, which, in turn, advanced the interests of such Lunde clients as the Business Roundtable and Nucor Steel, which backed the administration initiatives.

As mentioned, because we are traveling this afternoon, we've not yet had time to try and reach Lunde for comment. However, Dyke's phone number is given on each press release as 843-532-1192 for those who may have any questions.

The ACVR's homepage where their report, and several other pages of appalling disinformation is available is at www.AC4VR.com.

This Saturday is the 40th anniversary of the landmark Voting Rights Act. No doubt, today's reports and press releases were meant to coincide and continue the gross insult that the American Center for Voting Rights represents to the true Voting Rights activists in this country, many of whom have given their lives in support of such rights over the past century.

For more information on the "non-partisan" tax-exempt ACVR scam and the snakeoil salesmen who invented it, Bush/Cheney '04 National General Counsel Mark F. "Thor" Hearne and RNC Communications Director Jim Dyke, please see BRAD BLOG's full Special Coverage of the "American Center for Voting Rights" at http://www.BradBlog.com/ACVR.
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30 Days Pay 'Wrist Slap' for Matt Damschroder who Retains $97k/year Job
Not 'Illegal' in Ohio (Apparently) for Elections Officials to Take Pay-Offs from Voting Machine Companies
By Brad Friedman on 7/20/2005 8:03pm PT  

Just back in town after a day off, and man do I have a lot to catch up with...While I'm doing that, if you haven't noticed already, the Franklin County, Ohio Elections Director, Matt Damschroder, who last week acknowledged accepting a $10,000 check from a lobbyist for Diebold, was given a slap on the wrist yesterday and docked 30 days pay from his yearly $97,240 salary.

He has also claimed that the Diebold lobbyist, Pasquale "Pat" Gallina, told him that he'd made $50,000 in donations to groups that support Ohio's Secretary of State (and, coincidentally, the Co-Chair of the Bush/Cheney Re-Elect Committee) J. Kenneth Blackwell.

All of this has come about amidst a lawsuit filed by voting machine company, ES&S in Ohio against Blackwell for giving the entire state to Diebold. This should be very interesting to watch. Depositions are upcoming.

In the meantime, while Franklin County's head of election, who seems to have accepted a $10,000 bribe gets off virtually scot-free, Sherole Eaton --- the courageous whistleblower from Hocking County, OH, who gave testimony in an affidavit of employees from voting machine company, Triad gaming the Ohio recount --- has been accused of absolutely nothing. Nonetheless, she is still fired from the Hocking County Board of Elections.

Ohio. Retaining its slim edge over Florida for now...as the filthiest fucking state in the union.

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We're shocked...shocked!
Board of Elections' Matt Damschroder Continues his impressive 'bi-partisan' record in Ohio.
By Brad Friedman on 7/16/2005 10:50am PT  

From Cleveland Plain Dealer this morning...

A member of the Franklin County election board said Friday that prosecutors are investigating whether a GOP political consultant tried to bribe the board's director to buy voting equipment made by his client, Diebold Inc.

The director, Matthew Damschroder, has told prosecutors that the consultant, Pat Gallina, came to his office in early 2004, offering him $10,000.

"Pat Gallina came into my office at the Board of Elections and said, 'I'm here to give you $10,000. Who should I direct it to?' " Damschroder recalled. "I said, 'Certainly not to me. But I'm sure the Franklin County Republican Party would appreciate a voluntary donation. That was my first mistake."

The law prohibits Damschroder from accepting political contributions on county property. He said he took the check home and mailed it to the party, where he had just completed a stint as executive director.
...
Damschroder told prosecutor O'Brien of Gallina's visit after his testimony was sought in a civil suit filed by one of Diebold's competitors, Election Systems and Software.

ES&S charges in that suit that Secretary of State Ken Blackwell improperly favored Diebold in selecting electronic voting machines for use statewide.
...
Gallina told him that he and Cummings agreed on the cut-rate price Diebold would charge the state for its machines, and that Gallina promised in return to give $50,000 to "Blackwell interests."

Carlo LoParo, a spokesman for Blackwell, called the claim "absolutely ridiculous," and that Cummings has not negotiated any part of the state's voting machine contracts.
...
Diebold executives had ceased contributing directly to political campaigns in October 2003, after the company president sparked an uproar by saying he was "committed to helping Ohio deliver its electoral votes" to secure President Bush's re-election.

Spokesman Mike Jacobsen said the firm pays Gallina - through Celebrezze & Associates - to work as a liaison on state and county government contracts.

"It's a separate company," he said. "Just because we contract with a lobbyist and they make a contribution doesn't mean, in any way, that we use them as some sort of political back door to curry political favor."

(Hat-tip BRAD BLOG commenter, KestrelBrighteyes for the catch via RAW STORY)

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By Winter Patriot on 7/9/2005 9:41am PT  

Guest blogged by Bob Fitrakis

INTRODUCTION {by Winter Patriot}: On behalf of the BradBlog and the Blogathon I am pleased and proud to introduce Dr. Robert J. Fitrakis. According to his biography at freepress.org, Dr. Fitrakis is a professor of political science and a lawyer. He served as an international election observer in the 1994 presidential elections in El Salvador and as a dual-Ward legal advisor for the Election Protection Coalition during the 2004 U.S. Presidential Election. Dr. Fitrakis is also co-editor, with Steve Rosenfeld and Harvey Wasserman, of DID GEORGE W. BUSH STEAL AMERICA'S 2004 ELECTION? This essential volume is currently available from freepress.org, as well as through The BRAD STORE.

It's great to have Dr. Fitrakis here with us. And I think we can even call him "Bob".

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

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By Winter Patriot on 7/8/2005 5:05pm PT  

Guest Blogged by David Cobb.

INTRODUCTION {by Winter Patriot}: We are thrilled to announce that David Cobb will be with us for some live blogging on Saturday morning [late Saturday morning in the East, early Saturday morning in the West]. As most of you probably know, Mr. Cobb represented the Green Party in the 2004 Presidential 'Election'. He has indicated that he wishes to blog about two subjects, and he has sent us some very interesting links and text. So there's plenty to absorb before Mr. Cobb takes the hot seat as the first live blogger of the weekend.

Mr. Cobb's first subject:

The growing "New Voting Rights Movement" demands that we fully "democratize" US elections by implementing the Voter Bill of Rights. (This will necessarily include a discussion of the need for multi-party democracy and why the progressive movement actually *needs* the Green Party).

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

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Court Order Delivered at Dramatic Board of Elections Meeting as Eaton Supporters Rally
ALSO: A Republican Board Member Admits Fundraising Work Done on BoE Property
By Brad Friedman on 7/6/2005 1:42pm PT  

Hocking County, Ohio's recount whistleblower, Sherole Eaton --- who was recently fired without explanation in the wake of having reported on a voting company employee tampering with the hard-drive of a central tabulating computer and offering "cheat-sheets" prior to the recount of the November 2004 Presidential Election --- received some support yesterday from both a Court Order and several dozen backers at a dramatic Board of Elections meeting.

Attorney Cliff Arnebeck, one of the attorneys who filed a case in Ohio to have the November Election results set aside due to evidence of fraud, served County Board of Elections officials with a court order mandating Eaton not be replaced until further court orders are issued.

"Yesterday was the first of what I hope are many victories for Sherole," Karla VanBibber told us via Email earlier today. VanBibber, who is Sherole's niece attended the meeting, and described the moment when Arnebeck arrived with the court order: "The expressions on the board members faces when given the court injunction was priceless."

VanBibber also gave us her take on the reactions from the Board Members in the face of questions from supporters about Eaton's dismissal, which she says is illegal under Ohio law. "Their sputtering and faultering and lying was unbelievable," she said. "It's amazing how the arrogance we see in the Bush administrations has filtered down to the local level as it has."

Apparently, they won't be giving up the fight for Eaton, who is recovering from recent brain surgery, but attended the hearing "in apparently good spirits and seemingly good health - full of energy and zeal and very appreciative of the support," according to Evan Davis's detailed account of the meeting at Ray Beckerman's blog.

Said VanBibber, "We knocked them down a few notches yesterday, we won't give up until they're on their knees and Sherole has her job back."

Eaton's firing, and her dramatic appearance at another recent Board of Election hearing, just two days surgery, was covered in this previous BRAD BLOG report.

Hocking County's Logan Daily News also had a report today on yesterday's meeting. "[Sherole] was so happy this morning when she received her paper," VanBibber said, "she came over and was so excited and for the first time in awhile was optomistic."

Logan Daily News described Arnebeck's dramatic appearance at the meeting...

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

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By Brad Friedman on 7/5/2005 2:04pm PT  

In an open letter to John Tanner, Chief of the Voting Section of the Dept. of Justice, Bob Fitrakis of the Columbus Free Press responds to the unrequested and blatant whitewash "report" that the DoJ published last week on disenfranchisement (or a lack thereof, as the the DoJ "report" characterized it) in Franklin County, OH.

Fitrakis has been on the ground since Day 1 (and before) in Ohio, and knows whereof he speaks.

The more one looks at the outrageous "report" from the DoJ, the clearer it becomes what a despicable obfuscation that particular piece of propaganda was meant to be. For our money, the DoJ "report" represents perhaps one of the most chilling set of tea-leaves we've seen so far as an indication of just how cooked this DoJ now is, and to what lengths they are prepared to go in order to mislead the American public and media away from the truth.

We're not particularly prone to hyperbole, but we find this small indication of what the DoJ is now made of to be particularly troubling. Anyway, read Fitrakis' rebuttal to get a sense of how outrageous that "report" actually was...

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