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Latest Featured Reports | Thursday, August 28, 2014
Faking the Ferguson Docs:
KPFK 'BradCast'
Brad interviews open records advocate Charlie Grapski on his evidence that Ferguson and St. Louis County police are illegally withholding evidence in the killing of Michael Brown;
Plus MUCH more!...
Records Requests Suggest Ferguson, St. Louis County Police Involved in Cover-Up
How else to explain the missing details and required documentation of Officer Darren Wilson's killing of Michael Brown?...
'Green News Report' 8/26/14
  w/ Brad & Desi
Napa earthquake is a warning for CA's nuke plants; Another coal plant bites the dust; Cutting emissions will save $$$; PLUS: Fighting drought with a 'salmon cannon'...Yep...
Previous GNRs: 8/21/14 - 8/19/14 - Archives...
Our Story So Far: The WI GOP Photo ID Voting Restrictions
Trouble keeping up with all the court cases barring, then allowing, then barring the GOP's Photo ID voting restrictions in Wisconsin? Let us catch you up quickly with the latest...
Siegelman Judge, Arrested For Beating His Wife, May Avoid Prosecution Altogether
U.S. District Judge Mark Fuller checks in for 'treatment', may be able to duck prosecution...
Obama Orders Review of Police Militarization Program
In response to bi-partisan calls for reform and disturbing display by militarized local police in Ferguson, MO, the President takes aim at controversial Pentagon program...
Ryan Dismisses Elderly Voter's Question About His Medicare Cuts
2012 GOP Veep nom and 2016 hopeful 'charms' elderly voters in FL, by ignoring them...
Perry Tells NH Businessmen His Felony Indictment Was for a 'Bribery' Charge
Is this another 'oops' moment from the Repub TX Governor and 2016 hopeful? Or something else entirely?...
'Green News Report' 8/21/14
Too much rain in AZ desert; Another toxic spill in Ohio River; Solar breakthrough; Wind energy prices hit all-time low; PLUS: Auto-magically cleaning up Baltimore Harbor...
Rep. Hank Johnson on Ferguson and Demilitarizing the Police: KPFK 'BradCast'
The Democratic U.S. Congressman from Georgia's 4th district joins Bradto discuss his new bill...
Republicans Call Ferguson Voter Registration 'Disgusting'
Rightwingers decry effort 'to register Democratic voters' following the killing of Michael Brown...
Seriously, Ferguson Police?
The front page of the Post-Dispatch reminds again how ridiculous the era of post-9/11 Wars has become; Plus: another comparison to the Bundy Bunch...
'Green News Report' 8/19/14
OR nixes coal export facility; July 2014 4th hottest; Fracking industry illegally using diesel, threatening water; PLUS GOP officials secretly accept climate science...
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...

By John Gideon on 1/15/2008 8:00pm PT  

Guest Blogged by John Gideon of VotersUnite.org

I’m not going to hold my breath but it seems that maybe some common sense is now being used in Colorado. While SoS Coffman has everything mucked-up with machines decertified based on testing results and his offers to recertify them without any testing if a county appeals his decision. Now the Senate Majority Leader has stepped forward. Senator Ken Gordon, who lost in a bid for SoS against Coffman, is the co-chair of a task force looking at the election issues. He says that involved legislators and clerks have nearly come to an agreement that the voters will vote on paper ballots with either precinct or central-count optical scan or vote-by-mail. Vote-by-mail will be done much like it is in Washington state with centralized vote centers for voters with disabilities and anyone who wants to vote on an e-voting machine. A single system will be used throughout the state....

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

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SEVERAL UPDATES: Howard's Funds, in Full, Now Accepted by SoS Gardner, Republican Recount is On!
By Emily Levy on 1/15/2008 5:34pm PT  

Guest Blogged by Emily Levy of VelvetRevolution.us
-- Now UPDATED several times by Brad Friedman from on the road...

Brad just called me with the following:

"I'm in Sacramento tonight for screening of Uncounted but wanted to give you a quick update. Dennis Kucinich's campaign did in fact get their money in on time. The recount will be starting tomorrow. However, on the Republican side, though the money was wired to the bank for candidate Albert Howard, according to sources on the ground, something at the bank delayed release of the funds in time to meet Secretary of State Gardner's 3:00 p.m. deadline. As I wrote last night, Gardner's demand for full up-front payment does not seem to be in accordance with the law, which requires only a written guarantee that payment will be made. Trying to learn more but may not have anything until tomorrow because I'm off the grid for much of the night."

Guess that's a solar-powered movie, then.

UPDATE: Apparently SOS Gardner will still allow Howard and his team to have a count if he comes in with the money later, according to hints in the Union Leader.

And in BRAD BLOG comments, Bev Harris explains some of the details from on the ground, and what seem to be disparities in the way Gardner is handling the Dem. Kucinich count, versus the Rep. Howard count.

UPDATE FROM BRAD, 1/16/08, 10:35am PT: I was able to speak to some of the Kucinich folks last night (stepping out from the screening in Sac) to try impress upon them some of the chain-of-custody issue concerns described in Bev's comments below. We'll see if I made any progress. As I tried to explain in yesterday's piece, due to the extraordinarily complex and technological systems used in elections these days, a simple count of the paper ballots does not do the trick.

Most notably, I've tried to draw the Kucinich team's attention to Albert Howard's extraordinarily good letter to SoS Gardner, describing exactly what is needed if one is to have a legitimate and reconcilable recount that will offer the confidence in the count, as sought in the first place. If you haven't seen that letter, please do. It's at the bottom of this post from yesterday, and serves as a very good template for any candidate asking for a recount these days, in an election using a computerized voting systems such as the easily hackable, prone-to-error Diebold op-scan system (and many others just like it!)

Still on the road today, rolling from Sac to Oakland, so on and off the net throughout the day. More updates when I'm able...

UPDATE FROM BRAD, 1/16/08, 1:05pm PT: Just spoke with Albert Howard spokesperson Eric Newhouse. Just after 3pm ET, a check for the full $55,600 was delivered to and accepted by SoS Gardner for the Republican-side hand count. The Republican ballot count, he says, will now begin... More, again, as I can learn it as I roll in N. California...

UPDATE FROM BRAD, 1/16/08, 1:17pm PT: Marc "Armed Liberal" Danziger --- who last week had called me "Tawana Brawley" (an African-American woman who had claimed, without evidence, that she was gang-raped by a number of high-ranking, white NY public officials some years ago) --- has just written a new post headlined "Start Sauteeing The Crow". Writes Danziger [emphasis his]

As irritated as I was at Brad Friedman for coming out of the gate with what I saw as a conclusion unsupported by specific evidence, I fully share his discomfort with the current technology and processes used in voting in New Hampshire.

Now, the first rigorous study I've seen of the voter data has come out - and it supports him.

He points to a "rigorous study" at ScienceBlogs.com and quotes from their analysis of the reported NH results (as "counted", until now, only by an error-prone, hackable Diebold optical scanner, and double-checked by nobody). Danziger says they write:

To my complete (and continuing) amazement, the "diebold effect" on Hillary's votes remains after controlling for any and all of those demographic variables..., with a p-value of <.001: that is, there are less than 1:1000 odds for this difference occurring through chance alone, and that's after adjusting for variability in Hillary's votes due to education, income, total population, and population density.

Note: I'm still on the roll and haven't had time to check the study he points to yet.

Also note: Danziger, above, claims that he was "irritated" (he had written I deserved a "boot to the head" and was claiming a "Diebold conspiracy") when I offered "a conclusion unsupported by specific evidence".

The only "conclusion", I ever "offered" was that 80% of the paper-ballots in NH have never been counted by anybody. That conclusion is 100% accurate, and fully supported by very specific (and undisputed) evidence. I wrote, at length, about Danziger and others of his supposedly-Progressive ilk, and their phony unevidenced claims about my accurate claims back here.

He needn't "sautee crow". What he needs to do is retract and apologize. Period. Not sure why that's so difficult for him (and the others).

UPDATE FROM BRAD VIA EMILY, 1/16/08, 5:11 pm PT:
HAND COUNT OBSERVERS NEEDED IMMEDIATELY IN N.H.

Brad phoned from the road to say:

"Have been speaking with the Kucinich folks, and am encouraged by the early word. It seems they may finally be begging to "get it". Will have more soon when I'm back online and can get you more.

But for now, the Kucinich team is putting out the word that they need more observers for the election contest hand-counts in New Hampshire immediately. If you are available to get there, they are counting every day starting at 9:00 a.m. at the State Archives Building, 71 South Fruit Street, Concord, New Hampshire. Contact lead Kucinich attorney Manny Krasner on the scene. Bring video cameras and lots of blank tapes if you can."

See update on volunteering, below.

UPDATE: 1/16/08, 8:15pm PT: Final update in this thread. RESULTS OF FIRST DAY HAND-COUNT NOW IN. Many mis-tallied ballots reported, Diebold memory cards now "missing", much more. Details now here...

UPDATE 1/17/08 6:25 PM PST by Emily Levy: There are enough volunteers for tomorrow's counting. After Friday's counting, the count will be suspended for the Dr. Martin Luther King Holiday weekend and is scheduled to resume next Tuesday. Folks on the ground in NH ask that you not show up there without talking with someone first, as they don't want anyone to make the trip unless they're needed. Volunteering will be coordinated, and that system is being set up now. Check back here for updates.

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Later Cafferty Agrees With Viewer Email That There Is Precedent For Courts Stepping Into Political Process
Says Supreme Court Decided 2000 Election
By Alan Breslauer on 1/15/2008 3:42pm PT  

Guest Blogged by Alan Breslauer

CNN's Jack Cafferty calls Dennis Kucinich a "feisty little dude" for taking MSNBC to court for excluding him from the Democratic debate tonight in Las Vegas. A judge agreed that it would be unfair to exclude Kucinich and ordered MSNBC to allow the Congressman to debate. MSNBC has appealed that ruling and the hearing is ongoing.

The viewer E-mail in the second half of the Cafferty File is interesting as well. One viewer suggests that war profits by MSNBC parent company GE were driving the effort to exclude Kucinich from the debate. And the final viewer email by Tony poignantly answers Cafferty's questions about whether the courts should intervene in such cases:

Why not? There is precedent. Remember December, 2000 when the courts effectively selected who should be the President of The United States.

To which Cafferty responds, "Yes they did".

UPDATE: Glenn Greenwald has much more on the Kucinich debate controversy.

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Election Integrity Experts Converge and Join Both Republican and Democratic Candidates in Quest for Transparency
New Hampshire Secretary of State Questioned About Documentation, Poll Records, and Diebold Memory Cards...
By Brad Friedman on 1/15/2008 4:27am PT  

By Brad Friedman from Sacramento...

Election Integrity experts from around the country have been converging on the Granite State over the last several days, in preparation for "historic" state-wide hand counts of New Hampshire's Primary Election ballots, The BRAD BLOG has learned. Counts of votes on both the Democratic and Republican sides will begin in earnest this Wednesday, as long as the two contesting candidates deliver certified checks by 3pm on Tuesday, in amounts determined on Monday by Secretary of State William M. Gardner.

The battle for transparency and accountability on the ground, where some 80% of the state's ballots were tallied only by error-prone, hackable Diebold optical-scan voting machines, without human audit or spot-checking of any kind, in last week's first-in-the-nation Primary, is already growing heated on both sides of the aisle, and even inside the statehouse as of Monday.

While representatives from each of the contestants have reportedly been working together on several aspects of the two separate counts --- each claiming to have requested the hand-counts in order to help answer questions about anomalous reported results --- what has become immediately clear, during our interviews with several members involved in the challenges as well as Election Integrity advocates now in New Hampshire and elsewhere, is that these election challenges likely may not mirror the partial recount in 2004, held at the request of then-Presidential candidate Ralph Nader.

The BRAD BLOG has obtained the two-page request for a detailed list of ballot and voting machine-related public documents and records submitted on Monday to Gardner by the previously obscure Republican candidate Albert Howard. Howard's request makes clear that the battle for integrity and transparency in post-election challenges may have finally caught up with the technical sea-changes in voting equipment that have overtaken the American election system over the last several years.

Due to extraordinary complexities in the ever more complicated computer systems, scanners, tabulators, record sets, databases, and proprietary programming that have now been employed by election administrators across the country, the once-simple task of examining and recounting paper ballots --- where they still exist, as they do in New Hampshire --- has grown exponentially more technical and confusing.

Early word on the ground in New Hampshire's capital city of Concord, along with concerns from candidates, surrogates, and election experts alike, suggests that these "recounts" could be like no other in the history of the country...

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

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By John Gideon on 1/14/2008 8:00pm PT  

Guest Blogged by John Gideon of VotersUnite.org

VotersUnite Co-Executive Director Ellen Theisen called Kerry Asbridge, Hancock Co Illinois County Clerk, in regards to a news report from late last week that Mr. Asbridge had requested the DoJ to investigate the deceptive business practices of ES&S.

Asbridge spoke openly about how ES&S has treated his county; words that have been spoken previously by election officials across the country.

Ellen reports this from her conversation with Asbridge:

"The county, for years, sent their ballot information to ES&S on paper. Last year, the vendor told them they wanted it in Excel in a specific format. So, last November, the county sent it to ES&S as requested for this coming election. A week before Christmas, ES&S contacted them, said they had changed the format and **for a fee** would convert the data for them. The county resubmitted it themselves in the new format. Then a couple of weeks ago ... a repeat. New format, and for a fee ES&S would convert it."

How many other counties across the nation have had to face the same business practices from a vendor that has been called “arrogant” and, as one retiring Arkansas election official pointed out last year, they “lack competency to make their equipment work timely and effectively. They ... make a difficult job impossible to do. They can’t spell, meet deadlines, send documents to the right address or code elections correctly. They leave races off the ballot for us to correct, they can’t program their software to work and you have to hand add the results. And they don’t return phone calls. The ES&S people in Arkansas are capable but the people I have dealt with in the home office in Omaha prevent them from being effective. They are also mean-spirited when you try to get them to correct the numerous and recurring errors.”...

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

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Senator Says 'It Wouldn't Make Much Sense' For Illegals To Vote 'To Be Perfectly Honest'
By Alan Breslauer on 1/14/2008 3:15pm PT  

Guest Blogged by Alan Breslauer

Neil Cavuto of Fox "News" had on Maryland state senator, Alex Mooney (R), to discuss Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley's plan to allow "illegals" to keep driver's licenses. For the most part, Mooney plays the Fox guest role perfectly --- bashing the plan that could help "illegals", calling the Governor a "strong supporter of Hillary Clinton" and repeatedly referring to his political opposition as the "Democrat" party. However, the Senator fails to follow Cavuto's lead when he tries to link the licensing of "illegals" to voter fraud (beginning at the 2:55 mark):

Cavuto: But that second license, the illegal license, whatever you want to call it, that can't get you on planes or in federal offices, but I bet you it could let you vote.

Senator Mooney: Well, actually to vote you have to be a citizen according to the voter, when you register to vote you have to check off, at least pledge, under penalties of perjury, that you are a citizen.

Unconvinced, Cavuto pushes his case by stating that some municipalities might accept the licenses granted to illegals to which Mooney gives in a little. With Mooney back on board, Cavuto proceeds to bottom line the issue:

Cavuto: Bottom line Senator, you could have illegals voting in your state.

Senator Mooney: We could, but it wouldn't make much sense for them to do so, to be perfectly honest, because they would be subject to perjury and other problems. There's other things they'd rather do like be able to drive and have these jobs and, you know, go to schools.

Ouch! Only time will tell if the Senator is ever invited back to Fox "News".

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

-- By Brad Friedman, The BRAD BLOG

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

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

But with election results? Um, not so much.

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

Writes Mahjoun:

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

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

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

Did she? Is there any evidence for that?

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

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

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

Some democracy, huh?

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

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

Bingo. Buy that drunkard another drink!

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

Rigging the Coverage...

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

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By John Gideon on 1/13/2008 8:00pm PT  

I have editorialized quite a bit lately about the “mash-up” in Colorado. Secretary of State Coffman has made a mess of a court ordered recertification of voting machines. The state hired consultants and test labs to test the machines. The results from those tests were that none of the systems used in the state met state requirements for voting systems. Coffman then decertified every system except the Premier/Diebold system and immediately people pointed out that the lobbyist for the vendor is also Coffman’s advisor for his planned run for Congress.

Then Coffman began to “flip-flop” as he began telling counties to retest the machines themselves or just to appeal his decision and he would change his mind. Then, this past week, the state legislature, including the Senate Majority Leader Ken Gordon, began talk of new legislation that would make it easier for the state to certify their voting systems. Essentially the legislature wants to protect Coffman from any further lawsuits about voting machine certification. Ken Gordon, by the way, ran against Coffman for Secretary of State in 2006.

It is truly unbelievable that these politicians are cutting corners with elections. They don’t seem to care if the voters use secure, accurate, accessible voting machines. They do seem to want to protect themselves from voters’ lawsuits. I would argue that the voters should stand and vote these bums out of office but it’s hard to do when the voting system is corrupt.

That story, and the many other notable voting news item today, all linked below...

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

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Ending Iraq War Would Likely Hurt Parent Company GE's Bottom Line
And Is Chris Matthews A Hypocrite?
By Alan Breslauer on 1/13/2008 12:04pm PT  

Guest Blogged by Alan Breslauer

In a promo airing on MSNBC Chris Matthews states that "politics at its best is a battle of ideas where one person with some guts and belief takes on someone else with some guts and belief and those who watch get to decide who is right."

Unfortunately, those who watch the January 15th Democratic debate in Las Vegas will not see one of the gutsiest candidates since NBC recently revamped its own rules in order to kick Congressman Dennis Kucinich out of the debate. One can't help but wonder if this is because of some of Kucinich's ideas - bring the troops home now and vehemently anti-war - are anathema to NBC's parent company, General Electric (GE), which is also a large military defense contractor.

At a minimum, the exclusion of Kucinich certainly makes Matthews a hypocrite. As he says, "those who watch get to decide who is right", not those who run media conglomerates. Should one feel inclined to ask Matthews to stand by his words and let the people decide, his email is hardball@msnbc.com.

COMMENT FROM BRAD: Or does it have something to do with his asking for a hand count of the votes in the NH Primary? After all, Kucinich already had his anti-war position when he was initially invited to participate in the debate originally, several days ago. But he was then un-invited the morning after he announced his call for a count of the NH primary ballots. Just FYI.

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Pushback as Strongarm Voting Machine Company Up to Same Old Tricks in Land of Lincoln...
By Brad Friedman on 1/13/2008 12:01pm PT  

We missed this one during the busy week last week. But it's important...

Hancock County's clerk said that escalating costs incurred by the county from an election vendor has forced him to call for a federal investigation of the firm.

County Clerk Kerry Asbridge has asked the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate Election Systems and Software Co. of Omaha, Neb., which provides election technology to the county.

"Election Systems and Software has consistently engaged in deceptive business practices concerning Hancock County," he said. "It's time for it to stop."

The story details how ES&S, the world's largest voting machined company, is screwing the small county. They've been doing the same thing to counties around the country for years. Good to see someone else now trying to push back against these thugs. We hope to see more along this line soon (how could we not?)

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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By John Gideon on 1/12/2008 8:00pm PT  

Guest Blogged by John Gideon of VotersUnite.org

Congratulations to the Pima Co Arizona Democrats, Republicans and Libertarians who all worked together along with their attorneys and Election Integrity activists like John Brakey and Jim March. This group, and the countless other citizens of Pima Co, were able to convince the County Board of Supervisors that they need to release all of the data files from the Diebold system used by the county. Because this group was “rock-solid” in their stance they now have all of the files from the 2006 primary and general elections and the May 2006 Regional Transportation Authority election. These files will now be scoured for evidence of election fraud or hacking. The information obtained from them will be used to create a computerized tool that will help elections officials and political parties nationwide investigate their own local voting systems for security weaknesses that could be used to rig elections. Great job!!

A couple days ago I mentioned a letter from a Solano Co California Supervisor who wanted a Board of Supervisor’s hearing about last Nov.’s election and 1,321 phantom votes. The supervisor has now apologized for a mistake in computing the number of votes. The total is now 11 more votes cast than voters who voted. The Board of Supervisors has also put elections on the agenda for their next meeting....

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

For related coverage, please see our index of notable New Hampshire-related BRAD BLOG articles, since the '08 Primary.
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Says 'Election All for Naught if We Can't Trust Results'
Catherine Crier: 'Glad This Controversy's Come Up, Will Elevate Voting Machine Issue In Minds of American People'...
By Brad Friedman on 1/11/2008 11:23pm PT  

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


Some key quotes from the video...

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

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

[APPLAUSE]

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

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

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

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

The Real Time clip was very good.

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

For related coverage, please see our index of notable New Hampshire-related BRAD BLOG articles, since the '08 Primary.
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By John Gideon on 1/11/2008 8:00pm PT  

Guest Blogged by John Gideon of VotersUnite.org

New Hampshire will now conduct a full recount of all ballots cast in the primary. This, after formal requests were made by Dennis Kucinich and Republican candidate Albert Howard.

Solano Co California Supervisor Barbara Kondylis has requested that the rest of the Board of Supervisors discuss the fact that in last November’s election in the county 1,321 more votes were counted on their ES&S voting machines than voters who voted. The Chair and immediate past-vice Chair, who set the board's meeting agenda, have refused to allow the Supervisor’s concerns to be heard. She has now sent an open letter to the citizens of the county in hopes they will pressure the Chairman to put this issue on the board's next meeting agenda.

According to reports from Colorado, the state legislature has “A bill to be introduced today would offer greater latitude in recertifying machines deemed subpar.” So, the machines are deemed to be “subpar” when being certified by present standards. In an upside-down world, it only makes sense to lower the standards to accept those “subpar” systems. Simply unbelievable. The Secretary of State and all complicit state legislators need to be recalled and replaced with people who will protect the voters of the state....

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

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