Members convey 'moral and patriotic duty' to implement standards or face loss of Government Funding!
State that HAVA funding should only go to 'firms that abide by these principles'!
By Brad Friedman on 3/20/2005, 6:00pm PT  

Congressional support for VR's "Divestiture for Democracy" campaign continues to build strength as TWENTY-THREE U.S. House Members signed on to a letter sent late Friday to the nine major American Voting Machine companies!

The letter, authored by Rep. Maxine Waters and Rep. John Conyers (reported here late last week), demands transparency and accountability from the private companies which now run the public function of America's electoral system. The Congressional members outline --- in no uncertain terms --- their position that all government funding should be withheld from companies that do not comply with the standards originally set forth in VR's February 21 letter to the companies.

From the recent Congressional letter:

For the sake of our democracy, we believe you have a moral and patriotic duty to help eligible voters participate in and trust our electoral process. That is why we are urging you to adopt these common sense principles as expeditiously as possible.

It is our very strong position and belief that only firms that abide by these principles deserve funding under the Help America Vote Act. We will do everything in our power to see that non-complying firms do not receive such funding.

The letter was signed by the following U.S. House members: John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI), Maxine Waters (D-CA), Jim McDermott (D-WA), Marcy Kaptur (D-OH), Sam Farr (D-CA), Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX), Rick Boucher (D-VA), Stephanie Tubbs Jones (D-OH), William D. Delahunt (D-MA), Lynn Woolsey (D-CA), Barbara Lee (D-CA), Corrine Brown (D-FL), Bennie Thompson (D-MS), Robert Wexler (D-FL), James Oberstar (D-MN), Ra˙l Grijalva (D-AZ), Elijah Cummings (D-MD), Donald M. Payne (D-NJ), Barney Frank (D-MA), Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), George Miller (D-CA), Jesse Jackson, Jr. (D-IL) and Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ).

The members have asked for a reply from the companies no later than April 15, 2005. A copy of the complete signed letter is posted here.

As well, Conyers, sent another letter to me (as co-founder of Velvet Revolution) to inform us of this latest Congressional effort and his continuing commitment to the fight which VR began with our DV4D campaign. That letter is also posted at VR.

Twenty-three signers, we are told, is rather impressive for such a letter. As one congressional aide mentioned on that point via email, twenty-three signatures is "really good for a letter that kicks around a few weeks, let alone one that has circulated in just the last several days. Congrats! Wow!"

We suppose that must be attributed to the notion that supporting democracy in America really shouldn't be all that controversial an issue!

VR's "Divestiture for Democracy" Campaign, allows 60 days for the companies to announce their intentions of adopting the standards or face a massive divestiture effort to be launched against those companies (and their affiliates and clients) who choose to ignore the steps which so many Americans find necessary to restore confidence in America's electoral process. If you have not already done so, please click here to send an email to the companies yourself! It'll take you less than a minute yet means a lot!

Conyers had previously endorsed VR's "DV4D" campaign on March 2nd. And last week, Green Party Presidential Candidate, David Cobb, sent his own letter to America's Voting Machine Company strongly endorsing VR's campaign.

For more information on Velvet Revolution's "Divestiture for Democracy" campaign, please write to DV4D@VelvetRevolution.us.