Election watchdog org demands accountability and the return of millions in fraudulently collected tax-payer dollars...
By Emily Levy on 10/6/2009, 3:21pm PT  

Guest Blogged by Emily Levy of VelvetRevolution.us

Notorious electronic voting company Diebold, which has been hiding its election division under the name Premier Election Solutions, has bilked California taxpayers out of more than $100 million dollars for its failed, faulty, illegally certified electronic voting systems.

Velvet Revolution has now launched a new campaign: Diebold: Return Our Money! at DieboldReturnOurMoney.com and we hope you'll sign on in support.

California officials recently discovered that ALL of Diebold/Premier's voting systems violate federal, and thus state, certifications guidelines! These systems do some or all of the following in violation of those certification standards and laws:

  • delete ballots without notice
  • allow the "permanent" audit log records to be deleted
  • fail to properly record deletion of ballots
  • insert incorrect time stamps on audit log items.

Yet Diebold has falsely claimed, for years, they their systems meet all federal voting system standards. Accordingly, VR demands that:

1) DIEBOLD: RETURN OUR MONEY!: Diebold/Premier has accepted well over $100 million in county, state and federal taxpayer funds in California for services which the company knew it could not perform. With California's devastating budget shortfall of $ 45.5 billion dollars, we demand the return of these funds from Diebold. The purchase price for hardware, software licenses, and maintenance fees should be returned to the State within 90 days. If Diebold's announced sale to Election Systems and Software, Inc. (ES&S) becomes final, California must be fully reimbursed nonetheless, whether from Diebold or ES&S.

2) SOS DEBRA BOWEN: DECERTIFY DIEBOLD!: Diebold/Premier products, currently used in 20 California counties (and some 34 states across the country, by the way), violate federal voting system standards and must be immediately and permanently decertified for use in the state by Secretary of State Debra Bowen.

3) AG JERRY BROWN: PROSECUTE DIEBOLD!: California's Attorney General Jerry Brown must immediately launch a comprehensive criminal investigation into Diebold/Premier's knowing use and sale of faulty election systems that have undermined our elections. Further, unless Diebold/Premier, within 90 days, refunds to California all monies paid for its fraudulent software and equipment, we call on the State of California to file suit against Diebold/Premier seeking the return of funds for breach of contract and fraud.

Visit the campaign page at DieboldReturnOurMoney.com to send a quick email to Diebold (c/o the aptly-named company rep Chris Riggall), SoS Bowen and AG Brown. Over 400 emails have already been sent in the first 48 hours of this campaign...

As you may have heard, Diebold has recently been purchased by ES&S, its larger competitor. This purchase adds to the myriad problems with electronic voting yet another: one company's near monopoly on the industry. With the purchase of Diebold, ES&S will control approximately 85% of the nation's votes. An antitrust suit has been filed by Hart Intercivic, election watchdog BlackBoxVoting.org has filed a letter of complaint with the Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission, and yet another antitrust suit has now been filed by the e-voting legal eagles at VoterAction.org.

Velvet Revolution's demands for a refund of CA's money paid to Diebold, whether it comes from the Diebold Corporation or from ES&S.

Help us build momentum by supporting this campaign. Tell your friends about it! Join us on Facebook! (Become a fan of Velvet Revolution and DieboldReturnOurMoney.) Follow us on our brand new Twitter feed at vr_tweet, and please help by donating to Velvet Revolution!

VR is joined in the "Diebold: Return Our Money!" campaign by these fine organizations:

After Downing Street
Black Box Voting.org
Citizens for Legitimate Government
Election Defense Alliance
The Free Press
Liberty Tree Foundation for the Democratic Revolution
Progressive Democrats of America
Progressive Democrats of Los Angeles
Progressive Democrats of the Santa Monica Mountains
Protect California Ballots
Ruckus Society
SavElections Monterey County
True Vote

Other California groups or national groups operating in CA are invited to join by sending us an email.

[Disclosure: The BRAD BLOG is a co-founder of VelvetRevolution.us]