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2004 U.S. presidential election controversy and irregulariti

Daily newsbrief journal for January 2006, also see for a global 100-page perpetual brief and follow twitter @usdemocrats

2004 U.S. presidential election controversy and irregulariti

Postby admin » Fri Jan 27, 2012 7:30 am

2004 U.S. presidential election controversy and irregularities« Thread Started on Jan 30, 2006, 5:33am » --------------------------------------------------------------------------------2004 U.S. presidential election controversy and irregularitiesFrom Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.(Redirected from 2004 U.S. Election controversies and irregularities)go to source: ... gularities Jump to: navigation, searchThis page is protected from editing until disputes have been resolved on the discussion page.Protection is not an endorsement of the current page version. Please discuss changes on the talk page or request unprotection. To meet Wikipedia's quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup.See rationale on the talk page, or replace this tag with a more specific message. Editing help is available.(Tagged November 2005)After the 2004 U.S. Presidential election, several unique aspects about the execution of the election process caused some people to doubt the validity and/or verifiability of the election results.Exit Polls: Exit polls predicted John Kerry winning the popular vote by 5 million, while the official results gave George W. Bush the win with a popular margin of 3 million, meaning there was an 8 million vote discrepancy between the official results and the exit poll predictions. Voting Machines: With the introduction of the Help America Vote Act (HAVA), signed by George W. Bush on October 21, 2002, many states were given significant compensation to upgrade their voting apparatus to new electronic systems manufactured by several different vendors such as Diebold Election Systems, ES&S, and Sequoia Voting Systems. Several of these systems were identified by numerous reports such as the RABA Trusted Agent Report for the State of Maryland, the SAIC Report, and Avi Hopkins' Analysis of an Electronic Voting System, among others, as containing significant vulnerabilities, though it is unclear how many of these security risks had been fixed by Election Day. Voter Suppression: There are numerous reports, some documented through video, of significantly long lines at certain precincts in heavily populated urban areas. In a report later issued by the DNC, it was alleged that the difference in wait times was racially based. According to the report, the average wait time across the state for an African-American was 52 minutes, as compared to 18 minutes for a Caucasian [1] [2]. Since African-Americans tend to lean heavily towards the Democratic party, this alleged difference in the voting experience between African-Americans and Caucasians caused some people to believe this to be voter disenfranchisement by Republicans. Democrats have also been charged with wrongdoing. In one instance, Chad Staton of Defiance, Ohio, charged with filing 124 false voter registration forms, said he committed the felonies in exchange for crack cocaine from Georgianne Pitts of Toledo, who was working for NAACP National Voter Fund. [3]On December 13, 2004, the Electoral College vote gave President Bush a 286-251 victory over challenger John Kerry. The election was certified by the U.S. Congress on January 6, 2005, in spite of a challenge to the validity of Ohio's electoral votes. With the election certified, the tally cannot be overturned. As a result, the most prominent lawsuit contesting the election before the Ohio Supreme Court, Moss v. Bush, was withdrawn.This article provides detailed coverage of these issues, along with other central aspects, with many links to external sources. For a broad summary of controversies surrounding the voting process, see 2004 U.S. election voting controversies. Contents [hide]1 Controversial or irregular aspects of the 2004 election 1.1 Voting machine security, HAVA, and partisan vendors 1.2 Exit polls 1.3 Vote suppression 1.4 Allegations of racial discrimination and other bias 1.5 International election monitoring 1.6 Allegations of a media 'lockdown' 1.7 Voter registration irregularities 1.8 Other controversies 2 State and Federal government agencies 2.1 U.S. House Committee on the Judiciary (Democratic Staff) 2.2 Government Accountability Office 2.3 The 2004 Electoral Vote Challenge in Congress 2.4 California State Voting Panel and State Department 3 Voter's rights advocacy organizations 3.1 3.2 Electronic Frontier Foundation 3.3 The Election Protection Coalition 3.4 Lynn Landes' investigation of Associated Press exit polls reporting 3.5 Verified Voting and TrueMajority campaigns 4 Political party efforts 4.1 Democratic Party 4.2 Third party candidates 5 See also 6 External links 6.1 News/comment 6.2 Organizations 6.3 Multimedia 6.4 Interviews 6.5 Resources Controversial or irregular aspects of the 2004 electionFollowing the 2004 election, various aspects of the voting process raised concerns, including whether voting had been made accessible to everyone entitled to vote, whether the votes cast had been correctly counted, and whether these irregularities decisively affected the reported outcome of the election.Among the issues raised in 2004 were allegations or complaints regarding obstacles to voter registration, improper purges of voter lists, voter suppression, accuracy and reliability of voting machines (especially electronic voting), problems with absentee ballots and provisional ballots, areas with more votes than signatures of voters in election poll books, and more votes than registered voters.[4], [5], [6] and possible partisan interference by voting machine companies and election officials. Although a recount was conducted in Ohio, many of the alleged improprieties (such as long lines or tampering) could not be addressed in a recount. Voting machine security, HAVA, and partisan vendorsMain article: 2004 U.S. presidential election controversy, voting machines In response to the Florida 2000 voting debacle, where votes were miscounted due to problems with punch-card voting systems, Congress passed a law called the Help America Vote Act (HAVA) which appropriated $3.8 billion to upgrade the nation's traditional punch-card and lever voting systems with computerized electronic voting systems. While electronic voting systems have been in use for at least a decade previously, the passage of HAVA acted as a catalyst to help disseminate voting machines to a significant portion of the nation. In fact, it is estimated that around 40 million votes were cast using electronic voting machines in the 2004 U.S. election.However, as the usage of these machines became mainstream, several reports were released that highlighted the insecurities of these voting machines. [7] In response, the electronic voting machine industry banded together under the Information Technology Association of America, an industry organization that claims to represent hundreds of the top technology companies in the U.S.. [8]Many voting machines do not provide an auditable paper trail. Without a voter-verifiable paper trail, proper auditing of results produced by the voting machine is difficult if not impossible. Such concerns are important because votes tallied on an electronic voting machine can be electronically altered, possibly without detection. Some computer scientists have said these machines are not tamper resistant and that open-architecture voting machines would make the process more transparent.Government agencies that purchased voting machines were usually denied access to the manufacturer's proprietary software, and the official certifications were routinely bypassed, either by the failure to perform manufacturer-prescribed tests, the failure to apply instructions intended to safeguard their integrity once purchased, or the use of uncertified software and updates. Even when software was available for review, there were concerns that most agencies lacked the technical expertise to find problems or audit changes to the software. In several cases, agencies and experts examining the machines expressed dismay at their poor quality and minimal security.At least one voting machine began counting backwards to zero when it reached 32,000 votes. The manufacturer, ES&S, allegedly had known of this issue for two years but had failed to fix the bug. [9],[10] In two cases, a certifying company (Ciber Inc.) recommended voting machines for certification without testing core firmware or attempting to verify any of the crucial security aspects of the machines.Senior executives of each of the top three voting machine companies (ES&S, Diebold, and Sequoia, accounting for over 90% of voting machines in use) have strong Republican ties, and key managers or funders of all three are significant Republican fundraisers and donors. Some managers and/or affiliates of each of these also have criminal records, including cases of computer fraud, embezzlement, and bid rigging. Two senior managers went on to careers in politics. Even a small alteration of the machine could have been enough to change the result in battleground states.In addition, voting machine companies have been accused of major security and law violations. Employees (including senior executives) have been found to have had multiple prior convictions including bans for bid rigging, embezzlement, and drug trafficking ([11],[12],[13]), installing uncertified and untested versions of software on touchscreen voting machines, and tampering with computer files. According to internal email messages at the manufacturers, data files used in the machines are not password protected to prevent manual editing. Link to Post - Back to Top botAdministratormember is offline Joined: Nov 2004Posts: 4,324Re: 2004 U.S. presidential election controversy an« Reply #1 on Jan 30, 2006, 5:33am » --------------------------------------------------------------------------------Two groups are trying to create new programs for electronic voting machines are The Open Vote Foundation and the Open Voting Consortium. Exit pollsMain article: 2004 U.S. presidential election controversy, exit polls Exit poll interviews of voters leaving the polling place have been used in other countries to expose election fraud. In the 2004 Ukrainian presidential election, for example, exit poll discrepancies were an indication of possible election fraud. A re-vote was eventually ordered and the election result was overturned.The National Election Pool (NEP), a consortium of news organizations responsible for conducting most exit polls for the 2004 election, hired Edison Media Research and Mitofsky International (Edison/Mitofsky) to conduct the polls. The stated goal of NEP's and Edison/Mitofsky's exit polling and subsequent analysis is to accurately predict election winners, not to detect fraud. Accordingly, they adjust the final (published) exit poll results to match actual vote counts.In the 2004 election, pre-adjustment exit poll results were most likely leaked onto the Internet during Election Day via CNN [14]. These results, based on unadjusted exit polls, indicated that Kerry was leading Bush. [15]. According to an internal review of 1,400 precincts, Kerry's vote in the exit poll was higher than that in the vote count by an average of 1.9 percent. At one point during the day, Kerry's lead over Bush was estimated to be 3% of the popular vote. [16] Differences between vote counts and pre-adjustment exit poll results were larger in battleground states.A preliminary report [17] from the California Institute of Technology purported to show no discrepancy in the exit poll data. Another analysis from Steven Freeman, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania, gained initial media attention by asserting that the odds were less than 1 in 600,000 that the difference between unadjusted exit poll data and actual vote counts was due to chance. His paper has attracted criticism from polling statisticians for not having incorporated large enough design effects, which would mean that the paper overstated the odds against these anomalies occurring by chance, and for other statistical failings.Initial exit poll results indicated that Bush made substantial gains among Hispanics, especially in his home state of Texas, but some of these apparent gains now seem to have evaporated [18]. A correction [19],[20] reported by the [Associated Press] reduced Bush's support substantially, turning an 18-point Bush margin among Texan Hispanics into a narrow Kerry lead. Nationwide figures reported later by NBC reduced Bush's gains further, while other surveys have produced mixed results. A poll by the William C. Velasquez Institute indicated that Bush's gains among Hispanics since 2000 were not statistically significant, but the University of Pennsylvania's larger National Annenberg Election Survey showed a significant increase in Bush's support (pdf).In a 77-page report issued in January 2005, the polling company, Edison/Mitofsky, denied the possibility that fraud caused differences between exit poll results and vote tallies. [21] Edison/Mitofsky believes "Kerry voters were more likely to participate in the exit polls than Bush voters" and that this willingness was the cause of the error in the exit poll results. Edison/Mitofsky said their evaluation does not support the hypothesis that discrepancies were higher in precincts using electronic voting equipment.A group called US Count Votes responded with its own report [22], saying The Edison/Mitofsky report"gives no consideration to alternative explanations involving election irregularities" and "fails to substantiate their hypothesis that the difference between their exit polls and official election results should be explained by problems with the exit polls. They assert without supporting evidence that (p. 4), 'Kerry voters were more likely to participate in the exit polls than Bush voters.' In fact, data included within the report suggest that the opposite might be true."Their report also states that Edison/Mitofsky did not adequately investigate whether the type of voting machine was a factor in discrepancies. Several professors of statistics and other analytical fields contributed to the US Count Votes report. The report recommended that a national database of precinct-level election results be compiled to support rigorous statistical analysis.US Count Votes have since produced a further report (Executive Summary [23], Full Report: [24]), which claims that Edison/Mitofsky's data gives support to the idea that the exit polls were more accurate than the official vote tallies, and that a thorough investigation and exhaustive recounts in key states would be appropriate. Vote suppressionMain article: 2004 U.S. presidential election controversy, vote suppression The neutrality of this section is disputed.Please see discussion on the talk page.The term "voter suppression" is used to describe methods of discouraging or impeding people from voting. The government agency or private entity doing so believes that the would-be voters thus turned away would have been more likely to vote for an opponent. For example, Representative Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) described alleged voter suppression in his state (Ohio):Dirty tricks occurred across the state, including phony letters from Boards of Elections telling people that their registration through some Democratic activist groups were invalid and that Kerry voters were to report on Wednesday because of massive voter turnout. Phone calls to voters giving them erroneous polling information were also common. [25] In addition, while most political parties encourage turnout, occasionally acts of voter suppression are alleged. In a particularly overt case, a Republican state legislator in Michigan said, "If we do not suppress the Detroit vote, we're going to have a tough time in this election cycle." [26]Activists with ties to the Democratic Party also are alleged to have acted illegally to suppress Republican voters. In Wisconsin, the son of a Democratic Congressman and four volunteers for the Kerry/Edwards campaign, acting independently of that campaign, slashed tires on 25 vans rented by Republicans to aid in voter turnout. All five were arrested and are facing felony charges. [27] No evidence has been found that any votes were suppressed as a result of their action.In 2004, the issue of long lines and unequal voting machine distribution (among other issues) received increased attention in Ohio. In many places, voters had to wait several hours to vote. These waits have been attributed to an overall increase in voter registration without the mandated proportional increase in voting machines in some precincts (some precints lost voting machines while gaining registered voters); misdirection of voters, and poorly trained staff. Allegations of racial discrimination and other biasSome critics allege that the pattern of voter disenfranchisement is by design, having disproportionately affected racial minorities and/or urban precincts. For example, the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights estimated that, in Florida in 2000, 54 percent of the ballots discarded as "spoiled" were cast by African Americans, who represented only 11 percent of the voters. [28] People for the American Way and the NAACP catalogued a number of voting problems with discriminatory impacts through early 2004. [29]The 2004 election continued the trend that African Americans were much more likely to vote for Democratic candidates. As a result, a disproportionate reduction in the African-American vote would tend to hurt Democratic candidates. Greg Palast, a self-described progressive, alleged that if the election had been conducted without improprieties, Kerry would have won the presidency. [30] [31] [32] [33] [34]Jesse Jackson, a prominent African-American activist and founder of the Rainbow Coalition, remarked on Election Day: "Suppose 500 black folks came into a white neighborhood to challenge votes. It would be totally unacceptable. We will not surrender in the face of this madness." [35] [36].In August 2004, the NAACP and other civil rights leaders charged that the Republican Party was mounting a campaign to keep African Americans and other minority voters away from the polls in November.[37] Officers from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, which reports to Florida Governor Jeb Bush, were dispatched to investigate allegations of voter fraud that arose during the Orlando mayoral election in March 2004.In a repeat of the highly problematic "scrub list" of the 2000 election, the state ordered the implementation of a "potential felon" purge list to remove voters from the rolls. The state abandoned the plan after news media investigations revealed that the 2004 list also included thousands of people who were eligible to vote, and that it heavily targeted African-Americans while virtually ignoring Hispanic voters. [38] International election monitoringA small team of international election monitors from the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) were invited to monitor the U.S. election. The OSCE observers were granted access to polling stations in a number of states, although sometimes only in specific counties. The monitors criticised partisan election officials and the long lines at polling places, but said that electronic voting machines generally appeared to run smoothly.As for electronic voting, Gould [international election monitor] said he preferred Venezuela's system to the calculator-sized touch pads in Miami. "Each electronic vote in Venezuela also produces a ticket that voters then drop into a ballot box," Gould said. "Unlike fully electronic systems, this gives a backup that can be used to counter claims of massive fraud." The United States is also nearly unique in lacking a unified voter registration system or national identity card, Gould said, adding that he would ideally require U.S. voters to dip a finger in an ink bowl or have a cuticle stained black after voting. "In El Salvador, Namibia and so many other elections, the ink was extremely important in preventing challenges to multiple voting," Gould said. "In Afghanistan it didn't work so well, because they used the dipping ink for the cuticles, so it wiped right off."[39], [40] Link to Post - Back to Top botAdministratormember is offline Joined: Nov 2004Posts: 4,324Re: 2004 U.S. presidential election controversy an« Reply #2 on Jan 30, 2006, 5:34am » --------------------------------------------------------------------------------Allegations of a media 'lockdown'Since reports of irregularities surrounding the 2004 Presidential vote first started to surface even prior to the election, there has been an ongoing complaint by many that the "mainstream" media has not given enough coverage to the issue, or has in fact intentionally minimized coverage and public awareness. Although numerous publications have covered the voting process leading up to, during and following the election, the allegation of a "media lockdown" has persisted and grown as the majority of the coverage and insight into the election irregularities has taken place in alternative media outlets (independent/local media, internet media, etc.). In light of numerous troublesome occurrences, most notably the exit polls withheld from public scrutiny by various media corporations who own the data, allegations of corporate or government manipulation and suppression of the media continue. [41]Rep. John Conyers (D-MI), in an open letter to supporters, alluded to such a media lockdown:"For this challenge to Ohio's electors to have occurred, I owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to the internet activists, who spread the story of my efforts and supported me in every way possible. I am also thankful to the alternative media, including talk radio and blogs that gave substantial attention and investigation to these matters when all but a handful in the mainstream media refused to examine the facts. " Voter registration irregularitiesAllegations of voter registration fraud were made by both parties in many states during the 2004 election. Some of the controversies involved the procedure by which workers are paid per registration. In Colorado at least 719 cases of potentially fraudulent forms were submitted. [42] Colorado Secretary of State Donetta Davidson issued a statement saying:"I have a message for those that finance direct participation in abuse - I'm saying abuse. They could be out there legally doing it and there's no problem. If there is abuse in their process, we're going after them." In Nevada, former field registrars for the Republican party and for the Republican party-funded group "Voters Outreach of America" claimed that they had been instructed to "dispose of" any voter registrations they received from Democrats. A Republican official described the allegations as an "outright lie", and that there was "no way anyone would issue instructions to destroy valid registrations, even from Democrats". [43], [44], [45] Other controversiesThere have been incidents of irregularity, confusion or possible malfeasance in official handling of ballots with address errors, missing birthdates or other discrepancies, where such handling has been alleged to be contrary to standing law. Please see the In the news section for a list of reports detailing reported irregularities and unresolved aspects of the election.In Cleveland, a mistake in precinct poll coordination led to hundreds of presidential votes being cast for a third party candidate instead of the intended candidate. [46] Another article [47] alleges that Democratic results on election night were withheld until Republican results had moved ahead.Some analysts have suggested that a discrepancy between the loss margins of minor Democratic Supreme Court candidate C. Ellen Connally and Kerry/Edwards indicates vote manipulation: one would expect a minor candidate to receive fewer votes, relatively speaking, than the major candidate for the party. In some areas, this situation was reversed. [48]Blackboxvoting.ORG reports that the following voting irregularities are directly foreseeable: "There are some who are using election-manipulation techniques to transfer a block of power to their friends. This is a business plan, or a form of organized crime, depending on how alarmed you are ... Manipulation of elections includes the following attack points."Strategic redistricting, ignoring normal timelines for re-evaluation. Orchestrated vote suppression: Hiring "challengers" to confront voters in targeted areas; moving polling places at the last minute, "losing" the voter registration records for a percentage of targeted voters, booting up equipment late, or not having enough equipment in minority districts. Casting and counting the vote on manipulatable and insecure systems. Blackboxvoting.ORG has alleged it was "under attack around the time of the 2004 election, repeatedly, using various methods, very aggressively." The attack "was not random. It was clearly a targeted attack using a variety of methods..."In the 2000 election, especially in the disputed recounts in Florida, there were issues concerning the ambiguities and uncertainties that arose from punch-card ballots, such as the hanging chads (incompletely punched holes). In 2004, the punch-card ballots were still widely used in some states. For example, more than 90,000 votes cast in Ohio were discounted, many allegedly due to "hanging" chads. [49] State and Federal government agenciesMaster list of Election-related litigation [50] U.S. House Committee on the Judiciary (Democratic Staff)Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee requested an investigation by the GAO, asked Ohio election's chief J. Kenneth Blackwell for explanations of many irregularities, and held two Public Congressional Forums about voting irregularities in Ohio on December 8 and 13. Among the attendees were Jesse Jackson, Cliff Arnebeck, David Cobb, Bob Fitrakis and (at the first forum) Steve Freeman. Warren Mitofsky and Ken Blackwell were invited to the first forum but declined to attend.Relevant excerpts from the hearings are available at the article 2004 U.S. presidential election recounts and legal challenges.A 100-page status report on their investigations was released on January 5, 2005, prior to the Jan. 6 joint meeting of Congress to receive the electoral college votes.For letters and press releases, see House Committee on the Judiciary, Democratic Members. Government Accountability OfficeIn November 2004, the Government Accountability Office began investigating vote counting in the election. [51] The GAO report found problems with electronic voting machines, which could have resulted in lost or miscounted votes. The report did not make any specific accusations of fraud in the 2004 election. [52] The 2004 Electoral Vote Challenge in CongressOn January 6, 2005, representatives from the 50 American states met to certify the electoral votes for president and vice president. U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer and U.S. Representative Stephanie Tubbs Jones raised an objection to Ohio's votes, on the grounds that they were not "regularly given". This was the first objection to an entire state's votes since 1877, and resulted in separate debates and votes on the objection in both Houses. (A similar objection occurred in 2001, with Rep. Maxine Waters challenging Florida's votes, but in that instance no Senator joined the objection, so it could not be legally recognised.)Numerous Democratic members of Congress spoke on the importance of election reform, announced initiatives for constitutional protection of the vote, and called for election integrity protection against conflicts of interest, listing problems with the process of the vote in Ohio and other states. Numerous Republican members of Congress spoke against the objection, calling it an obstruction of the democratic process and pointing out that Bush won Ohio's vote by over 118,000 votes according to the recount. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-TX) denounced the objection, calling Boxer and Jones the "X-Files Wing" of the Democratic Party. [53]The objection was rejected by a vote of 1-74 (Yea-Nay) in the Senate and by a vote of 31-267 in the House, as both supporters and challengers anticipated.Debate continues regarding election reform, with a number of bills aimed at eliminating some of these irregularities expected in the 109th Congress. Community concern about the integrity of US election procedures is continuing and may bring about reform in several states.For more information, see 2004 U.S. presidential election recounts and legal challenges. California State Voting Panel and State DepartmentIn October of 2004 the state of California issued an order stating that 15,000 brand new touch-screen voting machines would not be used in next week's presidential election. These electronic machines were manufactured by Diebold Inc., a North Canton, Ohio-based company that also specializes in automated teller machines and electronic security.California election officials say there are serious flaws with the machines and that Diebold repeatedly misled the state about them. "[Diebold] literally engaged in absolutely deplorable behavior and, to that extent, put the election at risk, jeopardizing the outcome of the election," said California Secretary of State Kevin Shelley. [54],[55] California Attorney General Bill Lockyer announced before the election in September that he will sue e-voting technology maker Diebold on charges that it defrauded the state because of their aggressive marketing and overstated claims, and sold the state poor-quality equipment that did not produce a paper trail and was full of security vulnerabilities. In December 2004, Diebold settled the case by agreeing to pay $2.6 million and to implement "certain reforms". [56] Link to Post - Back to Top botAdministratormember is offline Joined: Nov 2004Posts: 4,324Re: 2004 U.S. presidential election controversy an« Reply #3 on Jan 30, 2006, 5:34am » --------------------------------------------------------------------------------Voter's rights advocacy organizationsBlackboxvoting.orgBlack Box Voting has launched a fraud audit into Florida and Ohio. Three investigators (Bev Harris, Andy Stephenson, and Kathleen Wynne) were in Florida requesting hand counts on selected counties that had not fully complied with's Nov. 2 Freedom of Information requests. accuses Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell of failing to properly account for provisional ballots, and refusing to allow citizens to see pollbooks.The director of, Bev Harris, has filed a lawsuit against Palm Beach County, Florida Elections Supervisor Theresa LePore, which accuses her of stonewalling or ignoring requests for public records. The information was obtained from her successor, Arthur Anderson. [57] [58] Electronic Frontier FoundationAccording to the Electronic Frontier Foundation electronic voting machines may have serious security problems that aren't being addressed. Most of the machines use "black box" software that hasn't been publicly reviewed for security. Few machines provide voter-verifiable paper ballots which can be used to detect vote fraud. A recent analysis by several academic researchers outlines the many and varied ways that anyone from a technically proficient insider to an average voter could disrupt a poorly designed e-voting system to defraud an election. EFF has filed numerous lawsuits concerning voting irregularities.Their most recent lawsuit against State of Louisiana elections officials alleged many low and moderate income citizens were denied the right to vote when polling places failed to open on time or provide enough provisional ballots. The Election Protection CoalitionHearings were held November 13 and 15, 2004, in Columbus, Ohio. The hearings were organized by the Election Protection Coalition and allowed citizens to enter their concerns regarding voter suppression and other irregularities into the public record. Lynn Landes' investigation of Associated Press exit polls reportingJournalist Lynn Landes' investigation states that the Associated Press (AP) is the "sole source of raw vote totals for the major news broadcasters on Election Night" and that they have refused to explain where this information will be sourced, and "refused to confirm or deny that the AP will receive direct feed from voting machines and central vote tabulating computers across the country."She notes that if so, a remote computer could also access these same machines (the manufacturers already requested they not be connected during some elections, see above), that the manufacturers pride themselves on "accessibility" and that many of the AP executives have Republican ties and as a sole source may not be as non-partisan as is believed. She also points out there are significant ownership ties between conservative newspapers and voting machine manufacturers. [59] [60] Verified Voting and TrueMajority campaignsOver a thousand computer scientists, academics, lawyers, elected officials and regular citizens have signed's petition to require voting machines with a verifiable paper trail. TrueMajority founder Ben Cohen (of Ben & Jerry's fame) notes, "The fledgling technology already has failed widely-publicized tests. One hacker was able to open a locked machine and start changing votes. It took him less than a minute. Another hacker was able to intercept and change vote totals being sent to headquarters." [61] Political party effortsDemocratic PartyThirty-four Democratic members of Congress, including one senator, objected to the counting of Ohio's Electoral votes on January 6. Their objection was overruled by separate votes in the Senate and House after debates lasting one and four hours respectively. Part of the evidence that was used for debate and discussion was the House Committee on the Judiciary Democratic Staff 101-page report titled "What Went Wrong in Ohio". The report was entered into the Congressional Record on January 6. Several Democratic members of the House Committee on the Judiciary have written to the GAO requesting a formal investigation. Their first letter was written three days after the election, on November 5 [62], and this was followed by a second letter on November 8 listing further matters which had since come to light [63]. The investigation by the GAO is ongoing.Numerous Democratic politicians have responded to the irregularities reported in the 2004 Presidential election. The Democratic National Committee (DNC)'s Voting Rights Institute has initiated an investigation of the Ohio irregularities. Senator Chris Dodd (D-CT) promised on January 6 that HAVA (the 'Help Americans Vote Act') would be 'fixed' in the 109th Congress. Senator Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) is expected to introduce the 'Federal Election Integrity Act' in February 2005. 'FEIA' is aimed at preventing election officials from participating in campaigns they oversee. Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-NY) agreed to join Senator Boxer (D-CA) in re-introducing legislation in the Senate requiring a paper audit for all electronic voting machines currently in service in the U.S. Third party candidatesGreen Party candidate David Cobb, in conjunction with his Libertarian opponent Michael Badnarik, raised the funds needed for a recount of the Ohio presidential vote in four days. Their request was filed with the required fees on November 19, and the recount was begun on December 13. Observers from the Green Party claimed that there were irregularities in the conduct of this recount [64], and Cobb filed a federal complaint on December 30 asking for a recount to be reconducted using uniform standards.Cobb and Badnarik also requested a recount in New Mexico, but were asked to pay the estimated cost of $1.4 million up front. They instead challenged this requirement in court, and appealed an initial ruling that upheld this fee.They also requested a recount in Nevada, but withdrew this request due to financial and other demands which they considered unreasonable.Independent candidate Ralph Nader filed a request for a recount of the votes with New Hampshire's Secretary of State. Nader's request cited "irregularities in the vote reported on the AccuVote Diebold Machines in comparison to exit polls and trends in voting in New Hampshire" and added: "These irregularities favor President George W. Bush by 5 percent to 15 percent over what was expected." [65] The state conducted a partial recount which was completed Nov. 30, finding no significant discrepancies. [66].According to Nader, the current situation with voting machines warrants investigation. Several elements make voting machines "probative" for investigation, according to Nader, a consumer affairs lawyer: proprietary ownership, secret code, vested interests, a high-value reward, and lack of any real consequences, or likelihood of getting caught, for vote manipulation. "We are told that shenanigans are just politics," said Nader at a press conference on Nov. 10. "Well, it's not politics. It's taking away people's votes." See alsoU.S. presidential election, 2004 U.S. presidential election, 2004, exit polls 2004 U.S. presidential election controversy and irregularities 2004 U.S. presidential election controversy, exit polls 2004 U.S. presidential election controversy, vote suppression 2004 U.S. presidential election controversy, voting machines 2004 U.S. presidential election recounts and legal challenges Moss v. Bush Timeline of the 2004 U.S. presidential election controversy and irregularities 2004 U.S. election voting controversies, Florida 2004 U.S. election voting controversies, Ohio People involved: Cliff Arnebeck Kenneth Blackwell Barbara Boxer David Cobb John Conyers Tom Feeney Bob Fitrakis Jesse Jackson Stephanie Tubbs Jones Organizations involved: Common Cause Government Accountability Office U.S. House Committee on the Judiciary Subject background: Voting machine Electronic voting Exit poll Voter suppression Electoral fraud Vote-rigging (Note: the presence of any link above involving election irregularities is for those seeking further information on those irregularities in a general sense. It is not an opinion on this specific election.) For a detailed timeline of events surrounding the 2004 U.S. presidential election controversy, see Timeline of the 2004 U.S. presidential election controversy and irregularities. All news, including recent news, has been moved to the abovenamed article. (Information relating to voting machines, exit polls or vote suppression may need to be reflected in their relevant pages) External linksNews/comment4 Kerry campaign workers reach plea deal in tire slashings, Milwaulkee Journal Sentinal [67] FAIR Extra, March/April 2005, "America’s Broken Electoral System: Get over it, says mainstream press" Christopher Hitchens, Vanity Fair, March 2005, "Ohio's Odd Numbers" Status Report of the House Judiciary Committee Democratic Staff, 5 January 2005, "Preserving Democracy: What Went Wrong in Ohio" - prepared at the request of Rep. John Conyers (D) Tim Radford and Dan Glaister, The Guardian, February 16, 2004, "Hi-tech voting machines 'threaten' US polls: Scientist warns that electronic votes cannot be safeguarded" - 'Powerful Government Accountability Office report confirms key 2004 stolen election findings', Bob Fitrakis, Harvey Wasserman (October 26, 2005) OrganizationsHouse Judiciary Committee Democrats [68], Correspondence [69] Caltech/MIT voting technology project MultimediaVideo of the January 6 Congressional debate regarding Ohio's challenged Electoral votes. [70] Video of the experiences of African Americans trying to vote in Ohio on Election Day. (clip1: video, wmv) (clip2: video, wmv) U.S House Committee on the Judiciary Open Congressional Forum in Ohio: rtsp:// ... conyers.rm (real media) U.S House Committee on the Judiciary Open Congressional Forum in Ohio (video) Highlights (wmv) Sworn testimony of David Cobb to House Judiciary [71] (mp3) Sworn testimony of Clint Curtis to House Judiciary (rm) (wmv) The Counter-Inaugural Committee's press conference as broadcast on C-SPAN including Brian Anders of the Washington Peace Center, Gael Murphy of Code Pink and United for Peace and Justice, Basav Sen of Mobilization for Global Justice, David Lytel of ReDefeatBush and Shahid Buttar of the Counter-Inaugural Committee. Lytel reviews what is expected on January 6th in Washington. (video) 'Stolen Election' - Video made by members of DU (Democratic Underground) RealPlayer 11/08/04 Olbermann segment online Ohio Public Radio: Excerpts of March 23, 2005 Ohio Voting Hearing exchanges between Rep. Stephanie Tubbs-Jones (D-OH) and J. Kenneth Blackwell, SoS OH. [72] InterviewsCliff Arnbeck on American Dream Radio (audio) Cliff Arnbeck on Pacifica Radio (audio) Cliff Arnbeck on CSPAN (video) Jesse Jackson on MSNBC (video) Kenneth Blackwell on MSNBC (video) Kenneth Blackwell takes questions from reporters (real media) Election 2004 Vote Fraud: Alex Jones Interviews Bev Harris of Q&A interview about 2004 election irregularities with author Mark Crispin Miller ResourcesBetter World Links on the Election Fraud 2004 Torrent file of an interactive CD containing numerous videos, documents, etc. of primary sources on the 2004 Election Controversies and Irregularities. Bev Harris's website and book "Black Box Voting" Election 2004: Theories and Countertheories 2004 election problems ( Election 2004 Vote Fraud News Archive The Votergate Resource Center Voters Unite Listing of All Reported Irregularities Common Dreams report 60,000 (5%) of Absentee Ballots go missing, undelivered to voters in Broward County, FL [73] 268,159 more votes than voters in Florida American Election Fraud - links and articles - 2004 election fraud Database of E-Voting Problems EIRS Database of Voting Incidents Compilation of Irregularities and Fraud News and Articles Findlaw Legal Database - Election 2004 OSCE preliminary statement on US election voting section lists of hearings, events and publications. U.S. Politics Today voting irregularities news Retrieved from ""
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