Greg Gordon (McClatchy Washington Bureau) today had a story that actually made it into the front section of my local paper:
Texas-based Premier Elections Solutions last week alerted at least 1,750 jurisdictions across the country that special precautions are needed to address the problem in tabulation software affecting all 19 of its models dating back a decade.
Beginning with the swing states, and then proceeding to counties whose election officials have been secretive, members of BBV’s Clean Up Crew make formal requests of public records under FOIA (the Freedom of Information Act) to force officials to disclose their electoral procedures, and take them to court if they refuse. Headed by e-voting activist Bev Harris, Black Box Voting has been a leader in documenting investigations, exposés, whistle-blower accounts, and many examples of flawed elections. Currently BBV has a Help America Audit campaign and is drawing attention to VoteHere’s cryptographic “solution” that would make a farce of voter verifiable paper trails.
Active lobbying in California and at the national level on voting issues. CVF has a good list of the types of errors that were reported with electronic voting machines in Nov 2004 election.
A number of states provide for a manual recount of a small sample of the ballots cast as a way to detect voting system errors. In California, although there is a requirement for a one percent manual recount, there are no rules on how this should be carried out. If not done carefully, however, the recount will not accomplish the task assigned to it. In particular, it may fail to detect election fraud committed by hackers inside or outside of the elections department.
SINCE the 2000 election, those who have been close to voting issues have been intensely concerned about the integrity of the vote. However, there has been scant coverage of this issue in the major media and, perhaps reflecting this, little interest by the broad public. Moreover, few elected officials of either major party are willing to address what is, without a doubt, the major political issue of the day.
Few Americans know about the historic event that happened on January 6, 2005, the official date for counting electoral votes. For the first time since 1877, congressmembers challenged the electoral count. Representative Stephanie Tubbs-Jones of Ohio, accompanied by the lone senator, Barbara Boxer of California, led the challenge to the Ohio vote count. Although massive fraud was reported around the country, only Ohio was officially cited.
Huge amorphous stories tend to wend their way into the mainstream press slowly, if at all. This one is no exception. The core of the story is straightforward: new computerized voting machines are vulnerable to tampering. The details and the implications become much more murky and complex: Who owns the companies that manufacture the voting machines? What are the technical issues involved? What does the law say? How can ordinary citizens best assert their rights to have their votes counted fairly and accurately?