Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Detroit candidate calls for election investigation, Fixing our broken democracy, ACORN cleared again

Former Mayoral Candidate Tom Barrow called for official review of the Nov 3 mayoral election "when he discovered empty ballot boxes and numerous ballot boxes with security seals which been breached, disqualifying tens of thousands of votes ...from being recountable... 'computer tapes', normally summarizing election results at the closing of the polls, had in fact actually been run hours before the closing of the polls indicating that the results were being electronically manipulated..."

The President appointed a Cyber Czar. Luther Weeks, CTVotersCount comments: "Our concern is with the disconnect that has otherwise intelligent people concerned with cyber security based on strong evidence, coupled with the almost simultaneous support for voting by Internet, email, and fax."..
.Brad Friedman reports that "ACORN Cleared YET AGAIN of Wrongdoing"...
In Fixing Our Broken Democracy, Professor Stephen Unger writes: "The warning, 'Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty', applies regardless of the election mechanics used."...

All this and more in today's voting news below....

CA: California: somehow pols are evading the campaign finance laws. Who'd a thunk it?

FL: Chambless urges delay in voting machine switch
Dec 23. GREEN COVE SPRINGS -- Supervisor of Elections Chris H. Chambless has gotten local legislative support for proposing a deadline on changing voting equipment for physically challenged voters
The Florida State Association of Supervisors of Elections (FSASE) is asking that changing to the AutoMark system be delayed until 2016, thus allowing counties to continue using their current Americans with Disabilitities (ADA) voting system

FL: License renewal to require a lot more identification
Getting a driver's license will require a whole lot more ID
The Department of Homeland Security reports that Real ID will improve security at federal buildings, nuclear facilities and aircraft, prevent people from fraudulently obtaining public benefits such as Medicare and Medicaid, prevent the hiring of illegal immigrants, prevent illegal firearm purchases and slow voter fraud.

IL: Military and Overseas Ballots in the Mail
Champaign County Clerk I’ve written about the problems of ballot certification as it relates to getting ballots to military and overseas voters. Well today we mailed the last of the initial mailing of 484 ballots

MI: Election Investigation * (missing ballots, 50,000 absentee ballots disqualified)
12/22/2009...Former Mayoral Candidate Tom Barrow is calling for an official review of the November third mayoral election. Mr. Barrow met with city officials at the Flynn Pavilion on Belle Isle to discuss allegations of voter fraud.

The concerns stem from missing ballots and signatures from several districts during the night of the election.

MI: Barrow Investigates City Elections *(suspicion results electronically manipulated) 21 Dec 2009. DETROIT, Mich. - Former mayoral candidate Tom Barrow has turned a routine recount of election precincts into a sweeping indictment of the entire conduct of elections in Detroit when he discovered empty ballot boxes
and numerous ballot boxes with security seals which been breached, disqualifying tens of thousands of votes in the November 3, 2009 general election from being recountable.
Barrow's team of lawyers, accountants and volunteers also challenged dozens of precinct's whose election results "computer tapes", normally summarizing election results at the closing of the polls, had in fact actually been run hours before the closing of the polls indicating that the results were being electronically manipulated and the numbers being shown not the final results.

MI: Barrow Calling For Election Investigation *
The Wayne County Board of Canvassers has already voted to exclude Detroit's absentee ballots and nearly four thousand poll ballots from being recounted because of broken seals and other unexplained discrepancies.

NC: Bald Head Island asks board of elections to fix voter registration rolls
The issue came about when former Mayor Larry Lammert lost last month’s election. The Pilot article states that although the island has 220 full time residents, 221 people voted and 282 were registered to vote.

NY: New York finally getting new voting machines
December 22, 2009 The New York State Board of Elections finally approved the use of two all-electronic voting machines to replace traditional lever booths after years of delay, although a final machine must still be chosen.
According to the City Board source, a decision can possibly be made as soon as December 29, when the commissioners hold their regular Tuesday meeting. However, if a decision is not made by January 5, a federal judge may make the ultimate decision.

OH: Ohio seeking Elections Statewide Voter Database Coordinator

NM: Voting concerns in South Valley (video available)
Ciessielki is very disturbed after casting her ballot. She says she saw two pieces of paperwork that a poll worker described as studies, but after looking them over, they appeared to read more like propaganda.

PA: With Sparse Turnout, Problems Persisted at the Polls Last Election Day *
Common election problems that cropped up – again – include faulty procedures around emergency paper ballots and provisional ballots, touchy unauditable, unrecountable electronic vote machines and understaffed polling places. These, along with a scattering of late openings, difficult to find polling sites (which cry out for a small investment in signage) and some polls that are inaccessible for the disabled – were joined this election by more reports of some over-the-top electioneering, notably in Cheltenham (more below).

TX: Federal Court Rules on Voting Machine Glitch
A Federal Court says a voting machine glitch needs to be fixed. The Democratic Party had sued Dallas County saying the way voting machines there were programmed didn’t count straight party votes for either party if someone also checked the parties Presidential candidate.


President Appoints Cyber Czar
December 23, 2009 ...We have previously covered the President’s concerns.

ACORN Cleared YET AGAIN of Wrongdoing...
And today, once again, ACORN is cleared of wrongdoing vis a vis yet another independent investigation, this one by the Congressional Research Service [PDF], as noted in a press release from U.S. House Judiciary Chair John Conyers this afternoon

Report Finds Acorn Broke No Laws

Fixing Our Broken Democracy
Professor Stephen Unger...It is important to understand that technology cannot be substituted for this vigilance; if Boss Tweed were left in charge of the polls, he would regard an e-voting system, not as an impediment, but rather as a labor saving device.

EAC Newsline: December 23, 2009
EAC is accepting applications for a Chief Information Officer and for External Peer Reviewers.


Canada: November: Port Hope chooses Internet and paper ballots for 2010 election 2009 Year in Review Dec 23, 2009
- Port Hope finalizes hybrid Internet and paper ballot voting for the 2010 election.

Philippines: Philippine Government Supports Holding Early Elections In Troubled Region
December 23, 2009... A poll has found that significant size of the electorate lack of awareness about how to use voting machines, and the delivery of more than 82,000 machines by Smartmatic International-Total Information Management has been delayed.

A leading election watchdog, the National Citizens' Movement for Free Elections, last month proposed holding elections in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao in response to the mass murder in the province of Maguindanao.

Voting News by Joyce McCloy.
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