Friday, March 17, 2006

US evangelicals warn Republicans: "DO MORE!"

By Jamie Coomarasamy
BBC News, Washington

Prominent leaders from the Christian right have warned Republicans they must do more to advance conservative values ahead of the US mid-term elections.

Their message to Congress, controlled by Republicans, is "must do better".

Support from about a quarter of Americans who describe themselves as evangelicals was a factor in President George W Bush's two election victories.

The Republicans will need to keep them onboard if they are to retain control of Congress in November.

  • 435 seats - all to be contested in mid-terms
  • Republicans hold 231 seats; Democrats 201; one independent; two seats vacant
  • Democrats need to win net 15 seats to win control of House
At a news conference in Washington, some of America's most influential conservative leaders said the current perception among evangelical Christians was that the Republican majority was not doing enough for them.

Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, said that apart from confirming two conservative judges to the Supreme Court, "core values voters" did not feel that Congress was advancing their interests.

  • 100 seats - 33 to be contested in mid-terms
  • Republicans hold 55 seats; Democrats 44; one independent
  • Democrats need to win net six seats to win control of Senate
The leaders appear to be reflecting a growing sense of frustration among the Christian right, over what they see as a lack of legislative progress on issues such as banning same-sex marriages.

And while this was not quite a call to arms, it will cause concern in Republican circles in the run-up to the mid-terms.

Exit polls suggested that more than three-quarters of white evangelical Christians voted for President Bush in 2004.

But according to a recent opinion poll, the number of them who want Republicans to retain their Congressional majority is not much above 50%.

Story from BBC NEWS:

Published: 2006/03/17 10:31:10 GMT

How To Steal an Election

From Washington Post, March 16, 2006:

It's easier to rig an electronic voting machine than a Las Vegas slot machine
, says University of Pennsylvania visiting professor Steve Freeman. That's because Vegas slots are better monitored and regulated than America's voting machines, Freeman writes in a book out in July that argues, among other things, that President Bush may owe his 2004 win to an unfair vote count. We'll wait to read his book before making a judgment about that.

But Freeman has assembled comparisons that suggest Americans protect their vices more than they guard their rights, according to data he presented at an October meeting of the American Statistical Association in Philadelphia.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

True 2004 Election Results - Map

We often see 2004 Election Results maps, which display "Red States" and "Blue States" as if there are no people with opposing political views in those states. This is not the case. Jerry Leibowitz created a map of the 2004 election results which is accurate.

The following map, created by Mr. Leibowitz, graphically displays the actual percentage of voters within each state who voted RED and who voted BLUE!

It is good (and, in fact, comforting) to remember that there were people in the RED states who voted for John Kerry.

When Electronic Voting Comes to MY County

Betrayed, outraged, that the worst, most corruption-prone Vote system is Foisted upon my own community

by Rob Kall

Tonight I found out that my county's supervisors decided, along party lines, to dump its old, reliable, trustworthy lever machines and replace them with unreliable, electronic machines, with no verifiability, no paper ballots.

I feel horrible-- betrayed, exposed and outraged. Local activists have done yeomans' jobs of educating both the public and the commissioners about the liabilities and negatives of electronic "DRE" machines and the strengths of optical scanning (OC)machines with paper ballot records. The more verifiable, higher integrity OC machines have a lower cost over time, by millions of dollars.

In the recent OpEdNews/Zogby Peoples poll, Pennsylvania voters said that they favored paper ballor or lever machines over electronic machines 84% to 13%.

Why would the commissioners-- the two republican commisioners-- James Cawley and Charles Martin-- choose a more expensive, less trustworthy, less reliable device that a massive majority of the voters don't want? That's the question.

Why didn't PA Governor Ed Rendell (former DNC leader) influence this situation? Why did he appoint a Secretary of State, Pedro Cortes, who voting integrity activists report did all he could to prevent the adoption of the most reliable systems?

This doesn't add up.

Some say the machine manufacturers contributed to campaigns. It's clear that the machine manufacturers are in far too close and too tight with the Secretaries of state, nation-wide. They help pay to sponsor meetings. Check out the (PDF) National Association's of Secretaries of State (NASS) corporate affiliates. This association, NASS, could be a cesspool of corruption, where these mid level state bureaucrats, these Secretaries of State, like Ken Blackwell and Katherine Harris, some of the most crooked, dangerous enemies of Democracy have found ways to gain power. Harris stole an election for Bush and became a member of congress. Blackwell is running for governor of Ohio, helped no doubt because of his dirty work aiding in the theft and corruption of the Ohio vote (sue me you SOB, Mr. Blackwell. Let's air this out in court.)

Some say the Commissioners are crooked, that they were made promises by the manufacturers. Some say Rendell's campaign received contributions. But this is speculation.

In PA, there is already one lawsuit against Secretary of State Pedro Cortes, and more are in the works. That probably won't do much to fix the problem with the two county commissioners. Word is, that when the one Democratic commissioner voted against the electronic machines, the one Republican commissioner appointed by the Republican machine blanched. There's no doubt that the payback for the commissioners betraying the desires of the voters of Bucks county will be the most active campaign against Republican control in history. Of course, the Republicans will be controlling the counting of the votes.

Governor Rendell seems complicit in this outrage. Add to his abuse of democracy, by attempting to force a senate candidate, Bob Casey, jr., upon the electorate, without an open primary, and Ed ends up with an interesting situation. He may lose Pennsylvania-- lose the governor's race, cause the loss of the senate race (if Casey wins the primary) and lose the whole state, so it becomes a red state. Rendell may very well lose, if Casey runs, because Casey's issue positions are abhorent to women and blacks. If Casey is running, he will turn off Republican women who split their "tickets" to vote for Rendell and Casey, because of the women's rights/ abortion issue. That won't happen if Casey runs. Matter of fact a lot of progressive women are saying they're so disgusted with Casey, they certainly won't work for his campaign and may not even vote for him. They're looking at staying home or voting for a third party candidate.

Our OpEdNews/Zogby Peoples poll found that Casey's support by African Americans was literally cut in half when they learned his positions.

Add this situation to Rendells culpability in allowing electronic voting to happen across the state and you get a lot of angry voters who just may send a message to Rendell and the Democrats who think taking away safe voting and women's rights is the way to win elections.

I think you know what I think of these DLC, democratic fakes. I call them Republicrats, and I think we need to purge the Democratic party of them. But that's another Op-ed.

Rob Kall is editor of, President of Futurehealth, Inc, and organizer of several conferences, including StoryCon, the Summit Meeting on the Art, Science and Application of Story and The Winter Brain Meeting on neurofeedback, biofeedback, Optimal Functioning and Positive Psychology.

Give To The Stephen Heller Legal Defense Fund

Stephen Heller is a whistleblower

He is alleged to have seen and then exposed legal documents
proving that Diebold Election Systems, Inc., the country's leading manufacturer of electronic voting machines and voting machine software, was using illegal, uncertified software in their California voting machines, thereby defrauding the state of California, the taxpayers of California, and disenfranchising the voters of California.

Did California applaud this courageous whistleblower, and prosecute Diebold for defrauding California?


What happened to Diebold:
Diebold was not prosecuted. Instead, California Secretary of State Bruce McPherson (Republican, running again in November '06) recently approved the use of Diebold voting machines throughout California for the November election. He did this after Stephen Heller exposed the fraud, and despite research reports from the GAO and a UC Berkeley research team, which exposed numerous hardware and software flaws that make Diebold machines imminently hackable! This is a travesty of enormous proportions. This is an outrageous abuse of the law and of power.

What happened to Heller: On February 21, 2006, Stephen Heller was charged in Los Angeles Superior Court with 3 felonies: felony access to computer data, commercial burglary and receiving stolen property. He pleaded not guilty.

Stephen Heller is running out of money to pay his legal defense bills. The blogosphere is coming to his aid. Please consider donating a few bucks!

* * * * *
Hello everyone,

This is Michele Gregory, Stephen Heller's wife. Once again, Stephen and I thank you for all of your help and support. Your encouragement and kind words have been invaluable to us in this very difficult and frightening time.

As you know, Stephen has been charged with some very serious crimes for allegedly blowing the whistle on Diebold Election Systems. He has pleaded innocent to all charges. He needed the very best legal defense, but criminal defense attorneys are very expensive. So far, starting in August of 2004, we have covered Stephen's legal bills with our personal savings and by taking a second mortgage on our house. Our savings are now gone, and our credit is strained.

And so, with the help of some friends, I have started the Stephen Heller Legal Defense Fund and corresponding website.

For more detailed information about this case and how to donate, please go to . The site has details on Stephen's case, news, press articles, blog posts, and information about the defense fund, including detailed information on how it is run and how you can donate, should you wish to.

Whether or not you are able to donate, please pass the website around to everyone you know. Stephen's lawyer has said that public awareness of his situation will be beneficial to his defense.

Thank you all for all you have done, are doing, and will do. Stephen and I are in your debt; you have our gratitude.

With love,

Michele Gregory
Proud and loving wife of Stephen Heller

* * * * *
Should you wish to donate with a check, please make the check out to "The Stephen Heller Legal Defense Fund" and mail it to:

The Stephen Heller Legal Defense Fund
c/o Michele D. Gregory, Fund Administrator
17216 Saticoy St., Box 234
Van Nuys, CA 91406-2103

The fund itself is a non-interest bearing, FDIC insured checking account opened on March 7, 2006 at the First Federal Bank of California, Encino branch. Stephen's name is not on the account and he does not have access to the money. Monies can only be used for payments to Stephen's attorneys, and the account has been set up after advice from attorneys and with full transparency.

Stop Election Day cheating -- or it will spread further

By Robert Steinback
Miami Herald, March 15, 2006 (

If you bet on a race horse, and later heard about serious allegations that the winning horse may have been illegally doped to gain an advantage, would you demand an investigation?

You know the answer. It would depend on whether or not you bet on the winning horse.

That's what has made much of America so hesitant to demand accountability regarding a growing ledger of allegations that the November 2004 election was so badly tainted that one could fairly question the outcome of the biggest race of all -- the one for the Oval Office. Anyone who questions the reliability of the election is assumed to be a sour-grapes bad sport who has fallen into the thrall of aluminum-foil helmeted conspiracy theorists. And the media, ever tremulous about affirming their critics' allegations of liberal bias, would sooner remove a hot radiator cap than make a mission of investigating the anomalies.

But the anomalies were real. Many have been documented. They kept thousands in swing states from voting, and prevented thousands of ballots from being counted.

Not incidentally, most of the 2004 anomalies benefited one party.

What stands out in the analysis of 2004 voting practices in the critical state of Ohio, says Columbus State Community College professor Bob Fitrakis, "is the asymmetrical nature of the anomalies. Virtually every single anomaly tends to favor Bush, just overwhelmingly."

Fitrakis, a lawyer who holds a Ph.D in political science, has done considerable research into the critical Ohio election, which Bush officially won by 118,599 votes to recapture the presidency. Fitrakis will present his evidence in a book, What happened in Ohio: A documentary record of theft and fraud in the 2004 election, coauthored by Harvey Wasserman and Steve Rosenfeld, to be released in September.

Among their findings:

Four percent of the 5.6 million votes cast in Ohio -- some 224,000 ballots -- were not counted for various reasons. Nearly two-thirds of those disallowed votes came from urban, heavily Democratic districts.

In certain heavily Republican counties, John Kerry received fewer votes than obscure Democrats running in statewide elections. In Butler County, for example, a retired black judge from Cleveland in a long-shot race for state Supreme Court got 61,000 votes. Kerry got 54,000.

''The drop-off [in votes] was at the top of the ticket, which is abnormal,'' Fitrakis said.

Voter turnout in two precincts exceeded 100 percent of the voters registered. In one precinct, 679 out of 689 voters reportedly cast ballots -- yet, ''In a couple of hours, we were able to find 25 people who said they didn't vote or were out of town,'' Fitrakis said.

(See a 2004 article Fitrakis wrote for The Columbus Free Press at http://www.freepress. org/columns/display/3/2004/983.)

Electoral problems are hardly limited to Ohio. Brad Friedman, the proprietor of the Brad Blog website (, has documented mounting suspicion of the veracity and reliability of electronic voting machines used across the nation.

Friedman told me he blames the reticence of the mainstream media to tackle the issue for the public's lack of fervor about what he sees as a threat to the nation's electoral integrity.

"The people who hear about the information, get it," he said. "But they're just not hearing it enough, and that's because of the media."

He cites an October 2005 report by the nonpartisan General Accountability Office which concluded that the nation's electronic voting system is rife with flaws, weak security controls and inconsistent voter-system standards.

Had you heard of this report? I hadn't, until Friedman referred me to it. And yet California just recertified a Diebold Co. voting machine even though it contains computer language rejected by federal guidelines because it makes the machines vulnerable to hacking.

Until the public demands changes, we'll continue to be plagued by partisan supervisors of election who -- as in Ohio in 2004 and Florida in 2000 -- simultaneously hold high positions in a top candidate's campaign. By electronic vote-counting machines lacking proper security controls or any way to recheck the vote afterward. By voter-purging tactics and preventable Election Day obstacles that mysteriously hurt one party more than another.

There's good reason for Bush supporters and rock-ribbed Republicans to demand corrective action to prevent the anomalies that surely compromised the 2004 election: The risk that failure to curb the abuses will encourage the competition to resort to similar tactics. The last thing anyone wants is a cheater's arms race. Either you stop the cheating, or you encourage more of it.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Bradblog: Whistleblower Warned Texas, Ohio of E-Voting 'Fraud' Concerns in 2004! (SOSs ignored him.)

100,000+ Votes Were Errantly Added by Hart Machines in a Single County in Last Tuesday's Primary via Flawed, Paperless 'eSlate' Touch-Screen System!
Former Hart Employee, Tarrant County TX Election Worker Notified State, Legal Authorities in 2004 About Serious Voting Machine Problems, Procedures...All Warnings and Complaints Ignored

Continuing in an exclusive BRAD BLOG series on Voting Machine Vendor and Election Fraud whistleblowers, another insider, from yet another voting machine company, has now come forward to reveal a myriad of known problems inside both the company and in several states and counties with whom they do business.

During last Tuesday's Primary Election in the state of Texas, scores of "computer glitches" -- as voting officials and electronic voting machine vendors like to refer to them -- were revealed occurred across the state. Many of those "glitches" occurred on electronic voting equipment manufactured and supplied to various counties in Texas by the Hart InterCivic company.

One such "glitch" occurred in Texas' Tarrant County, which encompasses Fort Worth. That "glitch" resulted in some 100,000 votes being added to the result totals across the county's paperless Hart-Intercivic "eSlate" touch-screen voting system.

Letters sent by William Singer of Fort Worth, a former Hart InterCivic "technical specialist" and current Tarrant County election worker, to state officials back in July of 2004 warned of exactly such problems. The letters, obtained and published on The BRAD BLOG (link below), reveal that there were serious problems and concerns of possible election system meltdowns that were already apparent with the Hart machines in Tarrant County long ago. However, the warning letters were all but ignored by both election officials and even state law enforcement officials.

In Singer's July 29, 2004 letter to Texas Secretary of State, Geoffrey S. Conner, Singer listed the following problems, which Conner ignored:

  • The audit trail for Hart's election generation software (BOSS) had invalid entries. Hart was aware of this and declined to fix it, and Robert also declined to fix it. I informed him that I had developed a simple, reliable, and effective method to remove the invalid entries (while at Hart), but he still refused to fix the information in the audit database.
  • The public test was fake. We ran a public test but discovered a series of problems with the election we were setting up, and in the course of resolving those issues had substantially different election databases to be used in the actual election. I had inquired about rerunning the public test, but was told it was unnecessary, troublesome, and pointless. ... There was also no record of adjustments made for each new iteration of the election databases.
  • The Hart technician that arrived onsite in Tarrant County admitted to being untrained, the company declined my offer to help, and instead allowed their untrained technician to make changes to Tarrant's election computers. The work was done improperly and had to be fixed twice, and was only finally completed because I intervened and corrected several problems so that the county could continue preparing for the next election.
  • Hart admitted to Tarrant County that votes are sometimes lost when using the disabled voting units
  • ES&S was pressuring Tarrant County into using unapproved software for election day, and told the staff there that they were also pressuring other jurisdictions to do the same thing. ... Tom Eschberger, a vice-president for ES&S, was the person who actually came onsite and tried to apply this pressure, and also asked what kind of deal they could offer to get Tarrant County to stop using Hart Intercivic's products.
  • There was a computer used to combine results from two separate vendor systems which did not have a password. I attempted to add one, but was ordered by Robert not to, on the grounds that it was a "change". ... This computer was the final reporting machine which would be used to generate reports for, among others, the SOS office, the press, and the parties, so the lack of a password was a real concern.
  • In my work area, where there were several computers used to program the elections, there was no physical security of any kind. I didn't have a closed office much less a lockable door
  • Anti-tamper devices provided for some of the computers were used improperly or not at all.
  • Hart did not release bug lists to Tarrant County for their software, and ES&S did so only intermittently and did not respond when I asked for updates
  • Tarrant County had no organized backups nor any procedure for doing so, nor any regular or safe way to maintain such backups.
  • During several Tarrant County elections Hart performed on the fly report fixes during elections, even while results were coming in.
Singer concludes his letter to Connor by noting; "As you, and other election officials must be aware, running a complex election is never as simple or easy as the law allows or we would like to believe. And I have recognized these realities in my consideration of the behavior and choices of others, and tried to judge them only on the more severe issues of which I am allowed, under confidentiality agreements, to speak."

The letter to Blackwell describes a number of alarming concerns about the electronic voting systems of Hart Intercivic, their gaming of the testing procedures, as well as the conduct of their highest-level officials.

Among the complaints and concerns contained in his letter to Ohio SoS J. Kenneth Blackwell are both "Fraudulent Acts" and "Fraudulent Claims":
  • The computer submitted to the examiners in Ohio for security testing was setup specifically for this test. Since I was the person who actually designed and setup the current configurations I was the only one who could have setup such a computer for the review. Not only was I not permitted to do so, I did not even discover Hart had shipped a computer to the state until after the review had started.
  • Hart sales staff has claimed to the Ohio SOS office that results are not transmitted over public networks. This is untrue, and indeed, absurd," wrote Singer. "Unofficial results are transmitted through public phone lines, and even mediocre 'hackers' can access such networks via the internet.

Read the complete article and see the documents at