As of May 16, we're $13,200 in the red for the quarter. Donate here to support this vital work.
Subscribe here to our free email list

Elections Media Articles
Excerpts of Key Elections Media Articles in Major Media


Below are key excerpts of highly revealing elections articles reported in the major media. Links are provided to the full articles on major media websites. If any link fails to function, read this webpage. These elections articles are listed by article date. You can also explore the articles listed by order of importance or by date posted. By choosing to educate ourselves on these important issues and to spread the word, we can and will build a brighter future.


Note: Explore our full index to key excerpts of revealing major media news articles on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.


Voter turnout limits said to be White House goal
2007-04-19, Miami Herald (Miami's leading newspaper)
http://www.miamiherald.com/416/story/79393.html

For six years, the Bush administration, aided by Justice Department political appointees, has pursued an aggressive legal effort to restrict voter turnout in key battleground states in ways that favor Republican political candidates, according to former department lawyers and public records and documents. Facing nationwide voter registration drives by Democratic-leaning groups, the administration alleged widespread election fraud and endorsed proposals for tougher state and federal voter identification laws. The administration ... has repeatedly invoked allegations of widespread voter fraud to justify tougher voter ID measures and other steps to restrict access to the ballot, even though research suggests that voter fraud is rare. Since President Bush's first attorney general, John Ashcroft ... launched a ''Ballot Access and Voter Integrity Initiative'' in 2001, Justice Department political appointees have exhorted U.S. attorneys to prosecute voter fraud cases, and the department's Civil Rights Division has sought to roll back policies to protect minority voting rights. Several of [the eight fired U.S. attorneys] were ousted in part because they failed to bring voter fraud cases important to Republican politicians. Virtually every significant decision affecting election balloting since 2001 ... has come down on the side of Republicans, notably in Florida, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio, Washington ... where recent elections have been decided by narrow margins. In the last six years, the number of voters registered at state government agencies that provide services to the poor and disabled has been cut in half, to one million.

Note: Doublespeak, like the "Ballot Access" initiative, is often used to disguise the fact that the effect of the initiative is the opposite of what the title suggests. Think about the results of the "War on Terror" and "War on Drugs." The amount of terror and drug use has expanded dramatically since these were initiated. Could this be a purposeful maneuver? For more, click here.


Prosecutor: Ohio County Rigged Recount
2007-01-18, ABC News/Associated Press
http://www.abcnews.go.com/Politics/wireStory?id=2806718

Three county elections workers conspired to avoid a more thorough recount of ballots in the 2004 presidential election, a prosecutor told jurors during opening statements of their trial Thursday. Witnesses testified that, two days before a planned recount, selected ballots were counted so the result would be determined. "The evidence will show that this recount was rigged, maybe not for political reasons, but rigged nonetheless," Prosecutor Kevin Baxter said. "They did this so they could spend a day rather than weeks or months" on the recount, he said. Defense attorneys said in their opening statements that the workers in Cuyahoga County didn't do anything out of the ordinary. "They just were doing it the way they were always doing it," said defense attorney Roger Synenberg, representing Kathleen Dreamer, a ballot manager. Charged with various counts each of election misconduct or interference are Jacqueline Maiden, the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections' coordinator, who was the board's third-highest ranking employee when she was indicted last March; Rosie Grier, assistant manager of the board's ballot department; and Dreamer. Baxter said testimony in the case will show that instead of conducting a random count, the workers chose sample precincts for the Dec. 16, 2004, recount that did not have questionable results to ensure that no discrepancies would emerge. "This was a very hush operation," Baxter said. There were allegations in several counties of similar presorting of ballots for the recounts that state law says are to be random.

Note: For lots more reliable, verifiable information on elections manipulations, click here.


Voting rights restored for thousands in state on probation
2006-12-28, San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco's leading newspaper)
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2006/12/28/BAGL8N8G031.DTL

A state appeals court has restored voting rights to as many as 100,000 Californians who are in county jails on probation from felony convictions, and who were disenfranchised by the state a year ago, based on a new legal interpretation. That interpretation abruptly reversed the state's reading of the law for the previous 30 years, the court noted in last week's ruling. The state's top election official said he will not appeal. Most of those affected by the decision are young men, typically racial or ethnic minorities, who have committed nonviolent crimes, said Maya Harris, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California and a lawyer in the case. "It sure is nice to have a win for democracy," she said after last week's ruling. In the 3-0 ruling, Justice William Stein also said the state constitutional provision at issue was passed by the voters in 1974 to lift some previous restrictions on the right to vote, and should be interpreted in favor of participation in elections.


Sweeping Changes Expected in Voting by 2008 Election
2006-12-08, New York Times
http://www.nytimes.com/2006/12/08/washington/08voting.html?ex=1323234000&en=3...

By the 2008 presidential election, voters around the country are likely to see sweeping changes in how they cast their ballots and how those ballots are counted. New federal guidelines, along with legislation given a strong chance to pass in Congress next year, will probably combine to make the paperless voting machines obsolete. Motivated in part by voting problems during the midterm elections last month, the changes are a result of a growing skepticism among local and state election officials, federal legislators and the scientific community about the reliability and security of the paperless touch-screen machines used by about 30 percent of American voters. Various forms of vote-counting software used around the country ... will for the first time be inspected by federal authorities, and the code could be made public. Last year, New Mexico spent $14 million to replace its touch screens. Other states are spending millions more to retrofit the machines to add paper trails. Because some printers malfunctioned last month, election commissioners in Cuyahoga County, Ohio, which includes Cleveland, said last week that they were considering scrapping their new $17 million system of touch-screen machines. Under changes approved by the Election Assistance Commission yesterday, voting machine manufacturers would have to make their crucial software code available to federal inspectors. The code is now checked mainly by private testing laboratories paid by the manufacturers.

Note: How is it possible that the government allowed voting machine companies to keep their software secret even from the government? We may never know how many votes were manipulated. For more, click here.


Security of electronic voting is condemned
2006-12-01, MSNBC News/Washington Post
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/15976613

Paperless electronic voting machines used throughout ... much of the country "cannot be made secure," according to draft recommendations issued this week by a federal agency that advises the U.S. Election Assistance Commission. The assessment by the National Institute of Standards and Technology, one of the government's premier research centers, is the most sweeping condemnation of such voting systems by a federal agency. NIST said that voting systems should allow election officials to recount ballots independently from a voting machine's software. The recommendations endorse "optical-scan" systems in which voters mark paper ballots that are read by a computer and electronic systems that print a paper summary of each ballot, which voters review and elections officials save for recounts. NIST says in its report that the lack of a paper trail for each vote "is one of the main reasons behind continued questions about voting system security and diminished public confidence in elections." The report repeats the contention of the computer security community that "a single programmer could 'rig' a major election." NIST says that voting systems should not rely on a machine's software to provide a record of the votes cast. Some electronic voting system manufacturers have introduced models that include printers to produce a separate record of each vote -- and that can be verified by a voter before leaving the machine -- but such paper trails have had their own problems. Printers have jammed or otherwise failed, causing some election directors to question whether a paper trail is an improvement.

Note: Another federal advisory panel amazingly rejects requiring a paper trail days after the above report is released. To read the CBS News/AP article on this, click here.


Experts Concerned as Ballot Problems Persist
2006-11-26, New York Times
http://www.nytimes.com/2006/11/26/us/politics/26vote.html?ex=1322197200&en=0d...

After six years of technological research, more than $4 billion spent by Washington on new machinery and a widespread overhaul of the nation’s voting system, this month’s midterm election revealed that the country is still far from able to ensure that every vote counts. Tens of thousands of voters, scattered across more than 25 states, encountered serious problems at the polls. The difficulties led to shortages of substitute paper ballots and long lines that caused many voters to leave without casting ballots. Voting experts say it is impossible to say how many votes were not counted that should have been. In Florida alone, the discrepancies ... amount to more than 60,000 votes. In Colorado, as many as 20,000 people gave up trying to vote ... as new online systems for verifying voter registrations crashed repeatedly. In Arkansas, election officials tallied votes three times in one county, and each time the number of ballots cast changed by more than 30,000. Election experts say that with electronic voting machines, the potential consequences of misdeeds or errors are of a [great] magnitude. A single software error can affect thousands of votes, especially with machines that keep no paper record. In Ohio, thousands of voters were turned away or forced to file provisional ballots by poll workers puzzled by voter-identification rules. In Pennsylvania, the machines crashed or refused to start, producing many reports of vote-flipping [where] voters press the button for one candidate but a different candidate’s name appears on the screen. In Ohio, even a congressman, Steve Chabot, a Republican, was turned away from his polling place because the address listed on his driver’s license was different than his home address.


When Votes Disappear
2006-11-24, New York Times
http://select.nytimes.com/2006/11/24/opinion/24krugman.html

There were many problems with voting in this election. In at least one Congressional race, the evidence strongly suggests that paperless voting machines failed to count thousands of votes, and that the disappearance of these votes delivered the race to the wrong candidate. [In] Florida’s 13th Congressional District .. according to the official vote count, the Republicans [won] narrowly. The problem is that the official vote count isn’t credible. In much of the 13th District, the voting pattern looks normal. But in Sarasota County, which used touch-screen voting machines ... almost 18,000 voters — nearly 15 percent of those who cast ballots using the machines — supposedly failed to vote for either candidate in the hotly contested Congressional race. That compares with undervote rates ranging from 2.2 to 5.3 percent in neighboring counties. The Herald-Tribune of Sarasota ... interviewed hundreds of voters. About a third of those interviewed by the paper reported that they couldn’t even find the Congressional race on the screen. Moreover, more than 60 percent of those interviewed ... reported that they did cast a vote in the Congressional race — but that this vote didn’t show up on the ballot summary page. An Orlando Sentinel examination of other votes cast by those who supposedly failed to cast a vote ... shows that they strongly favored Democrats, and Mr. Buchanan won the official count by only 369 votes. For the nation as a whole, the important thing isn’t who gets seated to represent Florida’s 13th District. It’s whether the voting disaster there leads to legislation requiring voter verification and a paper trail. I’ve been shocked at how little national attention the mess in Sarasota has received.


LA actor regrets copying election memos
2006-11-22, BusinessWeek
http://www.businessweek.com/ap/financialnews/D8LIF2DG0.htm

During the past two years, [Actor Stephen] Heller tapped the family savings and lost two jobs while fighting charges that he took copies of documents from a law firm where he worked. Prosecutors said he copied more than 500 pages of documents, including memos suggesting Diebold may have broken state law by providing Alameda County with electronic voting machines that hadn't been certified by state officials. Soon after, Heller gave the documents to Bev Harris, founder of Black Box Voting, which was involved in a lawsuit claiming Diebold used uncertified software in 17 counties. Harris then turned them over to the secretary of state and the Oakland Tribune. Heller was sentenced Monday to three years probation and ordered to pay his former law firm $10,000 in restitution. The records detailed potential problems with electronic voting machines made by Diebold. Heller was hailed by digital rights and political activists as a whistle-blower who tried to do the right thing. Some observers believe prosecuting Heller could prevent other people from revealing potential flaws with electronic voting systems. Some of Diebold's machines failed to work properly in the March 2004 primary election. Two months later, then-Secretary of State Kevin Shelley decertified 14,000 Diebold electronic voting machines. [Shelley's] lawsuit was eventually joined by the state attorney general's office. Diebold settled for $2.6 million last year. Heller hopes his case will bring about changes and prevent corporations from keeping details of election equipment and software secret. "The only thing that should be secret is our ballots," Heller said.

Note: So a whistleblower who exposes major corruption later proven to be true is fined and penalized. What kind of system is this? For lots more, click here.


Counting the Vote, Badly
2006-11-16, New York Times
http://www.nytimes.com/2006/11/16/opinion/16thur1.html?ex=1321333200&en=73e0e...

Last week’s elections provided a lot of disturbing news about the reliability of electronic voting. In a Congressional race...Sarasota County [Florida] reported that more than 18,000 people, or one in eight, did not choose either candidate. That “undervote” of nearly 13 percent is hard to believe, given that only about 2.5 percent of absentee voters did not vote. Ms. Jennings trails Mr. Buchanan by about 400 votes. The serious questions about the Buchanan - Jennings race only add to the high level of mistrust that many people already feel about electronic voting. Congress has resisted all appeals to pass a law that would ensure that electronic voting is honest and accurate across the nation. Partisan secretaries of state continue to skew the rules to favor their parties and political allies. States are adopting harsh standards for voter registration drives to make it harder for people to register. Some states have adopted an indefensible rule that provisional ballots cast at the wrong table of the correct polling place must be thrown out. Congress has failed to address these and other important flaws with the mechanics of the election system. But this...may be about to change. Senator Feinstein is saying that providing fair access to the ballot will be among her committee’s top priorities in the coming year. Election reform has tended to be a partisan issue, with Democrats arguing for reform and Republicans resisting it. It shouldn’t be. Congressional Democrats should make fixing this country’s broken system of elections a top priority, and Republicans should join them.


Florida Recount, 2006-Style
2006-11-11, CBS News
http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2006/11/11/cbsnews_investigates/main2174376.shtml

On Monday Florida will begin its first recount for a federal election since the botched 2000 presidential contest. The disputed race...is one place where the kind of machines used by 40% of American voters this week may have malfunctioned significantly enough to alter the outcome of a seat in Congress. An E-mail by a key election official [indicates] she may have known well before Election Day the machines weren't working properly. Republican Vern Buchanan beat Democrat Christine Jennings by 373 votes with 237,842 counted. That tiny margin – less than one-half of one percent – triggered an automatic recount under Florida state law. The Jennings campaign believes thousands of votes in the district's most populous county went unrecorded. In Sarasota County...nearly one in every six (16%) Election Day voters either skipped or missed the hotly contested House race. The Democrat won 53% of the vote in Sarasota County. Had even half the 17,811 "missing" machine votes been recorded...she would have overcome her margin of defeat. Only two-and-half percent of absentee ballots ignored the House race. Would six times as many people from the same place do so on Election Day? They didn't anywhere else in the district. Dozens of Sarasota County voters called "election protection" hotlines. Some did catch their "undervote." But what will happen in Sarasota...is less of a recount than a re-tally of the same results, because Florida is among the 15 states that do not allow touch screen machines to produce a paper trail.

Note: With no paper trail, if the voting machines were manipulated, there is no way to prove what really happened. How could our government have approved machines without a paper trail?


Recount Likely in Harris' House District
2006-11-09, Fox News/Associated Press
http://www.foxnews.com/wires/2006Nov09/0,4670,FloridaRecount,00.html

The touch-screen voting machines Katherine Harris championed as secretary of state after the 2000 presidential recount may have botched this year's election to replace her in the U.S. House, and it's likely going to mean another Florida recount. More than 18,000 Sarasota County voters who marked other races didn't have a vote register in the House race, a rate much higher than the rest of the district. The county's elections supervisor, Kathy Dent, had requested the team after one of the candidates reported complaints about voting machines malfunctioning. Earlier, Dent defended her staff and the machines, arguing that the thousands of voters must have either overlooked the race...or simply decided not to vote for either candidate in a race marked by mudslinging. But she couldn't explain why the undervote rate in her county was so much higher than in the four other counties in the district. Republican Vern Buchanan declared victory in the race with a 373-vote lead over Democrat Christine Jennings—less than 0.2 percent. Florida law requires a machine recount if the difference between the top candidates is less than half a percent. If the machine tallies find a margin of less than a quarter percent, a manual recount is conducted. To do a manual recount for touch-screens, officials go back over the images of the electronic ballots where the machine didn't register a choice. State rules essentially say that if the machine doesn't show that a voter chose a candidate, the voter is assumed to have meant to skip the race. It would be tough to prove otherwise.


Poll Workers Struggle With Vote Machines
2006-11-07, CBS News/Associated Press
http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2006/11/07/ap/politics/mainD8L8F4A00.shtml

Programming errors and inexperience dealing with electronic voting machines frustrated poll workers in hundreds of precincts Tuesday, delaying voters in several states and leaving some with little choice but to use paper ballots instead. In Indiana's Marion County, electronic optical-scan machines that read paper ballots initially weren't working right in more than 100 precincts. Election officials in Delaware County, Ind., and Lebanon County, Pa., extended polling hours because of early machine troubles blamed on bad programming. Republicans in Passaic County, N.J., complained a ballot had been pre-marked on some machines with a vote for the Democratic Senate candidate. In Colorado, Democratic Party officials said they would ask a state judge to keep Denver polling places open an extra two hours Tuesday because of long lines. A national Election Protection coalition logged 9,000 calls by noon on [their elections] hotline. In one case, a poll worker unintentionally wiped the electronic ballot activators. Some machines...jammed when they were turned on. One location suspended voting for 45 minutes because it received the wrong machine. But voting equipment companies said they hadn't seen anything beyond the norm and blamed most of the problems on human error. Nearly half of all voters were using optical-scan systems. Thirty-eight percent were casting votes on touchscreen machines that have been criticized as susceptible to hackers. Many states established voter registration databases for the first time and found problems matching drivers' license and Social Security data with voter rolls, sometimes simply because of a middle initial.


Election fixing charges fly in Utah county
2006-11-07, CNN News/Associated Press
http://www.cnn.com/POLITICS/blogs/politicalticker/2006/11/election-fixing-cha...

Voting appears to be very popular in Daggett County, Utah. Daggett County has registered 947 voters for Tuesday's election. According to the most recent Census figures, that's four more than the county's population in 2005. A spokesman for Attorney General Mark Shurtleff says complaints of vote-stuffing in the county are being investigated. Democrats suspect County Clerk Vickie McKee is letting outsiders swell the Daggett County registration rolls to give Republicans an advantage. The Democrats also say the father of a Republican deputy running for sheriff has 14 adults registered at his household. McKee hasn't responded to messages from The Associated Press.

Note: In such a small county, it is easy to spot the discrepancies. How often does this happen in much bigger counties and go unnoticed? For more, click here.


Can This Machine Be Trusted?
2006-11-06, Time Magazine
http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1552054,00.html

The U.S.'s new voting systems are only as good as the people who program and use them. In one week, more than 80 million Americans will go to the polls, and a record number of them—90%—will either cast their vote on a computer or have it tabulated that way. There are going to be problems. Some will be machine malfunctions. Some could come from sabotage by poll workers. But in a venture this large, trouble is most likely to come from just plain human error. Four years after Congress passed a law requiring every state to vote by a method more reliable than the punch-card system that paralyzed Florida and the nation in 2000, the 2006 election is shaping up into a contest not just between Democrats and Republicans but also between people who believe in technology and those who fear machines cannot be trusted to count votes in a closely divided democracy. Princeton computer scientist Edward Felten and a couple of graduate students this past summer tested the defenses of a voting machine made by Diebold. They were able to quickly infect the device with a standard memory-access card in which they had installed a preprogrammed chip. Other computer scientists have also breached electronic voting machines. Congressman Vernon Ehlers, a Michigan Republican who has been holding hearings this fall, says manufacturers "have produced machines that are very vulnerable, not very reliable and I suspect fairly easy to hack." Concerns about fraud are heightened by the fact that with some electronic voting machines, there is no such thing as a real recount [i.e. paper trail].

Note: For a highly important 12-minute video of the court witness testimony of a computer expert who was personally involved in the manipulation of votes, see http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JEzY2tnwExs. For more on this, click here. For a three-minute Fox News clip showing how easy it is to infect a voting machine with a virus which secretly changes the elections results: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8JESZiLpBLE.


Election Exit-Polls to Be 'Quarantined' to Prevent Early Result Calls
2006-11-04, Fox News/New York Post
http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,227559,00.html

Exit-poll data will be under lock and key Election Day to help networks avoid the Bush-Gore debacle of 2000 - and prevent bloggers from trumpeting results before the polls close. The crucial info - which could provide an early hint if a Democratic wave is in fact under way - will be squirreled away in a windowless New York office room dubbed the "Quarantine Room," the Washington Post first reported. A media consortium established to track polling results has set up ironclad rules to prevent leaks to news-hungry Web sites like the Drudge Report. Only two staffers from each of the TV networks and The Associated Press will be authorized to tear through the exit-poll data at the vote vault. Those staffers will have to surrender their cellphones, laptop computers and BlackBerrys - it's the price of admission. And they won't be able communicate with their offices until 5 p.m.

Note: Could this be a means of preventing "problems" with large discrepancies between exit polls and the elections results? How do we know that the two staffers selected from each network won't manipulate the results? Several TV networks had difficulties in the 2004 election describing sudden changes in the results of the exit polls during the elections. For lots more, see http://www.WantToKnow.info/electionscoverups


Inside the Shocking HBO Film That Rocks the Voting Process
2006-11-02, TV Guide
http://www.tvguide.com/News-Views/Interviews-Features/Article/default.aspx?po...

HBO's Hacking Democracy...tells the story of Bev Harris, a grandmother and writer who started investigating the subject of electronic voting in 2002 after questioning her county's switch to electronic touch-screen voting machines. Unsatisfied with their explanation, Harris set out to learn about electronic voting systems on her own, and in doing so stumbled upon shocking revelations about the vulnerability of the software and hardware. Harris, who went on to form the watchdog group BlackBoxVoting.org, recently spoke with TVGuide. TVGuide: [Diebold is] taking issue with...the hacking demonstration which shows how central tabulators can be tampered with by modifying a single memory card. Harris: It's interesting they would bring that up because the State of California commissioned its own independent study. Diebold was ordered to cooperate with the study. All of the scientists said, "The hack is real, and it is dangerous." And they found 16 additional vulnerabilities. TVGuide: Watching this unsettling documentary, you come away feeling like paper-chad ballots are our best bet. Harris: Actually, those are counted by a computer, as well. This election, 45 percent of the jurisdictions in New Hampshire will be counting by hand. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) has introduced a bill into the U.S. Congress to have the entire presidential race counted by hand in 2008. Canada counts their federal elections by hand, and they have the results generally in about four hours, and with little controversy. The missing ingredient has been the citizens. Any system that we end up with has to be one that citizens can oversee.

Important Note: Don't miss this powerful, highly revealing documentary now available for free viewing on the Internet at http://www.WantToKnow.info/electionsvideodocumentary.


Diebold demands HBO cancel film on voting machines
2006-11-01, Seattle Times/Bloomberg
http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/nationworld/2003335983_webdiebold01.html

Diebold Inc. demanded that cable network HBO cancel a documentary that questions the integrity of its voting machines, calling the program inaccurate and unfair. The program, "Hacking Democracy," is scheduled to debut on Nov. 2, five days before the 2006 U.S. midterm elections. The film claims Diebold voting machines aren't tamper-proof and can be manipulated to change voting results. "Hacking Democracy" is "replete with material examples of inaccurate reporting," Diebold Election System President David Byrd said in a letter to HBO President and Chief Executive Officer Chris Albrecht. "We stand by the film," HBO spokesman Jeff Cusson said in an interview. "We have no intention of withdrawing it from our schedule." This is Diebold's second defense of its system since last month. On Sept. 26, Byrd wrote to Jann Wenner, editor and publisher of Rolling Stone, saying a story written by Robert F. Kennedy Jr., "Will the Next Election Be Hacked?" was "error- riddled" and that readers "deserve a better researched and reported article." The documentary is based on the work of Bev Harris of Renton, founder of BlackBoxVoting.org, which monitors election accuracy. Harris says on the HBO Web site that she found "secret program files" used by Diebold for its electronic voting machines. Harris copied them and distributed the programs to others as a way to show the vulnerability of a system designed to safeguard voting, according to the Web site.

Note: For the revealing story in Rolling Stone, click here.


Multiple Voting Machine Problems
2006-10-31, CNN News
http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0610/31/ldt.01.html

[CNN News anchor Lou] DOBBS: Florida the scene of one of this country's worst election breakdowns ever. Already a series of e-voting glitches have plagued early voting in the state of Florida. KITTY PILGRIM, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Voter activists are warning there have been problems with electronic machines in Florida in early voting. Some of the most populous counties...have reported serious problems. In seven percent of precincts, the number of votes didn't match the tally of registered voters. PAMELA HAENGEL, VOTING INTEGRITY ALLIANCE: In Pinellas County in the primaries we found over 150 calibration errors from precinct workers' logs. That's when a voter goes to touch the screen and it hops to a candidate that they didn't necessarily vote for. PILGRIM: Today, Governor Jeb Bush gave his full vote of confidence to the machine. REGINALD MITCHELL, PEOPLE FOR THE AMERICAN WAY: Despite all the problems...we have nothing in place for a paper trail in Florida. SUSAN PYNCHON, FLORIDA ELECTION COALITION: The voting started at 8:00. At five minutes before 10:00, the power failed. PILGRIM: That power outage kept the electronic voting machines down for hours and hundreds of voters were turned away. PILGRIM: Another problem, in some places representatives of the voting machines company are in charge of running the software that tabulates the votes. DOBBS: This is one troubling, concerning report on top of another. We are beginning to behave like a Banana Republic. PILGRIM: It's unbelievably shocking this close to the election we're dealing with this. DOBBS: Unbelievable. It's just -- it's incredible.


U.S. Investigates Voting Machines' Venezuela Ties
2006-10-29, New York Times
http://www.nytimes.com/2006/10/29/washington/29ballot.html?ex=1319774400&en=e...

The federal government is investigating the takeover last year of a leading American manufacturer of electronic voting systems by a small software company that has been linked to the leftist Venezuelan government of President Hugo Chávez. The inquiry is focusing on the Venezuelan owners of the software company, the Smartmatic Corporation...and its subsidiary, Sequoia Voting Systems of Oakland, Calif.. Smartmatic was a little-known firm with no experience in voting technology before it was chosen by the Venezuelan authorities to replace the country’s elections machinery ahead of a contentious referendum that confirmed Mr. Chávez as president in August 2004. With a windfall of some $120 million from its first three contracts with Venezuela, Smartmatic then bought the much larger and more established Sequoia Voting Systems, which now has voting equipment installed in 17 states and the District of Columbia. The concern over Smartmatic’s purchase of Sequoia comes amid rising unease about the security of touch-screen voting machines and other electronic elections systems. The concerns about possible ties between the owners of Smartmatic and the Chávez government have been well known to United States foreign-policy officials since before the 2004 recall election in which Mr. Chávez...won by an official margin of nearly 20 percent. But after a municipal primary election in Chicago in March, Sequoia voting machines were blamed for a series of delays and irregularities. Smartmatic’s new president, Jack A. Blaine, acknowledged in a public hearing that Smartmatic workers had been flown up from Venezuela to help with the vote.


Glitches cited in early voting
2006-10-28, Miami Herald
http://www.miami.com/mld/miamiherald/news/politics/elections/15869924.htm

After a week of early voting, a handful of glitches with electronic voting machines have drawn the ire of voters, reassurances from elections supervisors -- and a caution against the careless casting of ballots. Several South Florida voters say the choices they touched on the electronic screens were not the ones that appeared on the review screen -- the final voting step. In Broward County, for example, they don't know how widespread the machine problems are because there's no process for poll workers to quickly report minor issues and no central database of machine problems. Debra A. Reed voted with her boss on Wednesday at African-American Research Library and Cultural Center near Fort Lauderdale. Her vote went smoothly, but boss Gary Rudolf called her over to look at what was happening on his machine. He touched the screen for gubernatorial candidate Jim Davis, a Democrat, but the review screen repeatedly registered the Republican, Charlie Crist. A poll worker then helped Rudolf, but it took three tries to get it right, Reed said. Broward Supervisor of Elections spokeswoman Mary Cooney said it's not uncommon for screens on heavily used machines to slip out of sync, making votes register incorrectly.


Important Note: Explore our full index to key excerpts of revealing major media news articles on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.