Fwd: Black Box Voting Board Member Arrested in San Diego for Viewing Vote-Tallying

From: Edmund R. Kennedy <ekennedyx_at_yahoo_dot_com>
Date: Wed Jul 27 2005 - 09:57:04 CDT

--- Black Box Voting <crew@blackboxvoting.org> wrote:

> To: ekennedyx@yahoo.com
> Subject: Black Box Voting Board Member Arrested in
> San Diego for Viewing Vote-Tallying
> From: "Black Box Voting" <crew@blackboxvoting.org>
> Date: Wed, 27 Jul 2005 01:51:05 -0700 (PDT)
>
> VIEWING THE DIEBOLD VOTE-TALLYING SCREEN PROHIBITED
>
> Jim March, a member of the Black Box Voting board of
> directors,
> was arrested Tuesday evening for trying to observe
> the Diebold
> central tabulator (vote tallying machine) as the
> votes were being
> counted in San Diego's mayoral election (July 26).
> (- online discussion: http:/www.blackboxvoting.org
> -)
>
> According to Jim Hamilton, an elections integrity
> advocate from
> San Diego, he and March visited the office of the
> registrar
> of elections earlier in the day. During this visit,
> March made
> two requests, which were refused by Mikel Haas, the
> San Diego
> Registrar of elections.
>
> 1) March asked that the central tabulator, the
> computer that
> tallies up the votes from all the precincts, be
> positioned so
> that citizens could observe it. According to
> Hamilton, this
> would have required simply moving a table a few
> feet.
>
> 2) March also asked for a copy of the ".gbf" files
> -- the vote
> tally files collected during the course of
> tabulation – to be
> provided for examination after the election.
>
> During the tallying of the election, the Diebold
> computer
> was positioned too far away for citizens to read the
> screen.
> Citizens could not watch error messages, or even
> perceive
> significant anomalies or malfunctions.
>
> Unable to see the screen, March went into the office
> where the
> tabulator was housed. Two deputies followed him and
> escorted
> him out.
>
> According to Hamilton: "He was not belligerent, not
> at all.
> After he went inside the tabulator room he came [was
> escorted]
> out and he said clearly 'I’m not resisting.' They
> handcuffed
> him, took him out of the building. They put him in a
> squad car.
> They’re going to take him to the police station,
> book him and
> take him to jail," said Hamilton. "He’s getting
> charged with a
> felony, 'interfering with an election official.'"
>
> March's actions are the culmination of two years of
> increasing
> frustration with the refusal of election officials
> to respond to
> security deficiencies in the voting machines. The
> software that
> tallies the votes in San Diego is made by Diebold
> Election Systems,
> a company that has already paid the state of
> California $2.8 million
> for making false claims, due to a lawsuit filed by
> March and Black
> Box Voting founder Bev Harris.
>
> On July 4, a report was released by European
> computer security
> expert Harri Hursti, revealing that the Diebold
> voting system
> contains profound architectural flaws. "It is open
> for business,"
> says Hursti, who demonstrated the flaws on Leon
> County, Florida
> Diebold machines. He penetrated the voting system in
> less than
> five minutes, manipulating vote reports in a way
> that was
> undetectable.
>
> Despite the critical security alert issued by
> Hursti, San Diego
> County sent 713 voting machines home with poll
> workers, increasing
> the risk that the "memory cards" housed in the
> machines could be
> hacked, and removing the argument that "inside
> access" was carefully
> safeguarded.
>
> The arrest of Jim March underlines a fundamental
> problem facing
> Americans today as, increasingly, they lose the
> ability to monitor,
> verify, or watch any part of the counting process.
>
> The San Diego registrar of elections knew of the
> security flaws in
> the voting system. Diebold has never denied the
> vulnerability
> identified in Hursti's report, found at
> http://www.blackboxvoting.org/BBVreport.pdf.
>
> Despite knowledge of the increased risks, Haas made
> the decision
> to create additional vulnerability by sending the
> machines home
> with hundreds of poll workers.
>
> While San Diego officials will no doubt point to a
> small seal on
> the compartment housing the memory card (the
> component exploited
> in Hursti’s study), Black Box Voting has interviewed
> a former
> San Diego poll worker, who reported that all that is
> necessary
> to dislodge and then reaffix the seal is a small
> pair of pliers.
>
> IN A NUTSHELL:
>
> - The machines have been demonstrated to be
> vulnerable to
> undetected tampering
> - The San Diego registrar of voters chose not to
> take
> appropriate precautions
> - The main tally machine was placed in a location
> that was
> impossible for citizens to observe
> - Many voting integrity advocates have come to
> believe that
> voting machine reform now rivals the urgency of the
> Civil
> Rights movement in the 1960s.
>
> Jim March acted on those beliefs.
>
> * * * * *
>
> If you share the feelings that Jim March has
> expressed
> about voting system secrecy, please forward this
> message to
> your lists and to online blogs as appropriate.
> Permission
> granted to reprint, with link to
> http://www.blackboxvoting.org.
>
>
> * * * *
>
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>
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>

-- 
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858-578-8842
Work for the common good.
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Received on Sun Jul 31 23:17:20 2005

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