Fwd: California Voters File Lawsuit Against Secretary of State

From: Arthur Keller <voting_at_kellers_dot_org>
Date: Wed Mar 22 2006 - 01:56:45 CST

>From: Dennis Paull <dpaull@svpal.org>
>Date: Tue, 21 Mar 2006 11:51:43 -0800
>
>Hi all,
>
>A suit has been filed this morning against the CA Sec of State's
>certification of
>Diebold's newest voting machines. At least seven CA counties are planning to
>use these machines for this June's primaries.
>
>This issue of what requirements will be imposed on the State's counties
>is critical
>and will likely impact many other states.
>
>Stay tuned.
>
>Dennis
>
>*California Voters File Lawsuit to Halt Use or Purchase of Diebold
>Electronic Voting System*
>
>*Illegal Computer Code, Security and Disability Access Problems Cited*
>
>*Plaintiffs Include Dolores Huerta, Avi Rubin, Doug Jones, Disability
>Advocates *
>
>A group of 24 California voters, including Dolores Huerta, social
>justice activist and co-founder of the United Farm Workers of America,
>announced at a news conference today that they have filed a lawsuit
>against California Secretary of State Bruce McPherson to nullify his
>"conditional" certification of the Diebold TSx electronic voting system
>and to block purchase or use of the TSx in California due to serious
>security, verifiability and disability access problems.
>
>"The right to a secure vote, which is recorded and counted as intended,
>is a basic tenet of our democracy, and Californians deserve no less,"
>said Dolores Huerta, social activist and Plaintiff in the California
>voters' lawsuit. "Diebold systems have failed in security tests and in
>communities around the country. In certifying the Diebold machines, the
>Secretary has sidestepped his duty to deny certification to voting
>systems that violate state and federal standards."
>
>"A crisis is brewing in California when computerized slot machines used
>by gamblers in the state are more secure and auditable than the
>electronic voting systems used by California voters to decide the future
>direction of their government," said Lowell Finley, Esq., counsel for
>the plaintiffs and co-director of Voter Action. "Expert testing has
>confirmed that the Diebold system contains "interpreted" code
>--programming that is vulnerable to malicious hacking, and prohibited by
>the California Elections Code. The Diebold touch screen voting system is
>a severe security risk, and does not accommodate all disabled voters as
>required by law."
>
>"California voters have the right to vote and to have their votes
>counted correctly. The last thing we need is to start using voting
>machines that deny access to disabled voters and create an unacceptable
>risk of fraud and vote manipulation," said John Eichhorst, co-counsel
>for the voter plaintiffs, and a partner with Howard, Rice, Nemerovski,
>Canady, Falk & Rabkin.
>
>
>"People with low vision want meaningful access, not token access, in our
>voting experience," said Bernice Kandarian, President of the Council of
>Citizens with Low Vision International. "Just because I need an
>accessible voting system does not mean that I believe that it is
>acceptable to vote on a system that is not trustworthy and hard to
>recount or audit. I too want to know that my vote will be counted by the
>most secure method. The Diebold machines are not only insecure and hard
>to recount or audit, but they also fail to provide meaningful access for
>many disabled voters."
>
>The lawsuit also challenges the Secretary of State's imposition of
>"conditions" to the certification which seek to impose new physical
>security requirements and liability responsibility upon County Election
>Officials.
>
>"The Secretary of State's conditions are new, untested, regulations that
>were adopted without the benefit of appropriate expert analysis and
>public hearing. These new regulations are not the cure for the
>acknowledged vulnerabilities built into this voting system," said Mr.
>Eichhorst.
>
>As part of their case, the plaintiffs will present the expert testimony
>of computer security experts Douglas W. Jones of the University of Iowa
>and Dr. Aviel D. Rubin of Johns Hopkins University concerning the
>serious security problems inherent in the Diebold TSx technology.
>
>"Voter Action is pleased to support this important lawsuit, which will
>be watched closely by states across the country facing or soon to face
>similar voting security issues and rushed purchasing decisions. We know
>from the research of independent experts that Diebold technology is not
>the answer. There are better, less expensive and secure options that do
>meet the needs of those with a wide range of disabilities, "says Holly
>Jacobson, co-director of Voter Action.
>
>The lawsuit was filed with support from Voter Action, a non-profit
>organization providing legal, research, and logistical support for
>grassroots efforts to ensure the integrity of elections in the United
>States. The action was filed in the Superior Court of the State of
>California in San Francisco, prior to the Voter Action news conference
>at the offices of the Howard Rice law firm in San Francisco.
>
>Voter Action <http://www.voteraction.org>, with members across the
>country, recently led successful litigation in New Mexico to block
>purchase and use of the types of voting machines that are most error
>prone and vulnerable to tampering. In addition to California, Voter
>Action is currently supporting similar efforts in New York, Pennsylvania
>and other states.

-- 
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Arthur M. Keller, Ph.D., 3881 Corina Way, Palo Alto, CA  94303-4507
tel +1(650)424-0202, fax +1(650)424-0424
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Received on Fri Mar 31 23:17:04 2006

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