Re: 60 minutes

From: Patricia Gracian <patricia_gracian_at_yahoo_dot_com>
Date: Fri Oct 29 2004 - 21:29:07 CDT

Will add these before sending out more copies...
Thanks for the input!

----- Original Message -----
From: "laird popkin" <lairdp_at_gmail_dot_com>
To: <voting-project@lists.sonic.net>
Sent: Friday, October 29, 2004 6:00 AM
Subject: Re: [voting-project] 60 minutes

> In the OVC section of this wonderful email, there are two minor
suggestions:
>
> 1) "[link]" that should be replaced with the actual link to the San
> Jose Mercury News article's URL:
> http://www.kentucky.com/mld/mercurynews/news/opinion/8383100.htm .
>
> 2) The section explains why the OVC is concerned about DRE's, but
> doesn't actually say what OVC does. I'd suggest adding the mission
> statement: "The Open Voting Consortium (OVC) is a non-profit
> organization dedicated to the development, maintenance, and delivery
> of open voting systems for use in public elections".
>
> That being said, the email is fantastic! Yay!
>
> - LP
>
> On Thu, 28 Oct 2004 19:18:37 -0700, Patricia Gracian
> <patricia_gracian@yahoo.com> wrote:
> > Here's what I'm sending out:
> >
> > We have all worked very hard at getting the vote out.
> >
> > Now we are faced with having our votes miscounted or thrown away when we
> > vote.
> >
> > I am hoping that we can still get out this very important notice to
voters
> > so I am sending this message to all of the organizations that are trying
to
> > get out the vote and achieve an honest election.
> >
> > Please post this on your webpage and also send it out through your
action
> > alerts so that all volunteers working to get out the vote and to protect
the
> > election get it NOW!
> >
> > Thank you for all you do!
> >
> > - Pat
> >
> > PLEASE POST THE FOLLOWING:
> >
>
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------

--
> > -----------------------------------------------
> >
> > www.verifiedvoting.org, www.openvotingconsortium.org, www.eff.org,
> > www.blackboxvoting.com
> >
> > ALL of the these organizations agree that to make sure your vote will
count
> > and can be verified:
> >
> > 1. Use the voting option that has a paper ballot that you get to look at
and
> > verify during your voting visit.
> >
> > 2. Avoid the use of electronic voting and most of all avoid the
touch-screen
> > voting machines that have no matching paper ballot that you can look at
and
> > verify your vote.
> >
> > 3. If you are only allowed to vote on electronics, go back to verify
that
> > your choices you made at the very top for President and Congressmen have
not
> > changed from the time you entered them, before you press the SUBMIT
button.
> >
>
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------
--
> > -----------------------------------------------
> >
>
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------
--
> > ------------------------------------------------------------------------
> >
> > Here are the supporting excerpts from these organizations and their
webpage
> > links:
> >
> > http://verifiedvoting.org/
> >
> > We advocate the use of voter-verified paper ballots (VVPBs) for all
> > elections in the United States, so voters can inspect individual
permanent
> > records of their ballots before they are cast and so meaningful recounts
may
> > be conducted. We also insist that electronic voting equipment and
software
> > be open to public scrutiny and that random, surprise recounts be
conducted
> > on a regular basis to audit election equipment
> >
> > http://verifiedvoting.org/article.php?id=5133
> >
> > Counties, boroughs, parishes, and even entire states are purchasing
digital
> > electronic recording (DRE) voting machines without a voter-verified
paper
> > ballot (VVPB) capability. A VVPB is a paper ballot that voters can see
and
> > verify that their votes are recorded accurately and stored in a secure
> > ballot box so that election officials can use the ballots later for
> > mandatory audits and meaningful recounts.
> >
> > This Voters' Guide to Electronic Voting provides voters with summary
> > information on the voting machines used in their local polling places
with
> > pointers about the voting technology and how to vote successfully. We
also
> > cover how to investigate and get help when something goes wrong with the
> > voting process.
> >
> > You can learn what choices are available to you as a voter. For example,
in
> > California, if you vote in one of the counties using electronic voting
> > machines, you have the right to ask for a paper ballot if you prefer. In
> > Hawaii and in Washington, D.C., voters may have the choice of using a
paper
> > optical-scan ballot instead of an electronic voting machine.
> >
> > --------------------------
> >
> > http://www.openvotingconsortium.org/
> >
> > On November 2, tens of millions of invisible ballots created with secret
> > software might or might not be counted! Ask for a recount and someone'll
> > push a button and get the same number. The vast majority of computer
> > scientists say we should not entrust democracy to these voting machines
> > (called Direct Record Electronic or "DRE").
> >
> > Will those votes be handled correctly? Vendors and election officials
say,
> > "trust us." But why should we? Any advantages DREs offer can be improved
> > upon by using computerized ballot-printing machines that leave people in
> > control of elections.What if we could print out our completed ballots
> > on-the-spot in the voting booth using an inexpensive computerized
machine
> > with the advantages of paperless DREs (no need for a pre-printed ballot,
> > assistance for voters with disabilities or non-English languages) but
none
> > of the disadvantages?
> >
> > Major newspapers from coast-to-coast have endorsed the concept of public
> > software and paper ballots that the Open Voting Consortium is promoting.
The
> > San Jose Mercury news called the OVC system the "Holy Grail." [ link ] .
> >
> > --------------
> >
> > http://www.eff.org/
> >
> > EFF Launches "Paper or Plastic 2004" to Educate CA Voters About Paper
Ballot
> > Option
> > San Francisco - The Electronic Frontier Foundation today launched a
campaign
> > to inform California voters of their right to vote on a paper ballot in
the
> > upcoming election. The website and animation for Paper or Plastic 2004
are
> > available at: PaperOrPlastic2004.org. Ten California counties-including
> > Orange, Alameda, and Riverside-will use electronic voting machines on
> > November 2nd, but these systems don't provide a voter-verified audit
trail
> > and they cannot be used in a meaningful recount. That's why Secretary of
> > State Kevin Shelley ordered each of these counties to give voters a
choice:
> > on election day, voters can choose to forego an electronic ballot and
> > instead vote on paper. However, election officials in at least three
> > counties are instructing poll workers to keep this "paper or plastic"
choice
> > secret...
> > Full Release, PaperOrPlastic2004.org
> > October 27, 2004
> >
> > -------------
> >
> > http://www.blackboxvoting.com/modules.php?name=Content&pa=showpage&pid=6
> >
> > Could Democracy be stolen from us in 2004?
> >
> > - We've developed safeguards to prevent tampering with ballots. We've
> > figured out ways to impede tampering with the voters themselves. But we
DO
> > NOT have adequate safeguards to prevent the most dangerous
election-rigging
> > of all: Tampering with programmers, vendors and technicians! Why has
> > everything changed, and what are the dangers to Democracy?
> >
> > How does the integrity of our voting system change when we use machines
to
> > count the votes?
> >
> > - Machines are more inaccurate than hand counting. The machines lose
some
> > votes (up to twice as many as hand-counts) and count some votes for the
> > wrong candidate. Human error compounds the mistakes. Election officials
must
> > be trained, and software programming errors have resulted in mistakes as
> > high as 100 percent.
> >
> > - The machines produce new tampering and vote-rigging vulnerabilities.
We do
> > not have adequate systems to protect against tampering with programmers,
> > vendors and technicians.
> >
> > - Voting machines create hidden changes in the way our voting system
works.
> > Using the machines, in effect, replaces sworn, elected officials with
> > unsworn, unelected technicians. In most states, elected officials can no
> > longer look at the voter-verified evidence. Many state laws prohibit
> > officials from looking at the paper ballots, and only allow them to look
at
> > the counts coming out of the machines, even when there is a recount.
> >
> > - A safe voting system is one that many eyes can view. Machines
eliminate
> > transparency in vote-counting. The newest machines eliminate the paper
> > trail - the only voter-verified evidence of how votes really were cast,
> > effectively saying "trust us" - voters and local election officials no
> > longer have any way to verify that votes were counted accurately.
> >
> > - It used to be that we knew who our elected officials were and the
names of
> > local election officials were a matter of public record. Manufacturers,
who
> > now count our votes, are not required to reveal the names of owners or
key
> > people. The codes counting our votes are considered "proprietary" and
> > outside officials are not allowed to examine them.
> >
> > - Some voting machine manufacturers are salted with vested interests.
Among
> > the owners of voting machine companies and testing labs: active
politicians,
> > corporate lobbyists, former CIA directors, and people who have been
involved
> > in prosecutions for bribery, kickbacks, and fraud. Our "watchdog" groups
are
> > also influenced by special interests. Voting machine companies are using
> > lobbying and political influence to influence purchase of machines,
> > specifications and regulations.
> >
> > - Vote-rigging on computerized machines may be possible on a grand
scale,
> > not just a local scale. It's hard to stuff more than a dozen ballot
boxes in
> > your trunk, and it's nigh-on impossible to get 100,000 dead people to
vote.
> > But with these machines, we sometimes lose hundreds of thousands of
votes in
> > a single city!
> >
> > What are the risks to Democracy?
> >
> > - As long as we've had elections, we've had people trying to rig
results.
> > Now, vote-rigging is possible on a massive scale, by tampering with the
> > computer programs that count millions of votes.
> >
> > - Sooner or later someone will start stealing elections. If they haven't
> > already.
> >
> > - At some point, the balance of power in Congress may shift to the party
> > that was not actually elected, "mandates" will not be mandates, and we
may
> > get a president whose votes were augmented by a handful of programmers,
> > instead of an accurate vote "of the people, by the people and for the
> > people." ...
> >
> > Although every method offers vote-rigging opportunities, only the
optical
> > scan, touch-screen and Internet systems enable high-volume vote-rigging
on a
> > national or international scale. And the optical scan, touch-screen and
> > Internet systems give the smallest number of scoundrels opportunities to
> > find ways to tamper with the greatest number of votes. It may take only
ONE
> > programmer to tamper with literally millions of votes at once.
> >
> > What can we do about it? Get a paper trail, LOOK AT the paper trail,
require
> > disclosure
> >
> >
>
>
> -- 
> - Laird Popkin, cell: 917/453-0700
>
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Received on Mon Nov 1 15:28:56 2004

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