Re: Question: What basis should candidates use to decide whether to contest their elections?

From: Kathy Dopp <kathy_dot_dopp_at_gmail_dot_com>
Date: Sat Oct 21 2006 - 16:20:57 CDT

On 10/21/06, Richard C. Johnson <> wrote:
> It would be reasonable for the election authorities to release any and all
> election records for the examination of the general public. Most election
> authorities have computer-readable records down to the precinct and
> sometimes the voting machine level. These records are and should be
> completely public; this is the key battle. Lawsuits and other means may be
> necessary, but I know of no reason not to disclose all information
> available.

Here in Utah, they are keeping all election records secret. They have
denied public records requests for DRE machine counts, DRE summary tapes,
DRE zero tapes, polling location/precinct DRE recap (reconciliation)
forms, written procedures for conducting elections, recounts, audits,
handling absentee ballots, etc. EVERYTHING is being withheld - our entire
election process in Utah is a SECRET. Unless candidates contest, in many
states, it will be difficult to obtain the records needed for forensic
analysis. AK Dems had to fight for almost two years just to obtain their
detailed vote counts.

The creation of useful records--such as are generated by scanning and
> processing paper ballots--is obviously also a requirement.

Yes, but not according to all states current open records and election laws
which in some cases will require a court to deman them.

I agree with you completely 100% in principle. Would you like to help us
write our press release?

It is difficult to see any valid reason to withhold data after an election
> has been certified. States will want to be sure of a count before releasing
> data, but there should be a window for public examination of the data prior
> to certification. Once data are available for examination, it should be
> possible to prioritize elections deserving of protest. Obviously, it
> dissipates effort to contest all elections and yet without data no
> meaningful protest is likely.

I agree completely, but we only obtained it in a few counties states after
the 2004 elections - the Dems never did obtain it for OH for their "study"
of the 2004 presidential election and you'd think they would have gotten it
there. You would be amazed at how difficult, time-consuming and expensive
it can be to obtain.

First, the public right to know must be established, as well as the right to
> generate records based on paper ballots. Then, it should be feasible to
> prioritize elections for challenge.

I agree. Would you help us write/edit a press release for election integrity
groups to send out?

I'm very busy myself so I don't have time to do much myself unfortunately
beyond what I've laid out above in the pdf.


Have at them!
> -- Dick

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Received on Tue Oct 31 23:17:05 2006

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