In 2004 tens of thousands of voters were denied their right to vote in Ohio when election officials provided inadequate voting machines in African American communities. Some people waited in line to vote for longer than 12 hours. Many thousands of others gave up and did not vote. This alone may have been enough to change the outcome of the 2004 election.
Well, it's happening again.
A recent report indicated that college-age and African American precincts in Florida, Michigan, Missouri, Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virginia will not have sufficient numbers of voting machines or election staff to handle the number of voters expected on Election Day. Help us to let these officials know that tens of thousands of people are watching their actions and documenting what occurs on Election Day. Even if you do not live in these states it is important for these officials to hear from you (send letters at http://salsa.democracyinaction.org/o/1331/t/6410/campaign.jsp?campaign_KEY=26109
). They need to know they will be held accountable for their actions. This action is being taken in concert with a coalition of organizations working under the banner "No More Stolen Elections." See www.NoMoreStolenElections.org
This is reminiscent of the experience of Sarasota, FL in 2006. When the vote was complete and counted, they discovered that vote-flips were the tip of the iceberg. The iVotronic machines - the same product being used in West Virginia - had 18,000 blank ballots which could have changed the outcome of the election. Election officials were unable to reconstruct the race. For more information, see “Vote Flipping with the iVotronic the Florida 2006 Experience” at http://truevote.us/nucleus/index.php?itemid=363
. This report includes comment by an election integrity advocate in Sarasota, as well as links to reports from the U.S. GAO and others.
We demand that West Virginia remove any machine that flips votes or resists voter's choices. Such machines must be immediately removed. Voters should not be forced to vote on a machine that makes intermittent or continuous misalignments. These problems can be a sign of fraudulent software or hardware that is not likely to be corrected by recalibration of the machine.
West Virginia should be preparing for a paper ballot election with hand counts. At this late stage of the game, that is the only alternative that seems possible.
On October 30, TrueVote.US went to seven embassies in Washington, DC to deliver a "Petition for International Observers for the U.S. Presidential Elections 2008." The petition was submitted by TrueVote.US, No More Stolen Elections, the Economic Human Rights Project, Chesapeake Citizens and Global Exchange. The petition is being delivered to the United Nations. We want to make sure that if the election results are contested steps have been taken so that the U.N. is able to participate in ensuring the integrity of the U.S. election. Sign a petition of support at http://salsa.democracyinaction.org/o/1331/t/6410/petition.jsp?petition_KEY=1726
Voters should be provided with the unadjusted exit polls and if adjustments are made to the final polls they should be explained publicly. Major media outlets are urged to archive all of the interim exit poll results to allow independent analysis later. Election integrity advocates must push for greater transparency since large-sample exit polls can and should be used be used to audit vote totals.
When the U.S. government audits the vote in a foreign country, the tool of choice is always a large-sample exit poll, which will identify problems in the vote totals. Yet, in the United States, even with the documented problems we have had in voting, our own government does not use the best tool available.
News and political divisions of the major networks must plan to archive all of the preliminary exit poll results since the overall survey will quickly be adjusted by the vendor to match the published vote totals, and will thus no longer be useful as an audit of the integrity of the vote totals.