I and a number of others from the Illinois Ballot Integrity Project and other election watchdog organizations attended County Board meetings to ask for public hearings before any machines were purchased. We were rebuffed by all commissioners, even though we brought out why it was necessary to bring in experts to testify how the machines were prone to hacking, prone to mechanical breakdowns and had, in general, a dubious track record.
We cited problems with the machines in the stolen 2004 presidential election.
Similarly, the Ilinois Board of Elections did not take our questions seriously, and certified the machines used in Cook County without having meetings held properly under the Open Meetings Act.
The government obviously does not take the issue of verifiable ballots and verifiable vote counting and the elections in general seriously. The U.S. government insisted that money be spent quickly for voting machines of questionable dependability and ability to count votes accurately.
I was an election judge in this last election. I saw all of the machines in our precinct and the adjoning precinct break down during the day. At the end of the day, we found that 24 voter choices in our precinct had disappeared and could not be accounted for. The other judges and I thought it was from the lack of an easily verifiable paper trail of votes on the touch screen machine and a malfunctioning recording device.
What we need are paper ballots that can be hand counted and recounted under strict supervision as a good step in the direction of having fair elections in the U.S.
Neal Resnikoff is active with the Illinois Ballot Integrity Project and various peace and justice groups. He has been a presenter at several forums focusing on various aspects of election fraud, including the theft of the 2004 presidential election. He suggests a path to a modern democracy in which people in the neighborhoods, workplaces, schools, etc. discuss and come up with their political agenda, pick their recallable representatives, and do not allow any parties to hold political power. He can be reached at email@example.com.