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Black Box Voting: WISCONSIN VOTE SPREAD 29,207? 7,500? Or 6,744?

By       Message Bev Harris     Permalink
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But maybe the county clerk had her way with the results on that murky uncertified private computer she was using?

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Poll workers in Wisconsin do reconciliations. You can't have thousands of ballots appear out of thin air on a county computer without those same ballot quantities being signed off on by poll workers days earlier at, in the case of Brookfield, 24 different locations all featuring different personnel.

I recommended to the locals to get copies of the poll worker reconciliations for Brookfield's 24 wards, along with copies of the voting machine tapes.

The Kloppenburg campaign already did just that. According to the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, "Saturday, Kloppenburg campaign volunteers combed through Waukesha County voting records made available by Nickolaus. By 5 p.m. they had completed the process of comparing data from poll books to tape from voting machines."

The article doesn't say if there are discrepancies; if so, those will surface. I don't expect fireworks.

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Not necessarily.

Here's the next twist: The Journal-Sentinel reports in a story posted Sunday April 10 at 1:00 a.m., "Prosser ahead by 6,744 votes out of nearly 1.5 million cast."

The newspaper is reporting roughly 400,000 more votes than the state has posted, and this is AFTER the Brookfield votes were posted. So what's missing on the state spreadsheet? By 4:14 p.m. Friday the state had not reported about 30 wards from the city of Madison, much of Fon du Lac, and several Oshkosh wards.

A copy of the spreadsheet is posted at the link at top of this email.


Several questions remain, but access to the original source documents will produce most of it. Wisconsin conceals the vote-counting and chain of custody from the public, using electronic machines with no way for the public to compare input to output. By the time any recount would be done, ballots have been moved out of public view, toasting the chain of custody.

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But Wisconsin does have many good procedures and good public records practices. In fact, Wisconsin had the first Freedom of Information law in America, passing it in 1848. (The first Freedom of Information laws in the world were passed in Sweden in 1766.)

In my opinion, the Wisconsin Supreme Court race probably won't ultimately come down to something that happened in Brookfield, but it may very well still come to a recount.


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Bev Harris is executive director of Black Box Voting, Inc. an advocacy group committed to restoring citizen oversight to elections.

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