My guest today is Netra Halperin, executive producer of Peace Films. Welcome to OpEdNews, Netra.
Joan Brunwasser: You recently wrote a piece at OpEdNews called Hillary Clinton & Rep. Nita Lowey, the Probable Causes of Brooklyn Voter Purges. But you live in Hawaii. What's your interest in what goes on all the way across the country, over in the Big Apple?
Netra Halperin: My interest is in the presidential election. Of course I have my favorite candidate, whom I want to win, but what is most important for me is that the election be fair. If we can't even have fair elections, than all the hype about "freedom and justice for all" is just that--hype. It's painful to see my country operate with such a level of hypocrisy.
JB: Fair enough! So, what's got you bent out of shape regarding the presidential election? Are you talking generically about our presidential elections or specifically about the current one?
NH: I am disturbed by the election fraud happening NOW, in the 2016 Democratic Primary. There has been evidence of rampant election fraud in New York, Arizona, Kentucky, Nevada, Illinois, Maryland, Iowa, Colorado, Massachusetts, Ohio and Wyoming. And there are already signs of attempts to disenfranchise "no party preference" voters in California.
JB: I'm assuming that "no party preference" voters refers to independents. You're making a pretty strong claim, Netra. If you're correct, you are justly incensed. Can you get this sad story rolling?
NH: The New York Board of Elections (BOE) has acknowledged that 126,000 voters were wrongly purged from the Brooklyn voter rolls (and up to 260,000 statewide). The day after the April 19th primary, the NY Attorney General, NYC Comptroller and NY Governor all declared that they would be investigating the matter. Also, Chief Clerk Diane Haslett Rudiano and Deputy Clerk Betty Ann Cenzio were suspended--both of whom claimed that the purges were a "mistake."
People need to understand that there is no possibility that these purges were accidental. According to the rules of the BOE, one employee is not able to purge voters on his/her own. The first employee can propose to purge certain voters' names--because they have left the district or died. And then the second employee, from the other party, must confirm it. Thus, the Democratic and Republican clerks did this TOGETHER.
JB: This was a bipartisan purging of Democratic voters? I didn't know that. Let's speculate here about motive, for both the Democratic and Republican clerks.
NH: We postulated that the Brooklyn Democratic machine, between 2013-2014, wanted to prepare to massage voter rolls for the 2016 election to ensure a Clinton win. Brooklyn Democratic power brokers (including Canizio) hatched a plan with long-time Clinton ally, Congresswoman Lowey and her daughter, to gain the Republican, Haslett Rudiano's cooperation in their plan. Lowey's developer daughter, Dana Lowey Luttway took Rudiano's rat-infested neighborhood blight brownstone off her hands at four times its value. In 2013, Rudiano had listed her brownstone at 118 West 76th St. for $1.5 million, however Lowey's daughter purchased it for $6.6 million in 2014, --or a $4 million "incentive" to cooperate!
JB: That doesn't sound promising. What recourse do angry, disenfranchised voters have if the investigation goes nowhere? The clock is ticking and the Democratic Convention is looming.
NH: Yes, the clock is ticking, as I just reminded the NY AG's office. However, there is another force in this equation. Schneiderman also has a reputation for being willing to "investigate power." He went after the big banks when they committed fraud and wrecked our economy in 2008. He personally created the NY AG's Bureau of Public Integrity. So, I imagine that he is now experiencing an internal conflict: Should he pursue justice, and follow his own principles, with the certainty of offending Clinton and much of the Democratic establishment? It's a life-changing, career-changing choice that he must make. Remember, he's also an elected official and likely has his sights on a higher office or appointment. We the people can help by letting him know that we are watching, and that if he chooses justice, we will politically have his back.
JB: I like that concept, Netra. But, somehow, the fact that this is all taking place in Hillary's home court, plus the intense pressure on Schneiderman to go along with the program does not encourage optimism. On another, more proactive note, there's going to be a workshop tomorrow, Wednesday, May 25th, in California. What can you tell us about it?
NH: The Institute for American Democracy and Election Integrity will be holding a free workshop in Corte Madera on the issue of election integrity, and how they can help tomorrow, Wednesday, May 25, 2016 from 7:30 PM to 10:00 PM. [Please confirm your attendance by clicking here.]