My guest today is Joe Libertelli a long-time grassroots progressive activist.
Joan Brunwasser: Welcome to OpEdNews, Joe. You wrote a headliner article, The Opportunity in this Crisis . It's quite a comprehensive piece and clearly took a lot of time and effort. Why did you write it?
Joe Libertelli: Ha - well, most of the ideas in the article have been percolating in my mind and among my activist friends for many years, but I suppose I will have to thank the - alleged - election of Donald Trump for forcing my writing hand!
JB: First things first. Why do you say "alleged" when referring to the recent election?
JL: Well, since 2004, I have been involved with what is called the "Election Integrity" movement, which has uncovered some strong evidence that the so-called "official" vote totals have been doctored electronically by those with access - which are the Republican-supporting electronic voting companies. In 2004, there was a pronounced "red shift" - a phrase borrowed from physics, but which we use to describe the unexplained change in the Republican (red) direction from the exit polls (which prior to 2004 had always been extremely accurate) to the so-called official results. The 2016 presidential election fits this pattern. Thus, in addition to the fact that Mr. Trump lost the popular vote by nearly three million - despite all the well known voter suppression techniques employed by Republicans nationally - there is much evidence that he did not fairly win the Electoral College tally either.
I came to be involved with the Election Integrity movement in an odd way. In 2004, one of my best friends, a guy I met in 7th grade Spanish class, Steve Freeman, was stunned by the shift from the presidential exit poll predictions to the supposed official result. Based on his understanding of what exit polls are, Steve, who has a PhD in Business Systems from MIT and is quite fluent with numbers, thought that such a shift was not at all likely. Searching the web, he found the work of Jonathan Simon, who had captured the unadjusted exit polls online on election eve. Steve crunched the numbers, saw that the chances for such a shift were WAY beyond the expected margin of error, and became convinced that fraud had occurred. Having just helped another friend, Tim Carpenter, start Progressive Democrats of America (largely from the energy of the Kucinich primary campaign), I was able to work with PDA to help Steve publicize a monograph on the subject that became quite widely distributed, and which eventually became the basis for his book, "Was the 2004 Presidential Election Stolen?" Bobby Kennedy Jr. went into the issues and quoted Steve here.
JB: Exit polls are considered to be the gold standard for evaluating elections worldwide. How is it that what works well everywhere else is so off here?