2:40 p.m. - New Hampshire: Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) announced today at the national citizen action convention called DemocracyFest that he will revoking his support for the controversial election reform bill known as th Holt Bill. He said he will inform Rep. Rush Holt (D-NJ) shortly that he cannot support the bill. He also announced that he will reintroduce his bill formerly known as HR 6200 -- to hand count the presidential election.
HR 811 is a controversial bill which provides a paper trail, but adds an unprecedented federal mandate for secrecy in voting, requiring even election officials to sign nondisclosure agreements if they seek to examine computerized voting software. The bill quintuples the budget of and further empowers the Election Assistance Commission, led by four White House appointees, and it institutionalizes the use of technology for voting.
The DemocracyFest event featured Anthony Stevens, Assistant New Hampshire Secretary of State, teaching citizens and voting rights advocates from across the USA how to plan for and carry out hand counting of paper ballots at the polling place.
Kucinich remarked in a telephone broadcast that he will be reviewing the original HR 6200 -- the bill that requires hand counting the presidential election -- carefully and deliberately to make it as good a bill as possible.
Kucinich is a candidate for president in 2008.Nancy Tobi, co-founder of Democracy for New Hampshire, Bev Harris, founder of Black Box Voting, and elections law attorney Paul Lehto are among the presenters at Democracy for New Hampshire and have been meeting with presidential candidates and other public officials to discuss the need to abolish secret vote counting procedures.