Albert was inspired to call for a recount when, on Primary night in New Hampshire, January 8th, he watched his vote total go from 178 DOWN to 44.
Through the donations of many interested voters and election reform activists, he was able to raise the $55,000 necessary to pay for a statewide recount of New Hampshire's 100% paper ballots. The problem is, 81% of those paper ballots were counted by Diebold optical scan counters.
After spending several days in New Hampshire trying to find an attorney to help with this effort, we were unsuccessful, so we just wrote it ourselves, with edits from Democracy for New Hampshire's Nancy Tobi, help from Bev Harris of Black Box Voting, suggestions from EDA' Jonathan Simon, and of course from Albert Howard himself. The primary authors were Abbe Waldman DeLozier, the PR Director of the Coalition for Visible Ballots; Sally Castleman, National Chair of the Election Defense Alliance (EDA) and myself, Vickie Karp, National Chair of the Coalition for Visible Ballots, and PR Director, VoteRescue.
The first level of appeal in New Hampshire is with the "Ballot Law Commission", which usually deals with matters of contested ballots It is unlikely that they will actually hold a hearing based on the many violations of chain of custody and election law that were observed during the recount process and noted in the Petition of Appeal document. Albert is determined to get a full hearing either at this Commission, or at a federal court. He is one of the most committed patriots I've ever met.
The actual recounting of the ballots is done in a very transparent manner with citizen monitors, observors and videographers allowed in the room to closely watch the process.
The chain of custody of the ballots on their journey from the towns and cities of New Hampshire back to the State Archive Building where the counting took place, however, left a lot to be desired, as did the condition of the boxes in which they came in, and the easily-removable "seals" which were supposed to make the boxes "tamper-proof" . See www.blackboxvoting.org and YouTube for videos about the "Shame of Custody".
While a full analysis of the numbers resulting from the recount is not yet completed, the official recount numbers reduced Albert's vote totals by one vote . Other more significant anomalies from the recount that are being examined are consistentlly higher discrepancies between ballots that were counted by machines versus those counted by hand. VoteRescue Radio's show on Sunday, February 17th, 2-4pm CST will feature Bob Schulz who may have his analysis of the numbers ready to discuss. The show can be heard online at www.wtprn.com; click "listen live", or by phone at 512/485-9010. Other guests on the show will be Albert Howard; Walter Reddy; Sally Castleman and Abbe DeLozier; and Bev Harris.
Many wonderful election reform activists and concerned citizens from all around the country came to New Hampshire to help monitor this recount. A partial list of those I knew or met while there: Bev Harris, Susan Pynchon, Paddy Shaffer, Sally Castleman, Jeannie Dean, Walter Reddy, Bob Schulz, Carolyn Sharpe, Bob Dwyer. Others who worked from behind the scenes to assist were Abbe Waldman DeLozier, Nancy Tobi, Jonathan Simon.
The link to the entire Petition for Appeal document is attached below. The Exhibits are not included here, but hope to have them available for distribution soon. The writing effort was a beautiful collaboration that came together in a miraculous way despite hours of exhaustion and incredulity that it could actually come together in time. But it did, in time for Sally Castleman, Walter Reddy, and Carolyn Sharpe to accompany Albert to Secretary of State Bill Gardner's office Friday, the 15th, to file the document with a full 30 minutes left before the deadline!
Truly a memorable experience, helping monitor in New Hampshire! And the search for the truth there continues.
Please consider sending a donation to Albert through his website, www.alberthoward.org.
Vickie Karp, National Chair, Coalition for Visible Ballots
PR Director, VoteRescue
|Petition for Albert Howard.doc|
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