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Democrats fighting hard for Diebold in Maryland

By Warren Stewart, VoteTrustUSA  Posted by Joan Brunwasser (about the submitter)     Permalink
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Subject: Press release: Democrats Fighting Hard For Diebold in Maryland

Democrats Fighting Hard For Diebold in Maryland PDF Print
By Warren Stewart, VoteTrustUSA
March 28, 2006
That's Right - Democratic State Senator Paula Hollinger Is Diebold's Best
Friend In The Maryland Legislature!

There is overwhelming support for verifiable elections in Maryland. The
House of Delegates recently unanimously passed a bill that would require a
voter verified paper record of every vote and a mandatory random manual
audit of 5% of those records. The bill included an amendment that calls for
leasing optical scan equipment for this year?s elections. Republican
Governor Robert Ehrlich has strongly supported the switch to a paper ballot
optical scan system. The New York Times weighed in with an editorial calling
for "common sense" in Maryland.

So why isn't anything happening? Two powerful state Senate Democrats -
Senate president Mike Miller and the chair of the committee to which the bill
was referred Senator Paula Hollinger (pictured at right) - seem to be
determined to protect Diebold in Maryland - and they're willing to waste
millions of Maryland taxpayer dollars to do it!

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It is the official position of the Democratic National Committee that a
paper ballot optical scan voting system is more accurate, affordable, and
with the use of ballot marking devices, provides the same accessibility for
disabled voters. However, it is Republicans who are working on behalf of
Maryland's voters to ensure confidence in the state's elections. Governor
Ehrlich has twice asked for funding to be appropriated for leasing optical
scan equipment for this year. Senator Hollinger took the first request -
$21.8 million - and diverted the money to purchase electronic pollbooks from
- you guessed it - Diebold.

Now Senator Hollinger is cooking up even more lucrative plans for her
friends at Diebold. Apparently she is considering three proposals:

1. Scrap the state's current Diebold TS-R6 touchscreen machines,
which cannot be retrofitted with printers, for the new TSx touchscreens.
That would transfer $60 million of Maryland taxpayer money into Diebold's
bank account.

2. Purchase one TSx for every precinct in 2006, which makes no sense
at all since some voters would have the benefit of a voter verified paper
record while others wouldn't and the configuration of R6s and TSx has not
received federal certification.

3. A pilot project in 5 precincts, the same the strategy used by
Democrats in Virginia and Georgia, who want to bury the whole idea of
verified voting with meaningless "pilot projects".

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All these proposals have one thing in common - lots of money for Diebold.
Why is Senator Hollinger so determined to pad Diebold's profits?

Stop the Madness! Contact Maryland State Senator Paula Hollinger and tell
her you want paper ballots in Maryland! Send emails to Senator Hollinger here.

and the members of the Senate Committee on Education, Health and
Environmental Affairs and then follow up with a call to Senator Senator
Hollinger (410) 841-3131. Contact information for the entire committee is
available here



Joyce McCloy
Founder, NC Coalition for Verified Voting
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