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"Senator Chuck Hagel - Poster Boy for Conflict of Interest"

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Message Vickie Karp
Excerpt from
HACKED! High Tech Election Theft in America
11 Experts Expose the Truth

Edited by Abbe Waldman DeLozier and Vickie Karp

HACKED! is an amazing expose about electronic vote fraud and was released in early September. As stated in the title, it includes contributions from eleven experts from around the country, all of whom have been working on election reform in once capacity or another for years. The common themes throughout the book are that electronic voting is extremely fraudulent, a case made very well by these experts; and that the only acceptable solution is elections held with hand-counted paper ballots, with totals posted at the precinct level ~ NOT adding printers to machines; NOT counting paper ballots with optical scan counters.

Here we feature the first of several excerpts from the book. This chapter, by Bev Harris, originally appeared in her book, Black Box Voting: Ballot Tampering in the 21st Century (Talion Press.) In it, she details the blatant conflict of interest regarding Nebraska Senator Chuck Hagel, who, just weeks before his senate race, was running the electronic voting machine company which counted the majority of votes in his 1996 election bid, and who had major stock holdings in the company at the time he took office.

Why We Need Disclosure of Owners
Bev Harris
from Black Box Voting: Ballot Tampering in the 21st Century

Elections in America-Assume Crooks Are In Control 1
Lynn Landes

"Only a few companies dominate the market for computer voting machines. Alarmingly, under U.S. federal law, no background checks are required on these companies or their employees. Felons and foreigners can, and do, own computer voting machine companies.
"Voting machine companies demand that clients sign 'proprietary' contracts to protect their trade secrets, which prohibits a thorough inspection of voting machines by outsiders.

"And, unbelievably, it appears that most election officials don't require paper ballots to back up or audit electronic election results. So far, lawsuits to allow complete access to inspect voting machines, or to require paper ballots so that recounts are possible ... have failed.

"As far as we know, some guy from Russia could be controlling the outcome of computerized elections in the United States."

* * * * *

This is the article that triggered my interest in voting machines. After all, how hard can it be to find out who owns these companies?

Chuck Hagel
Poster Boy for Conflict of Interest

He stunned them with his upsets. Nebraska Republican Chuck Hagel came from behind twice during his run for the U.S. Senate in 1996. Hagel, a clean-cut, crinkly-eyed, earnest-looking millionaire, had achieved an upset win in the primary against Republican Attorney General Don Stenberg, despite the fact that he was not well-known.

According to CNN's All Politics, 2 "Hagel hoped he could make lightning strike twice"-and he did: Hagel then defeated popular Democratic Governor Ben Nelson, who had led in the polls since the opening gun.

The Washington Post called Hagel's 1996 win "the major Republican upset in the November election."3 Hagel swept all three congressional districts, becoming the first Republican to win a U.S. Senate seat in Nebraska in 24 years. "He won counties up and down the politically diverse Platte River Valley and topped it off with victories in Omaha and Lincoln," reported the Hastings Tribune.4

What the media didn't report is that Hagel's job, until two weeks before he announced his run for the Senate, was running the voting machine company whose machines would count his votes. Chuck Hagel had been chairman of American Information Systems ("AIS," now called ES&S) since July 1992.5 He also took on the position of CEO when co-founder Bob Urosevich left in November 1993.6

Hagel owned stock in AIS Investors Inc., a group of investors in the voting machine company. While Hagel was running AIS, the company was building and programming the machines that
would later count his votes. In March 1995, Hagel stepped down as chairman of AIS; on March 31, he announced his bid for U.S. Senate.7 When Hagel won what Business Week described as a "landslide upset,"8 reporters might have written about the strange business of an upstart senator who ran his own voting machine company. They didn't because they didn't know about it: On Hagel's required personal disclosure documents, he omitted AIS. When asked to describe every position he had held, paid or unpaid, he mentioned his work as a banker and even listed his volunteer positions with the Mid-America chapter of the American Red Cross. What he never disclosed was his salary from or stock holdings in the voting machine company whose machines had counted his votes.9

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Vickie Karp is a Texas voting activist and author of Hacked! about electronic vote fraud in American elections.
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