By Barbara With
Never before has election fraud been so well understood by the American public. No longer a conspiracy theory, average Americans are now equating what appears to be a “permanent red shift” with hackable voting machines, voter intimidation, unconstitutional redistricting, manipulation of the voter registration rolls, elimination of exit polls, and here in Wisconsin, a lack of any real oversight by the Government Accountability Board.
In addition, the election integrity movement has never been so unified and demanding. The Atlantic, Harper’s, Rolling Stone, the New York Times and Washington Post all ran major articles on the possibility of stolen elections. News that Mitt Romney’s son Tagg has investments with people who own the voting machines in Ohio is being reported widely. Attorney and election integrity expert Dr. Bob Fitrakis has just filed a lawsuit over illegally placed software patches on Ohio voting machines. More election integrity organizations than ever are promoting activities to prevent the presidential election from being stolen.
In 2008, the theft of the Presidency would have been unbelievable by the general public. No one would have believed that John McCain and Sarah Palin could have won out over Obama’s Campaign after Wall Street crashed.
However, since June 2012, Wisconsin election integrity activists have come forward with evidence of the possible theft of the election to recall Governor Scott Walker. Many believe this was to send people the message that they weren’t afraid to steal anymore, even if the results seemed impossible.
So what that our state gathered over 2 million signatures to oust six politicians who were turning against their public oath of office and becoming tools for corporate interests? It didn’t matter that Wisconsin is traditionally a progressive blue state. Many believe that the audacity to steal the recall was a set-up for a presidential steal by Romney later on in November.
All the signs of a steal were there on the night of the recall election, June 5, 2012. According to Bill Robert and other election integrity experts from Wisconsin Counts!, people were still waiting in line to vote when MSNBC called the election at 8:50 PM.
Wisconsin polls closed at 8 pm but Milwaukee had run out of ballots around 7:15, so more were ordered and delivered. People remained in line, and it was a long line. At 8:50 PM with 27.6% of the state-wide vote in, it was announced that Walker had won the election. One member of the media informed voters to go home because Walker had been declared the winner. At 10:40 pm, Barrett conceded the race even though there were still nearly a million votes left to be counted.
According to 866-OUR-VOTE, “The Election Protection Coalition’s database received calls on some 1,500 problems as of poll closing at 8 pm local time. Many of the problems mentioned above can be seen in the records of those calls, and it’s likely we’ll have more on some of the issues that sent some voters away without being able to cast their vote at a later date. Moreover, as we always hasten to note, problems with electronic voting systems and tabulators often do not come to light until days, weeks and sometimes even years later. Data needs to be released and analyzed, and problem reports investigated. That can take some time.”
After the recall, election integrity expert Richard Charnin made a case for the implausibility of a Walker win based on mathematical analysis of previous elections and exit polls. According to Dr. Bob Fitrakis writing in the Free Press in Ohio, “The recall vote in Wisconsin produced another significant 7% discrepancy between the unadjusted exit poll and the so-called ‘recorded vote.’ In actual social science, this level of discrepancy, with the results being so far outside the expected margin of error would not be accepted.”
On Friday, the U.S. Department of Justice issued a press release stating that its “Civil Rights Division plans to deploy more than 780 federal observers and department personnel to 51 jurisdictions in 23 states for the Nov. 6, 2012, general election…to defend federal voting rights laws.”
In the face of the massive power outages all along the Eastern Seaboard due to Hurricane Sandy, millions of ballots cast in the 2012 presidential election might have to be counted either by hand with paper ballots, or via email and fax, leaving more room for possible fraud.
Since 2000, when a court decision deemed Bush winner, and again in 2004, we have watched as presidential elections were likely stolen. Today we understand election fraud isn’t just someone stuffing ballot bags in the middle of the night. It is a cocktail of suppressive activities and rigged voting systems. The latest addition is that 19 states will no longer have exit polls. These are usually conducted by major networks and the Associated Press. Without exit polls, election fraud becomes even easier since there is no basis for comparison between how voters claim to have cast their ballots and the tally of votes resulting from potentially rigged systems.
The road to true election reform is long and rocky. It might be too late to stop the theft of this election, but we can pay attention and continue to work for change in our elections. This includes community education, changes in election laws, banning hackable voting machines and an overhaul of the system to include hand counted paper ballots.
Without the true voice of the people as determined through an accurate ballot count, America is headed into becoming a fascist state, with corporate control of our government as the ruler. A non-participatory democracy is no longer an option. If it appears that this election is stolen, the only answer is for people to rise up and resist, as the African American voters did in the 1960s to win their civil rights. No matter who “wins” we must continue this tidal wave of protest and reform to gain back our right to vote in fair, open and transparent elections.