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Evidence of Voter Hacking and Fraud

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  • David Redmon
    Published on Saturday, November 6, 2004 by CommonDreams.org Evidence Mounts That The Vote May Have Been Hacked by Thom Hartmann When I spoke with Jeff Fisher
    Message 1 of 2 , Nov 7, 2004
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      Published on Saturday, November 6, 2004 by
      Evidence Mounts That The Vote May Have Been Hacked
      by Thom Hartmann

      When I spoke with Jeff Fisher this morning (Saturday,
      November 06, 2004), the Democratic candidate for the
      U.S. House of Representatives from Florida's 16th
      District said he was waiting for the FBI to show up.
      Fisher has evidence, he says, not only that the
      Florida election was hacked, but of who hacked it and
      how. And not just this year, he said, but that these
      same people had previously hacked the Democratic
      primary race in 2002 so that Jeb Bush would not have
      to run against Janet Reno, who presented a real threat
      to Jeb, but instead against Bill McBride, who Jeb
      "It was practice for a national effort," Fisher told
      And some believe evidence is accumulating that the
      national effort happened on November 2, 2004.
      The State of Florida, for example, publishes a
      county-by-county record of votes cast and people
      registered to vote by party affiliation. Net denizen
      Kathy Dopp compiled the official state information
      into a table, available at
      http://ustogether.org/Florida_Election.htm, and
      noticed something startling.

      While the heavily scrutinized touch-screen voting
      machines seemed to produce results in which the
      registered Democrat/Republican ratios largely matched
      the Kerry/Bush vote, in Florida's counties using
      results from optically scanned paper ballots - fed
      into a central tabulator PC and thus vulnerable to
      hacking � the results seem to contain substantial
      In Baker County, for example, with 12,887 registered
      voters, 69.3% of them Democrats and 24.3% of them
      Republicans, the vote was only 2,180 for Kerry and
      7,738 for Bush, the opposite of what is seen
      everywhere else in the country where registered
      Democrats largely voted for Kerry.
      In Dixie County, with 4,988 registered voters, 77.5%
      of them Democrats and a mere 15% registered as
      Republicans, only 1,959 people voted for Kerry, but
      4,433 voted for Bush.
      The pattern repeats over and over again - but only in
      the counties where optical scanners were used.
      Franklin County, 77.3% registered Democrats, went
      58.5% for Bush. Holmes County, 72.7% registered
      Democrats, went 77.25% for Bush.
      Yet in the touch-screen counties, where investigators
      may have been more vigorously looking for such
      anomalies, high percentages of registered Democrats
      generally equaled high percentages of votes for Kerry.
      (I had earlier reported that county size was a
      variable � this turns out not to be the case. Just the
      use of touch-screens versus optical scanners.)
      More visual analysis of the results can be seen at
      together.org/election04/FloridaDataStats.htm, and
      www.rubberbug.com/temp/Florida2004chart.htm. Note the
      trend line � the only variable that determines a swing
      toward Bush was the use of optical scan machines.
      One possible explanation for this is the "Dixiecrat"
      theory, that in Florida white voters (particularly the
      rural ones) have been registered as Democrats for
      years, but voting Republican since Reagan. Looking at
      the 2000 statistics, also available on Dopp's site,
      there are similar anomalies, although the trends are
      not as strong as in 2004. But some suggest the 2000
      election may have been questionable in Florida, too.
      One of the people involved in Dopp's analysis noted
      that it may be possible to determine the validity of
      the "rural Democrat" theory by comparing Florida's
      white rural counties to those of Pennsylvania, another
      swing state but one that went for Kerry, as the exit
      polls there predicted. Interestingly, the Pennsylvania
      analysis, available at
      doesn't show the same kind of swings as does Florida,
      lending credence to the possibility of problems in
      Even more significantly, Dopp had first run the
      analysis while filtering out smaller (rural) counties,
      and still found that the only variable that accounted
      for a swing toward Republican voting was the use of
      optical-scan machines, whereas counties with
      touch-screen machines generally didn't swing -
      regardless of size.
      Others offer similar insights, based on other data. A
      professor at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst,
      noted that in Florida the vote to raise the minimum
      wage was approved by 72%, although Kerry got 48%. "The
      correlation between voting for the minimum wage
      increase and voting for Kerry isn't likely to be
      perfect," he noted, "but one would normally expect
      that the gap - of 1.5 million votes - to be far
      smaller than it was."
      While all of this may or may not be evidence of vote
      tampering, it again brings the nation back to the
      question of why several states using electronic voting
      machines or scanners programmed by private, for-profit
      corporations and often connected to modems produced
      votes inconsistent with exit poll numbers.
      Those exit poll results have been a problem for
      reporters ever since Election Day.
      Election night, I'd been doing live election coverage
      for WDEV, one of the radio stations that carries my
      syndicated show, and, just after midnight, during the
      12:20 a.m. Associated Press Radio News feed, I was
      startled to hear the reporter detail how Karen Hughes
      had earlier sat George W. Bush down to inform him that
      he'd lost the election. The exit polls were clear:
      Kerry was winning in a landslide. "Bush took the news
      stoically," noted the AP report.
      But then the computers reported something different.
      In several pivotal states.
      Conservatives see a conspiracy here: They think the
      exit polls were rigged.
      Dick Morris, the infamous political consultant to the
      first Clinton campaign who became a Republican
      consultant and Fox News regular, wrote an article for
      The Hill, the publication read by every political
      junkie in Washington, DC, in which he made a couple of
      brilliant points.
      "Exit Polls are almost never wrong," Morris wrote.
      "They eliminate the two major potential fallacies in
      survey research by correctly separating actual voters
      from those who pretend they will cast ballots but
      never do and by substituting actual observation for
      guesswork in judging the relative turnout of different
      parts of the state."
      He added: "So, according to ABC-TVs exit polls, for
      example, Kerry was slated to carry Florida, Ohio, New
      Mexico, Colorado, Nevada, and Iowa, all of which Bush
      carried. The only swing state the network had going to
      Bush was West Virginia, which the president won by 10
      Yet a few hours after the exit polls were showing a
      clear Kerry sweep, as the computerized vote numbers
      began to come in from the various states the election
      was called for Bush.
      How could this happen?
      On the CNBC TV show "Topic A With Tina Brown," several
      months ago, Howard Dean had filled in for Tina Brown
      as guest host. His guest was Bev Harris, the Seattle
      grandmother who started www.blackboxvoting.org from
      her living room. Bev pointed out that regardless of
      how votes were tabulated (other than hand counts, only
      done in odd places like small towns in Vermont), the
      real "counting" is done by computers. Be they Diebold
      Opti-Scan machines, which read paper ballots filled in
      by pencil or ink in the voter's hand, or the scanners
      that read punch cards, or the machines that simply
      record a touch of the screen, in all cases the final
      tally is sent to a "central tabulator" machine.
      That central tabulator computer is a Windows-based PC.

      "In a voting system," Harris explained to Dean on
      national television, "you have all the different
      voting machines at all the different polling places,
      sometimes, as in a county like mine, there's a
      thousand polling places in a single county. All those
      machines feed into the one machine so it can add up
      all the votes. So, of course, if you were going to do
      something you shouldn't to a voting machine, would it
      be more convenient to do it to each of the 4000
      machines, or just come in here and deal with all of
      them at once?"
      Dean nodded in rhetorical agreement, and Harris
      continued. "What surprises people is that the central
      tabulator is just a PC, like what you and I use. It's
      just a regular computer."
      "So," Dean said, "anybody who can hack into a PC can
      hack into a central tabulator?"
      Harris nodded affirmation, and pointed out how Diebold
      uses a program called GEMS, which fills the screen of
      the PC and effectively turns it into the central
      tabulator system. "This is the official program that
      the County Supervisor sees," she said, pointing to a
      PC that was sitting between them loaded with Diebold's
      Bev then had Dean open the GEMS program to see the
      results of a test election. They went to the screen
      titled "Election Summary Report" and waited a moment
      while the PC "adds up all the votes from all the
      various precincts," and then saw that in this faux
      election Howard Dean had 1000 votes, Lex Luthor had
      500, and Tiger Woods had none. Dean was winning.
      "Of course, you can't tamper with this software,"
      Harris noted. Diebold wrote a pretty good program.
      But, it's running on a Windows PC.
      So Harris had Dean close the Diebold GEMS software, go
      back to the normal Windows PC desktop, click on the
      "My Computer" icon, choose "Local Disk C:," open the
      folder titled GEMS, and open the sub-folder "LocalDB"
      which, Harris noted, "stands for local database,
      that's where they keep the votes." Harris then had
      Dean double-click on a file in that folder titled
      "Central Tabulator Votes," which caused the PC to open
      the vote count in a database program like Excel.
      In the "Sum of the Candidates" row of numbers, she
      found that in one precinct Dean had received 800 votes
      and Lex Luthor had gotten 400.
      "Let's just flip those," Harris said, as Dean cut and
      pasted the numbers from one cell into the other.
      "And," she added magnanimously, "let's give 100 votes
      to Tiger."
      They closed the database, went back into the official
      GEMS software "the legitimate way, you're the county
      supervisor and you're checking on the progress of your
      As the screen displayed the official voter tabulation,
      Harris said, "And you can see now that Howard Dean has
      only 500 votes, Lex Luthor has 900, and Tiger Woods
      has 100." Dean, the winner, was now the loser.
      Harris sat up a bit straighter, smiled, and said, "We
      just edited an election, and it took us 90 seconds."
      On live national television. (You can see the clip on
      www.votergate.tv.) And they had left no tracks
      whatsoever, Harris said, noting that it would be
      nearly impossible for the election software � or a
      County election official - to know that the vote
      database had been altered.
      Which brings us back to Morris and those pesky exit
      polls that had Karen Hughes telling George W. Bush
      that he'd lost the election in a landslide.
      Morris's conspiracy theory is that the exit polls
      "were sabotage" to cause people in the western states
      to not bother voting for Bush, since the networks
      would call the election based on the exit polls for
      Kerry. But the networks didn't do that, and had never
      intended to.
      According to congressional candidate Fisher, it makes
      far more sense that the exit polls were right - they
      weren't done on Diebold PCs - and that the vote itself
      was hacked.
      And not only for the presidential candidate - Jeff
      Fisher thinks this hit him and pretty much every other
      Democratic candidate for national office in the
      most-hacked swing states.
      So far, the only national "mainstream" media to come
      close to this story was Keith Olbermann on his show
      Friday night, November 5th, when he noted that it was
      curious that all the voting machine irregularities so
      far uncovered seem to favor Bush. In the meantime, the
      Washington Post and other media are now going through
      single-bullet-theory-like contortions to explain how
      the exit polls had failed.
      But I agree with Fox's Dick Morris on this one, at
      least in large part. Wrapping up his story for The
      Hill, Morris wrote in his final paragraph, "This was
      no mere mistake. Exit polls cannot be as wrong across
      the board as they were on election night. I suspect
      foul play."
      Thom Hartmann (thom at thomhartmann.com) is a Project
      Censored Award-winning best-selling author and host of
      a nationally syndicated daily progressive talk show.
      www.thomhartmann .com His most recent books are "The
      Last Hours of Ancient Sunlight," "Unequal Protection:
      The Rise of Corporate Dominance and the Theft of Human
      Rights," "We The People: A Call To Take Back America,"
      and "What Would Jefferson Do?: A Return To Democracy."

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