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Thursday, November 03, 2005

The one-person no-vote principle

Vote fraud and the electronic voting scam are being investigated in a lawsuit in New Mexico (Montgomery Burns: "There's a new Mexico?"):
If you were a Hispanic American or Native American voting in New Mexico on November 4, 2004, you may have experienced some of the following:

The most likely problem was simply to find out that your vote for president or other offices was not counted. Ballots with missing votes are called “under votes.” In New Mexico there were around 23,000 under votes out of a total of about 750 thousand votes cast. That is a rate of 3.0% for the state, or six times the expected rate of under votes in a presidential election. In Hispanic and Native American precincts under votes range from 6% to as high as 49%. One poll worker described watching 141 voters come to the precinct, enter the polling booth where a voting machine awaited, stay for a short period, and leave. At the end of the day, there was only one vote counted for president. That’s a 99% plus rate of under votes for that precinct.

In another scenario, called election machine “vote switching,” one voter describes a scene that occurred throughout the state. The voter was choosing between Republican Heather Wilson and Democrat Richard Romero in the 1st Congressional District, near Albuquerque, NM. She recounts the frustrating story as follows:

"I voted for Richard Romero. The check did not appear in the box. I tried three more times to vote for Richard Romero, making sure that I was not touching the screen in any other place. The vote never registered. The fourth time that I tried to vote for Richard Romero, a check appeared in the box by Heather Wilson's name."

For the next 45 minutes, the voter sought help from an election official. None was available. When help finally arrived, “The monitor came and cleared the machine and stood watching me as I voted again.” It finally seemed to take her vote for Democrat Romero. Describing the one hour ordeal to cast just one vote in one race, the voter said, “I have no idea if my vote was processed correctly.”
The article includes scandalous figures for undervotes (no vote recorded for president, for example) when push-button or touch-screen machines were used, especially in Native American and Hispanic precincts--up to 9%, compared to less than 1% for all ethnic groups when optical scanners were used.