Friday, October 10, 2008

Lou Dobbs: Unreliability Voting Machines Without Paper Backup

Lou Dobbs Tonight 7:20 ET

Dobbs made the statement after a lengthy report on situation with ACORN, the potential for Voter Fraud, the potential for long lines at polls in many states, machine breakdowns in past elections, voters turned away or leaving due to inadequate systems, etc.

dobbs said on top of all of that is the unreliability of the electronic voting machines without a paper backup...

the program appeared to have cited a recent study which included Pennsylvania counties... the study was conducted by the Advancement Project...

CNN continuing its reporting throughout programming...

Larry King... pure fraud... where ACORN registration drives occurring across the country...

Net the Truth Online

POSTED: 10-09-2008 03:21 PM ET | MODIFIED: 10-09-2008 03:23 PM ET
Group Says Long Lines Possible on Election Day

A Washington, D.C.-based watchdog group says a lack of voting machines and poll workers could make for long lines at some polling places in Pennsylvania on Election Day. The Advancement Project says the surge in voter registration and expected larger-than-usual turnout may also overwhelm the resources of some precincts.

[ WEB LINK: ( Advancement Project ) ]

The group focused on Berks, Montgomery, and Philadelphia counties. It found that even if only an additional 5% new or infrequent voters turn out on November 4, there would be more voters per machine than state officials recommend at most precincts in Berks and Montgomery counties. Bucks, Chester, and Montgomery counties recently decided to buy or lease more machines because of the higher turnout expected this year. Berks hasn't added any machines just for this election...

Pennsylvania voters could face long Election Day lines
by The Associated Press
Thursday October 09, 2008, 1:57 PM
A watchdog group says a lack of voting machines and poll workers could leave some Pennsylvania voters facing long lines on Election Day.

The Washington-based Advancement Project says the surge in voter registration and expected larger-than-usual turnout might overwhelm the resources of some precincts. It found that even if only an additional 5 percent new or infrequent voters turn out, there would be more voters per machine than state officials recommend at most precincts in Montgomery and Berks counties.


County investigates voter registration fraud
Friday, October 10, 2008
By Karamagi Rujumba, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Authorities here and elsewhere in the nation are investigating allegations that thousands of fake names have been submitted on voter registration forms.

While such activity is a crime, experts say there is little or no threat to the integrity of the upcoming election, because newly registered voters are required to show identification at the polling place.

Investigators here and elsewhere are focusing on voter registration campaigns conducted by the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, known as ACORN.

Former justice slams ACORN's role in electoral process

Former state Supreme Court Justice Sandra Newman said today she has no confidence in the integrity of the electoral process in Pennsylvania, as a result of the massive voter registration effort by a community group with ties to Barack Obama.

She and other Republicans allege the Association of Community Organizers for Reforn Now, known as ACORN, might be involved in widespread fraud. Pennsylvania and eight other states are investigating suspicious or incomplete voter registrations obtained by canvassers working for ACORN.

"I am not confident we can get a fair election," said Newman, a Republican from Montgomery County.

Testimony of VotePA

September 25, 2008
Public Hearing on Preparedness for General Election
State Government Committee, Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Ladies and Gentlemen of the State Government Committee:

Forty days from now our nation will select the leaders that will govern us for the next four years. With the many problems we are facing today, this is an incredibly important election with great public interest. There are huge numbers of newly registered voters, and record turnout is expected on Election Day. This turnout may reach 80% in some areas.

As one of the largest swing states, Pennsylvania may well become a deciding factor this year. It is more important than ever that every eligible citizen who wants to vote gets to vote and to have his or her counted accurately. We absolutely have to "get it right" this time.

Public officials and citizen organizations all over Pennsylvania are working hard to help ensure a fair, smooth, and accurate election on November 4. But there are a number of issues that remain very concerning, especially with our voting systems.

Six of the ten voting systems that Pennsylvania will use this November 4 are software-dependent Direct Record Electronic (DRE) voting machines. Approximately seven million Pennsylvanians will cast votes using these paperless systems.

Of great concern is that in counties using DREs, a record turnout may create long lines at the polls due to not enough machines. With each voter having to occupy a DRE machine for the entire time he or she is voting, this will happen in any polling place where the number of voters exceeds the capacity provided by the number of machines available.

Under the Pennsylvania Election Code 25 P.S. § 3031.5 (b), the Secretary of the Commonwealth's certification report for each voting machine specifies "the capacity of the components of that system, the number of voters who may reasonably be accommodated by the voting devices and automatic tabulating equipment which comprise such system and the number of clerks and machine inspectors, if any, required based on the number of registered electors in any election district in which the voting system is to be used, such specifications being based upon the secretary's examination of the system."

These certified numbers are based on the vendors' recommendations and the state examiner's observations during a brief one-day examination conducted for each machine in Harrisburg. Many of our counties have used these certification numbers as a basis for deciding how many voting machines to purchase or lease.

Unfortunately these certified numbers, ranging from three hundred to four hundred voters per day per machine, are unrealistically high for all six DRE machines used in Pennsylvania. Based on the three-minute time limit allowed voters under the Pennsylvania Election Code at 25 P.S. §3057, any single DRE voting machine ­ no matter what the brand ­ can only accommodate twenty voters per hour or 260 voters in a thirteen-hour voting day.

And that is assuming voters come through the line in perfect three-minute intervals from 7 AM to 8 PM. As we all know, in real life voters tend to come to the polls in spurts. There is a higher concentration of voters in the early morning and after working hours in the evening.

The three-minute rule dates from the time when mechanical lever voting machines were used in much of the state. But for a Direct Record Electronic voting system, especially one where the voter has to move from screen to screen, three minutes is an incredibly short time frame for any voter to cast a ballot.



March 3, 2008 -- Citizens in Fayette County recently helped guide their County Commissioners to a choice of voter-marked and verified paper ballots with scanners rather than spending $170,000 to purchase more Direct Record Electronic (DRE) voting machines.

Concerned about long lines, the Fayette County Commissioners were considering the purchase of 55 more Hart / Intercivic eSlate DRE machines as additional equipment for the April 22 Pennsylvania Primary and the November General Election.

The eSlate does not offer a voter-marked or voter-verified paper trail in Pennsylvania. In addition, many Fayette voters, especially seniors, were unhappy with the machine's "dial-a-vote" interface.

Through the diligence of resident Delinda Young, other citizens in the County, and statewide members of VotePA, the Commissioners were informed of a paper ballot alternative. The eScan interfaces with software and equipment the county already owns and would allow the majority of voters to cast a paper ballot marked simply using a pencil.

Commissioners and local press received facts on the performance and costs of DRE machines versus scanners in other states, as well as updates on pending legislation to require paper ballots. Several lively discussions were held on local radio talk shows and at meetings.

The multipartisan informational effort was successful on February 6 when the Board voted by a 2-1 margin to purchase 113 precinct count eScan machines to cover their 103 precincts, giving the majority of Fayette County voters the opportunity to cast a true voter-marked and voter-verified paper ballot to protect their 2008 presidential and congressional choices.

Here are some links to news articles regarding the Fayette County decision:

Fayette ballot changes may get boost
by Chris Foreman,Tribune-Review

Fayette officials make deadline to buy scanners
by Liz Zemba, Tribune-Review

Fayette commissioners consider new voting machines
by Chris Foreman, Tribune-Review

Fayette studies different types of voting machines
by Mary Pickels, Tribune-Review

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