Archive for November 6th, 2012

Well, today is Election Day.  Finally.  The campaign  has seemed like it has lasted forever but it will all soon be over and hopefully there will be a clear winner without any stench from the ongoing controversies over voter suppression and voter fraud, particularly in, but not limited to,  the states of Ohio and Pennsylvania.   We all assume that in our democracy  every vote counts and that our right to cast that vote is an inalienable right.  But in these two states there are things happening that put both those assumptions to the test.

From Florida we see image after image of long lines of voters who are forced to wait sometimes up to 8 or 9 hours in order to cast their  ballots, conditions which even Republican Christine Todd Whitman says are akin to those one might see in an election in a Third World country.  You might notice that many of these lines are in areas heavily populated by minorities.  Denied the ability by the courts  to require more extensive ID from voters to fight the straw man of voter fraud they throw out as their reason, suppression has evolved into putting the determination of the voter to the test : How much will you tolerate in order to vote?

This is also happening in Ohio’s urban minority areas as well.  But there is a more insidious shadow hanging over Ohio in the potential for fraud in the vote count.  As documented yesterday in an article on the Salon.com site, there were software patches recently installed on the electronic voting machines in 39 Ohio counties that circumvented the certification process of the agency that oversees voting procedures in Ohio.  It is basically  uncertified and untested (by third parties)   tabulation software.  The possibilities for vote fraud are enormous.

Around the country in recent years, republican legislators have been crowing for more and more Voter ID laws to combat a problem that has not been in evidence for years. Outside of suppressing groups of voters that they see as not being in their camp,  I have always wondered why they were putting so much attention on this archaic form of voter fraud when the obvious way to corrupt the process is to let everyone vote and simply subvert the results.  It’s so much more effective than depending on people showing up at polling places to vote  multiple times, like a scene out of  the precincts of Chicago in the 1930’s.  Too slow and too many opportunites for something to go wrong or to be detected.  There are fewer conspirators to betray the plan if you can simply switch a vote for A to a vote for B, especially if the software does it seamlessly.  Everybody votes and everybody leaves the polls feeling that their  rights are in order and that their vote has been counted.  And though the exit polls might show that there is a discrepancy in the results that are announced , they can simply be shrugged off as flawed polling, something we hear everyday in the campaign.

Perhaps the Voter ID  controversy is in itself a ruse, a diversion from the bigger scam.  I hope I’m wrong here and that this is simply some crazy conspiracy theory.  But in a race where over  two billion dollars have been spent to obtain power, the stakes are indeed high enough to not rule out any possibility.  I hope that the authorities are taking this seriously and that if this subversion of our system is taking place that the perpetrators are handled severely.  We deserve to vote and have it  honestly counted.  Otherwise , our whole system falls apart.

So, lets assume that the system is still pure and get out there and do the responsible thing: Vote.


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