Democrats & Liberals Archives

The Biggest Scandal Since Watergate -- Bigger

Attention all journalists. Here is your chance to change the world.

There is a huge, ongoing scandal going on that threatens our democracy. With the new electronic voting machines you cannot prove an election wasn’t stolen. There is no audit trail.

Just saying that hasn't gotten the attention it deserves. Imagine how Fox News would react if it knew that some Democrat had stolen the Presidency by manipulating the programming in voting machines, covering his tracks through the lack of an audit trail.

Now consider that Republicans may have already done this, and that unless we can get some inside sources there is no way to prove it.

Here is what we need. First, we need a copy of the computer code these machines use. We need that code studied, taken apart, disassembled, and tested for vulnerabilities. We need a "Deep Throat" on the inside of one of these companies who will, in the name of democracy, come out with the evidence we need to prove someone has been defrauded by the manipulation of the machines.

It is possible to run a free, fair election with an electronic voting machine. All you need is a physical artifact that can be audited. I have proposed a double bar-code reader. Each voting machine prints two small bar codes, one on paper and one on something a little sturdier. The paper copy is left on the tape, while the sturdy copy is ejected into the voter's hand when they finish voting.

Now, you have a read-only machine nearby into which the voter can push this bar code and verify who he or she voted for. The voter doesn't have to check, but they can. Then you have a box, just as we have today, into which the voter must then deposit their bar code.

To conduct a machine recount, you simply run the tapes through a bar code reader. To conduct a "hand" recount, you pull the heavier bar codes out of the boxes and read them manually. It's fast, it's reliable, and it's verifiable.

Compare this to what we have now. Examine the results from 2002, especially in states like Nebraska, home of the man whose company created these machines -- Chuck Hagel.

This is the biggest story since Watergate. It is, in fact, bigger than Watergate, much bigger. If Republicans have been manipulating the machines, as Thom Hartmann alleges, they have been systematically destroying the democratic process we've trusted for over 200 years. At minimum you can already prove that they can't prove they're not doing just that -- which is scandal enough.

Posted by Danablankenhorn at June 27, 2003 10:53 AM