another election stolen by diebold?

Of course, nothing will come of it, but it’s being suggested that yet another election has been stolen. This time the election was the New Hampshire primary, and Hillary Clinton was the beneficiary, and not a Republican. I haven’t seen the raw data to support the claim yet, but, according to some folks who claim to have run through the numbers, Hillary did significantly better than exit polls had indicated in wards using Diebold electronic voting machines — you know, the kind that don’t leave auditable paper trails — the kind that have been implicated in Republican vote rigging scams of the past… Fortunately, Kucinich is requesting an investigation. Hopefully, something will come of it.

We’ve talked here about exit polls in the past. Traditionally they’ve been a very effective way to predict the outcomes of elections. There have, however, been several anomalies, namely Florida in 2000, Ohio in 2004, and now New Hampshire in 2008. In the first two, exit polls clearly showed Bush losing. This time it was Hillary.

So, now a lot of us will, once again, sign petitions politely requesting that our government no longer use non-auditable voting machines, just like we did in 2000 and 2004. I’m not one to advocate violence, but at what point does it become our duty to take axe handles into our polling places and smash every Diebold machine we see to pieces, or, better yet, when do we organize and visit the Ohio-based company en masse with pitchforks and torches, demanding our democracy back?

And I’m not even saying that the primary was fixed. It doesn’t matter. If there is doubt in the minds of voters, the system isn’t working. The technology already exists to conduct elections in such a way that would leave an auditable paper trail. There is absolutely no excuse whatsoever for us to be using electronic systems such as those that are produced by Diebold that require our blind trust. Voting is too important, especially at this point in our history, when so much is on the line. And it’s absolutely imperative that our people believe that their votes, when cast, will be counted.

So, let’s assume that, once again, the conspiracy theorists among us are right and Obama was robbed — Who fixed it for Hillary? Who pushed her out in front of Obama? Was it her people? Did they make a deal with Diebold, or figure out a way to hack in? Or, was it the Republicans? It’s no secret that they’ve got the best chance of winning against Hillary? Or is it big business? Is Obama too much of a wildcard? Could it be that they’re scared that once he takes office, he might not be as big business-friendly as he appears?

For what it’s worth, master pollster John Zogby says it’s nothing to worry about. He thinks that what happened in New Hampshire can be explained.

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  1. egpenet
    Posted January 12, 2008 at 11:09 am | Permalink

    The Republicans want to run against the Clintons. Hillary’s tax policies are in question, as well.

    The Republicans are convinced that Obama’s tax policies will cause a depression and his wishy-washy foreign policiy of “let’s all get along, shall we” will be a disaster.

    The Reopublicans are NOT in the least bit worried that Edwards will succeed.

    The Democrat with the best record and experiencee has dropped out … Richardson.

    What the Republicans fear most is a Huckabee indepeendent race.

    I wonder what Bloomberg and Gore are REALLY thinking.

  2. egpenet
    Posted January 12, 2008 at 11:10 am | Permalink

    Excellent overview on electronic (paperless) voting machines in last week’s NYT magazine section.

  3. Posted January 12, 2008 at 1:51 pm | Permalink

    I really liked the Ars Technica take on why the demand for an audit is important.

    I doubt it was fixed. I think the Bradley effect does a lot to explain why the polls were so far off in NH for the Dems but not the Republicans, but not in IA.

    In any case, whenever votes are counted electronically, there should always be a reliable paper record for which *every* election should be audited to guarantee no electronic shenanigans.

  4. mark
    Posted January 13, 2008 at 10:15 am | Permalink

    Thanks for the note, Scott. I hadn’t see the Ars Technica piece. For what it’s worth, II’m inclined to agree with you.

  5. mark
    Posted January 13, 2008 at 9:03 pm | Permalink

    See also.

  6. Posted November 6, 2008 at 10:17 am | Permalink

    The GOP attempted to fix New Mexico but failed.

  7. Edward
    Posted October 11, 2010 at 1:20 pm | Permalink

    A great graphic showing the difference between an electronic voting terminal and a Las Vegas slot machine. It’ll blow your mind.

  8. Meta
    Posted April 26, 2012 at 9:13 am | Permalink

    Fixed voting machines: The forensic study of voting machines in Venango County, PA found the central tabulator had been “remotely accessed” by someone on “multiple occasions,” including for 80 minutes on the night before the 2010 general election.

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