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The Bad News: Most Important Elections are Rigged. The Good News: A Solution is at Hand, the Ballot Images

Updated on May 8, 2018
Broward County Election Supervisor Brenda Snipes
Broward County Election Supervisor Brenda Snipes

I am going to put forth a proposition that will make some people mad. and I will show that it is true. This is something that most people do not want to hear. All that work you did during the last campaign you supported, whether it was knocking on doors or just spreading the word among your friends, all that money you donated, means nothing, as in, none of that wholesome exercise in democracy determines who wins.

If it is an important election, usually somebody else determines the winner. How do I know this? I don't, to 100 percent. But I certainly have reasons for suspicion, and so do you.

We'll skip over the entire 2016 election season, when election hacking became a household word. In that election there is strong and redundant evidence that Bernie Sanders did not get a fair shake. In 2016 the media was saying that elections would be nearly impossible to hack. Now DHS is saying the Russians successfully penetrated US voting systems in that year. This, at the least, establishes that election hacking is possible. That was actually established long ago, in numerous conferences, studies, and the HBO documentary Hacking Democracy, a 2006 shocker, the basic premises of which have not changed one bit.

We'll skip over the 2004 presidential election debacle, when George Bush came from behind John Kerry in Ohio, the key swing state, like Secretariat around the last bend, closing two laps in 30 seconds, light speed, to hand Bush reelection.

Then in 2007, two election officials in Cuyahoga County, Ohio were convicted of rigging an audit in that election, in this critical county, by cherry-picking ballots they knew would confirm George Bush as the winner. This could only mean that the machine count of votes was different from the actual votes contained on the paper ballots, a tactic known as "vote flipping."


Did this get proper coverage in the mainstream media? Given the possibility that one of the most important elections in American history was hacked? That election was seen as a referendum on George W. Bush's bloody invasion of Iraq, where at a minimum 2,000 civilians died in the initial, ferocious bombing campaign alone, over weapons of mass destruction which still not have been found.

In 2000 nobody knew Bush would invade Iraq, so, in the eyes of many around the world, Americans might be forgiven for electing him the first time. If indeed he was the winner, which the US Supreme Court's halting of a recount in Florida will leave forever in doubt. But in 2004, the world watched. Would Americans approve of this monstrous reaction to 9/11? It seemed they did, and now the sin was no longer only Bush's.


Also, we'll skip over the mathematical voting peculiarities in the 2012 primaries between Mitt Romney and Ron Paul, when Romney couldn't fill a high school gym while Paul was regularly filling stadiums. If you want to know more about that, read: How the GOP Establishment Stole the Nomination from Ron Paul.

All these instances point in one direction. The direction of the non-establishment, anti-war candidate losing to the establishment, pro-war candidate. The dots begin to make a pattern, and if it looks like a horse, it is a horse.

If you're not suspicious yet, you haven't been paying attention. All this doesn't mean that this is happening anywhere and everywhere, but we've a pretty good notion that it could be. Some of the evidence being so egregious and all. In Cuyahoga County, which swung the election to Bush, a conservative county recorded an impossibly high turnout of ninety-eight percent, while a polling place in urban Cleveland recorded an equally impossible turnout of only seven percent. Some might ask, if all this is true, why wasn't legal action initiated?

It was. But, alas, three months after being served a subpoena in a lawsuit filed by election activists aimed at answering the many questions surrounding the 2004 presidential election in Ohio, the star witness, Republican IT guru Mike Connell, was killed when his small plane went down near Akron. Despite his important connections in the GOP and with the Bush family, Connell's death and impending testimony received no national attention. Connell's death effectively ended the lawsuit.

Republican IT Guru Mike Connell Killed in Small Plane Crash

Where there is no possible good reason for hiding evidence, such as the paper ballots in an election, it must be assumed there is some bad reason. Election authorities would rather go to court to block citizen requests for access to recounts, rather than say, "Ok here's the ballots, knock yourselves out." After the proper training of course.


This is what has happened in Arizona, Alabama, Ohio, and Massachusetts, to
name a few. Election authorities have fought tooth and nail to not let anyone see paper ballots, in state courts and in freedom of information requests.

So if skulduggery must be suspected where an averseness to openness and transparency is apparent, someone should tell this to Broward County, Florida, a typically corrupt large US county, run by bosses and local machines of either party.

You see, Broward County finally dispensed with the irksome necessity to present any semblance of a lawful election. Why bother? They are used to it now. We don't even have to pretend anymore.

When the loser, Tim Canova, sued for a hand recount of some of the ballots where he did not believe the results, Broward County Elections Supervisor Brenda Snipes simply destroyed the paper ballots. Just shredded them. Against all federal and state law.

Snipes seemed to say: We can thumb our nose at any pretense of democracy, of fair play, and no one will say a thing. No one will go to jail, that's for sure.

And again, the loser was the anti-war, anti-establishment candidate, and the winner was a Hillary look-alike, former chair of the DNC no less. Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman-Schultz.

What has happened to Snipes? Has she been prosecuted? No, nothing has happened to Snipes. So far.

Steal an election, burn the ballots, no problem. If we didn't know if the election was stolen before, we sure know it now. The police say, if a suspect goes back to destroy evidence, he's guilty.

A jury will send you up the river in a heartbeat for the deliberate destruction of evidence which could prove you are guilty.

So now we know secretive behavior on the part of election authorities may not be innocuous. What is the problem with counting the paper ballots short of an act of Congress? Isn't that what they are for?

You are probably ready for some good news now. Fortunately there is some. Fantastic news, in fact. There is a way to verify most elections in the US, without even accessing the paper ballots. Election activists have found a way.

In short, in all modern voting machines, which are in use in more than half the jurisdictions in the US, each time a paper ballot is fed into the machine, that machine takes a digital image of that ballot and stores it in memory. It is automatic, and cannot be turned off. That's because the machine actually "reads" the digital image, not the paper ballot.

Those images become part of the audit trail, which can be posted online or burned onto a DVD, for citizens to count and verify what the machine came up with, precinct by precinct. It is cheap, easy, and well within the technological capabilities of the average election department.

So why aren't these images available everywhere? Why isn't this already being done? Ask your local election department. See what they have to say.

So far, when asked, they have come up with ludicrous excuses like "voter privacy." Pima County in Arizona, a critical county in presidential elections along with Maricopa, said that the court must side with "voter privacy."

But that is a fake issue. No violation of voter privacy takes place by making the ballot images public. All paper ballots in America are completely anonymous, so the images of those ballots are anonymous as well. Pima County knows this. So again, an election department strained hard to think up a reason not to let people see the ballots, even a stupid reason that makes them look like idiots.

Why work so hard at it? Nothing indicts like the desire for secrecy itself. In fact, Pima County, and the Secretary of State in Alabama, and the Secretary of State in Massachusetts, William Galvin, have not only not directed that the images be posted, they have directed that the ballot images be destroyed. Something is rotten in the state of Denmark, and in American elections.

Each and every political candidate in 2018, if they value the hard work and hard-earned money of their supporters, should demand the ballot images be made available in districts where they are available, and demand upgrades to modern, best-practices equipment where they are not. Bans on "DRE" touchscreen voting devices, except as necessary for disability, should go into effect, as well as a roll-back on increasingly popular mail-in voting. Nothing cries for mischief like stacks of marked ballots sitting in election offices for weeks.

Otherwise, these candidates are not respecting the hard work of their volunteers.

The iron is hot for election reform in America, and this should be a huge part of it. As Josef Stalin famously said: Those who vote determine nothing. Those who count the votes, determine everything.

(The non-profit website Verified Voting lists the type of voting system used in every US county. The types of optical scan vote-counting machines which generate digital images of the ballots include the ES&S DS200, the ES&S DS850, the Dominion ImageCast Precinct and ImageCast Central, the Hart Intercivic Verity Scan and Verity Central, and the Unisyn Voting OpenElect OVO.)

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    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 

      5 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      No matter how you dress it up a pig is still a pig. And conspiracy theories are still conspiracy theories. I think you would have done well just to say that -- after all you ain't paranoid is someone is really out to get you.

    • Joel Simpson profile image

      Joel Simpson 

      5 months ago

      Thanks for this great overview, which helps convince me that this issue is going mainstream DESPITE the refusal to acknowledge it by The New York Times, NPR, The Nation and other progressive news sources. Are they all working for the military-industrial complex, the great finance/corporate moguls, the Deep State?

      I'm presenting a panel again on the subject of Election Integrity at this year's Left Forum, June 1-3—don't have the exact time yet. One of the speakers is John Brakey, who fought hard to keep the Alabama Senatorial election honest, despite the attempt by the Secretary of State to trash the ballot images of the Opscan machines. Brakey sued, and eventually the State Supreme Court sided with him, and Doug Jones beat Roy Moore—by a hair. So there is hope, but the corruption is indeed extremely widespread, among both Democrats and Republicans. After all, the Dems didn't protest when the GOP stole both houses of Congress and the Presidency in 2000, 2004 and 2016—because they were doing it too. Anything, but let a popular anti-war candidate take power. They might just have to bump him off—as they did to JFK.

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