Thursday, December 16, 2004

Did they steal Ohio? Maybe. Good thing the Cobb campaign is finding out

The Republicans might have stolen the Ohio election in thousands of small ways -- denying ballots to Dem leaners in one precinct, jiggering with an electronic, paper-less voting machine in another county to reject 1 out of every 50 Kerry votes. It's possible.

A rule of thumb is that a good precinct organization on election day is worth 2 or 3 percent of the vote in a given precinct, by saving a vote here, denying a voter there, ensuring a voter fills out the ballot correctly, etc.

If the higher-ups in the Bush campaign had the chance to move a few hundred thousand votes Bush's way, they would take that opportunity in a heartbeat. Maybe some of the big-wigs at these private companies that operate the voting machines are active Republicans. In fact, they are. I don't trust those machines. That's why we should have a hand count in those places where they are actual ballots to count.

David Cobb, the Green Party candidate for President, is leading the charge to organize the recount.

Some of the D.C. Democrats are starting to pay attention to this, led by black Democrats who are less suspectible to this odd Beltway sickness of needing to appear responsible at all times and automatically dismissing voices calling for more transparency and accountability as conspiracy theorists or nutjobs.

Minor parties are good. They raise issues that major parties don't -- like ensuring every vote is counted. We need more than two parties.


Anonymous said...

Jeez, Dan -- conflate much? Saving votes, denying votes, making sure filled out properly -- these are good things, right? We make sure we have an election with integrity? But my oh my how you glide over to "oh but Republicans are perfectly willing to cheat, too, and hey, probably did!" Makes the head spin.

FightforJustice said...

Come on now. Dan doesn't pretend to be nonpartisan or even bipartisan. Consequently, it's no surprise that he'd cling to whatever conspiracy theory might explain the Kerry defeat.

FightforJustice said...

Speaking of election fraud, here's a piece from today's Washington Times:

"Republicans in Washington state suspect Democrats, with 500 patronage jobs at risk, are cheating in what is now the unprecedented third counting of the 2,883,341 ballots cast in the Nov. 2 election for governor.
"In the current hand recount, Democrats keep discovering untabulated ballots. The state's Republicans, who thought they had elected Dino Rossi as the first Republican governor in 20 years, are furious.

"State Republican Party Chairman Chris Vance says he can't decide whether Democrat officials in heavily Democratic King County — where uncounted or improperly discarded ballots keep popping up — are "colossally incompetent or completely corrupt.'"

Dan Johnson-Weinberger said...

I notice that no one is disputing anything I said. Did some Republicans cheat? Maybe. I don't know. But I do know it is a possibility. Most Republicans (and most Democrats, and for that matter, most people) would never cheat. But people in power that have the most to gain or lose are certainly more likely to cheat if they can. Look, it's a form of disenfranchisement to have lines that are longer than three hours to vote. Can anyone disagree with that? And can anyone seriously disagree with the statement that if some people in the Bush campaign had the *chance* to steal the election, they would in a second. Anyone?

FightforJustice said...

Can anyone seriously disagree with the statement that if some people in the KERRY campaign had the *chance* to steal the election, they would in a second? Anyone?

Anonymous said...


Yes, Dan, I absolutely dispute what you said. I was "in" the Thune campaign, and I had a "chance" to cheat, as did the hundred other lawyers that went out there to make sure that the 2002 fraud was not repeated. But I didn't. We didn't. And don't say it's just marginal, because your whole point was that the cheating occurs at the marginal, precinct-by-precinct level. But I didn't cheat. Why is that? Why did everyone I know who worked on the Bush campaign in Ohio work so conscientiously to play it down the middle?

To the other guy who says Dan obviously isn't nonpartisan, of course I know that, but Dan tries more than most men I've known to be fairminded and careful in his thinking. I'm a conservative Republican working in Washington; why would I stop by here to see what he has to say if I didn't respect that integrity? I do; I have for years.

Dan Johnson-Weinberger said...

Duff -- thanks for the kind words and right back at you. I'm glad you read these dispatches from the capital of Blue America (maybe I should put that in the intro. . .). I don't mean to suggest that the hundreds of thousands of active GOP volunteers are dishonest, anymore than the hundreds of thousands of active Dem volunteers are dishonest. But especially when it comes to the voting machines, owned by a private corporation with intimate ties to the Republican Party, I think the proper government response is to *expect* that there is likely manipulation, and fashion a public, transparent remedy in response (a hand recount, for example). I don't think Reagan's line of 'trust, but verify' works for elections -- that puts too much power (and temptation for cheating) in the hands of the people running the equipment. That's not a conspiracy theory. That's just common sense. And of course that goes for Democrats too -- they just don't run any voting equipment companies.