"Those who cast the votes decide nothing. Those who count the votes decide everything." Communist Tyrant Josef Stalin
Columbus, Ohio = Worst Voting System
February 22, 2000 NA (Network America) e-wire
Columbus, Ohio = Worst Voting System
The bottom of this e-wire also suggests a "heads up" for those of you who will watch tonight's election coverage of the Michigan Primary.
Tomorrow will be commentary on the Michigan Primary outcome, and the next day reader feedback, BUT, today, as promised, the incredible state of voting in Columbus, Ohio - the capital of my state. I know that some places in Nevada have the same system.
The system in Columbus, Ohio has done away with paper trails and paper altogether, according to eye-witness reports from actual users in the last election. You walk into a computer screen which displays the choices. You indicate your choice with your finger on the screen, as I recall. You hit "next" when you're done voting for each race. At the end, the screen flashes a "Thank You" - and then ....goes dark.
No paper trail. No way to double check the computers for programming errors.
And we're supposed to believe that little bleep of energy that goes into the computer or through the phone line, or whatever, will always be recorded correctly. How gullible can we get? Actually, the problem is that Americans have been too trusting, and haven't thought about these things. Which is why this e-wire list and all of you good people - are so potentially important to the future of our country. Once enough people think about these things, the tide will begin to turn. ...
Please notice tonight that the 5 Big TV networks will project winners and losers WITHOUT percentage predictions. From at least 1980 to 1992, the networks would always project WITH percentages, i.e., "CBS projects Bush is the winner in Florida with 57% of the vote" ... and while that was said, "Bush 57%, Dukakis 43% " would be flashed on the screen with a check mark next to Bush.
By the late primaries and the General Election in 1996, after the Colliers book had circulated for 3 years, and after, by the grace of God, I had appeared on over 500 radio outlets (that's about 45 shows broadcast over multiple outlets in certain cases) --- the Big TV networks ceased to project with percentages. (I believe we have some VCR footage from 1988 showing these percentage projections just minutes after the polls closed in some cases.)
I can't prove it, but I believe it was because the word was getting out over talk radio local and regional shows, and especially The Tom Valentine Show which led to all the others, Chuck Harder who was heard on over 325 medium and small town AM radio stations, and Roger Friedenberg who was on over 150 AM stations in the Western States. What word was getting out? The word that there were very few exit polls, and that at those exit polls the exit pollers usually missed both rush hours; further, that only 1 out of 15 people will talk to the exit pollers due to privacy considerations or rushing in and out of the polling place on a tight schedule. (And who's to say that some of the people who do take time to answer --- don't lie to the exit pollers?)
So, where's the scientific basis to be able to project these races to the percentage point??? That's what we were saying on radio all over the USA in early 1996. We were also making known that shadowy Voter News Service organization which does the exit polls for ALL 5 big TV networks, while the networks dishonestly pretend that they're in hot competition with one another to get the projections on the air FIRST.
Anyway, as of 1996, percentage points have been DROPPED from network projections. Let's see about tonight.
Jim Condit Jr.
Director, Citizens for a Fair Vote Count
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