Monday, August 22, 2005

Ohio Investigates Election; Diebold Works on PR

AP reports that “A county elections board has asked a team of computer experts to test its recently purchased touch-screen voting machines to ensure the devices’ programs are sound.” They also report:

In Cleveland, up to 10 subpoenas have been issued in the handling of the presidential recount in December by the Cuyahoga County elections board, according to special prosecutor Kevin J. Baxter. The Erie County prosecutor said the investigation was in the fact-finding stage.

The investigation was prompted by complaints from Green Party candidate David Cobb and Libertarian Party candidate Michael Badnarik. They claimed the sample recount precincts weren’t randomly selected and a test-run recount was done without witnesses.

Elsewhere, Diebold has hired former Democratic National Committee chairman Joe Andrew to help with their public relations following an election which many Democrats feel was stolen by Diebold’s machines. While their Republican political bias has raised suspicion, and while there have been some documented break downs in their machines, no actual fraud has been proven. It is possible that the economic incentives of selling all those machines does outweigh their political bias. Electronic voting machines might even be of benefit to Democrats, who suffered from depressed turn out due to long lines, provided that their results can be verified to prevent any suspicion of fraud. For now, it will be a hard sell to Democrats.


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