The fact that electronic voting machines don't work may finally be sinking into a segment of the mainstream media. The fact that e-voting machines can, have been, and will be used to steal elections, continues to go unreported.
At least the corporate media has moved from framing the allegations of e-voting fraud as “conspiracy theory” into reporting epic errors in election results.
Both USA Today and the New York Times have run recent articles on the mechanical problems surrounding electronic voting that mirror much of what happened during the theft the presidential election in Ohio 2004.
On March 28, USA Today's front page reported, that "Primary voting-machine troubles raise concerns for general election." The story focused on primaries in Illinois and Texas, where all-too-familiar problems include more votes being counted than there were registered voters, and thousands of votes missing from a recount.
Even Texas voters couldn’t ignore the fact that an initial ballot tally in Ft. Worth showed 150,000 votes “. . . even though there were only one-third that many voters,” according to USA Today.
The conservative Republican candidate for the Texas Supreme Court believes he was the legitimate winner in a race he "officially" seems to have lost. Various reports indicate there were vote counts in the election that were, like many in Ohio 2004, simply not credible.
On March 23 the Times editorialized in support of a unanimous resolution by the Maryland legislature to dump Diebold touchscreens and use opti-scan paper-based systems instead. The move "is just the latest indication that common sense is starting to prevail in the battle over electronic voting," said the Times.
The USA Today article featured a graph showing the hundreds of millions of dollars being spent under the Help America Vote Act (HAVA) to install electronic voting machines in key states such as California, New York, Texas, Florida, Illinois, Pennsylvania and Ohio.
Yet, the e-voting machines are just part of the digital problem facing U.S. voters. Diebold’s election software packages include what many activists describe as “one stop shopping” for election fraud. Most of the e-voting machine companies also sell software that creates digital electronic voter registration databases. In the Cleveland area, an estimated 7000 voters were knocked off the voter registration rolls when Cuyahoga County Board of Elections adopted the Diebold registration system. The e-voting machine companies can control everything electronically, from voter registration to election day vote recording to final vote tabulation and recounting.
Neither the Times nor USA Today nor any other major national publication has been willing to take the problem to its logical conclusion. None have seriously investigated how these very electronic machines were used to help steal the presidential election in Ohio 2004, or to defeat two electoral reform issues in Ohio 2005, or to swing key US Senate races in places such as Georgia, Minnesota and Colorado in 2002.
But the fact that these publications are finally acknowledging the obvious, overwhelming mechanical "glitches" with these machines is at least a start. Now that the Government Accountability Office has confirmed electronic voting equipment is easily hackable for mass vote stealing, and now that the Times and USA Today have reported that there are serious mechanical problems, maybe somebody at one of these media outlets will finally come to the obvious conclusion: electronic voting machines are merely high-tech devices designed to steal elections. And that is precisely why George W. Bush is in the White House today.
Bob Fitrakis and Harvey Wasserman are co-authors of "How the GOP Stole America's 2004 Election and Is Rigging 2008". They are co-editors, with Steve Rosenfeld, of "What Happened in Ohio?" forthcoming in September from The New Press.
© 2006 The Free Press