T Nation

Ohio Vote Challenged!!!

U.S. SENATOR BARBARA BOXER HOLDS BRIEFING FOR THE PRESS, CARRIED LIVE ON C-SPAN 2

JOINS WITH REPRESENTATIVE STEPHANIE TUBBS-JONES OF OHIO IN CHALLENGE TO COUNTING THE ELECTORS OF OHIO

Member of the House of Representatives from Ohio District 11 to present objection to recording the votes of the Electors of Ohio

In a press conference covered live on C-Span 2, Senator Barbara Boxer of California has announced that she will co-sign an objection sponsored by Stepanie Tubbs-Jones of the Cleveland area to the votes of the Electors of Ohio. The consent of a member of the Senate is necessary for any challenge from a House member as to the ‘regularity’ of Electors’ votes. Similarly, an objection from a member of the Senate must be paired with a House sponsor in order to recess the procedure for counting the votes of Electors, which will begin at 1:00 PM Eastern Standard Time in the chamber of the House of Representatives.

Barbara Boxer – a long-standing liberal Democrat who has consistently favored onerous and restrictive firearms legislation – has suddenly discovered that there are provisions in the Constitution for the United States which she thinks are worthwhile. Those who have not followed the issues of the Ohio election closely will be surprised to learn that two of the leading activist groups behind the many complaints about voting in Ohio last November, are Libertarian Michael Badnarik and Green Party presidential candidate David Cobb. Despite having almost nothing in common as political movements, the Libertarians and the Green activists have come together to help fund an official demand for a recount, which in Ohio costs more than $113,000 to file …

Boxer, answering questions after her prepared remarks were given, made a most surprising admission. When asked why she was not inclined to endorse similar objections made during the official count of Electors in 2001 ( for the disputed 2000 election ), she said that she was asked by former Vice President Albert S. Gore not to approve any of the objections raised at that time.

Almost all of the same issues that divided Democrats, Republicans and independent voters in 2000 were raised again in the remarks of Senator Boxer and Representative Tubbs-Jones:

  • people who were supposed to be registered to vote in their area were apparently not on the voter lists;

  • some predominantly African-American voting precincts in Ohio were troubled with a shortage of voting machines, while suburban precincts in the same counties seemed to have enough;

  • voters in the precincts served by Kenyon College in Ohio had long waits to vote, due to a shortage of machines;

  • more than one county reported problems with vote counting, and discrepancies between the original count and recounts: in one case, a county recorded more than 4000 votes above and beyond those eligible to vote in the precincts in question;

  • Tubbs-Jones raised the issue of a lack of conformity between States, noting that in some States convicted felons can regain their right to vote following successful completion of probation or their sentence, while in other States they are permanently barred from voting ( the message here being that this adversely impacts African-American men who’ve served time for felonies ).

What is doubly interesting about the process, so far, is that the Cobb-LaMarche campaign and their supporters in the Green Party and among those who identify with “Code Pink”, and other ultra-liberals like the Reverend Jesse Jackson, have been able to parlay these protests and complaints into a substantial fund-raising campaign. The Green faction has raised more than $ 150,000 to get the filing fee for the Ohio recount paid, and they have clearly had help from Libertarian party activists.

Perennial gadfly and neo-socialist suck-up Ralph Nader is nowhere to be seen in the process, and has virtually disappeared from view after spending almost all of his campaign monies and time on court challenges to ballot access laws and decisions in Pennsylvania, Texas and a few other States. By contrast, Cobb and Jackson are all over the place and are effectively using the Internet for their purposes.

As it happens, not all the members of the Senate will be in the House chamber today: Senator Bill Frist of Tennessee and Mary Landrieu of Louisiana are on a fact-finding trip in the Tsunami zone – while some House members are on a trip to China, Japan and North Korea.

The certification of the Electoral votes is done in a Joint Session of Congress, with the Vice President sitting as the President of the Senate. It began on time at l:00 Eastern.

Yeah, this is funny. A political signal from the liberal wing of the Democratic party on how cooperative they plan to be for the coming term.

BTW, FYI, in 2001, when there was an actual controversy, there was a plan to do exactly this, but Gore, being a classy guy at that point, talked the recalcitrant Democratic Senators out of doing so. I wonder where John Kerry is right now?

John Kerry says he won’t join the challenge.

By the way, this sort of sour grapes activity does not endear dems to the electorate.

If I was a dem (out of power in every meaningful way) I’d pick my battles more carefully.

Whigs=Democrats of 2005.

JeffR

I heard that the Dems were going to pull something like this.

I think that it really sets the tone for at least the next 2 years. Makes one wonder if there is any benefit at all to even try reaching across the aisle. I mean if the dems are going to pitch a fit at every turn, the Repubs ought to give them something to worth throwing a fit over.

I wonder what Tom Daschle’s doingwith all of his new found free time.

As a libertarian with a burning distate for the entire republicrat establishment, I look forward to the “ludicrous fringe” of the democrat wing of the party blocking forward momentum. Maybe the ass-clowns who thought that the current crop of democrats are “progressive” will begin to see the inanity of said belief. Politicians are scum. Of course there was massive vote fraud in urban areas. There always is. Here’s hoping that a couple of people will see all of these jackals for what they are: thieves.

The Dems are self-destructing. At least Kerry had the good sense and class to not sign on to it.

Dean as DNC Chairman…can’t wait. He is the choice of Democrats and Republicans.

By the way the questioning that Kennedy and Schumer put Gonzales thru yesterday was absolutely ridiculous. I mean Kennedy talking about drowning torture was priceless. Do these guys realize how silly they sound. The judge made them look like idiots.

Umm, wouldn’t that be something worth addressing, or is just impossible to get a handle on?

rainman, headboy and jeffy sure have a good time jacking each other off on these “we hate liberals” threads.

[quote]tme wrote:
rainman, headboy and jeffy sure have a good time jacking each other off on these “we hate liberals” threads.
[/quote]

Your a class act, tme. Through and through, a real gem.

[quote]tme wrote:
rainman, headboy and jeffy sure have a good time jacking each other off on these “we hate liberals” threads.
[/quote]

And you always seem to pop up and make some comment like this. Are you feeling left out? You’re not suffering from conservitive-envy are ya tme?

[quote]vroom wrote:
Of course there was massive vote fraud in urban areas. There always is.

Umm, wouldn’t that be something worth addressing, or is just impossible to get a handle on?[/quote]

It is definitely worth addressing. The problem is that both parties want to address different sides of the problem, and they fight each other about addressing the other side.

The Republicans want to address the problems of dead people, illegal immigrants, multiple votes, etc – I’ll call those the “overvoting” problems.

The Democrats want to address the problems of votes not being counted or of voters who “feel intimidated” or who are actually intimidated and don’t vote. I’ll call those the “undervoting” problems.

The undervoting and overvoting problems have the precise same effect on the outcome of the election. If some old lady feels intimidated and doesn’t vote, or if her vote is cancelled by the vote of a dead person, it’s the same net effect.

Unfortunately, the Democrats believe they benefit from overvoting problems, and the Republicans think they benefit from undervoting problems, so they fight each other about fixing the problems. Democrats decry attempts to minimize fraud as “racist” (against illegal aliens or if the efforts happen to be in minority communities – like big, urban areas); Republicans say that attempts to fix undervoting problems promote fraud.

Of course, sometimes there may be truth to those rebuttals (my personal belief is that there’s a lot more truth to the Republicans’ objections, but you know where I’m coming from). And sometimes they are complete crap (I find the idea that police presence at voting areas intimidates legitimate voters ridiculous).

Therein lies the problem. The best solution at this point seems to be increasing the accuracy of the voting technology – I would think that requiring identification to be entered into voting machines would help too. Staying on top of voter-registration rolls is important too, though there’s only really impetus to do so every 4 years and it’s hard to keep local officials on task at other times.

I should add that the above doesn’t really capture the new tack by the tin-foil-hat crowd on the Left concerning a conspiracy theory centered around electronic voting machines, but those don’t really deserve discussion – aside from saying that giving a paper voting record to voters would be a good idea, if simply to disarm the crazies from a favorite argument.

[quote]vroom wrote:
Of course there was massive vote fraud in urban areas. There always is.

Umm, wouldn’t that be something worth addressing, or is just impossible to get a handle on?[/quote]

If we really wanted (and I mean REALLY WANTED) to make sure that everyone who wanted to vote could vote, we’d make it a holiday from work. I mean, we have holidays for all number of “dead dudes” why not one holiday for “live dudes?” A buddy of mine had to wait 3 and a half hours in columbus, oh to vote. he’s lucky his boss let him have it. and then we’d streamline the registration procedure (I know, its not rocket science to register to vote, but this is all a hypothetical “max effort vote mobilizer”). That would then leave us facing the problem that Boston pointed out of keeping zombies and illegal immigrants out of the polls. Perhaps this could be partially dealt with in the process of streamlining the registration procedure? all of this is pointless musing on my part. I still won’t agree with anyone that the republicrats put forth in 2006, 2008…etc.

Here’s a thought: In Ohio we have magnetic strips on the backs of our ID cards. Why not make a voting machine that has you swipe your card when you start? Then it would automatically have the right person with the ID. Of course, this assumes that the picture is checked against the face of the bearer by a person first.

I wanted to encourage people to watch C-Span on a semi-regular basis.

It gives events in their entirety without the “impressions” of the talking heads.

It’s a fascinating political science lesson.

I just finished watching the House Debate that took place this Thursday.
This was the debate where the Democrats brought the “challenge” to the electoral votes in Ohio.

I am furious at the Democrats for being so idiotic. What possible good do they think they accomplished with this? Do they honestly think they were going to make ANY difference in voting procedures in the future with this? I cannot think how this grandstanding did any good at all.

Worse, the Democrats appeared petty and vindictive. Was it worth it to get their names in the paper and their faces on the television?

What does the moderate, usually independent voter think? I’ll bet the majority of them do not believe this challenge was undertaken for altruistic purposes.

If the Democrats were serious about election day reform, they would have highlighted irregularities in a Kerry-won state. For instance, Pennsylvania. There their assertion that they weren’t trying to change the election results would have rung true.
For most of us, their recounts, conspiracy theories, and noise in Ohio add up to one thing: Non-acceptance of the loss and looking to overturn the election.

I wanted to point one thing out, with the exception of tme’s childish horseshit, my Democratic friends have been stone silent on this thread.

My friends, you won’t win again unless you undergo the sometimes painful process of reevaluation. Frankly, your national leaders: Pelosi, Gore, Kerry, McAullife, Shrum, Jackson, H. Clinton, Ted Kennedy, Barbara Boxer, and Chuck Schumer stink to high heaven.

It would be refreshing to have my Democratic friends: P.O.X., Brother Elk, ILOVEGEORGEWBUSH1 (rsu), dahH, etc… point out the mistakes the DEMOCRATS ARE MAKING. I’m not encouraging you to do this so that your conservative friends can gloat (four more years is gloat enough). I believe in a two party system to promote balance. Unless you identify, discuss, and implement changes in the Democratic Party, you will continue to have no power. Period.

JeffR

The Democratic Party sucks. Any party that cannot ‘beat’ G.W. Bush in an election for ANYTHING sucks. As long as there aren’t any T-men running, politics sucks. It’s a game for the rich and mostly white. I am not qualified to play. I’ll continue to listen to AirAmerica while you idiots listen to your Rush and O’Reily.

[quote]oboffill wrote:
I’ll continue to listen to AirAmerica while you idiots listen to your Rush and O’Reily. [/quote]

AirAmerica - hahahahahahahahaha. Is it still on the air? I thought they had trouble getting people to accept their hot checks.

[quote]ToShinDo wrote:
Here’s a thought: In Ohio we have magnetic strips on the backs of our ID cards. Why not make a voting machine that has you swipe your card when you start? Then it would automatically have the right person with the ID. Of course, this assumes that the picture is checked against the face of the bearer by a person first. [/quote]

The Dems opposed any sort of ID requirements at the polls. Especially in NY/NJ. In NYC I actually heard an activist on the radio stating that his constituents don’t carry ID with them, in case they get stopped by the police. This seemed to be perfectly rational to him.

I think it would be a great idea. Pre-registrationa and ID required at the polls. Would eliminate most of the fraud.

Well, of course it makes sense to oppose identification at the polls. Most corpses don’t save their IDs.

Peter Kirsanow of the U.S. Civil Rights Commission examines some of the urban myths surrounding the claims of voter disenfranchisement:

http://www.nationalreview.com/comment/kirsanow200501100742.asp

January 10, 2005, 7:42 a.m.
The Florida Myth Spreads
Another ?stolen election.?

By Peter Kirsanow

Last Thursday’s challenge by certain congressional Democrats to the certification of the 2004 presidential election was but the latest chapter in the urban legend that began four years ago in Florida (see http://www.nationalreview.com/comment/kirsanow200310150822.asp ).

Back then, activists claimed that dogs and hoses were used to keep black voters from the polls. Claims that thousands of blacks were disenfranchised, harassed, and intimidated from voting ran rampant. The U.S. Commission on Civil Rights conducted a six-month investigation of the charges and found absolutely no evidence of systematic disenfranchisement of black voters. The civil-rights division of the Department of Justice also found no credible evidence that any Floridians were intentionally denied the right to vote.

These findings did little to dispel the myth of massive disenfranchisement. Politicians and activists persisted in circulating outlandish stories of nefarious schemes to steal votes, stories that became more numerous and absurd during the run-up to November 2004. Speaking before predominantly black audiences, John Kerry repeatedly suggested that a million black votes were stolen in the 2000 election (see http://www.nationalreview.com/comment/kirsanow200407120824.asp ). Representative Eddie Bernice Johnson (D., Tex.) asserted that George W. Bush lost the popular vote in Florida, despite the fact that every official and media count showed that Bush clearly won. In July, 2004 Johnson led a group of a dozen congressmen who requested that U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan provide U.N. election observers to monitor the November election to prevent a repeat of “the nightmare of the 2000 presidential election.”

As the November 2004 presidential election drew near, the mythologists issued dire warnings of Election Day calamities. When polls gradually began to make clear that Ohio would be 2004’s electoral ground zero, thousands of election lawyers and observers swarmed to the state. The mythologists railed against inevitable black-voter suppression and intimidation. The media braced for a repeat in Ohio of the narrow popular-vote margin and ensuing recount circus that occurred in Florida 2000.

But then, much to the chagrin of the mythologists, Bush defeated Kerry in Ohio by 119,000 votes. The army of election lawyers and observers reported no major problems. The predicted calamities failed to materialize: no stolen votes; no harassment and intimidation; no widespread confusion.

Since the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights is specifically charged with investigating deprivations of voting rights, its staff had been instructed to monitor the election and report back to the commission at its meeting the following week. The commission dispatched observers to battleground locations.

Given that distortions of the Commission’s Florida 2000 report formed much of the basis for the disenfranchisement myth, several commissioners were concerned that any irregularities reported by staff, however minor, would be hyped into yet another “stolen election.” But at the commission’s November 12, 2004, meeting, the staff reported . . . absolutely nothing.

The mythologists were undaunted. When initial claims of disappearing votes, voter intimidation, and rigged “Republican” election machines proved false, they tried to make the most of less-titillating claims that long lines, inadequate numbers of voting machines, and partisan election officials “disenfranchised” voters. Senator Barbara Boxer (D., Cal.) asserted that 5-10,000 black voters in Columbus had abandoned voting lines out of sheer frustration. Rep. John Conyers (D. Mich.) admonished that we should be as concerned about voter disenfranchisement in our country as we are in Afghanistan, Ukraine, and Iraq. And Rep. Maxine Waters (D. Cal.) stated that she was “ashamed to say” that Ohio’s chief election officer, Secretary of State Ken Blackwell, is black.

If there was a conspiracy to disenfranchise Ohio voters, black or white, its execution was profoundly inept. Ohio voter turnout increased from 4.9 million in 2000 to 5.5 million in 2004. Estimated black-voter turnout alone rose by 25 percent.

Many of these black voters apparently failed to pay attention to the subtext of the disenfranchisement claims ? that Republicans were trying their best to prevent blacks from voting. Yet President Bush’s percentage of the black vote in Ohio increased from 9 percent in 2000 to 16 percent in 2004. The total number of black votes cast for the president in Ohio increased by more than 100 percent.

The massive voter turnout did result in long lines. Long waits, however, were not peculiar to Ohio nor to predominantly black areas. And there’s scant evidence to support Sen. Boxer’s contention that as many as 10,000 black voters left long lines in Columbus.

The claim that partisan election officials affected Ohio’s election outcome was also embarrassingly weak. The county boards of election in Ohio are bipartisan. At least one black Democrat election official expressed bewilderment that anyone would think that he would permit disenfranchisement of his own people.

The final refuge of the mythologists was purported irregularities related to Ohio’s 160,000 provisional ballots. The mythologists contended that Blackwell had erected formidable barriers to casting provisional ballots and had discarded/invalidated huge numbers of them (presumably to the detriment of John Kerry). But as the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports, more than 75 percent of such ballots were counted as valid ? a percentage more than three times greater than the percentage of provisional ballots counted in Kerry’s home state of Massachusetts. In fact, it just so happens that Ohio counted a higher percentage of provisional ballots than any other state in the country.

Errors and problems will occur whenever 120 million voters go to the polls. This is not to diminish the issue ? we should continue to strive to reduce such problems. But random mistakes constitute neither a disenfranchisement conspiracy nor a stolen election. In the meantime, it would be helpful if ostensibly responsible individuals refrained from inflammatory disenfranchisement rhetoric that erodes public confidence in the electoral process.

? Peter Kirsanow is a member of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights ( http://www.usccr.gov/ ).

Maybe I missed it in the other reply’s, but I didn’t see anyone comment on the fact that the evening before this event took place John Kerry’s camp sent out 3 million e-mails to supporters urging them to flood their representatives phone lines with demands that strict voting standards be enacted.