Monday, December 20, 2004

Vote "Flipping" in Florida

"Vote Flipping":(touch one candidate, it records another)


The present writer was in Florida on Election Day, as a poll watcher for Election Protection Coalition, a non-partisan group concerned with preventing a repeat of the 2000 election debacle. What he saw first hand persuaded him that fraud had occurred on a massive scale--- in Florida, Ohio, and probably in other battleground states.

At his polling site, a largely minority area in Hillsborough County, half as many voting machines were in use as had been used for the earlier primary. Across town, the same situation prevailed. Long lines forced many potential voters to choose between their civic duty and privilege (voting) and their work and family responsibilities. Hillsborough County was the tip of the iceberg, as it turned out; the same happened all throughout Florida and Ohio. But in predominantly Republican neighborhoods, plenty of voting machines were on hand, lines were normal, and everyone who wanted to vote, did.

I saw another apparent anomaly. A touch-screen voting machine “flipped” a woman’s vote from John F. Kerry to George W. Bush. The woman was visibly upset, but it seemed to us poll watchers like a mere computer glitch, no different than a super market checkout machine that records an incorrect price for lettuce. It seemed that way, at least, until reports came in from all around the country about other electronic vote flipping. In Youngstown, Ohio, it went on all day without the machines being fixed.

Was a rash of faulty computers to blame? Possibly. Except that almost without exception, every switched vote went in the same direction…from Kerry to Bush.

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