Thursday, June 08, 2006

Documenting the Stolen Elections

Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. has written an article in the Rolling Stone examining the widespread and systematic fraud of the 2004 elections.

Nearly half of the 6 million American voters living abroad never received their ballots -- or received them too late to vote -- after the Pentagon unaccountably shut down a state-of-the-art Web site used to file overseas registrations. A consulting firm called Sproul & Associates, which was hired by the Republican National Committee to register voters in six battleground states, was discovered shredding Democratic registrations. In New Mexico, which was decided by 5,988 votes, malfunctioning machines mysteriously failed to properly register a presidential vote on more than 20,000 ballots. Nationwide, according to the federal commission charged with implementing election reforms, as many as 1 million ballots were spoiled by faulty voting equipment -- roughly one for every 100 cast.

The reports were especially disturbing in Ohio, the critical battleground state that clinched Bush's victory in the electoral college. Officials there purged tens of thousands of eligible voters from the rolls, neglected to process registration cards generated by Democratic voter drives, shortchanged Democratic precincts when they allocated voting machines and illegally derailed a recount that could have given Kerry the presidency. A precinct in an evangelical church in Miami County recorded an impossibly high turnout of ninety-eight percent, while a polling place in inner-city Cleveland recorded an equally impossible turnout of only seven percent. In Warren County, GOP election officials even invented a nonexistent terrorist threat to bar the media from monitoring the official vote count.
So go read it already.

There is a good article at Alternet discussing both Kennedy's reporting, and the reporting of the 2000 election.
Although it was reported -- in The New York Times, no less -- that Al Gore got more votes than George W. Bush in a statewide recount of Florida "no matter what standard was chosen to judge voter intent," most Americans don't know to this day that Gore actually won the 2000 election. The reason is a small percentage of Republican spin and a large percentage of journalistic cowardice in the mainstream media following 9/11. (This cowardice is limited to the USA, by the way -- the story was extensively covered in most of the rest of the world.)

In the 2000 case, The New York Times, on November 12, 2001, published a story summarizing the work of the newspaper consortium that spent nearly a year counting all the ballots in the 2000 Florida election. They found that a statewide recount -- the process the Florida Supreme Court had mandated and which had begun when George W. Bush sued before the US Supreme Court to stop the recount -- "could have produced enough votes to tilt the election his [Gore's] way, no matter what standard was chosen to judge voter intent."
If the decision of the Florida Supreme Court had been respected, and a statewide recount had been conducted, Gore won the state, no matter what criterion you apply to evaluate dodgy ballots. Katherine Harris tried to mess with the system, and when her method was dismissed by the Florida court, the US Supreme Court stopped ballot counting, a judicial coup, and a disgrace to American democracy.

Al Gore says, in his interview I cited below, that he felt he had to respect the US Supreme Court and the rule of law. He says there was no intermediate step between violent revolution, and respecting the decision of the court. Yet later in the same interview, he admits that we are not currently living under the rule of law, and that the US Constitution has been essentially suspended. It's an inconvenient truth, isn't it? I wonder how he resolves that contradiction. I guess he also thinks that if you lose everything you have to a card cheat that you should sell your house, wife, kids, whatever, to pay the debt, rather than get pissed off, because it just wouldn't be gentlemanly, after all, to pull a gun and blow the m.f.'s head off.

That's just a metaphor. Realistically, it would be a hard slog overthrowing the US Supreme Court-appointed regime with a People-Power revolution when you only had 52% of the vote to start with. It opens up a real can of worms, and that is why we have the territorial/popular hybrid Electoral College: to simulate the result of a civil war so that we don't have the human loss and economic destruction of a real war. And, if you think of it that way, the judicial coup was like the simulation of the nuclear bombs the western states could have launched against our cities, as we won, causing us to lose to the cowboys in the end. America got what it deserved for even letting him get nominated. That doesn't mean we have to pretend it was legal or constitutional.

George W. Bush is not the president of the United States.

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