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US Election Disenfranchisement & Fraud: Logging today's Blog

observer | 07.01.2005 00:10 | Analysis | Repression | Social Struggles | World

This from William Rivers Pitt's Truthout weblog.

You will have heard nothing about this (beyond ridicule) from the mass media. Very worrying. Read from the bottom up.

Civil Rights Movement. One more time.
Civil Rights Movement. One more time.

Today was a good day
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 06:05
I can't recall a day in the last several years when the efforts of citizens yielded fruit in the Senate. Didn't work with the Patriot Act vote. Didn't work with the Homeland Security Act vote. Sure as hell didn't work with the Iraq war vote.

It worked today. Voices were heard, and something we haven't seen since 1877 took place today. This is what Congress exists for, and for once, they responded.

The rest is up to the same people who got this ball rolling. Today was a beginning, an introduction into the national dialogue of the fact that lots and lots and lots and lots of Americans get jobbed out of their right to vote every election.

We can fix that. We should fix that. Today, the task was well begun.
List of House members who voted 'Yea'
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 06:02
Revised down to 31:

Brown, Corrine
Davis (IL)
Hastings (FL)
Jackson (IL)
Jackson-Lee (TX)
Johnson, E. B.
Jones (OH)
Kilpatrick (MI)
Lewis (GA)
Thompson (MS)
I interviewed Rep. Conyers just before the hearings
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 05:00
PITT: How are you feeling about what is happening today?

CONYERS: We have come a mighty long way. It seems to me, as we began this adventure, to make the ballot as important as it is, and that it be counted, and that it be available to every single qualified American voter, that I had always suspected that it would be hard for the United States Senate to do, again, what they did in 2000. To close down any possibility of any debate, of any investigation, of any recount, and it turns out that my hunch was correct.

The fact of the matter is that we have everything to gain and nothing to lose by doing this. This isn't like there is a down-side to this. It is all up, because as everybody knows, all the phones are jammed, emails are coming in, faxes. People are coming in from all over. This is a test of American democracy, just as in 1878. They passed the law to deal with the presidential election of 1877. We have to, in 2005, pass some more election reform laws to deal with what happened in 2004.

Read the rest here.......
Now it's 32
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 04:31
33 votes in the House
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 04:04
to support the objection.

I interviewed Rep. Conyers just before the hearing. I will have the transcript up as soon as I can.
Here comes the House vote
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 03:51
Republicans have trouble pushing buttons, it seems. Two times a vote to uphold the challenge came from the GOP side, and then got switched back after they realized they pushed the wrong button.

There is a GOP vote to uphold the challenge now, and it appears to be sticking.

Nope. Gone now. Learn to push buttons, folks.
Oh, here we go
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 03:45
Mr. I-don't-need-ethics-rules-in-my-face DeLay is up pretending to have any kind of moral standing on anything.

Lying his face off. Bush engineered electronic vote fraud, DeLay says is one theory.

I feel another terrorism quip coming. Yup, there it is.

No voter disenfranchisement in 2000 and 2004, saith DeLay. Everyone knows this.

This guy is a wonder of nature.
The House goes on
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 03:37
I have a feeling that the House vote will be a bit more satisfying to the Democratic base than the Senate vote.
Lock step
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 03:11
It took an incredible amount of effort to get several Democrats to get up and say basically the same thing in support of each other. It was a war to get that done.

The GOP sticks to their message with ease, almost automatically, preternatuarally.

That's a trick the Democrats need to learn.

The vote in the Senate is 74-1. The motion is not approved.
The debate continues in the House
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 03:05
Jackson-Lee blows the doors off, and the GOP Reps. march out accusing Democrats of aiding terrorists...and then complain about bitterness and partisanship.
Boxer votes 'Aye'
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 02:52
GOP Rep. Drier in the House says the people questioning the Ohio vote are aiding terrorists.

Lott is trying to shut it down
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 02:42
"Hopes it does not have a lasting impact."

"Merits no further response."

The roll is being called. Here come the votes. Boxer votes 'aye' and the gallery erupts in applause.
Voinovich (R-OH) is up
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 02:37
defending the vote in his state. Bunch of Ohioans in the gallery started bellowing and had to be removed.

Voinovich, like DeWine, is using editorials to prove there were no problems in Ohio. Dizzyingly hilarious.
Text of Boxer's statement today
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 02:33
Statement On Her Objection To The Certification Of Ohio’s Electoral Votes

January 6, 2005

For most of us in the Senate and the House, we have spent our lives fighting for things we believe in – always fighting to make our nation better.

We have fought for social justice. We have fought for economic justice. We have fought for environmental justice. We have fought for criminal justice.

Now we must add a new fight – the fight for electoral justice.

Every citizen of this country who is registered to vote should be guaranteed that their vote matters, that their vote is counted, and that in the voting booth of their community, their vote has as much weight as the vote of any Senator, any Congressperson, any President, any cabinet member, or any CEO of any Fortune 500 Corporation.

I am sure that every one of my colleagues – Democrat, Republican, and Independent – agrees with that statement. That in the voting booth, every one is equal.

So now it seems to me that under the Constitution of the United States, which guarantees the right to vote, we must ask:

Why did voters in Ohio wait hours in the rain to vote? Why were voters at Kenyan College, for example, made to wait in line until nearly 4 a.m. to vote because there were only two machines for 1300 voters?

Why did poor and predominantly African-American communities have disproportionately long waits?

Why in Franklin County did election officials only use 2,798 machines when they said they needed 5,000? Why did they hold back 68 machines in warehouses? Why were 42 of those machines in predominantly African-American districts?

Why did, in Columbus area alone, an estimated 5,000 to 10,000 voters leave polling places, out of frustration, without having voted? How many more never bothered to vote after they heard about this?

Why is it when 638 people voted at a precinct in Franklin County, a voting machine awarded 4,258 extra votes to George Bush. Thankfully, they fixed it – but how many other votes did the computers get wrong?

Why did Franklin County officials reduce the number of electronic voting machines in downtown precincts, while adding them in the suburbs? This also led to long lines.

In Cleveland, why were there thousands of provisional ballots disqualified after poll workers gave faulty instructions to voters?

Because of this, and voting irregularities in so many other places, I am joining with Congresswoman Stephanie Tubbs Jones to cast the light of truth on a flawed system which must be fixed now.

Our democracy is the centerpiece of who we are as a nation. And it is the fondest hope of all Americans that we can help bring democracy to every corner of the world.

As we try to do that, and as we are shedding the blood of our military to this end, we must realize that we lose so much credibility when our own electoral system needs so much improvement.

Yet, in the past four years, this Congress has not done everything it should to give confidence to all of our people their votes matter.

After passing the Help America Vote Act, nothing more was done.

A year ago, Senators Graham, Clinton and I introduced legislation that would have required that electronic voting systems provide a paper record to verify a vote.
That paper trail would be stored in a secure ballot box and invaluable in case of a recount.

There is no reason why the Senate should not have taken up and passed that bill. At the very least, a hearing should have been held. But it never happened.

Before I close, I want to thank my colleague from the House, Congresswoman Stephanie Tubbs Jones.

Her letter to me asking for my intervention was substantive and compelling.

As I wrote to her, I was particularly moved by her point that it is virtually impossible to get official House consideration of the whole issue of election reform, including these irregularities.

The Congresswoman has tremendous respect in her state of Ohio, which is at the center of this fight.

Congresswoman Stephanie Tubbs Jones was a judge for 10 years. She was a prosecutor for 8 years. She was inducted into the Women’s Hall of Fame in 2002.

I am proud to stand with her in filing this objection.
Barack Obama is up
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 02:26
and giving his first-ever speech to the Senate in support of Boxer and Tubbs-Jones.

Hot damn.

Tells a touching story of a supporter who was concerned about her right to vote. Obama does not doubt that Bush won. We are not challenging the outcome of the election.

Demands reform in the election system.
Harkin is up
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 02:22
and stands in support.

"The debate is short today, and I hope it will continue."

Not questioning the 2004 outcome. On message.

"I thank Senator Boxer, and Rep. Tubbs-Jones."

Zaps DeWine, says this isn't about removing Bush, but about how we can make elections better in America.

(How can that be a bad thing to stand on as a politician?)

(It isn't)

(For those who might have been worried about this)
Reid is up
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 02:16
I knew someone would bring up the troops, but I expected the GOP to do it in order to cry "Unpatriotic!" Yet here is Reid, saying we owe it to our soldiers to check these allegations out, and to reform the system.
Here comes Hillary
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 02:12
"I commend the Senator from California."

It permits us to air these issues, which protects the integrity of our most precious right. There are many questions about the integrity of this election, and not just in Ohio.

We stood with and admired the people of the Ukraine a few weeks ago when they fought for their rights. Our moral authority is in danger.

Some blivet in the House is telling stories about soldiers. I knew it.
Lautenberg is up
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 02:06
"We have to take a very hard look at this."

Talks about advertising democracy in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere, but we have these flaws here.

Not challenging the result, but "we would be derelict in our duty if we failed to investigate."
Pelosi is up in the House
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 02:03
"The right to vote is sacred."

The House will accept Bush and Cheney's victory, this isn't about rjecting that, so let's be respectful. There are problems with the electoral system. It is about election reform.

(Crazy, when you think about it. Pelosi and the others accept the results but discuss a busted system. In other words, the election system in America is broken...but it also worked.)
Wydwen (D-OR) demands a paper trail
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 02:01
for all votes cast on electronic machines.

Oregon, where voting works.
Kennedy is up
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 01:57
We do not question the outcome, but we gave deep concerns.

They are lining up behind Boxer here.

Hillary just walked in, and we haven't heard from Obama yet.

"The voting process did not live up to the standards we require," said Kennedy. "We must admit the election was flawed...I commend the many thousands of citizens who asked us to register our protest. We hope this issue is firmly planted on our agenda. No democracy worth the name can allow such a flawed process to stand."
You are watching Senators
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 01:55
speaking the words of the activists. You are watching Senators deliver the goods activists delivered to them.

Stabenow (D) stands in support
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 01:53
of Boxer, and repeats the stories related in the Conyers report.
Durbin (D-IL)
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 01:49
The outcome is not being challenged. The nature of this debate auger towards an analysis of the electoral system.

We have the opportunity to have a bipartisan discussion on the disparate election practices across the states.

"I do not challenge the legitimacy of the 2004 election outcome...but we can and should do better."

Durbin touting the Jackson proposal for a constitutional amendment cementing the right to vote. Puts the Conyers report into the Senate record. Gives examples of irregularities in Illinois.

Durbin was on message.
Bernie Sanders in the House
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 01:45
is en fuego.

This isn't about replacing Bush. "Today is about every American feeling confident in the vote. That is what democracy is about."
Senator Dayton (D-MN)
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 01:43
rises to object to Boxer's challenge. Calls it "seriously misguided."

This fellow is going to get some nasty emails today.
Reid is telling Senators to get down to the well
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 01:42
so they can speak. The time is now.
Conyers stands in the House
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 01:41
"We are here not as partisans for one party or the other, but to protect our democracy."
Senator DeWine is up
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 01:37
He can't believe they are debating whether Bush won Ohio, thus completely missing the point.

You knew this was coming. I'll bet you a dollar he brings up the troops in Iraq somehow. This is betraying them. Bet he says it.

My favorite bit is how he dismisses all the proof offered of fraud contained in the Conyers report, and proves there was no reading editorials. Hm.
Worth a couple of hours
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 01:36
"I think it is worth a couple of hours to discuss these issues."

She gave a good speech.
Boxer speaking in the Senate
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 01:34
We now fight for electoral justice. Everyone's vote must matter and be counted. Their votre must have as much weight as any Senator, House member, President, CEO.

"In the voting booth, everyone is equal."

"We must ask certain questions."

Why did voters have to wait in line for hours to vote because there were only two machines?

Why did voters in poor and African-American districts not have enough machines?

Why were machines held back from use in these communities?

Why did thousands leave polling places out of frustration, or because they ran out of time?

Boxer's voice is raw.

The gavel comes down again in the House
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 01:31
The Senate has not yet gotten together.

Tubbs-Jones stands forth.

"I thank God I have a Senator joining me...joining thousands of Ohio voters denied the right to vote."

Objecting to the electors is the only immediate avenue for raising these issues.

"We, a House member and a Senator...
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 01:23

Signed, Boxer and Tubbs-Jones.

The Houses withdraw for debate. The Senate retires.

Hot damn.
Here we go...
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 01:22
Tubbs-Jones objects to the electoral votes for Ohio.

"I do have a Senator."

It will come when they get to Ohio
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 01:14
I am given to understand that the objection will come when they get to Ohio.

They are on Kentucky.
Idaho is "regular in form"
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 01:13
Thank goodness.

Observing the marvel that is Trent Lott's hair is more than worth the price of admission.

The gavel comes down
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 01:07
The joint session has come to order.

Cheney is reading the boilerplate ceremonial language. The man never, ever, ever looks happy.

They will run through every state. Will the bump come when they get to Ohio, or after all the states are read? To be seen. Alabama, Alaska and Arizona just read by Lott.
A mob of pre-teens just carried in the votes
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 01:02

Cheney has arrived, and there is a general milling about. Hastert is yukking it up with Cheney at the podium.
The hearing is about to begin
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 01:01
Stay tuned...
Harry Reid is on board
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 12:15
Announced by Rev. Jackson at the rally about 10 minutes ago.
The Boxer Rebellion
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 11:06
A wee bit of history to start with.

The last time Congress was forced to interrupt the joint session to certify the Electors was in 1969, when a "faithless" Nixon elector broke ranks and threw his vote to George Wallace. After about twelve seconds of discussion, the vote was allowed to go for Wallace. Before that, we have to go all the way back to 1877, during the disputed election between Rutherford Hayes and Samuel Tilden. Hayes eventually won.

In short, what is happening here in Washington today has almost never been seen in the history of the republic.

This is the latest as I have it: Senator Boxer made the decision to stand and support the challenge to the Ohio electors. She transmitted a letter to Rep. Tubbs-Jones this morning which stated, "I have concluded that objecting to the electoral votes from Ohio is the only immediate way to bring these issues to light by allowing you to have a two-hour debate to let the American people know the facts surrounding Ohio's election."

Right now, several other Senators are preparing statements of Support for the Boxer/Tubbs-Jones challenge, and a number of House members will also rise in support. There is every expectation that Senators Clinton, Obama and Dodd will be among those offering statements of support.

Reps. Waters, Conyers and Kucinich will be among the House members who stand. Though Rep. Conyers was the main impetus behind this process, it was decided that Rep. Tubbs-Jones should be the one to make the official challenge, as she is a representative from Ohio, where the dispute is centered.

There is a rumor floating around that one of the Senators to rise in support will be a Republican. That is not in any way confirmed.

The process will begin to unfold at 1:00pm EST. Cheney, in his role as President of the Senate, will rise and ask if there are any objections. Tubbs-Jones will then announce her objection, and state that a Senator has signed her objection. The joint session will then adjourn, and there will be two hours (perhaps less) of debate on the issue. At the conclusion a straight up-and-down vote will take place on whether or not to support the objection. Almost certainly, the objections will be defeated along party lines.

This is an incredibly important day for this country, for two reasons.

First, this will initiate a national dialogue on how we run elections, and push forward the process of reform that is so desperately needed.

Second, this was a people's movement. None of this would have taken place without the grassroots effort. Look at the stars in the sky or the grains of sand on the beach. That is how many phone calls, emails, faxes, letters and telegrams were sent by ordinary people to the Capitol building in support of what Boxer has done. Jesse Jackson, David Cobb, Progressive Democrats of America and others were involved in getting this done, along with Rep. Conyers.

But it was the folks who got this done. If nothing else, this proves that concentrated activism and advocacy works. It works. It worked. Make sure it keeps working.

Tune in at 1pm EST. I will be blogging the hearing as it happens.

Today is history.


Our Voting System Needs A New Constitutional Foundation

Floor Statement

By Congressman Jesse L. Jackson, Jr.

Thursday, January 6, 2005

"The individual citizen has no federal constitutional right to vote for electors for the President of the United States." (Bush v. Gore, 531 U.S. 98, 104 (2000)

"In the eyes of the [Supreme] Court, democracy is rooted not in the right of the American people to vote and govern but in a set of state-based institutional arrangements for selecting leaders." ( Overruling Democracy - The Supreme Court v. The American People, By Jamin B. Raskin, p. 7)

"Amazingly, the government of the United States conducts and provides no official count of the vote for president." (Overruling democracy - The Supreme Court vs. The American People, by Jamin B. Raskin, p. 66)

"Thanks to the long and peculiar way in which suffrage evolved in the United States, the U.S. Constitution contains no affirmative right to vote for American citizens. That is likely the most important single gap in our Constitution, and it ought to be remedied as soon as possible." (Alexander Keyssar, Matthew W. Stirling, Jr., Professor of History and Social Policy at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government. His books include The Right to Vote: The Contested History of Democracy in the United States.)

Don't be confused or misled. Today's objection is not about an ELECTION RESULT, it's about an ELECTION SYSTEM that's broken and needs fixing.

Today you're hearing the facts about voter irregularities in Ohio. In 2000 you saw a similar mess in Florida. There were serious voting problems in other states - for example, New Mexico, Nevada and Florida again.

As we try to spread democracy to Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere, it might be wise, first, to look in the mirror; to take a serious look at our own house; and to analyze our own democracy.

What's wrong with our democracy? What's wrong with our voting system? State-after-state, year-after-year, why do we keep on having these problems?

The fundamental reason is this: most Americans and many in this body will find it shocking and hard to believe, but we have these problems because AMERICANS DON'T HAVE THE RIGHT TO VOTE IN THEIR CONSTITUTION!

In 2000, the U.S. Supreme Court in Bush v. Gore said in very plain language, "the INDIVIDUAL CITIZEN has no federal constitutional right to vote for electors for the President of the United States."

You say, "Congressman, I'm a registered voter and every time there's an election I'm entitled to vote - and I vote. What do you mean I don't have a `right to vote'?"

I mean as an American you don't have a citizenship right to vote. Voting in the United States is a "state right" not "citizenship right."

We keep on having these problems because our voting system is built on the constitutional foundation of "states' rights" - 50 states, 3,067 counties and 13,000 different election jurisdictions, ALL SEPARATE AND UNEQUAL.

If you're an ex-felon in Illinois you can register and vote. If you're an ex-felon in eleven states, mostly in the South, you're barred from voting for life. There are nearly 5 million ex-felons who have paid their debt to society but are prohibited from ever voting again - including 1.5 million African American males. But in Maine and Vermont you can vote even if you're in jail. Like I said, we have a "states rights" separate and unequal voting system.

You ask, "What's the difference between a citizenship right and a state right?"

The First Amendment contains individual citizenship rights that go with you from state to state (that is, they are the same wherever you are in the U.S.); and they are protected and enforced by the federal government. You have equal protection under the law by the executive, legislative and judicial branches of the federal government. Therefore, as a result of the First Amendment, every American citizen has an individual right to free speech, freedom of assembly, and religious freedom (or to choose no religion at all), regardless of which state you're in - individual rights that are protected by the federal government. You don't have such a right when it comes to voting!

A state right is NOT an American citizenship right, but a right defined and protected by each state - and limited to that state. Therefore, when it comes to voting, each state, county and election jurisdiction is different.

One-hundred-and-eight of the 119 nations in the world that elect their public officials in some democratic manner have the right to vote in their Constitution - including the Afghan Constitution and the interim document in Iraq. The United States is one of the 11 that don't!

The Bible says if you build a house on sand, when it rains, the winds blow and the storms come it will not stand. Our voting system is built on the sand of "states' rights."

That's why every four years when the entire nation is focused on a presidential election, and the rain of politics, the winds of partisanship, and the storms of campaigning come, our democratic house cannot stand the unitary test of voting fairness - and it has come close to collapsing in 2000 and 2004.

The American people are gradually losing confidence in the credibility, fairness, effectiveness and efficiency of our voting system.

We cannot export our current voting system or our form of democracy to other nations because our "separate and unequal" voting system, and our concept of an Electoral College, do not reflect the best of a representative democracy.

We need to build our democracy and our voting system on a rock, the rock of adding a Voting Rights Amendment to the U.S. Constitution that applies to all states and all citizens.

We need to provide the American people with a citizenship right to vote and provide Congress with the authority to craft a unitary voting system that is inclusive of all Americans and guarantees that all votes will be counted in a complete, fair and efficient manner.

It's the only foundation upon which we can build a more perfect Union.

Every two, four or six years every member of Congress wants the people in their district or state to stand up and vote for them. Today it's time for every member of Congress to stand up and vote for the right of the people to vote, and to have their vote fairly and fully counted.
Meanwhile, in Bizarro World
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 10:23
Heard in the Gonzales hearing just now:

SENATOR: Mr. Gonzales, do you approve of torture?

GONZALES: No, I do not.

SENATOR: Do you condemn torture?

GONZALES: Yes, I do.

Case closed, I guess. I hope someone asks him if he still thinks Bush is not subject to the rule of law.
Boxer is in
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 09:58
I just got confirmation from several sources: Senator Barbara Boxer will stand with House members to challenge the Ohio Electors. There will be a debate on what happened in Ohio, in all likelihood followed by a vote to accept those Ohio Electors.

But the messed-up way we run elections in this country is about to become part of a national dialogue, and you know what? It was the people who got this done. The calls, the emails, the faxes, the letters, the protests compelled this action. This is a big day in the history of citizen action.

More Senators may be coming later. Stay tuned.

Further confirmation has come in from the Associated Press.
To the Hill
Thursday 06 January 2005 @ 08:25
I am heading up to Capitol Hill in a few minutes, where I will camp out and wait for the show. The Gonzales hearings are this morning and very much worth tuning in to; we will see if there is bipartisan support for torture in Congress.

Be sure to reserve some TV time for around 1pm. If you are in DC and looking for something to do, head down to Lafayette Park at Pennsylvania and H around 10am.

It is going to be an interesting day.
And the tearing of the hair
Wednesday 05 January 2005 @ 07:58
OK. Looks like even Keith Olbermann is running headlong towards reporting as fact the same unconfirmed situation. In his most recent blog entry, he says, "Challengers are go" in his title.

Read down a bit, and he actually says that challengers are "All but certain" and "not yet formalized." That's a bit different than your headline, Keith.

Scroll down to my entry just below this one, and note the time. Olbermann has posted the same stuff MSNBC sorta-kinda reported on earlier today. In other words, nothing is confirmed yet, again.
Regarding Senator Boxer
Wednesday 05 January 2005 @ 03:54
I made it to DC in time for a bunch of hell to break loose. Apparently, MSNBC advertised a report that Senator Boxer would definitely stand up with Conyers tomorrow. Then, when the actual report came along, the story was that "people are saying" Boxer would stand up, maybe definitely sorta kinda who knows for sure.

General Electric reporting. Grr.

Boxer replied with nothing definite, that she was still considering all the options. Everything is in the wind at this point, nobody knows anything for sure, and a lot of what is being reported in the mainstream media is hooey.

So basically, keep an eye here. Not to sound like a gomer, but if you don't see it here, it isn't true yet. When I know, you'll know.
Heading to the airport
Wednesday 05 January 2005 @ 10:44
I am out the door to the airport, headed to DC. Blogging of the Electoral College hearing will begin for real on this page at 1pm EST on Thursday, but check in periodically for other reports. There is a lot happening over the next 36 hours.

It is snowing in Boston right now. Wish me luck that my plane gets off the ground...and stays in the air as long as it has to. :o)

See you in DC.
Oh, great...
Wednesday 05 January 2005 @ 10:12
Porter Goss continues the process of turning CIA into a political arm of the White House, and in the process, makes it harder to stop another 9/11-style attack. From the New York Times:

In the latest changes at the Central Intelligence Agency, Porter J. Goss, the new chief, has named a new deputy director for intelligence and has abolished a daily 5 p.m. meeting that had been used since the Sept. 11 attacks to coordinate counterterrorism operations around the world, intelligence officials said on Tuesday.

Under Mr. Tenet, the C.I.A.'s most senior officials along with representatives of the F.B.I. and other agencies convened each day at 5 p.m. for a counterterrorism meeting that participants have described as the most important session held each day in Washington. The C.I.A. has played the leading role in the clandestine effort against terrorism, and Mr. Tenet's admirers have said the meeting served a vital coordinating function.

In acknowledging that the meeting was no longer taking place, an intelligence official sought to minimize the significance of the move. The official said Mr. Goss was still presiding over frequent sessions on counterterrorism but had directed that the meetings be smaller, have a more tactical focus and be scheduled earlier in the day. The new meetings are being convened at least three days a week, the official said.

The move appears to reflect what Mr. Goss has publicly said was his concern that the C.I.A. under Mr. Tenet may have devoted too much time and resources to terrorism at the expense of other issues. A report issued last spring by the House Intelligence Committee, at a time when Mr. Goss was the panel's chairman, cautioned that "the Central Intelligence Agency must continue to be much more than just the 'Central Counterterrorism Agency' if America is to be truly secure, prosperous and free."

Read the rest here.....

Welcome to Bizarro World. Tenet was made the Judas Goat by people who claimed the CIA wasn't doing enough to stop terrorism...and now the new CIA chief claims Tenet was doing too much to stop terrorism.
A press conference worth catching
Wednesday 05 January 2005 @ 07:55
If you can:






Lead plaintiff, Moss v. Bush, Rev. Bill Moss

Lead trial counsel, Peter Peckarsky

Professor and statistical expert, Ron Baiman, Ph.D.

Publisher and lawyer, Bob Fitrakis

Lawyer, Susan Truitt

Exit polling expert, Jonathan Simon, JD

Senior editor, Harvey Wasserman

Legal statistician, Richard Hayes-Phillips, Ph.D

Director, Progressive Democrats of America, Tim Carpenter

NAACP, National Voter Fund, Greg Moore

Author Warren Linney, MA (The Patriot Test)


• Exit polls did not match the reported vote in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Florida and 7 of 8 other key battleground states

• Voting machines with secret software owned by private, partisan companies subject to manipulation and which deprived citizens of their right to fair and transparent elections

• Uncounted and provisional ballots negatively and disproportionately affected African American voters

• Inexplicable vote disparities

• Voting Rights Act Violations

• Recount did not recount all the votes

• Challenge at January 6 Joint Session of Congress




There is clear and compelling evidence that the election was stolen. By examining a very wide range of sworn testimonies from voters, polling officials and others close to the administration of the Nov. 2 election; by statistical analysis of the certified vote by mathematicians, election experts and independent research teams who have conducted detailed studies of the results in Ohio, Florida, Pennsylvania, and elsewhere; from experts who studied the voting machines, tabulators and other electronic equipment on which a fair vote count has depended; and from a team of attorneys and others who have challenged the Ohio results; the
investigative team has compiled a portrait of an election whose true outcome must be investigated further by the Congress, the media and all Americans -- because it was almost certainly not an honest victory for George W. Bush.

Crucial flaws in the national vote count, most importantly in the national popular vote, and in Ohio and Florida indicate John Kerry was the actual winner on November 2, as reported in national exit polls. At the very least, the widespread tampering with how the election was conducted, and how Ohio's votes were counted and
re-counted, has compromised this nation's historic commitment to free and fair elections.

George W. Bush's ‘victory' appears to have resulted from multiple frauds – a GOP ‘do-whatever it takes' strategy to win the state that swung the election.

The questionable votes far exceed Bush's margin of victory in Ohio.

The Bush-Cheney ‘do what ever it takes" strategy in Ohio covered a very wide range of tactics, from disenfranchisement of minority voters to discarding of ballots to tampered tabulators and much more. Taken as a whole, this compendium of error, fraud, cover-up and contempt indicates that this was not a legitimate election, and is not worthy of being certified by the Congress of the United States.

Thirty disenfranchised voters on the Freedom Winter bus ride from Columbus, Ohio to Washington, D.C. will be present to share their voting horror stories with the media.


National Press Club
Zenger Room
529 14th St. NW, 13th Floor
Washington, DC 20045

Free Press,

Citizens Alliance for Secure Elections,

Progressive Democrats of America,

We Do Not Concede,
Blackwell the braggart
Wednesday 05 January 2005 @ 06:14
The news site, which has been breaking some excellent stuff of late, has published a report from stating that Ohio Secretary of State Kenneth Blackwell bragged about getting Bush elected. The story reads:

Ohio’s Republican Secretary of State Kenneth Blackwell boasted of helping “deliver” Ohio for President Bush and said he was “truly pleased” to announce Bush had won Ohio even before all of the state’s votes had been counted in his own fundraising letter, RAW STORY has discovered.

The letter, which was received by a Butler County resident Dec. 31, is a plea to support Blackwell’s campaign for governor. The resident has asked to remain anonymous.

In apparent disregard for his nonpartisan role as Ohio’s chief election official, the Republican Secretary and chairman of Bush’s Ohio reelection campaign slammed Senator Kerry as a “disaster” who would have reaped “terrible” and “horrible” results on both Ohio and the United States.

Further, Blackwell’s use of the word “deliver” finds striking resonance with another controversial fundraising letter sent by the CEO of voting machine manufacturer Diebold Walden O’Dell in the summer of 2003 when he said he was “committed to helping Ohio deliver its electoral votes to the president next year.”

Between Kenneth Blackwell and Diebold CEO Walden O'Dell, there seem to have been a lot of very powerful Bush campaign officers promising to 'deliver' Ohio.

And people wonder why we need a Senator to stand with Conyers?

We need hearings. Period.
Stand Up, Senator
Tuesday 04 January 2005 @ 08:32
Stand Up, Senator
By William Rivers Pitt
t r u t h o u t | Report

Wednesday 05 January 2004

"Hope is not the conviction that something will turn out well, but the certainty that something makes sense regardless of how it turns out."

- Vaclav Havel

Four years ago, members of the Congressional Black Caucus ran deliberately and vociferously into a brick wall when they chose to stand and protest the deplorable election calamity in Florida. They sought the name of one Senator, just one, which they could append to their complaints. Had they gotten that one name, a debate and discussion on what happened in Florida would have taken place in the House and the Senate. No Senator came forward, and the debate never happened.

Now, four years later, another election has come and gone. Now, four years later, there are rafts of evidence which point, once again, to overwhelming disenfranchisement of minority voters. Now, four years later, members of the Congressional Black Caucus, along with several other House members, plan to stand once again and protest an election that failed to live up to the standards required of participatory democracy. Now, four years later, they seek a Senator to stand with them.

This time, a Senator must answer the call.


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