Jan 242014
 

ATBanner

I couldn’t think of a better excuse to start over for the new year.  We had a decent offer on the domain, “theintercept.com”, so this will be the opportunity to roll out another blog exploring the hypocrisy and origins of the war on terror.  Receive updates for the upcoming movie of the same name.  The new  domain will  be www.americanterrorist.com.  Join us or die!

Jun 122013
 

Risner

J.T. Waldron

For the past seven years, Pima County used every conceivable legal maneuver to evade a simple audit and forensic exam of the 2006 RTA ballots. It’s time to abandon formalities and refer to this two billion dollar bond election for what it is: a fraud perpetrated by the County against the people.

Like the scandals we are inundated with on a national level, the hard lessons learned involve judicial corruption, selective justice and complicit media. “Operation Fast and Furious”, NSA surveillance and the National Defense Authorization Act caused the nation to witness a compliant judiciary, a retaliatory justice department, and a collaborative press. Regardless of how offensive or outrageous these crimes become, the nation remains in a state of stagnation or paralysis unable to restore any semblance of law and order. In Pima County, Arizona, citizens remain in a stupor as they watch the continued destruction and construction of roads and infrastructure funded by a regressive half percent sales tax that was likely never approved by the electorate.

In the past seven years, we’ve watched Pima County’s Superior Courts rule in direct opposition to the U.S. and Arizona Constitutions, refuse to comply with the appellate court ruling and deny requests that Pima County follow existing election laws.

You might remember when Superior Court Judge Kyle Bryson ruled in defiance of the Appellate court, claiming there was no jurisdiction to provide prospective relief for rigged elections.

As a result, the Libertarian Party was forced to make the same appeal with the same arguments to the same appellate court.  Apparently, Pima County was not comfortable with that same argument being made to the same appellate court.  In a convoluted series of events, Pima County advocates succeeded in gaming the system and forcing a change in the venue.  By producing an amicus curiae brief through Republican party operatives, they managed to involve Sean Brearcliffe, a lawyer who was waiting to be selected by Arizona Governor Jan Brewer as a Superior Court judge.  An amicus brief is a vehicle by which representatives of special interest groups are able to express opinions on matters before the Court.  It’s never required by the Court, but is a voluntary option.  Looking at the substance and timing of this brief, it’s clear that the intent of exercising this option was to force a change of venue for the upcoming appellate court decision in this case.

Sean Brearcliffe’s law firm, “Rusing, Lopez & Lizardi, PLLC”, recently acquired J. William Brammer, Jr. as a partner.  Brammer served as an appellate court judge in Division Two until his recent retirement.   Due to his law firm’s connection to Division Two’s appellate court, Brearcliffe’s involvement with this amicus brief created a conflict of interest and forced a move from Division Two  (where the appellate court judges ruled in favor of prospective relief) to Division One.  Brearcliffe received  his appointment and is now a Superior Court judge.

In Division One, the case will be met with a whole new set of judges.

This could be history’s most contrived conflict of interest and serves as a reminder that somebody is truly sweating a forensic exam of the RTA ballots.  If the state’s Attorney General was willing to do the dance, should we be surprised to find a new Superior Court judge directly involved with this disco?   Let’s face it.  Election integrity and Pima County’s Superior court judges just don’t mix.  Let’s assume Maricopa’s appellate court suddenly decides that  Arizona’s reputation as the “Methlab of Democracy” is unbecoming and they rule in favor of prospective relief in rigged elections just like Pima County’s appellate courts.  Do you think Pima County’s Superior Court judges will abide by that decision?   AUDIT AZ ‘s John Brakey would like to find out.

“Is this how judges are made? They have to prove their worth to the puppet masters?  If we lose this appeal, the argument that Pima County and now the Republican Party is making about the finality of an election is much more important than stopping cheating in the future, will be locked into law,” Brakey said. “No candidate of any party will be able to ever challenge an election,” which Brakey states is basically the case already, but now would be sanctioned by the courts.

The substance of the brief approved by those claiming to be in charge of the Republican party is almost diversionary in its bizarre statements.  They spend a great deal of time arguing that repeated cheating is less important than the “finality” of elections.  That is quite an endorsement of Pima County by the Republican party especially when Pima County’s bureaucrats are more closely aligned with elected officials dominated by Democrats.  Since Arizona is a party oversight state for elections, the ‘finality argument’ created by the Republican party inadvertently suggests that the Republican party would prefer to relinquish its power to oversee elections in favor of supporting the finality of the vote.  It’s little wonder that Karen Shutte, the Chairman of the Republican Election Integrity Committee, resigned shortly after the brief was filed.  It’s important to note  that a number of familiar Republicans known for transcending partisan politics on behalf of election integrity were not involved in this amicus brief.

The state’s organizing body claiming to serve justice in Arizona treated Pima County much the same way Eric Holder coddled megabank HSBC.  After admitting that he was aware that Pima County managed to access evidence in violation of a court order, Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard refused to perform a forensic exam to make sure Pima County didn’t access the ballots during the years leading up to his investigation.  In fact, Goddard’s possession of the ballots (without allowing party oversight of the chain of custody), involved merely counting the ballots to determine if the figure was close to the tabulated 2006 election result.  A rudimentary audit characteristic of a white collar investigation comparing one set of numbers to another was certainly possible but refused by Arizona’s Department of Justice.

Poll tapes stored with the ballots could have served this auditing function.  They were also handy for detecting electronic fraud involving the memory cards from which these poll tapes are printed.  Goddard refused to examine the poll tapes despite requests by the Democratic party and a number of election integrity advocates.  One year later, the Democratic party was finally able to find out why.  Upon gaining access, they discovered that 44% of the poll-tapes were missing or didn’t match the final database and they happen to be closely matching the precincts suspected of foul play in the electronic data records.

What qualifies as more than just circumstantial evidence?  Let’s consider DNA samples in a murder case.  Whenever a DNA match is presented to the courts, prosecutors inform the jury about the probability of such a match occurring.

Why does it seem like only a pipe dream that someone may testify about the probability for the same precincts experiencing the same associated memory card errors correlating to the same missing poll tapes?  Statements claiming a lack of evidence for a crime are false claims by those who may be considered accessories after the fact.

The Republican party’s amicus brief states “there is no competent evidence that there was anything illegal or inappropriate done with regard to any of the 2006 elections in issue.”  One test of whether a judge is compromised or not is to see if he recognizes this statement as perjury.  Legal violations surrounding the RTA election have already been established in the courts.  Printing summary reports during elections is against the law.  The printing of such reports was indicated in electronic data files admitted as evidence in a previous court case.

Electronic data files containing details of this crime were first recovered in the exchange after the Democratic Party won the records lawsuit.  More detailed records remained in Pima County’s court vault until ten months later, when Pima County contractor John Moffatt somehow managed to obtain access to the remaining electronic data in violation of a court order.   Ironically, this violation was another unlawful act surrounding the 2006 RTA election.  In reality, this case is unique with the amount of evidence indicating that the 2006 RTA election was rigged.   There is a simplified RTA Fraud Flyer covering the basics and a more detailed “Statement of Facts” indicating what the Libertarian party intends to present if they receive a favorable ruling by one of the new judges in the upcoming appellate court decision.

Local media reaction to this crime has proven to be almost as scandalous as the crime itself.   We have provided past coverage showing how Pima County’s PR department uses taxpayer’s money to soak up employment slack as local media outlets shed their workforce in a failing local economy.  This results in reporters letting fear of retaliation and diminishing job prospects undermine critical coverage of the local RTA election.

The extent of public misdirection over the RTA election is best illustrated by the local weekly that actually claims to be independent and intent on informing the public with alternative news.  The Tucson Weekly’s editorial director at the time, Jim Boegle, published columns making dubious statements about a lack of evidence and chastising any public figure who suggested that the RTA election was rigged.

Their star political reporter, Jim Nintzel, actively sold the RTA plan to the public both before and after the plan had passed.  Nintzel’s primary strategy was to dismiss all evidence of fraud by drawing the public’s attention to a set of opinion polls.  Prior to our conducting a videotaped interview of pro-RTA advocate Steve Farley, Nintzel would pass along a copy of these polls hoping they would influence our discourse.  The polls were commissioned by an advertising agency called “Zimmerman and Associates”, a firm hired to promote approval of the RTA plan.

Zimmerman and Associate’s work included television commercials showing Steve Farley attempting to cross a busy intersection, an ambulance driver indicating how his precious cargo would continue to suffer if the RTA didn’t pass and a cluster of City and County employees pretending to voluntarily and spontaneously scream “Yes” in favor of the plan.   Bill Risner, the attorney representing the Democratic party during the RTA records lawsuit, spoke with a colleague who shared office space on the same floor of the Pioneer Hotel.  This colleague was involved with bundling the money from contributors for the RTA plan and passing the money onto the vendors.  He was complaining to Risner  about the  pro-RTA group’s last minute scramble to obtain more funds due to claims that polls are indicating that the RTA election is too close to call.

The circumstances leading up to the election were truthfully related by the actual money handler for the RTA, but no hard copy of the polls prompting this last minute scramble ever surfaced.  As a result,  Nintzel adopted a strategy to discredit election integrity advocates by using a strawman technique which attempts to dismiss the more valid evidence by placing emphasis on this perceptively weaker link.

Zimmerman and Associates were the only organization that paid for opinion polling for the RTA election.  Was the public privy to all the polling information provided to Zimmerman and Associates?  Opinion polling has only peripheral relevance to the rest of the evidence indicating election fraud, but for those choosing to ignore all the other evidence to place so much emphasis on Zimmerman and Associate’s opinion polls, it’s only fair to present this account by Carolyn Campbell, the environmental activist working on the pro-RTA campaign:

Would we have realized how overtly biased Nintzel’s reporting was without the ill-conceived decision to place the reference to polling among the eighteen various points surrounding the RTA election?   Probably not.  Months later,  watchful eyes did discover that Jim Nintzel’s brother Doug Nintzel was the chief spokesperson for the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT), a stakeholder in the RTA election.  Some of the weakest moments for the Tucson Weekly can be found in the bottom of a 2008 Time Initiative article where the comments thread sheds light on this potential conflict of interest.

Would election integrity activists have the opportunity to see just how far Pima County was willing to go to avoid transparency if they allowed Attorney General Terry Goddard’s recount to dissuade them?   Probably not.  Unfortunately for election integrity advocates, the opportunity to conduct a real investigation of the RTA ballots was a secondary goal.  The most important accomplishment behind this pursuit was to prevent cheating in future elections.  This case had implications for both Pima County and the rest of the country.

It appears for now that citizens will not be able to vote in the United States with confidence in an accurate outcome.  Pima County advocates gaming the system to change the venue of the appellate court decision from Pima County to Maricopa County know integrity will likely be abandoned.  There is some satisfaction, however, in watching Pima County jump through all these hoops just to avoid a simple investigation.  No doubt the cost of cheating was certainly raised in this instance.

Obviously, Pima County’s efforts to prevent this litigation from proceeding would not be needed if the 2006 RTA election was not rigged.  If the RTA was not rigged, Pima County only needed to make the effortless gesture of allowing a simple audit and forensic exam of the RTA ballots.  Nothing undermines the legitimacy of elections more than way Pima County reacts to scrutiny.

Continue reading »

Apr 112013
 

Global Research
William Blum

Would you believe that the United States tried to do something that was not nice against Hugo Chávez?

chavez2

Wikileaks has done it again. I guess the US will really have to get tough now with Julian Assange and Bradley Manning.

In a secret US cable to the State Department, dated November 9, 2006, and recently published online by WikiLeaks, former US ambassador to Venezuela, William Brownfield, outlines a comprehensive plan to destabilize the government of the late President Hugo Chávez. The cable begins with a Summary:

During his 8 years in power, President Chavez has systematically dismantled the institutions of democracy and governance. The USAID/OTI program objectives in Venezuela focus on strengthening democratic institutions and spaces through non-partisan cooperation with many sectors of Venezuelan society.

USAID/OTI = United States Agency for International Development/Office of Transition Initiatives. The latter is one of the many euphemisms that American diplomats use with each other and the world – They say it means a transition to “democracy”. What it actually means is a transition from the target country adamantly refusing to cooperate with American imperialist grand designs to a country gladly willing (or acceding under pressure) to cooperate with American imperialist grand designs.

OTI supports the Freedom House (FH) “Right to Defend Human Rights” program with $1.1 million. Simultaneously through Development Alternatives Inc. (DAI), OTI has also provided 22 grants to human rights organizations.

Freedom House is one of the oldest US government conduits for transitioning to “democracy”; to a significant extent it equates “democracy” and “human rights” with free enterprise. Development Alternatives Inc. is the organization that sent Alan Gross to Cuba on a mission to help implement the US government’s operation of regime change.

OTI speaks of working to improve “the deteriorating human rights situation in” Venezuela. Does anyone know of a foreign government with several millions of dollars to throw around who would like to improve the seriously deteriorating human rights situation in the United States? They can start with the round-the-clock surveillance and the unconscionable entrapment of numerous young “terrorists” guilty of thought crimes.

“OTI partners are training NGOs [non-governmental organizations] to be activists and become more involved in advocacy.”

Now how’s that for a self-given license to fund and get involved in any social, economic or political activity that can sabotage any program of the Chávez government and/or make it look bad? The US ambassador’s cable points out that:

OTI has directly reached approximately 238,000 adults through over 3000 forums, workshops and training sessions delivering alternative values and providing opportunities for opposition activists to interact with hard-core Chavistas, with the desired effect of pulling them slowly away from Chavismo. We have supported this initiative with 50 grants totaling over $1.1 million.

“Another key Chavez strategy,” the cable continues, “is his attempt to divide and polarize Venezuelan society using rhetoric of hate and violence. OTI supports local NGOs who work in Chavista strongholds and with Chavista leaders, using those spaces to counter this rhetoric and promote alliances through working together on issues of importance to the entire community.”

This is the classical neo-liberal argument against any attempt to transform a capitalist society – The revolutionaries are creating class conflict. But of course, the class conflict was already there, and nowhere more embedded and distasteful than in Latin America.

OTI funded 54 social projects all over the country, at over $1.2 million, allowing [the] Ambassador to visit poor areas of Venezuela and demonstrate US concern for the Venezuelan people. This program fosters confusion within the Bolivarian ranks, and pushes back at the attempt of Chavez to use the United States as a ‘unifying enemy.’

One has to wonder if the good ambassador (now an Assistant Secretary of State) placed any weight or value at all on the election and re-election by decisive margins of Chávez and the huge masses of people who repeatedly filled the large open squares to passionately cheer him. When did such things last happen in the ambassador’s own country? Where was his country’s “concern for the Venezuelan people” during the decades of highly corrupt and dictatorial regimes? His country’a embassy in Venezuela in that period was not plotting anything remotely like what is outlined in this cable.

The cable summarizes the focus of the embassy’s strategy’s as: “1) Strengthening Democratic Institutions, 2) Penetrating Chavez’ Political Base, 3) Dividing Chavismo, 4) Protecting Vital US business, and 5) Isolating Chavez internationally.” 1

The stated mission for the Office of Transition Initiatives is: “To support U.S. foreign policy objectives by helping local partners advance peace and democracy in priority countries in crisis.” 2

Notice the key word – “crisis”. For whom was Hugo Chávez’s Venezuela a “crisis”? For the people of Venezuela or the people who own and operate United States, Inc.?

Imagine a foreign country’s embassy, agencies and NGOs in the United States behaving as the American embassy, OTI, and NGOs did in Venezuela. President Putin of Russia recently tightened government controls over foreign NGOs out of such concern. As a result, he of course has been branded by the American government and media as a throwback to the Soviet Union.

Under pressure from the Venezuelan government, the OTI’s office in Venezuela was closed in 2010.

For our concluding words of wisdom, class, here’s Charles Shapiro, US ambassador to Venezuela from 2002 to 2004, speaking recently of the Venezuelan leaders: “I think they really believe it, that we are out there at some level to do them ill.” 3

The latest threats to life as we know it

Last month numerous foreign-policy commentators marked the tenth anniversary of the fateful American bombing and invasion of Iraq. Those who condemned the appalling devastation of the Iraqi people and their society emphasized that it had all been a terrible mistake, since Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein didn’t actually possess weapons of mass destruction (WMD). This is the same argument we’ve heard repeatedly during the past ten years from most opponents of the war.

But of the many lies – explicit or implicit – surrounding the war in Iraq, the biggest one of all is that if, in fact, Saddam Hussein had had those WMD the invasion would have been justified; that in such case Iraq would indeed have been a threat to the United States or to Israel or to some other country equally decent, innocent and holy. However, I must ask as I’ve asked before: What possible reason would Saddam Hussein have had for attacking the United States or Israel other than an irresistible desire for mass national suicide? He had no reason, no more than the Iranians do today. No more than the Soviets had during the decades of the Cold War. No more than North Korea has ever had since the United States bombed them in the early 1950s.

Yet last month the new Defense Secretary, Chuck Hagel, announced that he would strengthen United States defenses against a possible attack by [supposedly] nuclear-equipped North Korea, positioning 14 additional missile interceptors in Alaska and California at an estimated cost of $1 billion. So much for the newest Great White Hope. Does it ever matter who the individuals are who are occupying the highest offices of the US foreign-policy establishment? Or their gender or their color?

“Oh,” many people argued, “Saddam Hussein was so crazy who knew what he might do?” But when it became obvious in late 2002 that the US was intent upon invading Iraq, Saddam opened up the country to the UN weapons inspectors much more than ever before, offering virtually full cooperation. This was not the behavior of a crazy person; this was the behavior of a survivalist. He didn’t even use any WMD when he was invaded by the United States in 1991 (“the first Gulf War”), when he certainly had such weapons. Moreover, the country’s vice president, Tariq Aziz, went on major American television news programs to assure the American people and the world that Iraq no longer had any chemical, biological or nuclear weapons; and we now know that Iraq had put out peace feelers in early 2003 hoping to prevent the war. The Iraqi leaders were not crazy at all. Unless one believes that to oppose US foreign policy you have to be crazy. Or suicidal.

It can as well be argued that American leaders were crazy to carry out the Iraqi invasion in the face of tens of millions of people at home and around the world protesting against it, pleading with the Bush gang not to unleash the horrors. (How many demonstrations were there in support of the invasion?)

In any event, the United States did not invade Iraq because of any threat of an attack using WMD. Washington leaders did not themselves believe that Iraq possessed such weapons of any significant quantity or potency. Amongst the sizable evidence supporting this claim we have the fact that they would not have exposed hundreds of thousands of soldiers on the ground.

Nor can it be argued that mere possession of such weapons – or the belief of same – was reason enough to take action, for then the United States would have to invade Russia, France, Israel, et al. Continue reading »

Dec 102012
 

Digital Journal
Anne Sewell

It seems there were significant “irregularities” in the vote totals for Proposition 37, the ballot initiative to label genetically engineered foods, that could not be explained by random coincidence.

On election day, November 6, Proposition 37 – the ballot initiative for mandatory labeling of food with GMO content – failed by a narrow margin. With 4,277,985 people voting “yes” (47.9%) and 4,835,045 people voting “no” (53.1%), it was very close. Since then, some rumors have been going around about possible election fraud. Food Democracy Now!, one of the groups involved in Prop 37 has been closely monitoring the results as they came in, and they hadn’t seen any credible reports of voting irregularities, that is up until now.

On Thursday, Food Democracy Now! received some very disturbing news from a voter integrity monitor. This monitor claims that possible “statistical anomalies” had been detected in 9 counties in California.

Francois Choquette, a statistician closely involved in monitoring incoming election results in California, said there were significant “irregularities” in the vote totals for Prop 37 that could not be explained by random coincidence.

Since then, a team of independent statisticians has started analyzing raw voter data or “preliminary data from 17 of California’s 58 counties”.

So far, potential anomalies have been detected in a number of the largest precincts in Orange, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Alameda and San Diego counties, among others. While it is not definite that election fraud has actually taken place, it is important for Prop 37 supporters to be aware that the results of the election as they stand are not final. Food Democracy Now! is asking supporters to stand with them as they call for further inquiry into the questionable patterns being revealed.

By visiting this web page, you can join in standing for open and transparent elections and ask the California Secretary of State, Debra Bowen, to ensure that the election results from Prop 37 are properly counted.

Today, Friday December 7th is the day that county election officials in the state of California are required to report their final results to the Secretary of State’s office . According to state law, Secretary of State Debra Bowen has until December 14th to certify the results of the election.

Here is where the worry arises. On election night, the California Secretary of State’s office called the election for the No side, declaring that Yes on 37 to label genetically engineered foods had failed to pass by a margin of 46.9% to 53.1%, with some 4.3 million Californians having been reported voting Yes on 37 by the next morning.

However, since that date the ballot proposition has slowly and steadily advanced both its vote total, and also the percentage of the total vote.

As of Monday, December 3rd at 4:58 pm, the California Secretary of State’s office reported that Prop 37 had garnered 48.5% votes to the No side’s 51.5%, with 5,986,652 voting to Label GMOs and 6,365,236 Californians voting against.

The very next morning, according to the California Secretary of State’s website, the Yes on 37 campaign had received 6,004,628 votes and edged down to 48.4% of the vote total. The timestamp on the website showed December 4, 2012, 6:04 a.m.

This was an important milestone, as the Yes on Prop 37 side had gained six million votes, a significant achievement. Food Democracy Now! immediately shared the good news via Twitter @food_democracy at 8:40 am PST.

Then something strange happened. Less than one hour later. the California Secretary of State’s website no longer showed the 6 million vote total. Food Democracy Now! had captured a screenshot (see image below) and had tweeted the image. They then got in contact with the Secretary of State’s office and when they asked about the discrepancy, they were told that the office would no longer be updating the vote total until after December 14th, when the election is required by law to be certified.

When asked why, the Secretary of States’ office claimed that making updates to the official site was “no longer cost effective”. The Secretary of State’s office refused to give the number of remaining uncounted ballots and only continued to say that the information would not be updated until December 14th.

This seems odd, since the Secretary of State’s website had updated the vote count every day until December 4th, when the Yes side briefly appeared above 6 million votes. While it is still possible that Yes on 37 has failed, it is also possible that election fraud is being committed, and it is necessary to stand up for open and transparent elections and to ask California Secretary of State Debra Bowen to make sure that the election results from Prop 37 are properly counted.

Please share the screenshot below showing more than 6 million votes for Prop 37 to label GMOs, this may be the only hope to make sure that open and transparent election results are reported in California.

If you believe that you have a right to know what is in your food, and if you demand open and transparent election results, add your name here.

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Dec 092012
 

J.T. Waldron

Arizona’s Secretary of State’s office has issued a surprising answer to Supervisor Ramon Valadez’s request for ballot scanning.  Contrary to what has been publicly revealed and analyzed in Arizona Attorney General’s public recount of the 2006 RTA election, Arizona’s Secretary of State’s office issued a memo citing the “accuracy” of Goddard’s recount as a reason to forego graphic scanning of ballots.

The key quote in the document is as follows:

“The Secretary of State’s office has viewed the idea of ballot scanning as a way to further audit our elections process. However, recent events (the Prop. 112 recount, Attorney General Goddard’s evaluation of the RTA election, and the 2012 hand count results) have once again demonstrated that our election machines are incredibly accurate and reliable. Therefore, at this time, I don’t believe that it is prudent to spend resources on creating an audit for a process that is already audited.”

Perhaps they aren’t aware of the chimpanzee hacking the very same GEM’s elections system, but we do know that it’s incredibly naive to suggest that the need for election audits could only be defined by the potential accuracy and reliability of the machines – not the people running the machines.

So why would the Secretary of State choose to mislead the public with a letter alluding to “accuracy” in Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard’s RTA investigation?

It was Goddard’s ill-faited recount of the 2006 RTA election that became part of the legal argument for prospective relief in rigged elections which won an appellate court decision in 2010.   

There were so many problems with Terry Goddard’s investigation that election integrity groups AUDITAZ and Voters Unite! issued a twelve page report outlining significant discrepancies between the County’s canvass and Goddard’s hand count. By what measure does the Secretary of State cite Goddard’s hand count as sufficiently accurate to forego meaningful audits? We know that federal guidelines require accuracy within a tolerance of 1 in 500,000. Goddard’s recount had:

159 precincts missing 1,541 ballots
126 precincts that had 389 ballots too many
1,152 total ballots missing.

Goddard proclaimed in his press conference that they did such a good job, they found 63 additional ballots. Evidently, this was supposed to distract the public from the fact their count was missing four precinct’s worth of ballots.

Goddard’s investigation was so bad it garnered national attention on the Mike Malloy show once it was discovered that over a third of the poll tapes (that Goddard refused to inspect) were missing.

The missing poll tapes strongly correspond with electronic records of the RTA election showing memory card re-uploads characteristic of an attempt to pre-program memory cards.

From the perspective of a statistical analysis, one only has to consider the odds of the same precincts experiencing the same re-upload errors correlating to the same missing poll tapes.

Goddard had also refused to perform a forensic exam of the ballots, despite a previous move by the county to compromise court evidence. On the day of his press conference, Goddard acknowledged to the public on the John C. Scott show that he was aware of Pima County violating a court order by compromising evidence in the county vault.

Adding to the need for a forensic exam, court testimony indicated that no adequate protection of the stored RTA ballots took place until a court order was issued in 2011.

Attorney General Terry Goddard clearly moved beyond what is considered ‘executive discretion’ and served in some capacity to ensure Pima County’s right to commit election fraud.

When the Secretary of State’s office cites Goddard’s work as cause to forego graphic scans as a safeguard against election fraud, they are placing themselves in the same camp, especially when Pima County is now the main obstacle to a forensic exam of the RTA ballots.

John Moffatt’s name is all over the I-Beta report.
Moffatt represents the suspect in this investigation.

Terry Goddard’s investigation into the RTA election showed early signs of compromise as the suspects in the investigation (Pima County) were given the opportunity to shape the investigation. This took place through Pima County employee John Moffatt, who was afforded the opportunity to make himself an inextricable part of the report created by the independent data firm, I-Beta. Moffatt was also named in the I-Beta report providing many ineffectual tests that were certain to be meaningless in the first half of Goddard’s investigation. Since Goddard stated in public that he was aware of Moffatt being caught with his hand in the ‘evidence cookie jar’,the decision to include Moffatt in this process demonstrates highly questionable judgment. By this time, it was clear that John Moffatt, working directly under Pima County Administrator Chuck Huckelberry, was responsible for the convoluted logic that ultimately cost Pima County over one million dollars in legal fees resisting disclosure of public records.

Goddard continued coddling the suspects as he refused to provide the results of the I-Beta report to those who filed the initial complaint, but let the suspect (Pima County) receive a copy and subsequently instructed the suspect not to provide a copy to those who filed the initial complaint.

These conflicts of interest were so widely publicized it would be difficult for the Secretary of State’s office to make a credible claim of ignorance.

The Secretary of State’s office should direct its attention to the money being wasted by Pima County as they use every legal measure permissible to stave off a forensic exam of the RTA ballots.

Pima County’s Superior court judges have been ruling in defiance of the 2010 appellate court decision granting jurisdiction for prospective relief in rigged elections.

Before any court orders affecting election procedures are issued, the hearing for prospective relief needs to complete the fundamental tasks ignored by Attorney General Terry Goddard. The court must allow for the actual audit of the ballots (comparing, for the first time, one set of numbers to another set of numbers) and a forensic examination of the ballots. In fact, if the audit and forensic exam do not turn up evidence of foul play, the court does not have sufficient cause to issue orders for prospective relief. That outcome would end the case.

So why is Pima County the primary obstacle to this investigation?

All local media outlets fail to articulate this inescapably simple resolution that Pima County avoids. Everyone endowed with basic cognitive skills is left with the uncomfortable realization that Pima County has been caught cheating and they are staving off the inevitable with taxpayer’s dollars.

If the Secretary of State’s office is so confident in Terry Goddard’s investigation of the 2006 RTA Ballots, they should encourage Pima County to stop wasting taxpayers dollars and to stop obstructing the appellate court ruling for prospective relief.  That way, the Secretary of State’s office could demonstrate leadership in state elections instead of what appears to be an elections ‘circle jerk’.

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Nov 232012
 

Organic Consumers Association
Katherine Paul
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: Organic Consumers Association Katherine Paul, 207.653.3090,
Organic Consumers Association
FINLAND, Minn. – Nov. 12, 2012 – The Organic Consumers Association (OCA) is monitoring the ongoing vote count and election results for Prop 37, the California Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act. The OCA will contest the vote if results differ substantially from pre-election poll results or if there are reports of any voting irregularities, particularly in Orange and San Mateo Counties where paperless ballot systems make voting more vulnerable to fraud.

Prop 37 was defeated by 6 percentage points, 53% to 47%, according to the California Secretary of State on election night. However, as with every election, not every ballot had been counted as of midnight Nov. 6. On election night, there were still 3.3 million uncounted votes. As of November 11, the vote totals were 5,205,044 NO to 4,619,580 YES

“The OCA, along with the California Right to Know Campaign and its attorneys, are closely monitoring the ongoing vote count process,” said Ronnie Cummins, Director of the OCA and OCF, which contributed more than $1 million to the Prop 37 campaign. “We will challenge the outcome if the final count indicates more YES than NO votes, or if the results are substantially different from our pre-election polls.”

State law requires county elections officials to report their final results to the Secretary of State by December 7. The Secretary of State has until December 14 to certify the results of the election.

The OCA hired Lake Research Partners to conduct pre-election polling for Prop 37. The final results of the polling are not yet available.

“Win or lose, Prop 37 is just the beginning,” said Cummins. “We’ve put GMO labeling on the national map, and we’ve put Big Ag and Big Food on notice: This movement is stronger than ever, and it’s not going away.”

Activists in Washington State have already collected more than half of the signatures they need to put a similar GMO labeling initiative on the ballot there in 2013. Plans are also in the works to reignite legislative attempts in Vermont and Connecticut, where laws don’t provide for citizens ballot initiatives.

The Organic Consumers Association (OCA) is an online and grassroots non-profit 501(c)3 public interest organization campaigning for health, justice, and sustainability.

The Organic Consumers Fund is a 501(c)4 allied organization of the Organic Consumers Association, focused on grassroots lobbying and legislative action.


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Nov 212012
 

J.T. Waldron

The Pima County Board of Supervisors refused to conduct a proper hand-count audit of the 2012 general election ballots. This decision was made despite seasoned statisticians and computer experts in its own Election Integrity Commission indicating that the county’s elections are not verifiable in their current state.

The primary reason? Timing. Pima County’s use of this rationale is ironic because it appears that the county was in complete control its timing. As EIC member Mickey Duniho states in reference to Pima County Administrator Chuck Huckelberry:

“Mr. Huckelberry unilaterally postponed the recommendation without consulting or informing the Election Integrity Commission. This violated the Commission’s right to advise the Board of Supervisors without interference, and it also violated basic rules of courtesy.”

This postponement plays a role in solidifying the board’s argument that ‘it’s too late’.

Huckelberry’s recent memo, which is rife with distortions and errors, states that it’s impossible to do a hand count audit. Such hyperbole was thoroughly eviscerated by Mickey Duniho’s point by point response to the erroneous memo. Duniho provided his rebuttal in writing to each member of the board of supervisors.

“Your elections are being run by a sociopath,” said EIC member Jim March. Elections Director Brad Nelson was held under a burning magnifying glass in the most recent Board of Supervisors meeting as March leveled a series of new charges against Nelson. First, March states that Nelson had his county-issued credit card yanked for fraud, yet he still keeps his job.

Other charges had to do with Nelson’s management style with his employers. According to March, employees are willing to recall how they were retained because it was easy for Nelson to “make them cry” and “that’s something he needed to do on occasion”. Finally, March accused Nelson of breaking the law as he states that Nelson would ask temporary staff and poll workers to switch their party allegiance so that he can continue to retain these employees for future tasks.

Jim March’s history of careful, meticulous analysis  before calling any one person’s reputation into question adds significant weight to these charges.  We can only hope that an independent investigation into Brad Nelson’s activities will take place. 

The only Supervisor concerned about having verifiable elections for this elections cycle was Ray Carroll, a Republican who has consistently moved to transcend party affiliation and improve transparency.

Arizona solidifies its national reputation as the ‘meth lab of democracy’ because those who can intervene refuse to make direct, immediate, substantive changes to the elections process.

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