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Computer scientists fear voter fraud with touch-screen voting
Associated Press ^ | 10-6-03 | RACHEL KONRAD

Posted on 10/06/2003 3:25:35 AM PDT by Oldeconomybuyer

Edited on 04/13/2004 2:44:16 AM PDT by Jim Robinson. [history]

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) --  Punch-card ballots from Tuesday's historic recall election are sure to get a going-over by political activists, but some computer scientists think touch-screen voting machines deserve just as much scrutiny.

While punch-card ballots caused headaches for Florida election officials with their "hanging" and "pregnant" chads, 10 percent of the touch-screen machines in California don't produce paper printouts. And no printouts, the scientists say, would make a legitimate recount impossible.


(Excerpt) Read more at sfgate.com ...


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Front Page News; Government; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections; US: California
KEYWORDS: chad; electronicvoting; fraud; lockbox; recall; recount; riskyscheme
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1 posted on 10/06/2003 3:25:35 AM PDT by Oldeconomybuyer
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
Yes, while everyone has their attention diverted, Davis lets it be know he is ordering boxes and shredders to vacate, and no one is paying attention to what is going on in and around the voting booth.

The Republicans and those who plan to vote for "recall" better keep a watch on making sure that the place where the real action will count is protected from the lying cheating liberals.
2 posted on 10/06/2003 3:34:38 AM PDT by Just mythoughts
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3 posted on 10/06/2003 3:35:18 AM PDT by Support Free Republic (Your support keeps Free Republic going strong!)
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To: Miss Marple
For the "list."
4 posted on 10/06/2003 3:36:22 AM PDT by truthkeeper
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To: truthkeeper
Yes. Another sign they are going to try to steal the election. In fact, I am beginning to think that they stole the election from Simon.
5 posted on 10/06/2003 3:43:50 AM PDT by Miss Marple
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There should always be a paper trail in something this important. Paperless voting will eventually lead to some very strange situations. It is just a matter of time. The decision-makers have been razzle-dazzled by the high-tech advocates and the hardware/software salesmen, or worse, some of them may be knowing-participants in the scam.
6 posted on 10/06/2003 3:51:29 AM PDT by DefCon
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
Activists are demanding that ballot machine vendors include printers that produce paper receipts so citizens can confirm that paper results match their touch-screen choices. Receipts would go into a county lock-box for use in recounts.

For the life of me I don't understand why we would accept anything less. There has to be SOME paper trail!

7 posted on 10/06/2003 3:56:55 AM PDT by truthkeeper
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To: truthkeeper
There isn't. After 20 years of voting with punch cards, and never a problem with chads, we switched to touchscreen computers in the last election. *Zero* paper trail.

My state rep seems concerned, and now seems to understand the issue, but there also seems to be a "well, we spent all this money, we can't go back" attitude.
8 posted on 10/06/2003 4:00:48 AM PDT by FreedomPoster (In for the monthly deal since 3 quarterlies ago - support Free Republic!)
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
Face it folks, many of us don't have the intelligence to nod our collective heads up and down to signify yes, never mind touching a computer screen to vote.

It's time to go back to the piece of paper and draw a picture of the guy or gal you are voting for.

Don't worry if the election officials will recognize who you have drawn.

They are trained professionals and will decipher it for you.

9 posted on 10/06/2003 4:01:10 AM PDT by G.Mason (Lessons of life need not be fatal)
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
http://www.equalccw.com/dieboldtestnotes.html

This link will prove interesting reading. I have verified the info with an install of the software...
10 posted on 10/06/2003 4:06:51 AM PDT by beaware
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
The Democrats dont want electronic voting to really work - they want people to have doubts about any election results that they don't win, whether it's electronic or paper. If they can't win, they poison the winner one way or another.
11 posted on 10/06/2003 4:13:03 AM PDT by afz400
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
Researchers found it was theoretically possible to insert "back doors" into software code that would allow hackers -- or insiders -- to change future voters' choices and determine the outcome.
My first experience with e-vote and CNN insiders showed me in one second all the "benefits" :
1998 - CNN poll - should NATO attack Yugoslavia ?
After the poll was displaying ca. 80 NO -20 Yes for hours, one minute later it started displaying 49-51 ...
The software was obviously not yet designed for progressive fraud, so they still had to use a real-time fix ...
12 posted on 10/06/2003 4:17:05 AM PDT by Truth666
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
Which are the other 3 counties besides Riverside County ?
13 posted on 10/06/2003 4:27:17 AM PDT by Truth666
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To: Truth666
I think they are Shasta, Alameda and Plumas, which account, together with Riverside, for about 9 percent of all votes cast in CA.
14 posted on 10/06/2003 4:45:40 AM PDT by Truth666
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
Being an engineer, I have no faith whatsoever in electronic voting.
15 posted on 10/06/2003 4:47:06 AM PDT by DB (©)
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To: G.Mason
All California counties must convert from paper to electronic voting systems by March 1, 2004. I think this explains trying to delay the recall.
16 posted on 10/06/2003 4:53:13 AM PDT by Truth666
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To: afz400
I noticed that the "computer scientists" who were worried about electronic voting were all college professors. While printing out a receipt for a paper trail would be a good addition, the real reason they don't like a computer voting system is that they fear that they will be unable to steal more elections with a more reliable system.
17 posted on 10/06/2003 4:53:42 AM PDT by LegionofDorkness
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To: Truth666
These things have wireless access. According to hackers (who found the program on company servers) the vote can be remotely accessed and changed without ever leaving a log that shows the machine has been accessed. You'll never know who won an election with these things.
18 posted on 10/06/2003 5:01:41 AM PDT by steve50 (Principles are useless if applied selectively)
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To: FreedomPoster
There was nothing wrong with the punch card system. I've always voted that way. IMHO, if a person is too dense to be able to properly drive a stylus through a hole next to the name of the candidate of their choice, they deserve to lose their vote.

The real problem is that people who should know better have refused to put up a fight over losing this valid system, for fear of not being P.C. What a bunch of spineless wimps.

19 posted on 10/06/2003 5:07:36 AM PDT by truthkeeper
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To: truthkeeper
"There has to be SOME paper trail!"
The court doesn't agree with you :
http://www.thedesertsun.com/news/stories/local/1031970237.shtml
A Palm Desert resident whose lawsuit challenging the county’s touch-screen voting system was dismissed plans to appeal the federal judge’s ruling.
"All I’m looking for is a paper trail so nobody can cheat," he said.
20 posted on 10/06/2003 5:10:00 AM PDT by Truth666
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
I concur with the opinions expressed so far. Without a paper trail to verify the vote, the system is ripe for fraud.

When Computer Science PROFESSORS express concern . . . folks, there's something to be concerned about.
21 posted on 10/06/2003 5:17:15 AM PDT by DustyMoment
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To: Truth666
Just because a court says so, doesn't make it so.

That's why there are appeals, that's why there's a legislature to craft a new law.

But I understand, that at this instant in time, it's legally valid in CA. It doesn't mean we should accept it.
22 posted on 10/06/2003 5:19:29 AM PDT by FreedomPoster (In for the monthly deal since 3 quarterlies ago - support Free Republic!)
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To: Miss Marple
I just caught the last couple of minutes of a radio show discussing the recall and absentee ballots. Although I didn't hear the whole thing, I did hear the hosts mention that there is now a box somewhere (not sure where, maybe a registration form?) in which you can check an option to receive absentee ballots in perpetuity. (Inotherwords, a one-time check.)

Are you thinking what I'm thinking? Such as lots of dogs, cats, and dead people on the voter rolls...permanently?

23 posted on 10/06/2003 5:22:15 AM PDT by truthkeeper
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To: DefCon
I agree. The very thought of touch screen voting--or any type of voting exclusively through computers--makes me nervous. The opportunity for fraud is so obvious. The slightest tweak to a few lines of code can change the results.
24 posted on 10/06/2003 5:22:17 AM PDT by Skooz (All Hail the Mighty Kansas City Chiefs)
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To: truthkeeper
Yes. Neat little side-issue to the massive fraud....the potential for fraud in perpetuity.
25 posted on 10/06/2003 5:24:53 AM PDT by Miss Marple
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
The concern of Dill and some of his colleagues was dismissed as overblown and irresponsible by county registrars and executives at the companies that sell and update the electronic voting machines.

No bias there, no sir-ee. Lots of technical background, too, I'm sure.

26 posted on 10/06/2003 5:33:24 AM PDT by FourPeas (Syntax, schmintax)
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To: Miss Marple
Yes. Another sign they are going to try to steal the election. In fact, I am beginning to think that they stole the election from Simon.

If Davis stole the election from Simon why did Davis get 1.7 million fewer votes in 2002 than he got in 1998?

27 posted on 10/06/2003 5:46:42 AM PDT by Paleo Conservative (Do not remove this tag under penalty of law.)
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To: Paleo Conservative
The answer, sir, is that the Rats ALWAYS attempt to steal just enough votes to win, not enough to be ridiculous and generate investigations. Since the votes are created at the time of counting, they only need to know Simon's count, and then make just a few more.
28 posted on 10/06/2003 5:55:22 AM PDT by Miss Marple
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
Hillary pulled ahead of her competition who was running ahead of her in the polls right up until the week before the election.

Voters should protest these machines. There is not much telling how many of these bums are sitting in office right now due to vote fraud in one form or another, these machines make it that much simpler. Funny how the Republican's don't seem to be all that intent on mending the problem, I would think it would be a top priority.
29 posted on 10/06/2003 5:58:46 AM PDT by MissAmericanPie
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To: Truth666
"All California counties must convert from paper to electronic voting systems by March 1, 2004. I think this explains trying to delay the recall."

Face it, the only way voter fraud will be held in check is by giving the prepetrator convicted of such an offense a very long prison sentence.

We all are adult enough here to realize that isn't about to happen.

30 posted on 10/06/2003 6:00:58 AM PDT by G.Mason (Lessons of life need not be fatal)
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To: G.Mason
Punishment in this case is peanuts in comparison with prevention.
31 posted on 10/06/2003 6:15:05 AM PDT by Truth666
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
Given system access, any decent hacker could "rearrange" election results easily.

I suspect that the Democrats are already doing it. They have been busily stealing elections for a long time now (the 1960 presidential election comes to mind, but that wasn't the first one they stole, and the 2000 presidential election comes to mind, but that wasn't the last one they tried to steal).

We need to be auditing the Left carefully. And we're not. Never ever ever trust them.
32 posted on 10/06/2003 6:49:19 AM PDT by Steely Glint ("Communists are just Democrats in a big hurry.")
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To: beaware
Wow! That's in interesting link. Computer voting is the easiest way to "ballot box" fraud!
33 posted on 10/06/2003 7:57:07 AM PDT by theartfuldodger
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
Join Us…Your One Thread To All The California Recall News Threads!

Want on our daily or major news ping lists? Freepmail DoctorZin

34 posted on 10/06/2003 8:48:02 AM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
Bookmarked, for when the Dems argue the exact opposite side next November.
35 posted on 10/06/2003 8:49:27 AM PDT by Diddle E. Squat
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To: FreedomPoster
My state rep seems concerned, and now seems to understand the issue, but there also seems to be a "well, we spent all this money, we can't go back" attitude.

I bet my granpa spent money on buggy whips that weren't worn out when he bought his first car----Get a grip!

While everyone thinks technology is so wonderful, holding an election with no paper trail is like turning Osama Bin Laden loose inside a bank vault with all the keys and a large vehicle to get away.
Get involved with your local election process and find out what methods they are considering for now and future use.
All politics starts at the local level. What is you couldn't do a recount on a contentious issue locally? Then what would you do?
36 posted on 10/06/2003 9:17:02 AM PDT by ridesthemiles (ridesthemiles)
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To: steve50
These things have wireless access. According to hackers (who found the program on company servers) the vote can be remotely accessed and changed without ever leaving a log that shows the machine has been accessed. You'll never know who won an election with these things.

Really? I would like to know the political affiliation of the idiot that designed this program.

37 posted on 10/06/2003 9:31:15 AM PDT by hobson
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To: hobson
It's owned by republican backers. The owner in my state was quoted at a conference as intending to "do all he can to re-elect Bush".
38 posted on 10/06/2003 9:33:30 AM PDT by steve50 (Principles are useless if applied selectively)
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
Audit trail?

What about the hard drive?
39 posted on 10/06/2003 9:44:03 AM PDT by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: Salvation
What about the hard drive?

      Hard drives are erasable and rewritable.

      Machines do not make mistakes ... make mistakes ... make mistakes ... make mistakes
40 posted on 10/06/2003 12:12:05 PM PDT by Celtman (It's never right to do wrong to do right.)
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
Activists are demanding that ballot machine vendors include printers that produce paper receipts so citizens can confirm that paper results match their touch-screen choices. Receipts would go into a county lock-box for use in recounts.

BZZZZZZZZZZT! Hold it right there.

If a paper ballot is printed and placed in a box, then THAT is the ballot that must be counted, regardless of whatever was input into the machine.

There could always be a slight of hand from someone with a preprinted ballot in their hand that they place in the box. Such a mismatched ballot would "invalidate" the computer tally because there would be guaranteed to be a mismatch between some entries and the computer tally.

If voters are not smart enough to look at their ballot for any hanging chads (I've never seen one, even when I tried to dimple a ballot) then they most certainly won't reread the printed out card before putting it in the box.

Also, the term "touch screens" here is misleading. This is not just an issue with "touch screens" but all electronic ballot boxes (including those that use dial input devices).

41 posted on 10/06/2003 1:01:54 PM PDT by weegee
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To: ridesthemiles
The solution is to travel on election day so that you can legally mail your ballot in as an absentee.
42 posted on 10/06/2003 1:03:47 PM PDT by weegee
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
Hackers are going to love touch screen ballots!
43 posted on 10/06/2003 1:09:07 PM PDT by LittleJoe
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To: LegionofDorkness
Hmmmmmm Wonder why this wasn't an issue when Davis was elected? Hmmmm
44 posted on 10/06/2003 1:11:54 PM PDT by AbsoluteJustice (Kiss me I'm an INFIDEL!!!!)
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To: DB
I worked at Compaq on some systems that were to be used as Russian electronic ballot boxes (not the software for the systems, just lowcost PC systems).

I am skeptical myself. I say screw the "automated" tallying of electronic voting. Print out an analog ballot (black dots or punch holes) that corresponds to the voter's choices (with some sort of correlation so that the voter will be able to verify that these are his choices). Place that ballot in the box for later tabulation.

I've already said why a paper backup to an electronic count is pointless (some other sheet of paper could be put in the box).

There is still the possibility for "lost" or "mangled" ballots as well as ballot stuffing. Poll observers, clearing the voter rolls, and other doublechecks will always be important.

45 posted on 10/06/2003 1:11:57 PM PDT by weegee
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To: LittleJoe
If a sizeable percentage of the voting public protested by mailing in absentee ballots (physical hardcopy ballots) it would bog down the "streamlined" election process and would force the congressmen in every state to reconsider electronic balloting systems.

Here in Houston I think that you can also vote in Chinese or Vietnamese and still use a paper ballot (English and Spanish will be electronic ballots).

46 posted on 10/06/2003 1:14:38 PM PDT by weegee
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To: G.Mason
Face it, the only way voter fraud will be held in check is by giving the prepetrator convicted of such an offense a very long prison sentence.

Better yet, the death penalty.

47 posted on 10/06/2003 1:16:05 PM PDT by adx (Why's it called "tourist season" if you ain't allowed to shoot 'em?)
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To: adx
"Better yet, the death penalty."

Hee hee

My kind of guy/gal !

You realize they once hung horse thieves?

Now a thief who steals your car isn't even sent to prison.

Moider da bums!

48 posted on 10/06/2003 1:20:33 PM PDT by G.Mason (Lessons of life need not be fatal)
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To: weegee
Why not combine methods? Touch-screen machines that print out a human-readable and machine-readable ballot (print the name, with the machine-readable stuff next to it), that then gets fed into an optical scanner? And include a touch-screen "keyboard" so you can hunt-and-peck for write-in candidates. No dimpled chads or guessing who they meant to vote for, since all you'd have to do is see what's printed, not written, on the ballot.
49 posted on 10/06/2003 1:22:04 PM PDT by adx (Why's it called "tourist season" if you ain't allowed to shoot 'em?)
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To: weegee
I will be voting by absentee ballot even if I have to do it in Chinese!


If a sizeable percentage of the voting public protested by mailing in absentee ballots (physical hardcopy ballots) it would bog down the "streamlined" election process and would force the congressmen in every state to reconsider electronic balloting systems
50 posted on 10/06/2003 1:30:04 PM PDT by LittleJoe
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