The 2000 presidential election was a harbinger of things to come. It included not "just" hanging chads, but also a partisan Secretary of State in Florida, voting machine memory card "errors" that subtracted votes from Gore, & a bogus voter purge. - author @jonathansimon14 1/
2/ Some of the people who helped Bush stop the election recount in Florida 2000- Kavanaugh, & Roberts--are in positions of power today. Roger Stone organized the Brooks Brothers riot to intimidate recount workers & stall the recount so it wld be hard to complete b4 the deadline.
The GOP blocked the 2000 recount and then suckered Ds into passing The Help America Vote Act (HAVA) of 2002, which allocated billions of $$$ for new electronic voting machines, many of which made recounts impossible bc they did not use paper ballots. Some Ds co-sponsored HAVA. 3/
The only senators who opposed the Help America Vote Act, which allocated billions of dollars for often paperless (unauditable) voting machines were @HillaryClinton and Chuck Schumer. Again, w/o paper, there was no way to conduct meaningful audits or recounts w/ these machines. 4/
In 2002, Georgia became the first state to deploy paperless (unrecountable, unauditable) touchscreen voting machines statewide. That test election resulted in several poll-defying GOP victories. The GOP took over the governorship from the Democrats & have held it ever since. 5/
I forgot to mention that the 2000 presidential election between Bush and Gore was decided by just 537 votes in Florida. 6/
For the 04 presidential election, Ohio's Secty of State was Ken Blackwell, who also was the OH Bush Campaign's Honorary Chairman. OH's current Secty of State, @FranklaRose, made Blackwell his transition team leader. LaRose has recently banned more than 1 drop box per county. 7/
Late on election night, Kerry led. But Ohio's server went down 4 no publicly explained reason. Blackwell had set up a backup server controlled by Mike Connell (known as Rove's IT guru). The server routed OH's results to TN. When the main server went back up, Bush had the lead. 8/
A suit was filed alleging that Rove had orchestrated election theft in Ohio. Connell was ordered to testify at trial in December, at which point Jonathan half joked to his colleague in an email that Connell wouldn't see Xmas. Connell didn't see Xmas. His private plane crashed. 9/
Connell had not admitted election theft in his depo & died b4 trial. His blackberry was not recovered from the crash site. The memory cards & equipment were proprietary to the vendors. Kerry did not seek a recount bc he assumed the Supreme Ct. wld block it as it had in 04. 10/
Jonathan & I continued all the way thru 016. You can listen to the rest of the interview here. We discuss his analysis of exit polls in 2004 and thereafter. Those analyses are not reassuring as to the legitimacy of the outcomes in 2004 and 2016. 11/
I wanted to thread the entire interview as I just did, but I have to prepare for an Ohio presentation on Monday. I may come back to this later. Please follow Jonathan at @jonathansimon14. I highly recommend his book too. 12/ https://www.amazon.com/CODE-RED-Computerized-Election-American/dp/1500319856
Our point is NOT that the situation is hopeless. Our point is that we, the voters, must take the potential for electronic theft seriously & do what we can to mitigate threats b4 November. Here's an article I wrote w/ twenty proposed mitigations. TY. 13/ https://medium.com/@jennycohn1/tips-to-mitigate-threats-to-our-votes-and-voter-registrations-before-november-690099f76cf4
You can sign up to watch the Ohio election security forum here. As I mentioned, I’m one of the speakers. It’s from 4-6PM PST. It’s co-hosted by OPAL & the Ohio Democratic Party. I will discuss different types of election equipment & protecting Nov.
Ohio Election Security Forum · Ohio Progressive Action Leaders
## Join Voting Security Experts for this Important Conversation - How safe is Ohio's machine voting system? - Will voting by mail risk my ballot not counting? - What, if anything, can Ohioans do to...https://www.mobilize.us/opalmissionvote/event/306188/
OK, I can't help it. I need to at least finish Ohio 2004. So I'll add a few more. 15/
16/ Officials have claimed it wld have been impossible to remotely alter vote tallies. But in 2018, cybersecurity journalist Kim Zetter reported that our largest vendor, ES&S, had installed remote access software in central tabulators sold from 2000-2006. Diebold had them too.
17/ In 2018, ES&S claimed to have confirmed the removal of all remote access software in its systems. But it would not say if it was removed b4 or after the 2016 election. It hasn't said whether Diebold central tabulators still have it. ES&S acquired many Diebold contracts in 09.
18/ Exit polls were buried in 2002 in Georgia because they had deviated so substantially from the electronic outcomes reported by the machines. In Ohio 04, Ken Blackwell tried & failed to block exit polls.
19/ Other states had anomalous results in 02 too. One example is @DonSiegelman's race for reelection as governor of Alabama. 6K votes disappeared in the dead of night, & Karl Rove's client, Alabama's AG, seized the paper ballots b4 they cld be recounted. Exit polls were buried.
20/ Jonathan tried to raise money to conduct independent exit polls for the 04 election, but few were interested. He thus knew he'd have to rely on the media exit polls, so he downloaded them on election night. He was apparently the only one to do so.
21/ The exit polls from the 2004 presidential election showed a consistent "red shift" (favorable to the GOP) compared to reported electronic outcomes. The red shift was largest in places where it mattered most to winning the election.
22/ A few years ago, @JohnKerry told Brian Lehrer that his campaign suspected electronic vote tally manipulation in 04. They went to court to try to see the machine algorithms before the election, but the judge threw their case out on the basis that the software was proprietary.
23/ This @nytimes piece by Kim Zetter discusses how the Kerry team went to court to try to see the voting machine algorithms but the court ruled against them. https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/26/magazine/election-security-crisis-midterms.html
24/ Here's John Kerry's interview with Brian Lehrer where he said that his campaign suspected electronic vote tally manipulation in Ohio 2004. https://www.wnyc.org/story/john-kerry-reflects/
25/ The backup server in Ohio 2004, re-routed Ohio's results to a company called Smartech in TN. Smartech had also hosted the Bush White House's emails, including Karl Rove's emails. Russia reportedly hacked Smartech in 2015.
26/ McClatchy article about the routing of Ohio's results via a backup server to Smartech in Tennessee. https://www.mcclatchydc.com/news/politics-government/article24508330.html
Computer expert denies knowledge of '04 vote rigging in Ohio
WASHINGTON — A Republican computer consultant denied under oath Monday that he knew of any GOP effort to steal the 2004 election for President Bush by rigging Ohio's vote totals, an attorney who...https://www.mcclatchydc.com/news/politics-government/article24508330.html
27/ Article confirming that, in 2015, Russia hacked some "older" emails hosted on Smartech servers. Comey, naturally, downplayed this event. https://www.wired.com/2017/01/russia-hacked-older-republican-emails-fbi-director-says/
The FBI Just Confirmed That Russia Hacked Old GOP Emails, Too
FBI Director James Comey tells Congress the same hackers who breached the DNC also penetrated the RNC's older email domains and state-level GOP targets.https://www.wired.com/2017/01/russia-hacked-older-republican-emails-fbi-director-says/
28/ If elections are so easy to rig, how did Obama win 2X? I don’t know. But in 08, both Rove & Connell were dealing w/ the suit alleging they had electronically manipulated the 04 election.
29/ Here’s a Sept. 08 declaration from @spoonamore, a formerly Republican IT expert who traveled in the same circles as Connell & was an expert witness in the suit. He said Connell worried some of what Connell built might have been used for election theft. https://moritzlaw.osu.edu/electionlaw/litigation/documents/Lincoln-ReplyAff1-9-17-08.pdf
30/ Here’s an article about Connell’s plane crash in December 2008. https://www.cbsnews.com/news/republican-it-guru-dies-in-plane-crash/
31/ As I discuss here, McCain disliked Rove. His campaign had some sort of contract w/ Manafort’s IT company (3EDC) whose website described companies owned by Connell & the Smartech guy as “strategic partners.” But McCain fired Manafort b4 the election. https://link.medium.com/0zUxAk50a9
32/ “In 2012, Ohio Secretary of State John Husted (R), was caught allowing ES&S to install uncertified software patches throughout Ohio just before the election. Fitrakis, who made this alarming discovery as well, sued to compel Husted to remove the patches.”
33/ “Altho the court dismissed the case as premature (no damages), she said that she wld be ‘happy’ to consider ordering a recount after the election. Fitrakis apparently deemed this unnecessary when...Obama won re-election, triggering the infamous on air melt down of Karl Rove.”
34/ “The hacker group Anonymous has claimed that it prevented Karl Rove’s associates from stealing the 2012 election. As noted by Salon, however, it has never produced evidence to prove its claim.”
35/ To be continued. Jonathan and I discussed his exit poll analyses of the 2008 and 2012 elections and his conversation with someone who claimed to be a principal of Anonymous & to have knowledge of what happened in 2012.
36/ According to @AlexandraChalup, Obama’s DOJ teamed up with Anonymous hackers to monitor the 2016 election. She has been harassed by MAGAs for years over this & her early warnings about Manafort. Yes, it’s hearsay. No, I’m not sure. But I’m worried.
37/ I have always been skeptical of Anonymous’s claim that it stopped an election hack in 2012. But when I saw Alexandra’s post that they worked with Obama’s DOJ in 2016, it gave me pause.
38/ According to the book Rigged, 4 senior [email protected] if the Obama administration have said that Russia was in a position to alter vote tallies after all. https://twitter.com/davidashimer/status/1284685080531816448
39/ If so, the public was misled all this time into thinking that Russian hackers had targeted only voter registration systems. They targeted the voting apparatus too.
40/ The book Rigged further reports that Jeh Johnson said, "We don't have surveillance tools to surveil what is happening with voter registration and election infrastructure unless the state offers up what they have and opens their closet for us." Very few counties worked w/ DHS.
41/ Thus, for the vast majority of COUNTY systems, there is no basis for claiming that "vote tallies weren't changed" in 2016. No one looked in a meaningful way. Much of the recount was by machine (not by hand) and was blocked. The DHS says it conducted no forensic analysis.
45/ Here is what @jonathansimon14's exit-poll analysis showed in 08: unlike 04, the exit polls & reported electronic totals harmonized insofar as who would win the presidential election, though there was still a small red shift (exit polls suggested Obama shld have won by more).
46/ In an important 2010 senate race in Massachusetts (to fill the seat of Senator Ted Kennedy who had died). Jonathan found that @marthacoakley (D) had won in counties that hand counted, but lost the race to Scott Brown (R) in counties that used hackable scanners.
47/ Jonathan searched for benign explanations for this anomaly, but found that the scanner counties actually had more DEMOCRATIC voters. The anomaly also cld not be explained by media ad buys. A scanner county began a hand count, but the DEMOCRATIC Secty of State shut it down.
48/ Before the 2012 election. attorney Bob Fitrakis got a tip that ES&S had installed uncertified software patches throughout Ohio. He sued, but the court dismissed, saying she'd be "happy" to take the case later if needed. It wasn't needed: Obama won, & Rove melted down on TV.
49/ The hacker group called Anonymous has taken credit for thwarting electronic election theft in 2012, but provided no evidence. (Anonymous, if you're listening and have such evidence, please provide it. I kid. Sort of. Not really.)
50/ Jonathan was put in touch w/ someone who claimed to be with Anonymous and who told him that another hacker had infiltrated the GOP's "election hacking team" and thwarted election theft by changing the passwords. Yes, this is hearsay. I really wish they'd provided proof.
51/ Here, Jonathan and I discuss further his conversation with an apparent member of Anonymous and whether Anonymous's claim about 2012 is credible.
52/ Here, Jonathan adds some final thoughts about Anonymous's claim, and then we turn to a discussion of anomalies and other "red flags" in the Georgia 6th District election of 2017, including a wiped election server.
53/ The Georgia 6th District election between @ossoff (D) & Karen Handel (R) was the most expensive House race of all time & was considered a proxy on Trump's presidency. In the primary, Ossoff was poised to win w/o a runoff until a supposedly "rare memory card error" occurred.
54/ The runoff, which Handel reportedly won, was highly anomalous, as Jonathan explains. Ossoff clobbered Handel in the only verifiable aspect of the race (vote by mail, which uses #HandMarkedPaperBallots), but Handel somehow made up the difference on the paperless touchscreens.
The serious public attention given to the serious red flags re: #GA06 almost certainly helped persuade the GA federal court to rule (in the case brought by @marilynrmarks1) that paperless voting machines are unconstitutional. 55/
In 2016, almost all composite poll analyses (other than Nate Silver) gave Trump only about an 18% chance of winning. Central tabulators in many ES&S jurisdictions likely still had remote-access software. FL & WI had wireless modems that connected ES&S systems to the internet. 56/
57/ The 2016 recount was a sham because most large WI counties refused to count by hand, the PA recount never happened, and the MI recount systematically excluded counties that exhibited anomalies & was shut down after 3 days.
58/ Jonathan's exit poll analysis revealed substantial red shifts in 2016 in the battleground states that were supposed to have been Hillary's firewall.
59/ Significantly, the national exit polls generally matched the reported electronic results in 2016. But the battleground states (OH, NC, WI, PA, & FL) were significantly red shifted.
60/ Further discussion of the red shift between exit polls and reported results in battleground states (as opposed to other states) in 2016. Jonathan says the shifts were well beyond the margin of error.
61/ If you would like to watch our entire discussion, here it is again. (I also posted above). Thanks! #ProtectOurVotes
62/ Here again is my article providing about 20 tips for voters to help mitigate the threats to our election in November. https://medium.com/@jennycohn1/tips-to-mitigate-threats-to-our-votes-and-voter-registrations-before-november-690099f76cf4
63/ For further reading, here again is a link to Jonathan's book, Code Red: Computerized Elections and the War on American Democracy. https://www.amazon.com/CODE-RED-Computerized-Elections-Democracy/dp/B087H83JCR
64/ In case you think that the vendors themselves must at least have been well vetted, you may want to read this. https://medium.com/@jennycohn1/americas-electronic-voting-system-is-corrupted-to-the-core-1f55f34f346e
65/ Most of my published work and interviews are linked here. (It's about a month behind, but I'll update soon.) Thanks! #ProtectOurVotes https://medium.com/@jennycohn1/jennifer-cohn-links-to-articles-podcasts-talks-and-interviews-8e7916bdfc77
66/ Please also check out the library that I helped create with @SwissTriple_M at http://ProtectOurVotes.com . TY!
67/ My goal w/ this thread is not to try to “prove” that past elections were stolen, but rather to show that there’s a reasonable possibility that they might have been & thus we must do a lot more than “just” voting in historic numbers this year.
68/ We also cannot allow our candidates to continue conceding in the face of anomalous electronic results... not without an investigation .
I discuss this and other things voters can & should do to mitigate election threats in November in the article in post 62. I worry voters won’t do them if they underestimate the seriousness of our situation. 69/
And I don’t see how we can prepare for November in a meaningful way without trying to learn some lessons from these past elections. I sincerely hope it helps. 70/