November 29, 2004
UA Citizens for Change Report on Ohio Actions
UA Citizens for Change UpdateGrassroots democracy at its best!
No. 1 * November 29, 2004
http://www.uacitizensforchange.com/ * E-mail: UAforKerry04@aol.com
We're Back!It's been nearly a month since the UA for Kerry leadership has communicated with our wonderful and committed supporters through our online newsletter, and we apologize for leaving you to cope with the election results on your own. Quite frankly, the wind was knocked out of our sails and it's taken us this long to regroup, recover, recharge -- and refocus.We plan on continuing the group, not as UA for Kerry, but as UA Citizens for Change -- our legal name since August. You will see our name frequently abbreviated as UACC. Shortly we will be changing our e-mail address. We are developing our platform of issues, and brainstorming ideas and directions we want to pursue as a group. We will begin meeting again in January on a monthly basis. We welcome your ideas, and want to know what issues you consider the most important in the coming months. We plan to develop standing committees to provide the larger UACC community with a greater chance for participation, as well as better information and oversight on various concerns such as women's and children's issues; education; the media; and the environment, just to name a few. We are excited about the prospect of being a multi--issue and multi-candidate political action committee.Read this section now!
One issue that is front and center is a push for fair, transparent and accurate elections for this past presidential election and for all future elections. All citizens must have equal access to voting and the electoral process in order to ensure our democracy.
The backstory: America's election system is badly flawed. So flawed, that a Cal Tech/MIT study of the 2000 Election discovered that as many as one in 18 citizens was disenfranchised due to procedural and/or technological anomalies. The 2004 election was no different! Within hours after the final votes were cast on November 2nd, it became apparent that there were too many irregularities nationwide to ignore. Election officials are saying there are things that go wrong in every election, but how will the situation improve if we are content with mistakes? We can make a difference in safeguarding the electoral process by examining the mistakes that occurred in this past election and helping implement change for future elections.
A few irregularities in Ohio that need more investigation:
Many polling places (mostly in urban areas or places close to colleges and universities with typically Democrat voters) were allegedly given fewer voting machines than suburban areas, even fewer machines than what they had during the primary, causing the record numbers of voters in those areas to wait in long lines (typically three to five hours, and in one case, 13 hours) or get discouraged and leave without voting. http://www.freepress.org/columns/display/3/2004/995
In Warren County, election officials locked the doors to the County building and refused to allow bipartisan observers to watch the vote count. They also denied access to an AP reporter (it is standard procedure for the AP to observe vote-counting in counties all over the country).
In Gahanna, nearly 4,000 votes were cast for Bush in a precinct with roughly 700 voters. http://www.cnn.com/2004/ALLPOLITICS/11/05/voting.problems.ap/
In Perry County, it was discovered that several precincts had nearly 100 more ballots counted than people that cast ballots. Investigations in other precincts and counties were underway to determine if similar types of fraud had been committed when public records became unavailable. http://www.commondreams.org/views04/1118-30.htm
Other anomalies: double counting in Madison and Sandusky counties; machine misvotes for unintended candidates; confusion about provisional ballots; lost voter registrations; and late or no absentee ballots. Visit http://www.votersunite.org/electionproblems.asp to see a list of additional voting anomalies in Ohio and other states. To hear sworn testimony of concerned citizens from one of four public hearings held throughout the state click on http://www.theneighborhoodnetwork.org/.
Several members of the UACC executive committee have been involved since last spring with CASE, an acronym for Citizen's Alliance for Secure Elections, successfully working to keep lawmakers from purchasing electronic voting machines with no paper audit that could be used in a recount. You can get more information at their website: http://www.caseohio.org/.
As can be seen by the voting irregularities in Ohio, this year's election in Ohio was deeply flawed. There are many areas, beyond electronic voting, in need of reform. To that end, CASE is sponsoring a "Fight for Democracy, Investigate All 88 Rally," an initiative to draw attention to problems in our electoral system and to support the Congressional probe of allegations into voting irregularities in Ohio and elsewhere.(See flier copied below.) Thousands of people are needed to attend the rally to show Ohio election officials, lawmakers and the nation that we believe every voter counts and every vote must be counted, and that election systems need to be corrected to insure that our most precious right as citizens -- choosing our leaders through a tamper-free, transparent, verifiable voting process -- is developed and protected.
At stake is the very heart and soul of our democracy. Make sure your voice is heard loud and clear in future voting booths -- by voicing it loud and clear on Saturday! Hope to see you there!
Please forward this information to your networks:
Fight for Democracy Rally
Saturday, December 4, 20041:00 - 3:00 p.m. Ohio Statehouse
Reverend Jesse Jackson
Journalist Greg Palast
Fact:Thousands of Ohio citizens had difficulty voting
on November 2nd.Despite thousands of complaints, a planned recount,
statewide public hearings, several lawsuits, a Congressional
investigation and the outcry of voters rights groups, this fact
has been dismissed or underreported by the mainstream media.
Even Secretary of State Kenneth Blackwell indicated the Ohio
election was a huge success, saying, "We came through with flying colors."
Washington Times, 11/04/04
We need thousands of people to attend the"Fight for Democracy Rally"
to draw attention to voter issues AND to
support the Congressional probe of allegations of irregularities in the November 2nd presidential vote.
Please plan to attend and bring your friends! America's election system is badly flawed. So flawed, that a Cal Tech/MIT
study of the 2000 Election discovered that as many as one in 18 citizens
was disenfranchised due to procedural and/or technological anomalies.
The 2004 election was no different! All citizens must have equal access
to voting and the electoral process in order to ensure our democracy!
Following the Rally
"Stand Up and Be Counted; A CASE for Democracy"
6:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.
Africentric Middle School, 300 E. Livingston Ave., Columbus, OH.
Click on the links below to find out more. * CLICK THIS LINK to view the web version of this information and to download a flyer for distribution.
http://www.uacitizensforchange.com/rally/* CLICK THIS LINK to get an overview of 2004 election problems.http://www.orlandoweekly.com/news/Story.asp?ID=4688* CLICK THIS LINK to read the CalTech/MIT study:http://www.votewatch.us/why/reports/report.2004-08-14.8236285198