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GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal 2012...
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Motion Demands Preliminary Injunction, Alleges E-Machines Are Not Secure, Not Fully Accessible to Disabled Voters
Suit is Latest in Growing Line of Similar Actions Being Taken Around the Country, SoS Brewer Continues to Duck Public Discussion of Issue or Support the Troops
By Brad Friedman on 5/10/2006 3:26pm PT  

John Gideon contributed to this report.

A group of Arizona voters have filed a Motion for Preliminary Injunction against Sec. of State Jan Brewer to halt the purchase of electronic touch-screen voting systems in the state made by both Diebold, Inc. and Sequoia Voting Systems.

The voters announced today that the motion was being filed in time to stop the use of the Diebold TSx and Sequoia Edge II systems in the state's upcoming 2006 elections, due to security, verifiability, and disability access problems with these systems.

In addition to the litany of security issues concerning Diebold's TSx, details from the most severe one to date were just revealed publicly last Friday with more chilling details filed in the Oakland Tribune by Ian Hoffman today, the suit also contends the machines, being purchased and implemented in many Arizona counties for the first time this year, are accessible only for a small number of voters with disabilities.

Indeed, on Monday, Diebold issued a press release about new disabled-accessible features that the company is now making available for their line of touch-screen voting machines. The press release can be seen as a tacit agreement, of sorts, that those systems had not been previously accessible to all disabled voters as required by the federal Help America Vote Act (HAVA)?

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---




State Election Director Appears on Radio Show ONLY if Brad is Not Allowed to Ask Questions...
PLUS: Brad Invites AZ SoS Jan Brewer to a Public Debate in Support of our Troops and Democracy on the Homefront!
By Brad Friedman on 5/2/2006 11:15am PT  

Our Electoral System is supposed to be open and transparent and accurate. Our democracy is worth fighting for and, if you believe the politicians in D.C., worth sending our troops to fight and die in order to spread around the world. The Help America Vote Act (HAVA) amongst other things, is supposed to help disabled voters vote in private and on their own. All of these things, I believe Arizona's Secretary of State, Jan Brewer would probably agree with. And yet, she seems to have a very different belief about how to ensure the integrity of our democracy at home and how disabled voters should be treated.

Therefore, I am inviting her to a public debate on the matter. I will travel to Arizona on a date of her choosing to accommodate her schedule. Tickets can be sold to the events, and all proceeds will go towards supporting our troops from the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars for a charity which builds accessible housing for the most severely disabled of them. More on that below.

I appeared on the Jay Lawrence Show over the weekend on KTAR Newsradio 620 in Phoenix. (Link to full audio from the show at bottom of this article.)

Lawrence, and the entire station, are very rightwing. Nonetheless, to his credit, Lawrence is very concerned about the non-partisan crisis in our 2006 Electoral System vis a vis the proliferation of Electronic Voting Machines in the wake of the HAVA. This was my second time appearing on his show.

This time around, he attempted to invite his friend Jan Brewer to join us for a discussion on these important matters. Brewer has recently come under fire for her decision to bring Diebold systems into the state even after they were proven to be hackable in Leon County, Florida late last year. They were then confirmed to be even more unsecure than previously realized by an independent study [PDF] commissioned by CA Sec. of State Bruce McPherson (a big Diebold supporter himself) after the security vulnerability was discovered in Leon County.

Lawrence said during the show that he had personally discussed some of these matters with her at a speech not long ago and learned that, apparently, she's no fan of The BRAD BLOG. As Lawrence reported during the show...

I went to a speech Jan Brewer made, and brought up the question of these machines and Diebold. And Jan --- who I've known for years and love dearly --- was almost angry about you, Brad. About BRAD BLOG, about the attacks on Diebold Electronic Voting..."

Of course, Brewer, despite many previous appearances on Lawrence's show, turned down the invitation to show up and discuss the matters along with me. She did, however, send a spokesperson instead who agreed to appear only if he would be allowed to do so without being questioned by me.

So at the bottom of the hour, after I'd been on for the first part by myself with Lawrence, SoS spokesman/attorney --- and, I've since learned, State Elections Director --- Joe Kanefield came on for a few minutes while I was made to sit on hold. Kanefield to tell several untruths to Lawrence and his listeners, to suggest that I have been "spinning" these issues, and then he scrammed before I was allowed to come back on the air to question or challenge his assertions "face to face."

During his drive-by appearance, Kanefield said that he's "absolutely confident" that Arizona's untested voting systems are "rock solid". But for an idea of just some of the misinformation and untruths that he gave to Lawrence and his listeners (while I was unable to respond) consider this exchange concerning the Leon County hack, and the statement The BRAD BLOG was able to receive from the Leon County Election Director, Ion Sancho himself, in response to it...

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---




Pima County Election Director Brad Nelson Is Sorry...
Local TV News Covers Tirade, New Diebold Touch-Screen Voting Machine Controversy in State
By Brad Friedman on 3/17/2006 3:54pm PT  

Tuscon Arizona's local NBC TV news affiliate ran a story Wednesday night on the raging controversy across the state concerning Sec. of State Jan Brewer's recent agreement to allow hackable Diebold touch-screen voting machines into the state.

Their report (linked below) included a snippet of the video that The BRAD BLOG ran as an Exclusive at the end of February featuring Pima County, AZ Election Director, Brad Nelson freaking out and verbally assaulting Election Integrity Advocate, John Brakey --- on video --- during a public local precinct council meeting.

Nelson, the station reports, has apparently apologized for his tirade. Brakey is also interviewed in the new report on Pima County being "pushed into a national controversy."

Their coverage of "both sides" of the story led last Wednesday's 6 O'Clock newscast in Tuscon.

MORAL: Always bring a video camera (or audio recording device) when meeting public Elections Officials. They often don't fare well under the harsh light of actual public scrutiny, and footage of such encounters may help your local TV affiliate suddenly become interested in reporting on the story.

Report on AZ's Diebold Touch-Screen Voting Machine Controversy:

-- Video in Streaming Flash format...
-- Windows Media Player Version...

-- Our original Video Exclusive story, featuring Nelson's full tirade is here.




Pima County Election Director Brad Nelson Launches Outburst Towards Election Reform Advocate in Response to Question About New Touch-Screen Voting Machines
Letter Calls for Censure of Official as Onlookers Stunned by Encounter, Feared Violence Would Break Out...
By Brad Friedman on 2/27/2006 10:57am PT  

The battle between Election Officials and Election Integrity Advocates has been simmering and intensifying for some time. Last week, in Arizona, one such confrontation boiled over briefly into an outburst at a public meeting which was documented on video tape. In what could be a preview for the Electoral Integrity fight still to come, Pima County, Arizona's Election Director Brad Nelson went into a short tirade last Tuesday as the video camera rolled during a local Democratic precinct council meeting in the state's 26th Legislative District.

The BRAD BLOG has obtained the exclusive video of the event which reveals the Republican Nelson flying off the handle and shouting as he confronts Election Integrity Advocate, John Brakey, "nose to nose" during a question about Diebold's DRE (touch-screen) voting machines. Before Brakey was able to get to his main question concerning Nelson's plans for Logic and Accuracy testing on the machines, he was interupted by Nelson's outburst over whether or not he had, in fact, signed a contract for use of the new voting machines in the county.

Diebold's hackable touch-screen machines have been recently approved for first-time use in the state by Arizona's Secretary of State Jan Brewer.

Ironically enough --- especially in light of this new video --- Brewer herself recently referred to election integrity advocates as "anarchists" in an interview with the Arizona Star after demonstrators concerned about Diebold interrupted her re-election campaign announcement just after the first of this year.

While Nelson's confrontational rant was just short of anarchic, it certainly sent a shockwave of concern throughout the room of stunned onlookers.

One of the witnesses present, Rev. Gerry Straatemeier, described the "intimidating behavior" displayed in the incident as "completely out of line for a public official". Straatemeier was so troubled by the display that she sent an open letter to the Pima County Board of Supervisors calling for Nelson to be censured for the behavior. In the letter (posted in full at the end of this item, along with a text transcript of the event) Straatemeier says, "I really thought he was going to land a blow on Mr. Brakey and I was scared to death."

In the video, Nelson charges towards the camera at one point --- which Brakey was standing near --- coming so close that it's impossible to see anything but his chest in full camera's full frame.

Straatemeier, in her letter, suggests the tirade was an attempt to intimidate Brakey --- and other election integrity advocates --- from further inquiry into the controversial Diebold touch-screen voting equipment now coming into Arizona despite a Dept. of Homeland Security warning that their tabulator software is hackable, a non-partisan GAO report confirming the failures and loss of ballots via electronic voting, and a recent independent analysis [PDF] commissioned by the Sec. of State of California which warns about the hackable "interpreted code" used in Diebold voting machines despite a ban on such code by the federal Help America Vote Act (HAVA) guidelines.

As we reported in May of last year, Brakey has for some time been closely investigating a number of troubling anomalies in recent Arizona elections. His intensive work auditing his own precinct in Pima County, where he says evidence suggest fraud occurred in the 2004 election, was covered in detail last year by The Tuscon Weekly. That work has brought him in contact many times in the past with Nelson --- without incident apparently, until last week.

Last Tuesday, as the following video shows, the simmering frustration and growing anger roiling up between many Election Officials and Election Reformers, has finally begun to make its way to the surface and into the public eye...


Additional versions of the video...
-- Video in Streaming Flash format...
-- Video in Windows Media format...

===
UPDATE 3/17/06: Tuscon's local NBC affiliate runs a report including this video, Nelson says he is sorry for the outburts. Full report here...
===

A complete text transcript of the incident, and a copy of Straatemeier's open letter to the Pima County Board of Supervisors calling for censure of Nelson follows...

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---




Republican Jan Brewer's Re-Election Announcement Interrupted by Demonstrators
Activists Object to Her Recent Decision to Allow Unsecure, Hackable Diebold Voting Machines for Use in Virtually Every Arizona Precinct!
By Brad Friedman on 1/5/2006 4:38pm PT  

Perhaps it's a step up from "dissidents" as the AP once called them, but Election Transparency Advocates who turned out today at Arizona's Sec. of State Jan Brewer's speech to announce her re-election bid were labeled "anarchists" and "conspiracy theorists" by the woman who recently approved Diebold's flawed "AccuVote" touch-screen voting machines for use in virtually every precinct in the state.

During her speech today, according to the Arizona Star, "which boasted of the state getting rid of the last punch card ballots as part of her accomplishments since being elected in 2002 but one that never mentioned the Diebold contract" the Republican official in charge of ensuring free, fair and accurate elections in the state was repeatedly interrupted by advocates for transparent election who objected to the use of Diebold's failed machinery in the state.

Diebold's election equipment was recently shown to be hackable in a mock election test in Leon County, Florida, where the final results were completely flipped by computer security specialists. Over the summer, 20% of the same AccuVote touch-screen systems that Brewer approved on Friday, were found to have failed during a massive mock election test in California.

According to the Star, Brewer apparently dismissed the adamant concerns of the very voters she is (theoretically) in charge of serving:

Brewer, responding to media questions, called the noisy protesters "anarchists" and said they were off base.

"I don't think there is a problem with the Diebold equipment," she said. Brewer said a committee investigated the bids and the machines passed on the guidelines.

"I think that there are a lot of conspiracy theorists out there that are trying to blow this completely, totally out of proportion," she said.

In December of 2004, while members of several political parties had joined in challenging the results of Ohio's disastrously run Presidential Election, the Associated Press referred to those challengers who dared seek transparency in an utterly gamed election as "dissidents" which prompted one dubious American to reportedly ask at the time, "Great! So now we're dissidents?! What's next --- 'insurgents'?!"

No. Apparently "what's next" is that those who wish transparency and oversight and accountability in American democratic elections are now "anarchists." At least according to Arizona's shameful --- and hopefully out-going --- Secretary of State, Jan Brewer.

A useful thought for those considering running for the office of Secretary of State around the country: "It's the voters, stupid."

...CONTACT...
AZ SoS Email Contact Page: http://www.azsos.gov/info/contact_us.htm
AZ SoS Office: 602-542-4285

Campaign Website: JanBrewer.com
Campaign Email: info@janbrewer.com
Campaign Office: 602-439-3425

UPDATE 1/8/05: Brad was on Air America Phoenix today to discuss, amongst other things, the incident above on the M&M Show. The hosts, Fred and Steve McChesney, were amongst the "anarchists" and "conspiracy" --- and later called "brownshirts"! --- who made poor Jan Brewer's life so difficult. Audio available here.




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