Report from 'American Center for Voting Rights' (ACVR) Used as Political Smokescreen to Deflect from Real 2004 Election Irregularities...
Cynical, Deceptive GOP anti-Election Reform Agenda gets Underway as Baker/Carter Commission Convenes...(And apparently ACVR Knew About it Before Anybody Else! Go Figure!)
By Brad Friedman on 3/30/2005, 2:04pm PT  

It'll be little surprise to BRAD BLOG readers who are by now aware of the phony "non-partisan" "voting rights" group recently created by high-level Bush/Cheney/RNC officials, but the coordinated strategy for smoke-screening what really happened in Election 2004 now seems to be in full swing.

In an Email sent yesterday by the RNC Political Director, Mike DuHaime, members of the huge RNC Email list are pointed to the 31-page hoax report [PDF] created by the three day old Talon News-like, tax-exempt, self-proclaimed, "voting rights" group, American Center for Voting Rights (ACVR).

The ACVR is anything but "non-partisan" and their so-far known ringleaders are actually Mark F. (Thor) Hearne, the National Counsel for Bush/Cheney '04 Inc. and his partner-in-crime Jim Dyke, the RNC's Communications Director. (Click here for our Special Coverage page on the ACVR for more details.)

The ACVR report was presented by the GOP front group to Congress in a U.S. House Adminstrative Committee hearing on the Election Mess in Ohio. The then-three-day old group, masquerading as a "voting rights" organization, was the only such group called as witnesses in the hearings convened by the committee's Chairman, Rep. Bob Ney (R-OH).

As well, the creation of the ACVR seems to be smartly-timed with the creation of a supposedly "bi-partisan" blue-ribbon commission convened to study and recommend solutions for Electoral Problems in 2004. The Commission was seated in secret, announced on Thursday at 2pm, and lauded in a Press Release published by ACVR just 24 minutes later!

The commission, as announced, is set to be co-chaired by James A. Baker, III, the mastermind and architect of the 2000 Bush/Cheney strategy to ensure that votes were not counted in the state of Florida. The other co-chair is former-President Jimmy Carter who led a similar commission with respected elder statesman, former-President Gerald Ford after the 2000 Election debacle led by Baker on behalf of the Bush Family.

The RNC email, sent to believers on Tuesday, described the ACVR report as "document[ing] massive amounts of voter intimidation by Democrats and their third-party allies".

Of course, the report doesn't. Neither does it document the thousands of verified instances of real election fraud, irregularities, intimidation, disenfranchisment, miscounted and uncounted votes that occurred in Ohio and elsewhere in the last general election. Many of the real documented reports of evidence of went actually went wrong last November are contained in a 102-page report submitted to Congress after months of investigation by the minority staff of the U.S. House Judiciary Committee.

But in GOP Land, where black is white, wrong is right and where Republicans seem to have divorced themselves from reality...simply saying something makes it so. The Email and the link to the report is even now being circulated widely on Rightwing blogs and "centrist" newspapers and news services.

Here is a copy of the disingenous and misleading email sent yesterday by the RNC Political Director about the "non-partisan" report created by the RNC Communications Director and Bush/Cheney '04 Inc.'s lead attorney...

As the BRAD BLOG investigation into this bogus and cynical voter supression group has moved forward, it's become clear that the very creation of the ACVR is part of a high-level coordinated strategy to deflect from the very real and anti-democratic activities that took place on Election Day 2004. Activities which are receiving more and more attention as the irregularities of the general election are becoming more and more familiar to Americans.

The emergence of this group and their smoke-screen report occurred just in time for them to testify before the House committee.

But perhaps even more sinister, is that the emergence of this group from nowhere seems to have been well-coordinated with the newly announced Baker/Carter Blue-Ribbon Commission convened (by organizations still-unkown) to investigate and report on Election 2004 problems and solutions.

The ACVR, in fact, was the first known group to trumpet the creation of the newly seated Commission, posting a News Release in support of it just hours after the announcement of the Commission's existence hit the news wires.

The first public announcement of this Commission that we've been able to find, occurred via U.S. Newswire (a press release service) on Thursday, March 24 at 2:00pm ET.

Just 24 minutes later, on the same U.S. Newswire, a statement by Hearne lauding the commission appeared at 2:24pm ET.

The Reuters news service picked up the story 3 hours after Hearne's release, while AP and Bloomberg didn't even post the story until the next day (along with CNN, ABC and all the rest).

The evidence would seem to clearly indicate that Hearne has the inside track on this newly formed commission. None of the real Voting Rights or Election Reform groups that we've spoken with seem to have heard anything about this commission prior to Hearne's statement.

The co-chairs of the Baker/Carter Commission are former President Jimmy Carter, and current-Bush Family loyalist and long-time clean-up man, James A. Baker, III.

Baker's position as co-chair of a commission convened reportedly to improve inclusiveness in the election process, has been derided by real voting rights organization Velvet Revolution (VR) due to Baker's dilligent work assuring that votes of Americans would not be counted in Florida during the 2000 Bush/Cheney Election debacle. VR has called for the immediate removal of Baker from the commission.

(DISCLOSURE: Velvet Revolution is an umbrella organization affiliated with nearly 100 Election Reform and Voting Rights groups and was co-founded by BRAD BLOG writer/editor Brad Friedman.)

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