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Bowen plans full review of voting machines (Debra Bowen)

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cascadiance Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-05-07 11:15 AM
Original message
Bowen plans full review of voting machines (Debra Bowen)
Edited on Fri Jan-05-07 11:21 AM by calipendence
Hey folks! Check out Debra Bowen's jumping right up to the plate to go after all of the abuses by the evoting machines! She's not wasting any time talking about the things we've been complaining about for the last few years in California. Certain machines may get decertified, whether we spent a lot of money or not on them. She's going to go after "sleepovers"! She's going to go after excessive charges for hand recounts! She's going to ensure we have a proper paper record of ballots too! Her election is the best local election result for Californians in 2006 statewide!

From:
http://www.venturacountystar.com/vcs/opinion/article/0,...

Bowen plans full review of voting machines

By Thomas D. Elias
January 5, 2007

An anxious time is just about to begin for the two interest groups that have done more than anyone else in recent years to make Californians feel uncertain about the integrity of their elections.

Those two groups: The makers of electronic voting machines of various types, many of whose devices have been shown to be both hackable and problematic in other ways. And county voter registrars who bought those machines largely with many millions of dollars derived from the federal Help America Vote Act, which was more concerned about speed of conversion to new technologies than whether they were trustworthy.

Now comes Democrat Debra Bowen, elected last fall and just now about to move into her new job as secretary of state, California's top elections officer. As a state senator from Marina del Rey for the last eight years, Bowen was the Legislature's leading skeptic of new-fangled voting machines and their bells and whistles.

Her appointed predecessor and defeated autumn opponent, the former Republican state Sen. Bruce McPherson of Santa Cruz, was anything but a skeptic, certifying virtually any machine any county registrar wanted to buy and imposing questionable checks on their performance.

Those easygoing days are over for machine makers like Diebold Election Systems, Election Systems & Software, Sequoia Voting Systems and others, and for the registrars who bought their products, often under tight federal deadlines to do something.

"We are going to do a top to bottom review of every voting system in use anywhere in California," Bowen said in an interview. "Yes, I would consider decertifying machines that my predecessor approved. Unfortunately, we've spent a lot of money on equipment that's not ready for prime time. Any Fortune 500 company would have sent those machines back with a letter saying they just don't do what they're supposed to."

...
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-05-07 11:18 AM
Response to Original message
1. DEBRA!
:woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo:
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Peace Patriot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-05-07 11:20 AM
Response to Original message
2. Typo: correct 2004 to 2006, at end of first paragraph. Go, Debra! n/t
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cascadiance Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-05-07 11:21 AM
Response to Reply #2
3. Hah! I stand corrected! Gladly fixed!
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xxqqqzme Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-05-07 11:25 AM
Response to Original message
4. That's why she ran for SoS
and why she was elected. I stayed up on election night watching her numbers - I went to bed when I knew she had a lead that mcpherson could not overcome.

GO DEBRA GO! Show the rest of the country how it is done.
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Benhurst Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-05-07 11:39 AM
Response to Original message
5. Recommended #2
:bounce:
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Peace Patriot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-05-07 11:41 AM
Response to Original message
6. The columnist, Thomas Elias, is quite knowledgeable. He mentions many of
the problems that we election reformists know about it, and what Bowen has pledged to do to remedy them. One interesting and VERY IMPORTANT matter--which I am so glad to see Bowen working on--the cost and difficulty of recounts.

"The new elections chief also will be going to the Legislature with a plan to make recounts easier in close races or where there have been machine problems. Today, the preliminary loser in any vote must pledge to pay all costs if a recount doesn't overturn the preliminary conclusion. This can cost upward of $50,000 in a congressional race, and most candidates don't have that much money left after Election Day. So there have been no recounts in California since the state set a requirement for voting machines to produce recountable paper trails at all elections.

"Bowen recognizes that a paper trail is worthless unless it's usable. 'I think $50,000 to do a recount where it might be merited is a tiny price to pay for democracy and to keep people from saying "forget about the election, they'll never count our votes anyway." So she'll support at least a partial public subsidy of recounts, where they appear justified."

-----

We have a fairly decent paper trail requirement in California. What's important are audits and recounts.

-----

Never mentioned in corporate news monopoly articles--and not in this one: The machines are run on TRADE SECRET, PROPRIETARY programming code, owned and controlled by far rightwing Bushite corporations. In this circumstance, a 100% audit should have been required from the beginning, and should be required now--or at least, say, the 55% audit that Venezuela does of all electronic voting machine results. Know how much we do in California? 1%! And that's the highest in the country. This is OUTRAGEOUS! And many states have ZERO audit!

Absentee Ballot voters, raise the flag! Demand hand-counting of Absentee Ballot votes (50% of the votes in CA!), and it will spread. Don't pay Diebold to count your votes--pay your mother! (There's a slogan!)

----

It is absolutely wonderful to have a smart woman like Debra Bowen on the case! I don't agree with her on some policy matters, but one thing I do know--she has been a strong advocate of open government her entire career, and she is FOR the voter, not the corporate vote counter. That is an enormous change for the better! Like night and day!
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msongs Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-05-07 11:45 AM
Response to Original message
7. a dem I voted for is doing the job for which I voted....about time eh?
first dump the proprietary code,

then dump the machines and go back to paper ballots counted at the precinct level.

too many to count?

then make smaller precincts.

this state has millions to waste brown nosing der groppenfuhrer, we ought have a few bucks for honest elections.

Msongs
www.msongs.com
batik and digital art
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Uncle Joe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-05-07 11:59 AM
Response to Original message
8. Thanks for the post calipendence
Kicked and recommended
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NV Whino Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-05-07 12:19 PM
Response to Original message
9. Go Debra!
What a breath of fresh air.
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-05-07 01:10 PM
Response to Original message
10. kick
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cascadiance Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-05-07 01:17 PM
Response to Original message
11. Here's an article on McPherson...
Where it sounds like he's a bit unclear on his future plans, other than he's not likely to run for the State Assembly again with only two years left with term limits.

He is talking her about his "next job to focus on business or education, especially if they coincide with government or social services. Leaders of a university have called him, he said, and he has been invited to oversee elections in foreign countries. So far, he hasn't made any commitments."

http://www.santacruzsentinel.com/archive/2007/January/0...

I wonder if Mexico or Diebold have been calling him! Hey Bruce, the revolving door awaits you! :)
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-05-07 01:24 PM
Response to Original message
12. Sounds as if she's working not only for her constituents, but also for all other Americans
who want to see our system running clean. She's got real courage to dive into this life-saving work for our country.

Too bad Republicans have never been concerned that the crooked method is simply WRONG.
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slackmaster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-05-07 01:27 PM
Response to Original message
13. Sounds like a good start
K&R
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VegasWolf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-05-07 01:59 PM
Response to Original message
14. Excellent! These efforts will be a huge boost for real democracy! nt
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In Truth We Trust Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-05-07 10:31 PM
Response to Original message
15. K&R Hand Counted Paper Ballots NOW! Nothing More Nothing Less!
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Wilms Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-06-07 02:17 AM
Response to Original message
16. Nice move, Debra. n/t
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lonestarnot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-06-07 11:44 AM
Response to Original message
17. Woooodamnwhoooo!
Yessssssssssssss!
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