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DoYouEverWonder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-28-06 08:09 AM
Original message
Federal officials are investigating Smartmatic connection to Hugo Chavez
Edited on Sat Oct-28-06 08:10 AM by DoYouEverWonder
U.S. digs for vote-machine links to Hugo Chvez

Oct. 28, 2006

In the debate about the reliability of electronic voting technology, the South Florida parent company of one of the nation's leading suppliers of touch-screen voting machines is drawing special scrutiny from the U.S. government.

Federal officials are investigating whether Smartmatic, owner of Oakland, Calif.-based Sequoia Voting Systems, is secretly controlled by Venezuelan President Hugo Chvez, according to two people familiar with the probe.

<snip>

Concerns about Smartmatic are keen on the eve of the Nov. 7 election, given fears that someone with unauthorized access to the electronic system could create electoral chaos. Some critics believe that if the Venezuelan government is involved, Smartmatic could be a ''Trojan horse'' designed to advance Chavez's anti-American agenda.

<snip>

The founders and principal owners of Smartmatic are Antonio Mugica and Alfredo Anzola. They are also the founders and owners of Bizta -- the company the Venezuelan government once partly owned.

Though both men come from wealthy families, a decidedly anti-Chvez sector, their reluctance to provide specific details about ownership has continued to fuel suspicions about the company.

http://www.miami.com/mld/miamiherald/news/15869919.htm

Nice spin. If the DEMS win it's because Chavez manipulatedthe results. Too bad Smartmatic owners are anti-Chavez Venezuelans, who probably already maniplated our elecitons and helped Bush win in 2004.

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pnorman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-28-06 08:19 AM
Response to Original message
1. They're concerned that the vote-stealing in the contry
might fall into "unfriendly" hands?

pnorman
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Eric J in MN Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-28-06 08:35 AM
Response to Original message
2. OK, to avoid the risk of having our elections controlled by...
...Venezuala, let's switch to voting on paper ballots and publicly hand-counting every ballot.

If electronic voting machines can be manipulated by Venezualan owners to control the results of our elections, then electronic voting machines can also be manipulated by American owners to control the results.

The problem is using electronic voting machines in the first place, not whether the company owners are Venezulan or American.
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leftchick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-28-06 08:38 AM
Response to Original message
3. "Chavez's anti-American agenda"???
:rofl:

Chavez LOVES America! He HATES the chimp! And with good reason! When the hell will the press get it right?
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Eric J in MN Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-28-06 08:38 AM
Response to Original message
4. The silver lining is that...
...if Democrats do win big on November 7, 2006, then maybe articles like this will promote right-wing suspicions that electronic voting machines are awful.

Then there may be enough support for counting every ballot publicly by hand.
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papau Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-28-06 09:04 AM
Response to Original message
5. Do media folks ever research GOP PR blurbs - Pres Carter "ok'd" Smartmatic E voting
Does anybody notice that the Venezuelan voting machine choice have paper trails with audits and were reviewed and approved by Carter - while for the US Market these fellows needed a new company and a new machine (Sequoia's electronic voting machines) so they could be sold to GOP standards - the standards that allow election theft?


http://www.miami.com/mld/miamiherald/news/15869919.htm
U.S. digs for vote-machine links to Hugo ChvezBY ALFONSO CHARDY

In the debate on the reliability of electronic voting technology, the South Florida parent company of one of the nation's leading suppliers of touch-screen voting machines is drawing special scrutiny from the U.S. government.

Federal officials are investigating whether Smartmatic, owner of Oakland, Calif.-based Sequoia Voting Systems, is secretly controlled by Venezuelan President Hugo Chvez, according to two people familiar with the probe.

In July, a Treasury Department spokeswoman disclosed that a Treasury-led panel had contacted Smartmatic, and a company representative said his firm was ''in discussions'' with the panel. At the time, those discussions were informal. The government has now upgraded to a formal investigation, the two sources said.

Sequoia's electronic voting machines operate in 17 states. In Florida, the machines are used in four counties: Palm Beach, Indian River, Pinellas and Hillsborough.<snip>


http://news.com.com/Global+lessons+in+e-voting/2009-100...




Type: The integrated voting device has a small touch screen and a receipt printer.
Usage: Almost the entire country voted on the device for an Aug. 15 referendum on the ouster of President Chavez.
Addressing distrust: Paper receipts were kept by polling stations for random audits.
Addressing multiple votes: A voter's fingerprint is transmitted to a national database, ensuring that each person votes only once.
Still at issue: The voting process still lacks adequate checks on system integrity.

"The Carter Center concludes that the automated machines worked well and the voting results do reflect the will of the people," former U.S. President Jimmy Carter wrote after his organization observed Venezuelan voting and audited a results sample from the Aug. 15 referendum to recall President Hugo Rafael Chavez.


THE CARTER CENTER:
WAGING PEACE THROUGH ELECTIONS

Since 1989, The Carter Center has observed 65 elections in 26 countries (listed at right). Missions are undertaken only upon the invitation or consent of all major parties to an election.

Observers bring a reputation for impartiality, and their presence helps to reassure voters that they can safely and secretly cast their ballots. As the eyes and ears of the international community, observers also help deter fraud. Carter Center observation projects generally begin well in advance of elections. Observer teams are often in a country to assess registration exercises and political campaigns. During elections, the observers monitor voting and counting and remain after the ballots have been counted to monitor vote tabulation.

Before an election, Carter Center observers meet with election officials and party leaders to discuss electoral procedures. Sometimes they mediate election disputes and help all sides to agree on election rules. During this phase, assessments are made of the voter registration process, voter education efforts, and the fairness of the campaign "field of play."

On election day, observers are dispatched with systematic survey forms to urban and rural areas to witness preparations at poll openings, voting, and vote counting to try to determine whether the vote was secret and fair at the sites they visited. In addition to talking with polling site officials and party witnesses, observers talk with citizens and note any complaints.

After polls close, delegates observe the counting of votes and the delivery of ballot boxes. Then, the entire delegation meets to discuss its observations and issue a statement of findings as a group. If necessary, qualified high-level observers can serve as mediators to facilitate the peaceful transfer of power.

Once election results are confirmed, The Carter Center sometimes remains engaged in a country through the inauguration of a new president and beyond, particularly in countries where the Center has had or anticipates a long-term involvement. Post-election activities to strengthen people's confidence in their democratic institutions can take many forms, and in the past, have included projects to protect and promote human rights, build civil society, refine the democratic electoral process, and address economic or development issues.

Carter Center Election Reports http://www.cartercenter.org/peace/democracy/observed.ht...

Venezuela

28 Jun 2005

Report: The Carter Center and the Peacebuilding Process in Venezuela
June 2002 - February 2005 (English and Spanish). http://www.cartercenter.org/news/documents/doc2139.html

25 Feb 2005

Observacion del Referendo Revocatorio Presidencial en Venezuela: Informe Integral (PDF)

Observacion del Referendo Revocatorio Presidencial en Venezuela: Informe Integral. Serie de Reportajes Especiales (en Espanol, PDF). http://www.cartercenter.org/documents/2021.pdf

25 Feb 2005 The Venezuela Presidential Recall Referendum: Final Reports

An overview of the Carter Center's observation of the 2004 Venezuela presidential recall referendum, with links to three final reports (in English and Spanish). http://www.cartercenter.org/news/documents/doc2023.html

25 Feb 2005

El Centro Carter y el Proceso de Construccion de Paz en Venezuela, Junio 2002 - Febrero 2005: Resumen (PDF)

El Centro Carter y el Proceso de Construccion de Paz en Venezuela, Junio 2002 - Febrero 2005: Resumen (en Espanol, PDF). Serie de Reportajes Especiales, el Centro Carter. http://www.cartercenter.org/documents/2022.pdf

25 Feb 2005

Observing the Venezuela Presidential Recall Referendum: Comprehensive Report (PDF)

Comprehensive report of The Carter Center's observation of the 2004 Venezuela presidential recall referendum. (English, PDF) http://www.cartercenter.org/documents/2020.pdf


1 Feb 2005

El Centro Carter y el Proceso de Construccion de Paz en Venezuela, Junio 2002 - Febrero 2005

El Centro Carter y el Proceso de Construccion de Paz en Venezuela, Junio 2002 - Febrero 2005, Resumen (Espanol). http://www.cartercenter.org/documents/2137.pdf


1 Feb 2005

The Carter Center and the Peacebuilding Process in Venezuela, June 2002 - February 2005

The Carter Center and the Peacebuilding Process in Venezuela, June 2002 - February 2005, Summary (PDF). http://www.cartercenter.org/documents/2138.pdf


30 Sep 2004

Executive Summary of Comprehensive Report: 2004 Venezuela Elections (PDF)

This is the executive summary of the comprehensive report of the Carter Center's observation of the signature collection, verification, reparos, and the recall referendum in Venezuela. As the formal appeals and dispute adjudication process is still ongoing, we will issue an addendum to this report if needed at the conclusion of these formal appeals. http://www.cartercenter.org/documents/1837.pdf

30 Sep 2004

Resumen Ejecutivo del Informe Comprehensivo (PDF)

El presente informe es un resumen ejecutivo del informe final detallado sobre la observacin del Centro Carter en la recoleccin de firmas, su verificacin, los reparos y el propio revocatorio. Considerando que hay apelaciones formales presentadas y que existe un proceso controversial en marcha, publicaremos un addendum al presente informe si resultare necesario una vez que concluyan las apelaciones formales. http://www.cartercenter.org/documents/1839.pdf

16 Sep 2004

Report on an Analysis of the Representativeness of the Second Audit Sample, and the Correlation between Petition Signers and the Yes Vote in the Aug. 15, 2004, Presidential Recall Referendum

This study was conducted by The Carter Center and confirmed by the OAS in response to a written request from Sumate presented to The Carter Center Sept. 7, 2004. Sumate asked that The Carter Center evaluate a study performed by Professors Ricardo Hausmann and Roberto Rigobon. http://www.cartercenter.org/documents/1834.pdf


16 Sep 2004

Informe sobre un anlisis de la representatividad del segundo examen de auditora, y la correlacin entre los firmantes de la peticin y el voto por el SI en el referendo de revocatoria presidencial

El presente estudio fue llevado a cabo por el Centro Carter y lo confirm la OEA, en respuesta a un pedido escrito que Sumate present al Centro el 7 de septiembre de 2004. Sumate solicit que el Centro Carter evaluara un estudio efectuado por los profesores Ricardo Hausmann y Roberto Rigobon. http://www.cartercenter.org/documents/1833.pdf

5 Sep 2004

The Carter Center Statement About Statistical Assessment of the Venezuela Referendum Results (English and Spanish)

Upon receiving complains from the opposition Coordinadora Democrtica about suspected irregularities in the voting results recorded in the machine, specifically, a pattern of tied results among two or three machines in the same voting tables, The Carter Center consulted with several statisticians. http://www.cartercenter.org/news/documents/doc1821.html


26 Aug 2004

Audit of the Results of the Presidential Recall Referendum in Venezuela (PDF), Aug. 26, 2004

Final Report: Audit of the Results of the Presidential Recall Referendum in Venezuela (PDF), Aug. 26, 2004 http://www.cartercenter.org/documents/1820.pdf

26 Aug 2004

El Informe Final De La Auditoria Del Referendum En Venezuela (PDF), Aug. 26, 2004

Auditoria de Resultados, Proceso de Referendum Revocatorio Presidencial Venezuela (Spanish version, PDF). http://www.cartercenter.org/documents/1817.pdf

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spoony Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-28-06 10:20 AM
Response to Original message
6. "probably already manipulated our elections"
Edited on Sat Oct-28-06 10:23 AM by spoony
Is that really the sort of thing you can say "probably" about? Is there anything to point to that?

edit: what I mean is, without something concrete that isn't any more reasonable than the government is for figuring they'll steal votes at the behest of Chavez.
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