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RICHARD HAYES PHILLIPS! His fraudometer has been working OVERTIME!!! PLEASE K & R!

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Bill Bored Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 08:16 PM
Original message
RICHARD HAYES PHILLIPS! His fraudometer has been working OVERTIME!!! PLEASE K & R!
Edited on Sun Jul-27-08 08:21 PM by Bill Bored

http://www.opednews.com/articles/In-Defense-of-Levers-b...

In Defense of Lever Voting Machines
by Richard Hayes Phillips
July 27, 2008


-snip-

A number of unfounded attacks on lever machines have circulated lately on the internet. Most that I have seen are hopelessly uninformed rants by activists who have never seen a lever machine, much less voted on one. I regret that I must respond to them at all.

Writer #1 alleges that lever machines "produce" exit poll discrepancies. This is silly on its face. Exit polls are quite separate from the machines. Moreover, in the infamous 2004 presidential election, when the exit polls in nine of ten battleground states showed Kerry winning a much higher percentage of the vote than he was awarded in the official results, there was no discrepancy in New York State. The exit poll had Kerry winning by 17.3%, and the official results had Kerry winning by 17.3%. The same writer alleges that "programmers" "know" that lever machines are not to be trusted, and that those who do trust the lever machines are "ignorant." To the contrary, it is Writer #1 who is ignorant. Lever machines are not "programmed" at all. They are mechanical devices, not computers.

Writer #2 states that although the "lever voting machine is not quite as inscrutable a closed box as an electronic voting machine and does take more work to reprogram in bulk, such things can still be done." He gives no examples of such reprogramming of vast numbers of lever machines. I doubt that he can. They are mechanical devices, not subject to "programming" as are electronic devices. The only two vote-rigging methods he suggests "zeroing the vote incorrectly, or messing with the adder gears" are exactly what election observers check for. The writer claims that lever machines are "an invalid mechanical solution" without offering any proof. He later acknowledges that he does not have research to support his position, and then restates it anyway, claiming that "The machine count cannot be observed without taking apart the machine," and that this would have to be done while the votes are being cast, which would violate the voter's right to a secret ballot. This argument is specious. It is rather like saying that cars cannot be trusted to function properly unless somebody is looking under the hood while the car is being driven.

Writer #3 alleges that lever machines "break the chain of custody," and that they "sit between the person and their vote." This is an unfortunate misuse of terminology. The lever machine tallies are observed and recorded right at the polling place, in full public view. The chain of custody is not broken unless and until the lever machine is taken away from the polling place and removed from public scrutiny. The writer later states that "lever machines transfer voter intent to a ballot," and then the ballot is deposited by hand into a ballot box. Clearly this writer has never seen the lever machines that she so vociferously attacks. There is no ballot at all. The votes are tallied by levers and gears. The writer then raises the case of a candidate (obviously Paul Harmon) who lost a close race in Licking County, Ohio. The writer claims that Harmon "forced a look at the actual lever machines (and) when he took them apart he saw where the teeth that were supposed to poke holes in the ballot were filed down to a nub and those ballots (only on the Democratic levers) were seen as undervotes where a person did not vote at all." This writer is confusing lever machines with punch card machines. Licking County used punch cards in the 2004 election to which this writer refers. Moreover, punch card ballots are punched by hand, by the voter, not by some mechanical device hidden within the machine.

Writer #4 attacks lever machines because "voting cards" can be laminated "to make some punches almost impossible to make, while others would almost drop out, of themselves." The writer makes the same mistake regarding Dan Rather's expose of "clearly defective punch cards" in South Florida, concluding that "the history of levers is a very sullied one," and that "lever machines are entirely riggable and unreliable in their performance." Clearly this writer, as with Writer #3, does not know the difference between lever machines and punch card machines. I rest my case.

I generally make it a point not to publicly criticize election integrity advocates. But these rants are just plain wrong. I have voted on lever machines in New York State since 1972. I know what they look like, I know how they operate, and I surely can distinguish them from punch card machines. These misguided activists who are slamming lever machines without ever having seen one, and who do not even notice when the accounts they are citing are actually describing punch card machines, should just shut up before they cause further damage. They are playing into the hands of a federal government that is presently suing New York State to force us to abandon our beloved lever machines and replace them with optical scanners or electronic voting machines. We don't want or trust either of them, and we don't like being told what to do by the federal government or by people who don't know what they are talking about.
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OnTheOtherHand Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 08:56 PM
Response to Original message
1. actually, he's wrong about the exit polls
Apparently the folks who were running around saving screen shots of 2004 exit polls didn't get around to New York until it was Too Late, so they don't necessarily realize what the NY exit poll results actually were.

http://www.exitpollz.org/cnn2004epolls/Pres_epolls/NY_P...

We know from the evaluation report, and from the archived data, that there was a double-digit exit poll discrepancy in New York. Connecticut's was even larger at the precinct level. The average within-precinct error in lever machine precincts was larger than the average for precincts with any other voting method.

So, it's been grimly funny to watch certain exit poll true believers lobby to keep the levers. Maybe eventually some of them will make the connection that maybe the exit polls aren't so hot.

I think the levers performed fine in 2004 -- and Phillips is obviously right that some of their critics don't even know what technology they are talking about. (Some of the confusion may have to do with the book Votescam... never mind.)
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Bill Bored Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 11:04 PM
Response to Reply #1
4. Couldn't care less about the exit polls, but I'm glad you're on top of it.
Edited on Sun Jul-27-08 11:15 PM by Bill Bored
The exit poll true believers have their own crosses to bare, as do the op scan true believers, the open source software true believers, the "if only we could get this crap certified" true believers and most of all, the "stop upsetting the political class or they won't talk to us anymore" true believers.
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 08:25 AM
Response to Reply #1
7. New York has the greatest exit poll difference of all 50 states, per one study.
				PERCENTAGES:		Kerry	Kerry		
Bush Kerry Bush Kerry Exit Diff.
NY 2,962,567 4,314,280 39.8 57.9 62.75 -4.83


The difference is about 360,000 votes, immensely more than any other state.

more: jqjacobs.net/politics/spreadsheets.html
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OnTheOtherHand Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 03:25 PM
Response to Reply #7
11. depending on the metric, sure
One or two states have bigger percentage model errors, but extrapolating to votes, NY would be the hands-down winner.

If one uses mean WPE, then California wins on the extrapolation to votes: its WPE was similar to NY's (larger or smaller depending on the choice of WPE measure), and of course it had many more voters. But its model errors were much smaller.
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Bill Bored Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 04:33 PM
Response to Reply #11
14. NY's precincts are relatively small. Could this be why the WPE is higher?
Or has that been ruled out? I.e., smaller per-precinct samples would be less accurate.
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OnTheOtherHand Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 05:45 PM
Response to Reply #14
15. can't really explain it
The interviewers are given a sampling interval to try for 100 interviews per precinct; NY precincts generally aren't too small for that. The survey was fielded in fewer precincts than in swing states, but that in itself doesn't explain the results.

Again, I certainly agree with RHP that the levers didn't cause the exit poll discrepancy. I don't think Kerry won New York by 31 points.
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Bill Bored Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 11:07 PM
Response to Reply #15
17. How much different was the certified result than the election-night result?
If it was a lot different, which I doubt, that's the one remaining obvious explanation other than that the exit polls were wrong.
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OnTheOtherHand Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-29-08 06:15 AM
Response to Reply #17
18. ?
You mean, if Kerry were ahead by 31 on election night but absentee ballots trimmed it to 18? Something like that?

Didn't happen. I don't have a number right now.
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Bill Bored Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-02-08 04:25 PM
Response to Reply #18
23. Yes. Absentees, recanvass, etc?
Edited on Sat Aug-02-08 04:45 PM by Bill Bored
I mean we know what the margin was on election night, as reported by the MSM, don't we? But that's not the certified count.

I don't care about the absentees unless they were included in the polls.

The certified totals show a 18.6% margin using the 2-party vote or 18.1% based on the total ballots cast.
http://www.elections.state.ny.us/NYSBOE/elections/2004/...

Which of these do the exit poll true believers use and how far off are they from the exit polls? Is NY still the worst?

The undervote rate was only .77%.
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OnTheOtherHand Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-02-08 05:37 PM
Response to Reply #23
25. exit poll true believers tend to do what they want...
I'd say they generally use the total presidential vote (no undervotes) to figure the official percentages. But to figure the exit poll results, some use screen shots (which should yield the "Composite" projection, except that no one seems to have an early screen shot of NY), I think some use the "Best Geo" projection, and Freeman says it's best to use WPE (which means that he actually figures out what the exit poll result 'should' have been).

"Is NY still the worst?"

NY is definitely not the worst in raw percentages, no matter what measure one uses (at least, not for any measure I can think of). In raw percentages, the worst is either DE or VT. If one converts the percentages to estimated votes, then NY is the worst if one uses either of the projections, and CA is the worst if one uses WPE. At least I think that is all true.
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 10:49 PM
Response to Reply #11
16. Raw exit poll - actual vote % disparity was highest in NY.
Edited on Mon Jul-28-08 10:50 PM by L. Coyote
More than any other state, based on Steve Freeman's numbers.
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OnTheOtherHand Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-29-08 06:24 AM
Response to Reply #16
19. not really "raw" exit poll
Those numbers look to be from screen shots, so they would use the composite estimate, which actually factors in pre-election expectations. Nicht so raw. As I said, the story would be different using WPE, as Freeman advocates in his book (although NY would still be near the top -- behind only CA, I believe).

Not that this is relevant to the OP -- just since the subject came up.
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-29-08 09:03 AM
Response to Reply #19
20. The Freeman data is the "unadjusted" exit poll data
which is why I used the term "raw". At any rate, NY has a significant disparity
and falls at one end of the 15 states with high disparities:

15 States with % Disparity favoring Bush and StDev > 1.0
Disparity Range 3.03% - 4.83%
Mean Disparity = 3.65%
Mean Kerry Votes Reported = 48.37 %
Mean Kerry Exit Polls = 52.02%
33,982,586 voters

Freeman has a 54.64 Kerry exit % for CA:

Kerry Kerry Kerry
Exit Vote Diff.

CA 54.64 55.206 0.566

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Bill Bored Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-02-08 04:21 PM
Response to Reply #19
22. California? Don't they have a 1% statewide audit?
That's actually not so bad for a statewide election because it's a HUGE state. So how would that audit compare in terms of effectiveness to the number of exit polled precincts in the state?

It would have to be close to 250 hand counted precincts right?

So how many precincts did they exit poll?

And how many voters did they interview, and how many voter-verified paper records were counted in the 1% audit, and what kind of errors or miscounts did they find?

(Of course, the audit procedures may not have been perfect, but then neither are the exit polls.)
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OnTheOtherHand Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-02-08 05:26 PM
Response to Reply #22
24. yeah, the CA exit poll was comparatively tiny
They did exit poll interviews in 35 precincts. The archived data have 1541 complete questionnaires from those precincts, so the total N may have been something like 2500 (it's hard to tell) -- plus 858 phone interviews of convenience voters. Say 3500 tops.

Over 12 million people voted in California, so I assume the 1% manual tally counted something over 120,000 ballots. Unfortunately, Debra Bowen hadn't started cleaning up the state yet, so there's no easy way to get all the results -- but I haven't heard of any huge discrepancies.
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truckin Donating Member (500 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-14-08 01:22 PM
Response to Reply #24
26. OTOH, I am curious. What do you think of the Ohio data and
the conclusions that Richard Hayes Phillips writes about in his book "Witness to a Crime". He says that he did more research and has more evidence than anyone else and he believes that John Kerry "more likely than not" won Ohio in 2004 even thought he can't say so with absolute certainty.

Do you agree with this assessment? Apologies if you have already discussed the conclusions of this book.

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OnTheOtherHand Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-14-08 05:32 PM
Response to Reply #26
27. great question
I drafted a very long reaction to the book, but I don't know when I will find time to render it readable (the book is very complicated, so the draft turned out the same way).

I really admire Phillips' work ethic, and it's very likely that he looked at more evidence than anyone else. His central arguments -- with respect to estimating vote miscount -- aren't very solid. My DKos diary here talks at some length about the "Connally anomaly" issue. Basically, I and the quants I know don't think there is a Connally anomaly. That's huge because it accounts for more than half of his vote-change estimate.

Somewhat similarly, Phillips relies heavily on disbelief that many people might have voted for Bush and against Issue One, but other evidence (including his own evidence from Harrison County) shows that it happened. Not only does this undermine Phillips' credibility, but it makes the book very hard to read.

Some of the details are sketchy, too. For instance, at one point he asserts that two signatures on different absentee ballots match, but they really don't -- the letters are differently formed. Or, he takes an election official's asinine comment that "all of the Delaware shop owners are gay" and treats it so seriously that he makes it one subject of a public records request. Or, more consequentially, he has some weird turnout figure for Cleveland. Of course it stands to reason that in a 400-page book, some of the details will be sketchy.

I think his discussion of miscounted ballots in Cuyahoga County is pretty solid, although L Coyote might well disagree, and he's at least in the ballpark with respect to machine distribution in Franklin County.

Phillips finds lots of mismatches between pollbook counts and ballot counts; he interprets these as evidence of fraud, but it is hard to tell what they are. (Republicans cite similar results as evidence that Kerry stole Wisconsin -- which is possible, for all I know, but I don't find either one very convincing.) If the mismatches coincided with other anomalies, that would be noteworthy, but it isn't obvious to me that they do so coincide. Similarly, he finds some suspicious runs in precincts that weren't even recounted, but the results aren't obviously anomalous, so it's hard to know what to conclude. It's definitely a bad situation when the counts don't match.

I wish that Phillips had collaborated with someone else with a more skeptical bent, to winnow some of the less convincing stuff and help him figure out how to sharpen his arguments.
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-14-08 07:24 PM
Response to Reply #26
28. Very little research has been accomplished in Ohio
relative to what remains to be done. What is needed is a state-wide, precinct-level analysis. So far, only 10% of the state has been studied at the precinct-level.
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Bill Bored Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-15-08 02:12 PM
Response to Reply #28
29. Hope you know that the SoS's website has full precinct data for the whole state in Excel (2004). nt
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Bill Bored Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 03:32 PM
Response to Reply #7
12. And we're PROUD OF IT! It proves that Exit Polls are a waste of time. Keep the levers! nt
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truckin Donating Member (500 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 08:34 AM
Response to Reply #1
9. Votescam may have caused some confusion because the
Edited on Mon Jul-28-08 08:35 AM by truckin
Collier brothers investigated both lever machines (from 1970 -1974) and a punch card system (in 1982) in Florida. They filmed and referred to problems with "hanging chads" many years before the 2000 election.

However, I'm not sure how many people actually read this book; it was independently published in 1992 and had a very limited distribution.
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DCKit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 09:41 PM
Response to Original message
2. The Lesson: Republics Will Say Anything to Justify Election Fraud.
They will keep winning enough seats to obstruct Congress as long as we allow them to have a say in the voting process.
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Ellipsis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-27-08 09:53 PM
Response to Original message
3. greatest n/t
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samsingh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 01:19 AM
Response to Original message
5. kick
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truckin Donating Member (500 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 08:22 AM
Response to Original message
6. Here is a link to events that Mr. Phillips has planned.
I am going to try to attend the Wednesday, 8/6/08 event in Glens Falls, NY (near Saratoga Springs).

http://www.witnesstoacrime.com/schedule.htm
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 08:31 AM
Response to Original message
8. "activists... should just shut up..." is always bad advice!
Not to mention rude. Activists should keep there voices active, and discourse should be polite when disagreements arise.

Should Mr. Phillips have to shut up if he has ever been wrong about something? I don't think so!!
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Wilms Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 08:48 AM
Response to Reply #8
10. Except that ain't what he said.
Edited on Mon Jul-28-08 09:06 AM by Wilms
These misguided activists who are slamming lever machines without ever having seen one, and who do not even
notice when the accounts they are citing are actually describing punch card machines
, should just shut up
before they cause further damage
.


That seems reasonable. No? :shrug:

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Bill Bored Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 04:30 PM
Response to Reply #10
13. Shutting up is hard to do, but none of them can explain how levers cause exit poll discrepancies. nt
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Wilms Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-01-08 10:17 AM
Response to Reply #13
21. Hayes is right.
Edited on Fri Aug-01-08 10:18 AM by Wilms
"They are playing into the hands of a federal government that is presently suing New York State..."

And, Bill, you are right when you say they just can't shut-up.

But these "misguided activists" have wares to market...optical scan, exit polls, urban myths...whatever.

That all got drunk one night, got a tattoo, and the rest is repetition.

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Bill Bored Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-05-09 10:47 PM
Response to Original message
30. .
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WillE Donating Member (150 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-05-09 11:08 PM
Response to Original message
31. No, the NY Best GEO exit poll had Kerry winning by 31%: 65-34%
Edited on Sat Sep-05-09 11:11 PM by WillE
"The exit poll had Kerry winning by 17.3%, and the official results had Kerry winning by 17.3%"
Of course the Final NY Exit Poll was FORCED TO MATCH the bogus recorded vote.

The unadjusted exit poll had Kerry at 64.3%
The adjusted GEO poll had him at 65.1%
The 12:40 am Composite had him at 64.1%

Still at it, Bill?

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