Democratic Underground Latest Greatest Lobby Journals Search Options Help Login
Google

Humboldt Election Transparency Project Identifies Another Discrepancy In November's Reported Results

Printer-friendly format Printer-friendly format
Printer-friendly format Email this thread to a friend
Printer-friendly format Bookmark this thread
Home » Discuss » Topic Forums » Election Reform Donate to DU
 
GuvWurld Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-09-09 03:03 AM
Original message
Humboldt Election Transparency Project Identifies Another Discrepancy In November's Reported Results
Originally blogged at We Do Not Consent:
http://wedonotconsent.blogspot.com/2009/01/humboldt-ele...

Humboldt Election Transparency Project Identifies Another Discrepancy In November's Reported Results
By Dave Berman
1/8/09

This is the first of two breaking stories from the Humboldt County, CA election integrity scene on the evening of January 8...

In a message posted just before 5pm Thursday at the Democracy Counts blog, Mitch Trachtenberg and Humboldt County Registrar of Voters Carolyn Crnich made a joint statement announcing the Humboldt County Election Transparency Project (ETP) has found a second discrepancy in the results of November's election, which Crnich certified as accurate in early December, just prior to discovering the Diebold central tabulation program, GEMS, had secretly deleted 197 ballots from the total count.
Joint Statement on the November 2008 Humboldt County Election Results

Carolyn Crnich,
Humboldt County Clerk and Registrar of Voters

Mitch Trachtenberg,
Humboldt County Election Transparency Project volunteer

January 8, 2009


As we've compared the results from Humboldt County's official count with the independent count Mitch has conducted with his Ballot Browser independent vote counting software, we've found two additional issues.

First, the Election Transparency Project had scanned the front side of 63 ballots twice (once upside down); these duplicate scans will be removed from Ballot Browser's counts.

Second, the Elections office appears to have scanned 57 ballots into the Diebold GEMS system twice -- these duplicates need to be removed from the GEMS results.

The numbers from the two systems are now extremely close, though not identical.

We believe many of the remaining variations may be a result of differing vote sensitivity between the Diebold system and Ballot Browser, with Ballot Browser's totals approximately 0.05% higher than those from the Diebold system (approximately one added vote per 2,000 counted vote opportunities).

The variations that remain do not affect the outcome of any races.
That last line about no outcomes being affected, while I don't doubt it, seems almost obligatory to the point of cliche in these types of stories, like many a government-issued denial ("the US does not torture," or even, "I did not have sexual relations with that woman"). Even given the benefit of the doubt, things look very wrong and smell foul. But hey, what's a little secret vote counting among friends, right?

Since the news of the original GEMS failure, the We Do Not Consent blog has twice broken stories of the Registrar's rushed and hushed plan to replace GEMS and the county's Diebold optical scanners with similar eScans made by Hart InterCivic. Crnich told the Eureka Times-Standard "This plan that is proposed pre-dates any of the problems that were found to exist in this election."

I personally confirmed this quote with Crnich on Tuesday when she acknowledged having shared her plan in November with volunteers of the ETP, who were asked to keep it a secret.

Even prior to learning this, I had already written a series of articles and letters calling for a public process to evaluate multiple alternatives to the current Diebold system, which of course I'm thrilled we'll finally be done with. With cooperation from Parke Bostrom and others, an outreach campaign is underway aimed at getting the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors to create such a process at their January 13 meeting, when Crnich's proposal comes up for their approval. We are beginning to receive support from some perhaps unexpected places. That's the other breaking story, coming soon...

Permalink:
http://wedonotconsent.blogspot.com/2009/01/humboldt-ele...
Refresh | +8 Recommendations Printer Friendly | Permalink | Reply | Top
Wilms Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-09-09 12:09 PM
Response to Original message
1. Very disappointing news.
ETP holding secrets for Crnich is not an exercise in trust-building I care to see.

The fact that each of those machines, Diebold's and Trachtenberg's have an error rate is a given. Everything does.

In fact the very mistakes leading to the inaccurate recheck is a vulnerability of the humans operating the system. They could have hand-counted those ballots twice just as easily as they twice scanned them.

Very disappointing news.
Printer Friendly | Permalink | Reply | Top
 
GuvWurld Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-09-09 04:37 PM
Response to Original message
2. Eureka Times-Standard now has this as "breaking news"
http://www.times-standard.com/ci_11415913

The Times-Standard
Posted: 01/09/2009 02:04:53 PM PST

About a month after discovering that a software error resulted in about 200 ballots disappearing from Humboldt County's final results, County Registrar of Voters Carolyn Crnich announced Thursday that another error has been discovered.

Crnich said Friday that the newly discovered error resulted in 57 ballots from the Petrolia area being counted twice in the county's final results. The discrepancy did not affect any of the election's outcomes, according to Crnich.

It remains unclear if the discrepancy was the result of operator error, related to the previously discovered software bug or an entirely different software problem.

All information concerning the double-counted ballots has been forwarded on to California Secretary of State Debra Bowen's Office for review, Crnich said.
Printer Friendly | Permalink | Reply | Top
 
Wilms Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-18-09 11:09 PM
Response to Original message
3. .
Printer Friendly | Permalink | Reply | Top
 
WillYourVoteBCounted Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-19-09 06:13 PM
Response to Original message
4. Tell us more about Trachtenberg system
is this something we could go to at the precinct level, replace other scanners?

Printer Friendly | Permalink | Reply | Top
 
kster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-20-09 12:13 AM
Response to Original message
5. AIG brought to you by SECRET VOTE COUNTING MACHINES
Come on Gals and Guys, if we had Hand Counted Paper Ballots at the Precicnt, There would be no AIG.

Think about it................................... :)
Printer Friendly | Permalink | Reply | Top
 
BeFree Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-25-09 11:23 PM
Response to Original message
6. Hey Guv
Way to go Dude! Good work. I always had a feeling you guys would break something big, and you did.
Printer Friendly | Permalink | Reply | Top
 
DU AdBot (1000+ posts) Click to send private message to this author Click to view 
this author's profile Click to add 
this author to your buddy list Click to add 
this author to your Ignore list Tue Sep 16th 2014, 11:03 AM
Response to Original message
Advertisements [?]
 Top

Home » Discuss » Topic Forums » Election Reform Donate to DU

Powered by DCForum+ Version 1.1 Copyright 1997-2002 DCScripts.com
Software has been extensively modified by the DU administrators


Important Notices: By participating on this discussion board, visitors agree to abide by the rules outlined on our Rules page. Messages posted on the Democratic Underground Discussion Forums are the opinions of the individuals who post them, and do not necessarily represent the opinions of Democratic Underground, LLC.

Home  |  Discussion Forums  |  Journals |  Store  |  Donate

About DU  |  Contact Us  |  Privacy Policy

Got a message for Democratic Underground? Click here to send us a message.

© 2001 - 2011 Democratic Underground, LLC