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Monopoly Looms on Electronic Voting-Single Company Poised To Monopolized 7% Of Nations Votes [View All]

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kpete Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 08:23 PM
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Monopoly Looms on Electronic Voting-Single Company Poised To Monopolized 7% Of Nations Votes
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Monopoly Looms on Electronic Voting

By Lisa Pease
September 16, 2009

While weve been concentrating on the healthcare debate, the economy and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, another story important to American democracy has gotten inadequate attention: a single company is poised to monopolize the counting of over 75 percent of the nations votes.

Earlier this month, Election Systems & Software (ES&S), which counted roughly 50 percent of the ballots in the last four major U.S. elections, purchased Diebolds electronic voting unit, Premier Election Solutions, which controls roughly a third of the voting machine market.

The merger of these two companies has set off alarm bells, and not just in the voting activist community.

Hart InterCivic, a competitor in the voting machine market, has filed a lawsuit seeking a federal court injunction to block the merger as an antitrust violation and a threat to the integrity of the voting process in the United States.

Sen. Charles Schumer, D-New York, wrote Attorney General Eric Holder requesting that the Antitrust Division review the deal for possible violations. Schumers letter referenced a Congressional Research Service report from 2003 which indicated that having a diversity of systems and vendors might decrease the likelihood of widespread election fraud.

The cloistered nature of the electronic voting industry also is underscored by the fact that Diebold Election Systems was once run by Bob Urosevich, who in 1979 along with his brother Todd founded American Information Systems, which was later renamed ES&S.

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