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WOW! ** CA's Sen Bowen Rips rethug SoS over Diebold Certification ** (3/1)

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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-01-06 09:18 PM
Original message
WOW! ** CA's Sen Bowen Rips rethug SoS over Diebold Certification ** (3/1)
Edited on Wed Mar-01-06 09:49 PM by nicknameless
This is a bit long, but a fantastic read.
Check out the timeline and all of the identified Diebold flaws being ignored by McPherson.

From CA State Senator Debra Bowen's office:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 1, 2006

WHERES THE HEARING ON THE DIEBOLD SECURITY FLAWS DISCOVERED BY THE SECRETARY OF STATE?


NEW REPORT FROM DIEBOLD-HIRED TESTING COMPANY REVEALS
SECURITY FLAWS IN MACHINES CERTIFIED BY SECRETARY OF STATE


BOWEN CRITICIZES SECRETARYS REFUSAL TO PUBLICLY VETT TWO SOS-REQUESTED REPORTS
IDENTIFYING SECURITY FLAWS IN DIEBOLD MACHINES


SACRAMENTO As the Secretary of State held a hearing today on whether voting systems from four manufacturers should be certified for use in California, Senator Debra Bowen (D-Redondo Beach), the chairwoman of the Senate Elections, Reapportionment & Constitutional Amendments Committee, criticized the Secretarys continuing refusal to hold a public hearing on the security flaws that have been identified in the Diebold systems he re-certified for use on February 17.

The Secretary cant be allowed to have it both ways, said Bowen. He laid out a process for dealing with the Diebold re-certification request, one that people who are concerned about the reliability and accuracy of these machines relied on, and then he ignored it. He says hes for public hearings and a public process, yet he continually changed the process he established and refused to release critical information about the flaws in the Diebold machines until after he decided to re-certify them.

Todays hearing involved the proposed certifications of voting systems from ES&S, Hart InterCivic, Sequoia, and Populex. The Secretary of State did hold a hearing on the Diebold re-certification request on November 21, 2005. However, that hearing was held before the February 17, 2006, release of a report from the Secretarys Voting Systems Technology Assessment Advisory Board (VSTAAB) that identified 16 security flaws in the Diebold machines, and before the February 28, 2006, release of a report from the independent testing authorities (ITA) that identified three security flaws in the Diebold machines and recommended code changes.

The Secretary has continued to say one thing and then do another on this certification process, which does nothing but undermine the voters confidence, continued Bowen. In August, he said he wouldnt certify any voting system that didnt meet all of the federal standards, yet the Diebold machines he re-certified in February dont meet the federal standards. In December, he said he wouldnt act on Diebolds re-certification request until he heard back from the ITA, yet he approved the Diebold machines in February without waiting for the ITAs report on the Diebold memory cards.

The Secretary released the ITA report on the Diebold memory cards on Tuesday, February 28. The report, which was conducted by CIBER and was dated February 23, 2006, notes in part:

Certain vulnerabilities in this report may require a portion of the code to be modified in order to correct the vulnerabilities identified. To ensure that the efforts to correct vulnerabilities do not introduce new vulnerabilities, CIBER strongly recommends retesting of the remediated code prior to its migration to a production environment.

Whats not clear is whether the Secretary is now going to require Diebold to modify its equipment and re-test it to address the issues raised by the ITA report, or whether hes going to continue to ignore the security flaws identified by this report and the report put out by his own staff, continued Bowen. The Secretarys decision to rely on elections officials and volunteer poll workers in hundreds of polling places around the state to manually override the embedded security flaws in these machines concerns me and should concern anyone who cares about the reliability, the accuracy, and the integrity of Californias elections.



Following is a timeline of the important dates and actions related to the Secretary of States decision to re-certify the Diebold voting systems:

August 3, 2005 Secretary McPherson announces, All systems certified by the Secretary of States Office shall comply with the standards and requirements of the Help America Vote Act of 2002 (HAVA) , including all requirements, standards and regulations promulgated pursuant to authority derived from HAVA, as well as complying with all other applicable requirements and standards explicit in federal and state laws, and any requirements, standards and regulations deriving authority from federal and state laws. This means all systems certified for use in California have to comply with the 2002 Voting System Standards adopted by the Federal Election Commission (FEC) and the Election Assistance Commission (EAC) that ban the certification of voting machines that contain interpreted code.

October 3, 2005 The Diebold system is federal qualified and is assigned NASED number N-1-06-22-22-002. However, as the Secretary notes on December 20, this review and qualification failed to look at the machines memory cards.

November 21, 2005 Secretary McPherson conducts a public hearing on Diebolds application to have its voting systems re-certified for use in California. Although the Secretarys staff report recommends re-certifying the machines, no decision on re-certification is reached due in part to concerns raised during the hearing.

December 20, 2005 Secretary McPherson announces he wont consider approving the Diebold systems until the ITA acts on his request to review the Diebold memory cards. He states, During a thorough review of the application for the Diebold system currently pending certification, we have determined that there is sufficient cause for additional federal evaluation. I have consistently stated that I will not certify any system for use in California unless it meets the most stringent voting system requirements. Attached to his statement is a letter from the chief of the Secretarys Elections Division to Diebold stating, We require this additional review before proceeding with further consideration of your application for certification in California. Once we have received a report from the federal ITA adequately analyzing this source code, in addition to the technical and operational specifications relating to the memory card and interpreter, we will expeditiously proceed with our comprehensive review of your application.

January 18, 2006 The Secretary of States staff, in a hearing of the Senate Elections, Reapportionment & Constitutional Amendments Committee, publicly announces that the state process for certifying voting machines cant begin until the federal process is completed. The Secretary of States staff notes it wont begin the process of determining whether the Diebold machines should be re-certified until the ITA responds to the Secretarys December 20, 2005, request for further testing.

February 17, 2006 Secretary McPherson announces that he has re-certified the Diebold machines despite the fact that the ITA report he requested in December hasnt been completed. The Secretary explains he made his decision after receiving a yet-to-be-released report conducted by his own Voting Systems Technology Assessment Advisory Board (VSTAAB).

February 17, 2006 After issuing his certification order, Secretary McPherson releases the VSTAAB report, which is dated February 14, 2006. Prior to its release, there was no public notice that such a report was being developed or would be the basis for the Secretarys decision. The report concludes there are a minimum of 16 security flaws in the Diebold machines, noting, These bugs would have no effect at all in the absence of deliberate tampering, and would not be discovered by any amount of functionality testing; but they could allow an attacker to completely control the behavior of the . An attacker could change vote totals, modify reports, change the names of candidates, change the races being voted on, or insert his own code into the running firmware of the machine. The report also notes the Diebold machines rely on interpreted code, stating, Interpreted code in general is prohibited by the 2002 FEC Voluntary Voting System Standards, and also by the successor standard, the EACs Voluntary Voting System Guidelines due to take effect in two years. In order for the Diebold software architecture to be in compliance, it would appear that either the AccuBasic language and interpreter have to be removed, or the standard will have to be changed. The FEC standards that ban the use of interpreted code are the very standards the Secretary pledged to follow on August 3, 2005.

February 22, 2006 Senator Bowen writes to Secretary McPherson, calling on him to reverse his February 17 decision to re-certify the machines. The letter states the Secretarys decision is: 1) Contrary to his August 3, 2005, promise not to certify machines that dont comply with all federal guidelines and regulations; 2) Contrary to his December 20 statement to wait for the ITA to act; 3) Contrary to state law requiring any machine thats certified for use in the state to also be federally certified (although technically the Diebold machines have a federal certification number from October 3, 2005, the Secretary himself pointed out on December 20, 2005, that the certification didnt review the Diebold memory cards, which is why the Secretary sent them back for review); 4) Contrary to the state law requiring all direct recording electronic voting machines to have an accessible voter verified paper trail that provides a visually-impaired voter with an audio read-back of whats recorded on the paper trail; and 5) Out of compliance with the law requiring a public hearing on a voting system because the report upon which the Secretarys approval was based wasnt prepared or released until nearly three months after the original public hearing.

February 28, 2006 Secretary McPherson releases the ITA report dated February 23, 2006 from CIBER on the Diebold memory cards. The report notes the Diebold system uses interpreted code something banned by the FEC standards the Secretary said on August 3, 2005, he would follow. The report also identifies at least three security vulnerabilities and a number of requirement violations. The report notes, Certain vulnerabilities in this report may require a portion of the code to be modified in order to correct the vulnerabilities identified. To ensure that the efforts to correct vulnerabilities do not introduce new vulnerabilities, CIBER strongly recommends retesting of the remediated code prior to its migration to a production environment. The report also states, Error handling appears to be adequate for a system that executes in a perfect running environment. However, the interpreters do not have the proper degree of effort checking to identify or recover from key failures in a damaged, altered or dysfunctional environment. Our reasoning for increasing the security on the code is because the object code traverses potentially untrustworthy hands . . . Since the object code is on the memory cards being distributed, it is a prime target for potential tampering."


How can voters possibly have confidence when this rethug SoS demonstrates such overwhelming disregard, for law, policy, voters, public opinion, and past promises, right in our faces?

This release deserves to be bold-faced in its entirety, with all of McPherson's flip-flops and contradictions and violations.
It's an excellent read.
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Kerry fan Donating Member (351 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-01-06 09:26 PM
Response to Original message
1. How about Heller?
Has there been any news on him?
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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-01-06 09:38 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. I haven't heard more than what's been posted on DU.
:shrug:

Surely hoping the very best for him.
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Kerry fan Donating Member (351 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-01-06 10:00 PM
Response to Reply #2
4. So do I.
He deserves a medal, not an indictment.
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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-01-06 10:59 PM
Response to Reply #4
9. He sure does.
It's just a blatant SLAPP suit.
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SnoopDog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-02-06 12:02 AM
Response to Reply #1
14. You mean Heller of Nevada?
No matter what, voter verified paper trail means nothing - it is who counts the votes that counts.
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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-02-06 12:18 AM
Response to Reply #14
19. Steve Heller
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stevietheman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-01-06 09:56 PM
Response to Original message
3. Got link? I'd like to forward this. n/t
n/t
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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-01-06 10:10 PM
Response to Reply #3
5. I don't have. It was sent to me, with no link included.
:shrug:

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Wilms Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-02-06 02:19 AM
Response to Reply #3
25. Here ya go.
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stevietheman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-02-06 10:48 AM
Response to Reply #25
27. Thanks! n/t
n/t
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mom cat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-01-06 10:10 PM
Response to Original message
6. Bowen for Govenor!
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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-01-06 10:12 PM
Response to Reply #6
7. She's amazing. We need to clone her.
:)
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gristy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-02-06 12:01 AM
Response to Reply #6
13. She's running for CA Secretary of State
She gets it. Donate to her campaign today!

http://www.debrabowen.com/
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kster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-01-06 10:51 PM
Response to Original message
8. kick..nt
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Amaryllis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-01-06 11:00 PM
Response to Original message
10. K and R for CA and for all of us!
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Kurovski Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-01-06 11:38 PM
Response to Original message
11. K&R
The hits just keep on coming.
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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-01-06 11:52 PM
Response to Reply #11
12. It's so flipping corrupt.
Time for legal action.
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Wilms Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-02-06 12:07 AM
Response to Reply #12
15. The blueprint for legal action is in the OP. n/t
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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-02-06 12:12 AM
Response to Reply #15
17. Amazing, isn't it.
... Where's GuvWurld? ;)
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Kurovski Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-02-06 12:10 AM
Response to Reply #12
16. Who told you about me? Are you having me arrested?!
Just kidding...actually, legal action would have been good a few years ago.

It's unreal to think that so many still have trouble accepting the evidence on election fraud.
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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-02-06 12:17 AM
Response to Reply #16
18. Probably should, but let's go after McPherson for now ;)
I can't believe how this crime wave has snowballed.
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autorank Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-02-06 12:44 AM
Response to Reply #11
21. Kurovoski, Nicknameless...how about this...precient...
Edited on Thu Mar-02-06 12:44 AM by autorank
http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL0512/S00246.htm

GuvWurld has his ass out there way ahead of everybody. While others were being nice, he was calling out Diebold and he's still walking around. I really like the Hal Ashby quotes in this article.


================
http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL0512/S00246.htm

Dan Ashby of the Voting Rights Task Force (VRTF) told us, "Our most recent meeting concluded with recognition that instead of always reacting defensively to further inroads on electoral integrity, we need to come up with some full time proactive strategies."

"This realign or resign campaign directed at election officials in the Diebold counties seems to me a very good place to start," Ashby said.
Activist groups like the CPEN and VRTF are now determining if and how they will participate with the GuvWurld campaign. Ashby is hoping that activist pressure will convince Secretary of State McPherson to refuse to recertify Diebold's DRE touch screens in California. He argues that, "To reward this worst-of-class, repeat offender by granting an extended franchise in the nation's largest voting market - after all the Diebold dirt that has floated to the surface these past few years - is just unthinkable."

Berman is working with the CEPN groups in California, national forums on election integrity, and has plans to expand the campaign to other political groups in the state.

"Election conditions must change in order to ensure conclusive outcomes and create a basis for confidence in the results reported," he said. "Officials resigned to the status quo should resign their positions and make way for those determined to improve these conditions."

"The right of voting for representatives is the primary right by which all others are protected. To take away this right is to reduce a man to slavery."
- Thomas Paine


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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-02-06 02:39 AM
Response to Reply #21
26. I'm a fan of GuvWurld and his strategy.
(See post #17)

He brings the issue of personal accountability to the forefront where it belongs.
These thugs have been stealing elections and blaming technical "irregularities" on computers. That, of course, is BS.

He wants to hold those, who purchase this garbage, accountable. That, IMO, is the ONLY answer to this mess.
In North Carolina, Diebold balked because their CEO was required to sign an affidavit stating that the code put in escrow was identical to that installed on the machines.

What reason could he have had to balk, other than because he intended to commit fraud?
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autorank Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-02-06 12:36 AM
Response to Original message
20. It's Diebold now, "spoiled ballots" and voter supression then...it's all
the same old same old. How stupid indeed.

Excellent post. Recommended.

I like Bowen. She may save all of our asses. CA is like a major country and if she stirs the pot, there will be an effect nation wide.

How well is she respected by her Dem peers?


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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-02-06 01:01 AM
Response to Reply #20
22. Those Dem peers are a mixed bag.
Some are great, some are cowards.
That's how McPherson got where he is in the first place. Dems were in the majority and could have refused to confirm him.
I was told that they gave McPherson a pass because they were afraid of Ahhnold. :eyes:

Nurses and teachers fought back against herr gropenfuhrer's attacks on them. And they were a significant force behind the defeat of his awful initiatives last Nov. Wish our so-called Dem leaders would follow their example.

On the Senate Rules Committee, I know that at least one of the other Dems is supporting Bowen's request for subpoenas.
That could get us moving in a good direction.
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autorank Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-02-06 01:17 AM
Response to Reply #22
23. Amazing, they hesitate on subpoenas!
:argh:

Put the nurses and public safety people in charge. Get that damn prison guard union involved. They know how to get what they want. Teachers union plays hard ball.

And what's with the LA DA? Didn't they go after the Diebold whistle blower. Amazing!

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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-02-06 01:43 AM
Response to Reply #23
24. Not sure what's with the DA.
Corruption or intimidation/blackmail? ... or some of each?
I thought SLAPP suits were illegal. The LA DA needs to be replaced. Maybe they could vote on it. :cry:

Police and firefighters really went after Ahhnold when he threatened their pensions. He backed off on them, but still pursued his attack on teachers and nurses. They fought the good fight and won.

I only called the two other Dems on the Rules Committee.
One office was great, the other (Perata's) left me wanting to reach through the phone and shake the woman on the other end.
She was trying to convince me that our only course of action was to call McPherson and ask that he change his mind.
I practically yelled at her.

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diva77 Donating Member (999 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-02-06 11:15 PM
Response to Reply #22
29. who is the Dem supporting Bowen's request for subpoenas?
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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-03-06 12:10 AM
Response to Reply #29
30. As I understand, he's leaning that way.
Senator Gilbert Cedillo. He's the only other Dem, besides Bowen and Perata, on the Rules Committee.
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diva77 Donating Member (999 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-03-06 01:56 AM
Response to Reply #30
31. Thanks, Nicknameless!
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AndyTiedye Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-20-06 01:36 AM
Response to Reply #22
32. Maybe some NSAmail Going On There Too
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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-20-06 01:48 AM
Response to Reply #32
33. Meaning blackmail?
I'm afraid that's behind a lot of Dem spinelessness. :(
We need some sort amnesty for those being blackmailed.
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kster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-20-06 01:57 AM
Response to Reply #33
34. You got that right
"amnesty for those being blackmailed" thats is the answer.
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AndyTiedye Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-20-06 02:05 PM
Response to Reply #33
35. 
looking for blackmail so the BFEE can control them.

That is some of the stuff they couldn't go to the FISA court for.

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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-20-06 06:48 PM
Response to Reply #35
36. I totally agree.
Blackmail against Dems in office and undoubtedly those in the media who might challenge them.
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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-02-06 07:46 PM
Response to Original message
28. Landshark? GuvWurld?
Either of you care to weigh in on this?
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