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WillYourVoteBCounted Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-09-06 02:09 PM
Original message
The Mother of all Election Scandals
Democrats are doing just what Karl Rove wants you to do -

Paying attention to everything except what matters.
While people obsess over 2004, or they obsess over hand counted paper ballots -

Meanwhile, Rove's strategy to rig all of our future elections is working beautifully -



The bigger scandal is that the DNC is pushing internet voting for
the primary in 08 (do Dems like to rig the primaries?).

The bigger scandal is that overseas voters of 7 states will be allowed to vote by
email!

The bigger scandal is that California voters are willing to give up their
electoral votes and even the hope of one man one vote in favor of
saying that whatever the rest of the country votes for will be their vote too!

The bigger scandal is that pushers of Instant Runoff Voting have gotten
Dems to feel obligated to this convuluted form of voting that makes
election audits ever more impossible and increases the likelihood
of ballot programming errors. Errors that will be hard to unravel.
IRV proponents are NOT advocating for hand counted paper ballots,
but are trying to force states to purchase voting MACHINES that can
be programmed to (pretend) count ballots cast this way.

The bigger scandal is that the DLC is trying to control
the Democratic Party and undermine the work that Howard Dean is doing.

The bigger scandal is that Donna Brazile cursed out one election integrity
advocate in Chicago in August, saying "F%#* You to a guy who got a VVPB law
passed in his state.


Maybe the Democratic Party has to be completely destroyed and completely
rebuilt, but by that time, our elections will be so coopted that only
the most radical of actions can reverse the damage.
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PoiBoy Donating Member (842 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-09-06 02:17 PM
Response to Original message
1. Thank you for this post...
it's very informative... IMO, whatever the current issue is in our faces at the moment... none is more important that the protection of our right to vote and have it counted accurately... this is the only way we're going to take back control of our country peacefully, and it's one of the most important national security issues we face.

http://www.opednews.com/articles/opedne_bruce_o__060824...

:hi:
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Fridays Child Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-09-06 02:38 PM
Response to Original message
2. k/r
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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-09-06 05:57 PM
Response to Original message
3. I don't understand issue #3.
More info? Link?

:shrug:
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WillYourVoteBCounted Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-09-06 06:13 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. Rebecca Mercuri for item number 3
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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-09-06 07:08 PM
Response to Reply #4
7. Argh!!!
I didn't know about this! Shit!!!
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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-09-06 07:17 PM
Response to Reply #4
8. All but one voting for it were Dems.
It calls for direct popular vote. I didn't see anything about electoral votes being awarded. :shrug: Is that in the fine print somewhere?

Because of what's been going on in the redder states, I'm not in favor of changing the system right now.
They faked up a popular vote "win" for dimson last time.
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WillYourVoteBCounted Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-10-06 01:01 AM
Response to Reply #3
21. If only 11 states go for it - they and CA could be the only ones

What if 11 of the biggest and Bluest states sign up?



The California legislation would not take effect until enough states
passed such laws to make up a majority of the Electoral College votes
a minimum of 11 states, depending on population

http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-legis31aug31,1,...


What if this had been in effect in 2004?
Here "Senior Citizen" posts that very nightmare scenario
to my diary at Kos:



Had this been in effect in 2004
All of California's electoral votes would have gone to Bush even
though California is a blue state and voted for Kerry.

Let me say that again, in case anybody missed it:

Had this been in effect in 2004, all of California's electoral
votes would have gone to Bush even though California is a blue state
and voted for Kerry.

Okay, I'm sure some people still don't get it:

Had this been in effect in 2004, all of California's electoral votes
would have gone to Bush even though California is a blue state and voted for Kerry.

Now you really want Californians to support Democratic candidates,
donate to Democratic campaigns, and get out the vote for Democrats,
knowing that even if not a single person in California votes Republican,
if enough people in other states do, all of California's electoral
votes will be given to the Republican?

I know I live in a very strange world, but this is ridiculous.
We're supposed to support Democrats, but the Democratic Party doesn't
care if our votes all go to Republicans anyway?

The nightmare is getting worse every day.

The In-Site Kite

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2006/9/9/154212/2478

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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-10-06 05:57 PM
Response to Reply #21
29. Thank you for the further clarification. Afraid I must agree.
What the hell is it with our Dems in the CA legislature? They either lack the foresight or the will to protect our votes.
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skids Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-09-06 06:31 PM
Response to Original message
5. We are starting to use IRV in MA for special election primaries.

...and it's running on opscan paper ballots, which I agree are not as good as hand-counting, but IRV proponents are not necessarily anti-paper-trail. Some of them may be, but none of the ones I have ever seen or met.

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WillYourVoteBCounted Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-09-06 07:41 PM
Response to Reply #5
9. have you done any audits? IRV 2 or 3 times harder to audit
just wondering how this affected transparency.

Election officials don't like audits in the first place, because of the extra
work. If there are problems with the election, they catch heat,
so they prefer to keep appearances nice.

How do political consultants develop strategy?

How do voters know who to rank as 2nd, 3rd and 4th or beyond?
Many voters don't know that putting the same name 3 times just means throwing
your vote away if your chosen candidate doesn't win first place.

Also many don't know that you could end up electing the weakest candidate
instead of the strongest, because of this scheme.


Also see IRV = The Big Lie The Progressives Embrace
http://www.gregdewar.com/2005/05/straight_talk_on_socal...

IRV is just another scam that is being pushed by people who have a
whole agenda that has nothing to do with helping liberals or democrats.
http://www.dailykos.com/story/2006/8/21/172423/121#c6

But first and formost is Election Integrity:

Ballot definition file formats do have to be changed substantially.
On the one hand, the list of offices and candidates does not change;
but the ballot layout and voter directions and such change drastically.


Post election procedures also change substantially.
You cannot decide the winner of an election by summarizing what
happened at each precinct and then combining the precinct summaries.
Instead, the full record of all choices made by all voter on every ballot
must be brought together in one place.
Only after all first choice votes on all ballots from all precincts have
been counted can you decide whether there is a winner in the first round,
or if some candidates have to be eliminated and the second choice vote of those voters whose candidates are eliminated should then be counted and added in.


There are lots of corner cases that have to be considered in the counting of ballots, and a lot of detail must be clarified. Suppose a voter indicates a fist and a third choice, but no second choice: Is that illegal and a spoiled ballot? Or is the third choice counted as the second choice? What if a voter votes for the same candidate a first and second choice? Or no first choice but a second choice? Or overvotes on the second choice?


IR voting must make auditing more complex than in a standard election, especially given the many special cases that have to be in the rules. Roughly speaking, it can be as hard as auditing 2 or 3 ordinary elections (depending on whether the voters are asked to rank 2 candidates, or 3). This is not surprising, since IR voting is supposed to mimic the effect of a sequence of 2 or 3 separate elections in a runoff series.

And frankly, the GOP will be better at getting their troops to march in lock
step, which is what IRV requires.

The GOP was financing the Green candidate in Pennsylvania in order
to bleed off Dem support.

Voting is part of the game, but campaigning and supporting the
candidate is the other big part.

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skids Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-09-06 10:05 PM
Response to Reply #9
13. Boy do you fanatically hate IRV.

Your hatred is misplaced.

First off, election workers need to be forced to audit, not pleasantly asked. How they feel about doing audits is not the issue. Whether they get fired or sued for not doing one is the issue.

Secondly, the supposed problems with IRV are technical and academic arguments made by advocates of concordat about corner cases which have been bastardized and inflated by less well meaning IRV opponents beyond all reasonable proportions. If you applied the same strict standards that are being applied to IRV to generate these complaints, to the way we do things now, you'd see that the way we do things now is much, much worse on all counts.

It's like saying people shouldn't install airbags in their cars because they might break their noses if they crash while drinking a cup of coffee. :eyes:

You can indeed summarize precincts in IRV, just the summaries include each ballot combo
and their quantities, rather than a simple number. Heirarchal counting is certainly possible, at any rate. To say it isn't is disingenuous.

Thirdly, how "political consultants determine strategy" is their own damned problem. We don't have elections for their benefit, and our election system should not be customized to their whims. It's their job; they need to figure it out, or they need to find a new line of work. Elections are for the people, to choose leaders, not for the pundits and screwoffs who make their money off exploiting the defects in our system.

And as far as spoiler candidates be they green, libertarian, or DINO, that is a problem inherent in the current election system. The very fact that they exist is reason enough to move to IRV or concordat.
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WillYourVoteBCounted Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-10-06 02:34 PM
Response to Reply #13
26. Does MN have audits of their elections?
Perhaps I didn't do a good job of presenting my concerns about how IRV greatly
complicate audits and create resistance to them.

It's not that audits can't be done - its that they would be at least three times
the work of a normal audit, and likely even far more complex.

Worse, the ballot definition files would be exponentially more complicated,
thus increasing the opportunity for error and flipping of the results.

But lets get back to what you said in your post -


"First off, election workers need to be forced to audit,not pleasantly asked.
How they feel about doing audits is not the issue.
Whether they get fired or sued for not doing one is the issue."


Given this statement, I would like to ask you if there have
been any post election audits conducted in MN?


-If so, please describe the procedure used for auditing the IRV election.
-If not, why? - Didn't you force them?
-Does your state require or have post election audits?

Here is my 2 cents, based on our (successful) efforts to get audits
for our elections in North Carolina:



Making audits more difficult, more time consuming, and more expensive will make
it harder to get them legislated, not easier.

It takes a major lobbying effort to get audits legislated.
Election officials lobby too - as we found out in North Carolina.
They were the strongest opponents of VVPB.


I checked the list of states that require post election manual audits,
and dont see MA on it. See
http://www.verifiedvoting.org/downloads/ManualAudits-06...

IRV on Hand Counted Paper Ballots is not a problem - it avoids the risk of election
software flipping the vote or obscuring malfunctions or vote rigging.

Since we can't make voting systems of any kind completely secure,
even HCPB, we must have decent audits.

While 27 states require voter verified paper ballots, only 13 states require audits,
and North Carolina is the first state to have conducted theirs.

http://www.commoncause.org/site/apps/nl/content2.asp?c=...


My colleagues are reviewing that audit and in the midst of preparing a
report.
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skids Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-10-06 05:22 PM
Response to Reply #26
28. You mean MA.

No, we don't, which is pathetic. It will take some time to convince people in a state where one party has a virtual lock on everything that fraud can and will occur within the Democratic party as well.

I do look forward to the day, however, when audits are mandatory.

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WillYourVoteBCounted Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-10-06 07:32 PM
Response to Reply #28
31. Exactly, now add to that mix a more complicated audit
OK - you are in a state that doesn't require audits.

If you have IRV, how is it that one party has a strangle hold
on everything?


Maybe Greg Dewar (political consultant in San Francisco) is right - IRV just protects the incumbents, and rarely helps out some odd candidate.
www.gregdewar.com

You said - "It will take some time to convince people..."

Exactly.

You can't just force people. Especially if you don't have a law.

You have to work with the party that is in power, which we did in NC.
The Dems were the ones that did everything to try to run the clock out
on us getting our law passed. The GOP didn't really care one way or the other.

The Dems literally kept a stanglehold on our legislation until the very
last day of the session. The last day.

But we had influential people in that party work on the lawmakers,
we had precinct chairs and others make a big push.

We feel like we (the grassroots) are taking back the Dem Party in NC.


Now for persuading lawmakers to require audits:

You see - the election directors and SOS or whomever will argue that
audits cost time and money.

Then you will have to prove how much they cost compared to what the
election officials claim.

You will likely have to provide a fiscal analysis, and they will have
theirs.


Even if the election officials flat out lie, they will be believed first.

If you want cooperation, you have to keep things simple.
And you sometimes have to compromise.


In North Carolina, we had to fight for our audits, and had we included in
the mix a more complicated audit, we probably would have failed.
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skids Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-10-06 08:43 PM
Response to Reply #31
32. A) We only use IRV in special election primaries.

B) We need a law. We don't need to "be nice to people". We need a mandatory audit law.

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emlev Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-09-06 11:37 PM
Response to Reply #5
17. Hey skids, long time no speak! How are you???
Have you not been around on DU, or just not posting where I've been?
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skids Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-09-06 11:58 PM
Response to Reply #17
18. I've mostly been transfixed...
Edited on Sat Sep-09-06 11:59 PM by skids
...by watching the collapse of the biosphere over in the E/E forum. Though right now I'm helping Kathy a bit, just putting my pennies, labor wise, in the collection dish so to speak for election audits.

How's things for you? I do get emails from you from time to time. :hi:


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The Backlash Cometh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-09-06 07:04 PM
Response to Original message
6. Why would Brazile respond so strongly?
Do you think she's bought like Lieberman?
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FourScore Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-09-06 09:31 PM
Response to Reply #6
11. I turned my back on Brazile
after she praised Bush for his efforts around Katrina. Right after his speech last year. Man that pissed me off! And she's from New Orleans too! Her Washington Post op-ed:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/20...

She praised him on the TV talk shows as well! Haven't heard a peep from her since on Katrina and Bush. What an idiot!
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The Backlash Cometh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-10-06 06:38 AM
Response to Reply #11
22. How sickening. How can she call herself a Democrat?
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galloglas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-10-06 06:11 PM
Response to Reply #6
30. Bought, Paid for, and Delivered! N/T
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Unbowed Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-09-06 09:08 PM
Response to Original message
10. This is just too damn depressing.
E-mail voting, isn't that precious?
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galloglas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-09-06 09:48 PM
Response to Original message
12. IRV and the theft of votes: Here are the culprits
You have above:

The bigger scandal is that pushers of Instant Runoff Voting have gotten
Dems to feel obligated to this convuluted form of voting that makes
election audits ever more impossible and increases the likelihood
of ballot programming errors. Errors that will be hard to unravel.
IRV proponents are NOT advocating for hand counted paper ballots,
but are trying to force states to purchase voting MACHINES that can
be programmed to (pretend) count ballots cast this way.



There is a scandal here in Missouri I will post later this week, but I address part of it now.

The only reason for IRV is the fact that it might, just might, give an election to a candidate of a minor party once in a while (think Libertarian, Green, Constitutionalist, or whatever). They believe they get legitimacy that way.

It's BS.

We are not a nation with a Parliamentary system. So, that locks out the minor parties. Too bad.

When this nation has truly needed change, it has gotten it. It has come at the expense of fracturing the major parties, but, that is the price we paid to win our own Civil War. The Whigs went out of existence and a new breed of "Republican" came in with Lincoln.

Likewise, when the Robber Barons of the early 1900s took everyone's money, the Progressives formed and Teddy Roosevelt (a Republican president) bolted his party. The Progressives led us, progressively, through that hard period until the Depression hit and FDR turned the Democrats into what we are supposed to be today (instead GOP-lite).

If these people (Greens, Libertarians, etc.) can't win on their platforms, and build a party from the bottom up, they should try to amend the Constitution to make America a Parliamentary country... or give it up.

But, instead, they are resorting to Rovian trickery and deceit.

The Missouri story is this.

Immediately after the theft of the 2004 elections by the GOP, Missouri was the best positioned state (several factors contributing to this) to change its Constitution to mandate HCPB by way of an Initiative Petition. As soon as the Green Party caught wind, they sent "ambassadors" who supported the change, and many even signed informal petitions to our SoS for HCPB.

When this began to get some steam up, a Green "Ambassador" called for a private meeting and (after suggesting things like "negotiation" with EDs, using Open Source software, creating "honest machines", and other options) he asked that the Initiative Petition for HCPB not be pursued further.

For reasons unrelated to the Greens, the effort was put aside.

But, as we were to find out in 2006, the Greens had all the while been planning to run, and collecting signatures to put candidates on the ballot, under the name of "The Progressive Party".

Talk about a False Flag operation!! The Bushkovites have nothing on these people!

As much as I may agree with most of political positions of the Greens, I lose all respect for them appropriating the name proud name and illustrious past of the "Progressive Party".

And we Democrats who cried "Foul" when the Green Party cost us the Presidency in 2000, by running Ralph Nader, should be screaming now.

If Nader's 2000 run should be labeled "Foul", the running of candidates in Missouri under the name Progressive should be labeled "Criminal!"

Is the Green Party so ashamed of itself, and its past lackluster performances, that it will not even run candidates under its own banner?











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skids Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-09-06 10:18 PM
Response to Reply #12
14. Oh please.


The only reason for IRV is the fact that it might, just might, give an election to a candidate of a minor party once in a while (think Libertarian, Green, Constitutionalist, or whatever). They believe they get legitimacy that way.



Bullshit.

You couldn't count the number of time IRV would have bailed out a progressive Democrat from a loss in a Dem primary where the establishment Dem inserted a spoiler, or the field was just too saturated. You also couldn't count the number of times IRV would have saved a Dem from being Nadered in the general.

IRV is a mutually beneficial technique for both minor and major parties.

Now, some people who claim to be IRV advocates may be surreptitiously trying to throw monkey wrenches into auditing efforts, but that's got nothing to do with IRV really. These people are causing trouble because that's their objective. Any responsible advocate would be tackling auditability along with IRV.

It's also a missed opportunity that the election integrity activists do not seem to see the strategic value in using enthusiasm for IRV as a way to force out bad systems and put auditable ones in.

And I find it funny how people in this thread love to scream "IRV!" and then talk entirely about the the way the Green party seems to have been taken over by asshats. The subjects have absolutely nothing to do with each other. IRV could help dems even in a two party system when an independent spoiler is fielded by the right.


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galloglas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-09-06 10:58 PM
Response to Reply #14
15. Pretty Please?
I have no problem with IRV.

I have problems with double-dealing bastards who put their own personal interests before those of their country.

What you say about IRV benefiting an otherwise disadvantaged Democrat is correct. OTOH, the people screaming loudest for IRV are the marginal parties, for they benefit from IRV only in the way I said. That's a big difference!

But with the Cheat-o-Matics ready to grab everyone by the ass in November, there is no time to quibble over IRV when the EDs routinely cite that as an impediment to the only sensible way to handle elections: hand counted paper ballots.

When one is attacked by a pack of ravening wolves, what does one shoot at first?

I'll tell you. One shoots the nearest wolf and, in this case, it is the Cheat-o-Matics. You take out that wolf, then shooting the IRV wolf is fine by me!

So, mandate HCPBs, then deep-six all the Diebolds for reefs and crappie beds, I am perfectly happy to hand count those ballots with IRV.

But, are you telling me you advocate the actions of the Greens that I described? If so, my friend, you are going to wind up being Ralston-Purina Wolf Chow!






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skids Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-09-06 11:13 PM
Response to Reply #15
16. No, right now the Greens disgust me...

...I always knew the NY chapter was screwed and full of punks, but it's pretty evident that the problems with their leadership extend to perhaps even a majority of their chapters.

I have a personal word for people who advocate the fall of the two party system without any regard for the consequences -- "3PACs" or "3rd party at any cost." I support 3rd parties and independents, but not to the extent that it damages the country by enabling Republicans.

IRV is a chip on the table. You can hate it, or you can pick it up and use it.

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WillYourVoteBCounted Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-10-06 12:50 AM
Response to Reply #12
20. they tried to force requirement for their "software" in NC
When we were desperately trying to get bipartisan approval
of a VVPB bill in our state, even with many in denial that there
was a problem, the Green Party inserted itself into the equation
and tried to force a requirement in our legislation.

WHen our legislation was being drafted, the Greens tried to
put a requirement in the bill to require that we buy voting machines with IRV compatible
software.

Not HCPB, but software.

Many of the lawmakers said this would kill our legislation completely,
but the Greens didn't care. They slammed me with emails telling me that it would
be a real shame if I worked against them. That I might be sorry, burning my
bridges and all of that.

Scare scare scare tactics.

I have no respect for a group that tries to intimidate people to get their way.

IRV doesn't help Democrats at all.

IT does give the optical illusion that your vote for a green isn't hurting a Dem,
but that is a lie.

And further, the greens ran against the Dems in 04, and 00, saying there was
no difference between Bush and Gore, for example.

The republicans won't bleed off their support with IRV, they will use
mass mailings to ensure that their voters know how to vote,
while "Progressives" will stupidly bleed off to the Greens, and then
another GOP victory won by Rove.

Yep, I hate it - because it is a scheme that doesn't work.

It didn't take IRV to nearly get Perot elected.

Look at who funds many of the Green candidates - the GOP.

Now, there are a few (Greens) that I think highly of, but they have the testicles
to run a big campaign on the issues, and get the media they need.
Few and far between. (Kevin Zeese).

Greg Dewar, a political consultant in San Francisco, who works for Greens
and Dems says that IRV is a sham, and that it doesn't make elections more fair.
Maybe since he lives there and has had to deal with the system, he knows what he
is talking about.

My interest is first that it muddles transparency.

IF you make it three times as hard to audit elections, the first thing
to go will be hand to eye audits.

You won't MAKE election officials do anything that they can argue is unreasonably
difficult or impossible.

ITs reality time here.

IRV - Instant Republican Victory
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BeFree Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-10-06 01:45 PM
Response to Reply #20
25. I concur
IRV would be a step back. Considering where we are now, a step back would mean we are back at square one.

IRV is a sham and if the dems start buying into yet another sham....well.
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Einsteinia Donating Member (645 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-10-06 12:41 AM
Response to Original message
19. THIS IS WONDERFUL. THANK YOU. YES, YES, YES!
I hope you don't mind but I passed this link into the universe,

We need to wake up before it's too late.

#: )
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enough Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-10-06 07:52 AM
Response to Original message
23. k&r
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CrispyQ Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-10-06 08:33 AM
Response to Original message
24. k&r
Wake up America!

:kick:
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texpatriot2004 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-10-06 04:56 PM
Response to Original message
27. No transparency = no Democracy nm
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Einsteinia Donating Member (645 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-13-06 02:46 AM
Response to Original message
33. GREAT SYNOPSIS--SEE:

Electoral College Reform in CA Synopsis
http://www.califelectprotect.net/AB2948.pdf
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