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stevepal

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Member since: Fri Dec 2, 2016, 05:27 AM
Number of posts: 109

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Beth Clarkson gets the usual treatment in her testimony October 27

Beth Clarkson on the website that covers her work on getting verification of the vote <showmethevotes.org>, explains what happened when she testified to a legislative body about her contention that the vote needs to be verified if the voter is to feel sure that his/her vote was counted correctly. Here are some selected sections from her description of her testimony, my interpolations are in parenthesis:

"I told the committee flat out that my research, currently under peer review, show that our machines are being manipulated and they needed to do something about that. I could be proved wrong with an audit, except … no audits allowed.

"I complained about the fact that in Sedgwick County we have a brand new expensive voting machine system with a paper trail. Our election officials insist that without a legislative solution, those ballots may never be opened and reviewed by human eyes to verify the accuracy of the count. Which is pretty much what the appeals court judge told me back in September when I asked what voters could do to hold our officials accountable. I think I made it clear to the committee that the current situation was unacceptable."

snip

(She also said she does not think that "audits" will work). She said, "Audits only tell us how off the results were and predict if outcomes were impacted. They don’t fix anything and they don’t prevent anything. We have to do that part too." (What happened was predictable). Here's how she puts it: "I got chided by the Chair about speaking off-topic. I got a lecture by Senator Miller about the unreliability of exit polls – which included a well-delivered “ma’am” that shut me off when I tried to interrupt him." Another senator (Miller), agreed in part with what she said. According to Beth, he "expressed how he agrees with me about the audits. I acknowledged that audits are better. They were my first choice after all. (While) he doesn’t think that exit polls should be taken seriously, (he) . . . acknowledged it’s the best data available to Kansas voters." Another senator indicated that she would like to work with Beth to "prepare" a bill that would "get the transparency we need to have confidence in election outcomes."

So there is a wisp of hope that somewhere down the road we may be able to have trustworthy vote counts in KS. Probably other states would have or have had encounters like the above or are in even worse circumstances for a variety of reasons. But all Beth can do is keep working and I'm sure she'll keep doing that.

Beth Clarkson to go before a special committee of the KS legislature on October 27

Here's what she said: "I have requested and been granted the opportunity to . . . speak briefly. It is open o the public. The meeting will begin at 9AM in room 582-S of the Statehouse."

Here are some of her remarks she plans to make (somewhat condensed):

My name is Beth Clarkson. I am a lifelong Kansas, born in Wichita. I hold a Ph.D. in statistics and have been certified as a quality engineer by the American Society for Quality for the past 30 years. Over the past several years, I have become more and more concerned about the accuracy of our voting machines, which has never been evaluated post-election via a hand count of election results. I have attempted to get access to the records needed to perform an audit of our voting machines more than once over the past several years but been told no every single time. Having failed to receive permission to do an audit, on Nov 8th 2016 , with the help of volunteers, set up citizen’s exit polls for five locations in south central Kansas. This was our attempt to find out the accuracy of our voting machines.

I’m afraid that the evidence from those exit polls point overwhelmingly to our voting machines being manipulated. Not by enough to alter any outcomes in the races studied – the maximum deviation between our exit polls and the official results was less than 5% in suspect races. But still extremely troubling to me as a voting citizen of Kansas. I have submitted these results and my conclusions for peer review. I will be happy to provide an electronic copy of this paper on request. Today, I will simply summarize the findings.

A common question I get regarding these findings is “Couldn’t your results be due Republicans being less likely to fill out the exit poll survey?” . . . . Whilst certainty is never forthcoming from statistical analysis, the hypothesis that ‘Party X members respond to surveys at a different rate than others’ is a plausible explanation for only the Libertarian Party in two races. It does not suffice for any others.

There are a number of statistically significant differences between our exit poll results and the official results, randomly scattered through the five locations and both methods (voting machines and paper ballots counted electronically). . . . . The results for the Presidential race look very suspicious. In Wichita and Winfield, four out the five sites, votes appear to be shifted from Clinton to Trump. Results in the fifth site, Wellington, showed substantial errors in the opposite direction. Results for the four Supreme Court justices opposed by Governor Brownback show a similar pattern nearly double in magnitude. This is not plausibly due to Republicans and Democrats having different propensities to respond to the Exit poll. If that were the case, we would see the same pattern in all locations and methods and races. We don’t. This looks like malicious tampering of the results by at least two different parties with opposite intentions. These findings could be easily proven wrong with an audit of the results in those locations, except that only Sedgwick County has a paper trail. A paper trail that is, apparently, forbidden ever to be seen by human eyes.

Our machines should not be considered trustworthy without having a paper trail and verifying the count afterwards. These steps are the minimal precautionary measures needed according to the testimony of Dr. Andrew Appel of Princeton University to the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity Resources last month. . . . . Democracy requires transparency in the vote count. We don’t have that. New machines that aren’t verified are not an improvement. Citizens, such as myself, have no cause to have faith in the reported results. Further, faith in the reported electronically computed election results require verification done in a transparent and secure manner because audits can be rigged as easily as voting machines.

If this sounds crazy, I would remind the committee of the 2015 diesel emission cheating scandal, in which VW was caught installing secret software in more than half a million vehicles sold in the US that it used to fool exhaust emissions tests. Pre-election testing of the voting machines is not sufficient to guarantee accuracy.

Equifax is merely the latest in the seemingly endless procession of data breaches, which includes multi-national corporations as well as federal and state agencies including the CIA, the NSA, US Postal Regulatory Commission, the US Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Health Resources and Services Administration, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and the U.S. Election Assistance Commission. That last, the Election Assistance Commission is mandated, among its many other responsibilities, with testing and certifying voting equipment. As our elected representatives overseeing the voting process, I hope you will rectify this situation and allow all Kansas voters the right to see and count ballots for themselves or to see them counted by someone they find trustworthy. Transparency means having a paper trail and allowing voters access to that paper trail.

Beth's website: showmethevotes.org

Judge suggests the KS legislature might need to take up where Clarkson has been stopped.

Beth Clarkson, the tireless Ph.D. statistician who works for NIAR at Wichita State, has been trying for years now to be allowed to see the paper so she can check into why the vote tallies in KS tend to favor Republicans as the size of the voting population increases, the opposite of what is normally the case. Kris Kobach, whose cross-check schemes and voter suppression tactics have established a pattern for Republicans across the country, would prefer perhaps not to be forced to put up with a democratic system but rather to find ways to be endorsed by easily hacked or maliciously programmed voting machines and thus be assured of victory.

Ms Clarkson, to my mind, is one of the true patriots in the country today. Here is the Wichita Eagle article about her Tuesday court confrontation in regard to her suit.

http://www.kansas.com/opinion/editorials/article174439541.html

Here's Beth Clarkson's own site, where she will very soon undoubtedly have an article about Tuesday's event. She would be happy for any donations I'm sure and she is certainly worthy of being helped.

showmethevotes.org

I wish Hillary would stop bashing Bernie and talk about one topic in particular on her tour.

What is that issue?

THE VOTING MACHINES!!!!!!!! With voter suppression coming in a close second.

I personally believe that Bernie won MA during the primaries and a RECOUNT using hand-counted ballots would have shown this to be true. And by the way, the paper ballots were available since MA uses opti-scan and keeps the paper in case a recount is called for.

I also believe strongly that Hillary won the election if the votes had been counted fairly in the northern states. If PA, for example, or WI or OH or any of the northern states which supposedly went for Trump had been required to VERIFY THE VOTE thru a hand-counting of the paper we'd have a different president now and it would be Hillary. And she would have made a very good prez as well and would already have done way more than what Trump has done.

Why O why won't the politicians talk about the obvious??? In MA e.g. in the primaries if the figures I've seen are correct, in the 3% of the precincts that hand-counted the paper, Bernie won by 17%, but in the state as a whole he lost by about 3% or so. Any statisticians want to figure the chances of this happening? And by the way according to Jon Simon, the 3% sample in the state is perhaps slightly more CONSERVATIVE than the rest of the state so don't claim that the sample isn't a good one.

Also in the election as a whole I believe now PA doesn't even use paper. I could be wrong, but I believe they voted this time on completely unverifiable touch screen computers. WI's election officials are crooked and have been for a couple decades now. I'd bet plenty of money that Hillary won WI if it were possible to have a hand count of paper in WI. There's a good chance she won in OH as well if the vote could be recounted using paper.

But not a peep from Hillary OR ANY OTHER POLITICIAN about our absolutely unverifiable election system and the fact that these computers are "trivially easy" to hack or rig or maliciously program or what not. I have no doubt at all that the vote count in a number of states was rigged or hacked, maybe by the Russians but potentially by anybody with a little computer savvy as hackers proved just recently when they hacked into a number of voting systems during a convention of hackers using information publicly available about the machines being used to count the vote in specific states.

But don't hold your breath about this happening in our lifetime.

For those interested, here's some facts about the state of GA's vote counting.

From Brad Friedman's Bradblog, some new information has come to light in the last week or so. As usual it merely confirms what I and many others have known since 2002:

http://bradblog.com/?p=12189

Here are a couple paragraphs from the link above.

"In advance of Tuesday's highly contested U.S. House Special Election in Georgia's 6th Congressional District --- the most expensive House race in U.S. history --- Politico Magazine's Kim Zetter offers an absolutely chilling bombshell of a report headlined "Will the Georgia Special Election Get Hacked?" She reports that gigabytes of unsecured data --- including passwords for e-voting system central tabulators, voter registration databases and much more were kept on a wholly unsecured web server, potentially for years, at Kennesaw State University's Center for Election Systems.

"The KSU Center, as they describe on their website, was "created and charged with the responsibility of ensuring the integrity of voting systems in Georgia" since the state adopted its statewide, 100% unverifiable Diebold touch-screen voting system in 2002. Those same machines are still used there today, despite their age (they run on a version of Windows 2000) and massive, well-documented vulnerabilities to hacking and insider manipulation. Nonetheless, the Center for Election Systems has long been cited as a model for election administration by the U.S. Election Assistance Commission and is responsible for the security and programming of every 100% unverifiable touch-screen voting system, computerized central tabulator, and electronic pollbook used across the state of Georgia."

I'm sure, as people are always reminding me, that there's no evidence of cheating by rigging or maliciously programming the computers in GA.

Cheers and have a good day!

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