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Blackwell, Diebold, and Campaign 2006

The common statewide wisdom is that “Ken Blackwell will never lose an election in which he is in charge of the vote count.” But Ohio Democrats never seriously questioned Blackwell’s rigged 2004 vote count that put Bush back in the White House.

An eyewitness ally of Blackwell told a small gathering of Bush supporters, with a Free Press reporter present, that Blackwell was in a frenzy on Election Day 2004, writing percentages and vote totals on maps of rural Republican counties, attempting to figure out how many votes, real or manufactured, Bush would need to overcome the exit poll results in Cleveland and Columbus. Read more

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Blackwell’s Letter from Franklin County Jail

All along, J. Kenneth Blackwell has been engaging in criminal activity.

He’s responsible for the purging of over 300,000 voters in Ohio between the 2000 and 2004 election, telling voters they were registered on the wrong paper weight, not counting votes cast in the wrong precinct after he had the precincts switched, and stealing the election in Ohio.

He could always count on the Bush boys to bail him out. But now what? He’s caught dead to rights with an unlawful interest in a public contract.

Remember, Blackwell bragged about negotiating the “best in the nation” deal with Diebold. It wasn’t hard, since Wally O’Dell was one of the president’s Pioneer and Ranger team members. Read more

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A Jail Cell for Blackwell

Ohio Secretary of State J. Kenneth Blackwell was forced to reveal Monday in an Ohio Ethics filing that he had inadvertently invested in the notorious voting machine company, Diebold Inc. This is clearly a criminal act and Blackwell belongs in a jail cell. My favorite weasel words from the abysmally corrupt Republican gubernatorial candidate is that, because he didn’t know what his accountant and financial advisor were investing in, it’s “similar to a blind trust.”

The only people who would have to be blind are those who fail to see the deliberate theft of the election by Blackwell and the fact in April 2005, he personally negotiated what he called the “best in the nation” deal with Diebold to purchase their fraud-o-matic touch-screen machines for $2700. This, a la Halliburton, was an unbid contract.

The Diebold machines met with massive disaster in the November 2005 election as untrained workers lost memory cards and more votes that voters appeared in Carlisle and other Ohio cities. Read more

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The New Face of Apartheid: J. Kenneth Hackwell

The most unprincipled and opportunistic man in the history of Ohio, Secretary of State J. Kenneth Blackwell, stands poised to claim the Republican primary for governor. Blackwell and his far-right theocratic “rapture-ready” Christian dominionists will doom the Buckeye State to further despair.

It should come as no surprise that the Free Press is the only newspaper in Ohio willing to out Blackwell for appearing before white supremacists in the secretive Council on National Policy. Blackwell understands power; he understands that there’s plenty of money in putting a black face on the new politics of high-tech Jim Crow. Blackwell also understands that in order for his strategy to succeed, he must convince a significant number of black ministers to join him in his open bigotry against gays and lesbians.
This is simply the old apartheid politics of divide and conquer. Blackwell wants to rule the new Buckeye State Bantustan.

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Restoring Democracy in Ohio

As a former international election observer, who co-wrote and edited the 1994 report delivered to the United Nations on the first democratic elections since the peace accords in El Salvador, I saw far worse abuses of the election process in Ohio in the 2004 presidential election than I witnessed in Suchitoto, El Salvador.

The elections in Ohio, run by the highly partisan J. Kenneth Blackwell, Co-Chair of the Bush-Cheney Re-Election Campaign, aided by private partisan voting machine companies that use secret proprietary software, did not meet the minimum international standards for nonpartisanship and transparency. Blackwell banned international observers from Ohio polling stations and threatened them with arrest. He allowed Republican-dominated rural counties to avoid posting the election results at the precinct level and, instead, allowed them to be counted at the county level by suspect central tabulators.

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