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Bipartisan Voter Repression In Ohio Masquerades As Reform

Bob Fitrakis
March 18, 2013

A bipartisan Ohio election panel released its recommendations for “voting reforms.” An early indicator of how bad these “so-called” reforms came when Ohio’s controversial Secretary of State Jon Husted immediately endorsed the panel’s proposals.

“A lot of the reforms that are in there are things that I have long advocated for,” Husted said.

The Ohio Association of Election Officials responsible for the recommendations is comprised of equal totals of Democrats and Republicans, but they are 100% party regulars, causing some activists to refer to them as the Ohio Association of Political Hacks. Under Ohio law, the two major parties get to appoint the top election officials in the state’s 88 counties.

These party regulars agreed to eliminate Ohio’s “Golden Week” of voting. During that week, voters were both allowed to register to vote at the Board of Elections and also cast an early ballot on the same day. Apparently the efficiency of such a system that made it incredibly convenient for voters to participate in the democratic process had to go.

Now, voter registration will close the day before early voting begins. Despite the success of Wisconsin which allows same day registration and voting even on Election Day, Ohio has chosen to separate registration from voting, even though they would have been done at the same building.

The reason cited by the panelists for the ruling is that they wanted to remove all uncertainty from the registration and voting process. They added certainty by making it more difficult for Ohio voters to vote.

As the Ohio Association of Election Officials Executive Director Aaron Ockerman told the Columbus Dispatch, “Uncertainty is really, really, really bad for the elections process.”

In an attempt to squash uncertainty, the panel wants the voting hours to certainly be shorter. Instead of embracing Ohio’s successful 35-day early voting period inaugurated by reform-minded former Ohio Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner, the panel will now restrict early voting to two weeks.

The voting centers which Husted limited to one site per county, as contrasted with the five sites Brunner allowed in 2008, would only remain open on weekdays and only the two Saturdays before the election from 8am-2pm. In the 2012 presidential election, up to 5-hour lines existed at the sole early voting sites in Cleveland and Cincinnati.

The panel failed to grasp that far more people, many without transportation, live in cities as opposed to rural areas. So whether you’re Holmes County, Ohio with 11,000 voters or Cuyahoga County, Ohio with 1.3 million voters, the panel embraced the concept of equality – one early voting site per county.

Also, voting hours are limited on the two Sundays before the election, from 1-5pm. This was predictable since the black churches have been running massive and successful “souls to the polls” campaigns on the Sunday prior to Election Day. These large numbers of people voting while black have caused concern among the overwhelmingly white Ohio Republican Party, but white Democratic politicians in counties like Cuyahoga, Columbus, and Cincinnati. There has been a growing tendency, particularly in Cleveland, for black candidates who challenge the white Democrat-controlled counties to do well due to high black voter turnouts.

Another interesting reform requires that all voters will be mailed an absentee ballot and that voters will be responsible, as they always have been, for postage. What the panel failed to recommend is an ongoing problem with mailed absentee ballots where, for example, in Franklin County (Columbus, Ohio) absentee ballots that required two stamps only had one spot preprinted on the return envelope. In the 2008 election, the Free Press broke the story that there were 10,000 absentee ballots being held up for lack of postage.

An actual reform would have required county election officials to weigh the absentee ballot and envelope and put the proper postage spot preprinted on the envelopes.

The panel managed to ignore the most pressing voting problem in Ohio. In 2012, more than 1.1 million voters were purged from the voting rolls, with the vast majority coming from Ohio’s urban areas. In 2008, the figure was even higher at 1.25 million voters purged. In a computer era, in a state that requires various forms of ID at the polls, it makes no sense to purge voters.

So once again, voter repression masquerades as voting reform in Ohio. The Democrats capitulated to the racist and class-based voter suppression enthusiastically embraced by the Republican Party.

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Come to the Free Press FREE film night – Free For All

Come to the Free Press FREE film night – Free For All
Tuesday, October 23 — 7:30pm

Free For All is a documentary film by John Wellington Ennis. John Ennis is planning to be here for the showing. This is a re-release of his original film with updated information.
How did America get so off track? Nagging doubts about the legitimacy of the 2004 election force John Ennis to get off his sofa and investigate Ohio leading up to the 2006 elections – even though he is just some dude. He meets with journalists, politicians, election officials, attorneys, activists, and everyday Ohioans in a search for truth. Along his journey, Ennis uncovers a web of schemes that swing U.S. election. Re-released with updated information including the mysterious death of Mike Connell.
Followed by a discussion.

Free and open to the public as part of the Free Press Film Night at the Drexel. This screening is co-sponsored by the Free Press, the Columbus Film Council, the Central Ohio Green Education Fund, and the Drexel.

Location: Drexel Theater, 2254 E. Main St., Bexley
Phone: 253-2571
Email: truth@freepress.org

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THE GREAT GOP ELECTION THEFT PARTNERSHIP NYC Press Conference Oct.22, 2012

New York City press conference, Monday, October 22, 2012
THE GREAT GOP ELECTION THEFT PARTNERSHIP:
The Romney Family, Hart InterCivic, a major American voting machine company and Karl Rove’s Wireless Election Management Empire…
Harvey Wasserman and Bob Fitrakis of the Free Press (www.freepress.org) will present shocking new information on the Bain Capital part ownership of one of America’s chief voting machine companies, Hart InterCivic that counts many votes around the US. Additionally, Jill Simson and Jim March will present on the wireless empire of Karl Rove and associates for possible election manipulation. Both presentations will be part of a panel which also includes NYU professor Mark Crispin Miller and election activist Lori Grace on other possible upcoming election manipulations in the November 2012 elections nationwide.

Time: Monday, October 22nd, 12:00-2:00 pm. EST
Place: New York Open Center, 22 E. 30th street, New York, NY 10016

Harvey Wasserman and Bob Fitrakis are the editors of the Free Press www.freepress.org which has played a major role in exposing election manipulations since 2004. Bob Fitrakis and Cliff Arnebeck have participated in the KingLincoln Bronzeville lawsuit against Bush where they held him and Rove accountable for election stealing in 2004. Mark Crispin Miller is author of Fooled Again: The Real Case for Electoral Reform.

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Wisconsin: None dare call it vote rigging

Bob Fitrakis

Wisconsin: None dare call it vote rigging
June 14, 2012

If vote-rigging prospers, none may call it vote-rigging. It simply becomes the new norm. Once again, the universal laws of statistics apply only outside U.S. borders. The recall vote in Wisconsin produced another significant 7% discrepancy between the unadjusted exit poll and the so-called “recorded vote.” In actual social science, this level of discrepancy, with the results being so far outside the expected margin of error would not be accepted.

When I took Ph.D. statistics to secure my doctorate in political science, we were taught to work through the rubric, sometime referred to as HISMISTER. The “H” stood for an explanation of the discrepancy rooted in some historical intervention, such as one of the candidates being caught in a public restroom with his pants down and a “wide stance” soliciting an undercover cop. The “I” that came next suggested we should check our instrumentation, that is, are the devices adequately reporting the data?

Here’s where U.S. elections become laughable. A couple of private companies, count our votes with secret proprietary hardware and software, the most notable being ES&S. Every standard of election transparency is routinely violated in the U.S. electronic version of faith-based voting. How the corporate-dominated media deals with the issue is by “adjusting the exit polls.” They simply assume the recorded vote on easily hacked and programmed private machines are correct and that the international gold standard for detecting election fraud – exit polls – must be wrong.

They are not going to go through the rest of the acronym and check to see if the Sample makes sense, that the right Measurements are being taken, or whether or not there’s been a breakdown in Implementing the exit polling. They won’t check to see if the representative Size of the polling numbers are accurate, or if there are problems with the pollster’s Technique, or if there was human Error, or if there’s just bad Recording going on.

Of course, the machines could be recording wrong because they are programmed for an incorrect outcome. The easiest people to convince regarding the absurdity of electronic voting with private proprietary hardware and software are the computer programmers across the political spectrum. Statisticians and mathematicians also readily comprehend the obvious nature of rigged elections.

One of my favorite mathematicians is Richard Charnin, who on his website using readily available public information, calculates the odds of the so-called ‘red shift” occurring from the 1988 to 2008 presidential elections. The red shift refers to the overwhelming pick up of votes by the Republican Party in recorded votes over what actual voters report to exit pollsters.

In Charnin’s analysis of exit poll data, we can say with a 95% confidence level – that means in 95 out of 100 elections – that the exit polls will fall within a statistically predictable margin of error. Charnin looked at 300 presidential state exit polls from 1988 to 2008, 15 state elections would be expected to fall outside the margin of error. Shockingly, 137 of the 300 state presidential exit polls fell outside the margin of error.

What is the probability of this happening?

“One in one million trillion trillion trlllion trillion trillion trillion,” said Charnin.

More proof of Republican operatives and sympathizers is found in the fact that 132 of the elections fell outside the margin in favor of the GOP. We would expect eight.

Say you have a fair coin to flip. We would expect that if we flip that coin there would be an even split between heads and tails – or in this case, Republicans and Democrats. Election results falling outside the margin of error should be equally split between both parties. Yet, only five times, less than expected, did the extra votes fall in the direction of the Democratic Party.

So what are the odds? According to Charnin, of 132 out of 300 state presidential elections exceeding the margin of error in the direction of the Republicans – one in 600 trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion.

The corporate-owned media does not want to mention that the problems with the exit polls began with the ascendancy of the former CIA Director George Herbert Walker Bush to the presidency in 1988. It is also that year when the non-transparent push-and-pray voting machines were introduced in the New Hampshire primary by Bush ally John Sununu. Bush, who rigged elections for the CIA throughout the Third World did unexpectedly well where the voting machines were brought in.

In any other election outside the U.S., the U.S. State Department would condemn the use of the these highly riggable machines based on the discrepancy in the exit polls. It’s predictable what would happen if an anti-U.S. KGB agent in some former Soviet Central Asian republic picked up an unexplained 5% of the votes at odds with the exit polls. A new election would be called for, as it was in the Ukraine in 2004. We would not have accepted the reported vote from the corrupt intelligence officer.

The CIA Director’s son wins with laughable exit poll discrepancies in 2000 and 2004 and the mainstream media sees no evil. The media’s perspective is to discredit the exit polls, which they sponsor, and call any who point to the polls “conspiracy theorists.”

In 2004, 22 states had a red shift to the CIA Director’s son, George W. Bush. Usually such improbably results are signs of a Banana Republic. Now we have a too-close-to-call neck and neck recall race in Wisconsin that show an obvious red shift for a right-wing red governor. Nobody wants to look at the non-transparent black box machines. Electronic election rigging has prospered. Long live the “adjusted” vote totals.


Originally published by The Free Press, https://freepress.org

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Recent Fight Back – Episodes: Podcasts

05/09/12 Trotsky In America, Eco-Socialism

05/02/12 Ohio’s Progressive Agenda

04/25/12 Unite Against The War On Women

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Bob’s Radio Shows This Week: Michael Parenti Podcast

Bob Fitrakis on “Fight Back”: Michael Parenti
Bob interviews Michael Parenti, author, scholar, activist, currently on the advisory boards of Independent Progressive Politics Network, Education Without Borders, and the Jasenovic Foundation; as well as the advisory editorial boards of New Political Science and Nature, Society and Thought. He is the author of twenty-three books
Listen and call in this Wednesday, April 11
7 – 8 PM
Call 877-932-9766

Here’s how to call in to the LIVE INTERNET radio show:
(on your computer – not on your broadcast radio dial)
On Wednesday nights at 7:00 pm
Go to: http://talktainmentradio.com
Click on “Listen Live”
Call 877-932-9766
All shows rebroadcast on WCRSFM community radio 98.3/102.1 Wednesdays at 8pm
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Bob’s WVKO 1580AM radio show Saturday, April 14 – 11am-12noon
Call in @ 1-614-821-1580
Talking about the OSU project on the near east side including Poindexter Village with Deborah Steele of Jobs with Justice and others.

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Listen and call-in to Bob Fitrakis’ new radio show on WVKO1580AM

Listen and call-in to Bob Fitrakis’ new radio show on WVKO1580AM
This Saturday, April 7 from 11am-12noon
1-614-821-1580
This week’s guest: Staughton Lynd, prisoner rights activist, author of Lucasville: The Untold Story of a Prison Uprising
OPEN LINE: Call in between 11:40am-12noon on whatever subject you want to talk about!

also, don’t forget —

Join us to Stop the Prison Industrial Complex!
Saturday, April 7, 2012
1-3:00 PM
Gather at Corner of Broad St. & High St. for a Rally (State Capitol Building), Columbus, Ohio.
Speaker: Bob Fitrakis
Followed by a march west on Broad Street to the Ohio Dept of Rehabilitation and Correction. Several organizations and activist groups are uniting for this rally to bring attention to the injustices which are inherent in the prison industrial complex.This is an effort to educate the public and law makers about these issues and to show our growing support for change.
• Free the framed Lucasville Five.
• End the death penalty.
• Parole for Old-Law prisoners – presumption for parole when eligible.
• Right to a life for former prisoners – remove barriers to employment and housing.
If you have a prison issue, come with signs, banners, drums and bullhorns. Show your support.
Sponsored by the Central Ohio Prisoner Advocates
centralohio.prisoneradvocates@gmail.com
http://centralohioprisoneradvocates.wordpress.com
614-635-0227
Followup article:https://fitrakis.org/prison-rally-saturday-april-7-2012-dowtown-columbus/

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Bob Fitrakis Fight Back: Podcast: Justice for Trayvon Martin and the new Jim Crow

Bob Fitrakis on “Fight Back”: From Sanford, Florida to Columbus, Ohio — Justice for Trayvon Martin and the new Jim Crow
Bob discusses the Trayvon Martin case and local cases with Noel Williams (Columbus NAACP) and Dr. Marilyn Howard, Race relations historian
Listen and call in this Wednesday, March 28
7 – 8 PM
Call 877-932-9766

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Here’s how to call in to the LIVE INTERNET radio show on Wednesday nights at 7:00 pm
(on your computer – not on your broadcast radio dial)

Go to: http://talktainmentradio.com

Click on “Listen Live”
Call 877-932-9766
All shows rebroadcast on WCRSFM community radio 98.3/102.1 Wednesdays at 8pm

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Bob Fitrakis on “Fight Back”: Podcast David Swanson on Iran

Bob Fitrakis on “Fight Back”: David Swanson on Iran and other current events
Bob interviews anti-war activist David Swanson on the escalating situation in Iran, a petition to remove Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize, the efforts to arrest George W. Bush and other current events.
Listen and call in this Wednesday, March 7
7 – 8 PM
Call 877-932-9766
*************************
Here’s how to call in to the LIVE INTERNET radio show:
(on your computer – not on your broadcast radio dial)
On Wednesday nights at 7:00 pm
Go to: http://talktainmentradio.com
Click on “Listen Live”
Call 877-932-9766
All shows rebroadcast on WCRSFM community radio 98.3/102.1 Wednesdays at 8pm

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Bob Fitrakis on “Fight Back”: Michael Keegan And Ohio Green Party Senate candidate Joe DeMare

Bob Fitrakis on “Fight Back”: The Davis Besse Nuclear Plant and Ohio Green Party Senate candidate Joe DeMare
Bob interviews Michael Keegan of Beyond Nuclear and Joe DeMare, the Green Party’s candidate for Ohio Senate.
Listen and call in this Wednesday, February 29 – 7-8 PM EST
Call 877-932-9766

*******************************************************************
Here’s how to call in to the LIVE INTERNET radio show:
(on your computer – not on your broadcast radio dial)
On Wednesday nights at 7:00 pm
Go to: http://talktainmentradio.com
Click on “Listen Live”
Call 877-932-9766
All shows rebroadcast on WCRSFM community radio 98.3/102.1 Wednesdays at 8pm