Saturday, August 06, 2005

Not again...Ohio election strangeness 

As if the Conyers report on Bush's second straight stolen Presidential election weren't bad enough, now it looks like the Republicans--faced with the embarrassing loss of their gerrymandered "lock" district--may have prevented an honest outcome again. This sounds bad...really bad:

As of 1 am this past Tuesday night/Wednesday morning, Hackett was within 3600 votes---about four percent---of Schmidt.

But election officials announced a mysterious "computer glitch" that delayed reports from Clermont County, which accounted for roughly a quarter of all the ballots cast in the district.

When things finally settled out, Clermont gave Schmidt 58%, and a 5,000 vote margin there. And thus the election.

Earlier in the evening---around 9pm---Hackett and Schmidt had been in a virtual dead heat, according to sources in the Cincinnati area (see among them http://billmon.org/archives/002073.html ).

A full 88% of the district's precincts had then reported, including more than half those in Clermont. As in Florida 2000 and Ohio 2004, it looked like a cliffhanger. Schmidt's lead was less than 900 votes.

Clermont's "technical malfunction" with optical scan readers was blamed on the humidity. Election officials said the southern Ohio summer had soaked into the ballots, making it hard to pass them through opti-scan machines.

Once the problem was "solved," Schmidt picked up more than enough votes to guarantee victory. The percentages by which she won in the post-glitch vote count were far higher than those by which she had been winning prior to the glitch. Vote counts were also higher than expected in the strongest Schmidt precincts.

Read the following and compare it to the Conyers Report--it's the same county:

Clermont and neighboring Butler and Warren Counties gave George W. Bush a margin in 2004 that exceeded his entire statewide margin over John Kerry. Warren County became infamous on election night, when its supervisors suddenly declared a "Homeland Emergency" and dismissed all media and Democrats from the vote count. Bush then emerged with a huge, unexpected and unmonitored majority.

Clermont, Butler and Warren Counties' totals were also suspect because a Democratic candidate for Ohio Supreme Court implausibly out-polled John Kerry. As would be expected, Bush vastly out ran the Republican candidate for Supreme Court Chief Justice in those three counties. But Democrat C. Ellen Connelly, a pro-choice, pro-gay-marriage African-American from Cleveland somehow got a higher vote count than Kerry in these conservative, predominantly white southern Ohio counties. Richard Hayes Philips and other experts who have assessed that vote say it is beyond implausible, indicating a high likelihood of fraud.

With the exception of the Washington State Gubernatorial Vote, every time there's an election like this, it goes the way of the Republicans. Washington, a usually Democratic state, may have its own shenanigans going on (though I haven't heard of any).

The bottom line: it's getting harder and harder to trust anyone in the government. Or in the media. Or in the oil industry. Oops, sorry, I'm being redundant. Those three are all the same people.

Anyone out there who's still finding excuses for the US and its government deserves what is coming. The rest of us are simply ineffectual victims.


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