Monday, 18 August 2008

’04 Election Apologists Still Unmoved By Mountain of Evidence: Columbus Dispatch Ignores Facts

Columbus Dispatch articles explaining the 2004 election irregularities all embrace the same formula: ignore the more than 1000 signed affidavits and sworn testimonies of disenfranchised voters; rely only on the word of OSU Law Professor Dan Tokaji who has no background in statistical analysis and who always tells the Dispatch whatever they want to hear; and then apologize for former Ohio Secretary of State J. Kenneth Blackwell and fail to mention what is routinely reported in every other major newspaper in the state of Ohio.

In the Sunday, August 10 Dispatch front page story, the paper conveniently avoids reporting on Blackwell’s well-documented activities. There’s no mention of: Blackwell’s directive that returned voter registration applications that weren’t on “80-bond paper weight”; Blackwell’s refusal to count the votes for the first time in modern Ohio history if voters were at the right polling place but the wrong precinct table; the fact that Blackwell outsourced Ohio’s official vote count tabulation to Michael Connell, a Bush family partisan who sent the vote tally to a Republican server site in Chattanooga, Tennessee tied to the White House; or of his full-court blitz on TV trying to get Democratic Presidential candidate John Kerry to concede with 250,000 uncounted votes

The Dispatch claims “there’s no direct proof of widespread fraud.” This may be true. But, in an election where the exit polls showed Kerry winning by 3 percentage points, all you need is a “little bit of” fraud to flip the numbers. And that’s exactly what the exit polls showed. That instead of Kerry winning 52% to 48%, Bush wins 51% to 48.5%.

So biased was the Dispatch reporting that they either engaged in deliberate propaganda or made errors so simple that they would have flunked Intro to Politics 101 at any college. Tokaji, who admitted to having no training in exit polling, told the AP, and hence the world, that the unexplainable discrepancy between the exit poll numbers and the actual vote count was not a problem.
From the paper’s perspective: 308,000 voters purged from voting registration rolls in the urban centers of Cleveland, Cincinnati, and Toledo, are not deliberate, even though 80% or so would have likely voted for Kerry; dozens of sworn statements from voters saying that they touched the computer screen for Kerry and saw their vote flip to Bush is only an accident; and that Kerry’s votes ran significantly behind an underfunded retired African American municipal judge from Cleveland on the ticket – only in 14 Republican counties – is simply ignored.

When criminal elements control who counts the votes you no longer have a democracy. It is because of such actions that we have the Bush Administration and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Ensuring there are fair and transparent elections is vital in preventing the criminals from gaining power. At present the whole US electorial system is highly suspect with mostly wealthy, politically "anointed" individuals gaining a ticket to run as a candidate. It's a club for the cronies (especially on the Republican side of the ledger).

[Posted at the SpookyWeather blog, August 18th, 2008.]

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