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10/24/04 - 10/31/2004

Sunday  10/31/2004

Georgia's e-voting system will get biggest test on Tuesday  10/31/2004 AP 

Problems still remain in Florida balloting  10/31/2004 Capitol Outlook, FL: "Noting that it was revealed just yesterday on the Tom Joyner Morning Show that 12 million single moms were not registered to vote in November, Greene said, "I just wish some kind of way these people would understand that if government goes this far to throw your registration card out, that should prove to you just how important that little card is, in terms of registering and voting." "

Fraud File: States to Watch  10/31/2004 NewsMax: "Unlike in 2000, Florida now has a statewide recount law. Recounts are automatic if the result is within 0.5 percent of total votes cast." [This extreme-right paper forgets that over 30% of the voting machines are incapable of doing a recount.]

International Monitoring Team  10/31/2004 Pax Christi: bios for the monitors of one of 3 teams we know of, along with the Global Exchange sponsored team and the Europe based OSCE team.


Saturday  10/30/2004

The Caging List - Voter Denial in Jacksonville, FL  10/30/2004 Black Voter Network: "Are Republicans keeping a Caging List so as to challenge Black voters?"

Bush and Kerry see election hijacked by their old enemy  10/30/2004 Independent, Uk: "But the opposite may happen. Voters may be reminded that the man who has for the first time explicitly admitted he was behind the 11 September terror attacks is still at large, strengthening the feeling that the war against Iraq was a mistake, a distraction from the real war against Bin Laden and international terrorism."

Sparks couple take vote battle to state high court  10/30/2004 Las Vegas Review Journal: "A Sparks couple who claim a Republican-backed voter drive lost or destroyed their Democratic registration forms have taken their case to the Nevada Supreme Court."

Foreign monitors to view N.C. vote  10/30/2004 News Observer, NC 

Republicans Pressed To Halt Voter-Suppression Efforts  10/30/2004 OneWorld: "With political analysts agreeing that voter turnout, especially of minority and youth voters, will likely determine the outcome of next Tuesday’s presidential election, civil and human rights groups are pressing the Republican National Committee (news - web sites) (RNC) to call off plans aimed at discouraging people from casting ballots."

Kerry squeaks ahead in Florida  10/30/2004 Palm Beach Post 

Transcript of Greenberg, Devine, Donilon, Lockhart Call (1/2)  10/30/2004 US Newswire: "I'm going to read you paraphrasement about Osama Bin Laden's videotape - this is a poll that was conducted by Democracy Corps, I'm going to read you a paraphrasement about the release of Bin Laden's videotape, please tell me what comes closer to your view: One, it makes me think that George W. Bush took his eye of the ball in Afghanistan (news - web sites) and diverted his resources to Iraq; Two, it underscores the importance of George Bush (news - web sites)'s approach to terrorism By ten points, 46-36 percent, voters responding to the survey agreed with the first statement , rather than the second."


Friday  10/29/2004

topElection day trickery  10/29/2004 Afro American Newspapers: "If you vote by provisional ballot, physically be at the Election Board office on Thursday [Nov. 4] after the election to make sure your vote is counted. The goal is to vote by any means necessary," said Cheatham.

Household Survey Sees 100,000 Iraqi Deaths  10/29/2004 AP: "Researchers have estimated that as many as 100,000 more Iraqis -- many of them women and children -- died since the start of the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq than would have been expected otherwise, based on the death rate before the war."

Ohio GOP Loses Bid to Fight Registrations  10/29/2004 AP 

State Department Tried to Stop Airing of Bin Laden Tape  10/29/2004 AP: "The State Department on Friday urged the government of Qatar, which finances Al-Jazeera, not to broadcast a videotaped speech by Osama bin Laden, a senior State Department official said."

Charges over voter rights intensify  10/29/2004 Boston Globe: ''Republicans are yet again crying fraud and spinning a story of chaos at the polls . . . and laying the groundwork for challenges," said Christine Anderson, a Kerry campaign spokeswoman in Fort Lauderdale. ''They're developing lists of voters they plan to challenge. They could bring these to the supervisor of elections office ahead of time to try to get it resolved before Election Day, and they've not done that. They'd rather scare people away from the polls."

Another Voter Intimidation Tactic: Flyer Full of Lies  10/29/2004 Buzzflash: "This is an example of the type of tactic being done in the African American neighborhoods to suppress the vote. It is not an accident; it is intentional and it is aimed at the newly registered and infrequent voter, or the fearful voter. This is why we need all of you to please keep your eyes and ears open, participate wherever you can and encourage people to not be intimidated by or discouraged from voting."

What Could Go Wrong: Part III  10/29/2004 CBS: "Some worry the mere presence of so many lawyers and monitors could erode the perceived legitimacy of the election. "I think it could be a very serious problem," said Sen. John McCain in an interview outside the final presidential debate in Tempe."

Kerry's Contra-Cocaine Chapter  10/29/2004 Consortium News: "In December 1985, when Brian Barger and I wrote a groundbreaking story for the Associated Press about Nicaraguan Contra rebels smuggling cocaine into the United States, one U.S. senator put his political career on the line to follow up on our disturbing findings. His name was John Kerry."

Bush Administration Attempts To Overturn Decades of Legal Precedence & Block Voting Rights Lawsuits From Voters  10/29/2004 Democracy Now 

Ohio Lawmakers Call for Secretary of State Blackwell to Resign  10/29/2004 Democracy Now: "Meanwhile, Ohio Secretary of State Kenneth Blackwell has come under fire in recent weeks for his directives on provisional ballots in the state that many say would disenfranchise voters. Several Ohio Democratic Senators are calling for the immediate resignation of Blackwell, stating in a letter addressed to him that he has been "unresponsive to the needs of Ohio's voters" and has "failed to uphold [his] duties as chief elections officer." "

Secret Document Suggests GOP Preparing to Challenge Black Vote in Florida  10/29/2004 Democracy Now: "GREG PALAST: Yeah. That's why I’m grateful that you have run the report today. Because the Republican National Committee is threatening BBC, as they have done before with my reports, saying that if Greg Palast is on the air there will be no interviews for the network. From the Republican National Committee, which is, of course, cutting off the air supply of the news organization, and you can immediately see why American news organizations won't touch the story. That's basically that the Republican Party has a hit list of black people they're going to try to wipe out on Election Day, stop them from voting, and in particular, this has the effect of not only of intimidating the voters, eliminating voters, but in places like Jacksonville where three and four-hour waits are expected, this could entirely sabotage the voting operation. Understand, this is illegal if they're targeting black folk. It is against federal law." ...GREG PALAST: What you saw was a guy, Ion Sancho, who is probably considered the most experienced and respected of election supervisors in Florida. Unfortunately, my one mistake was to identify him as a Democrat, because the Republicans told me he was a Democrat. He's very independent, not affiliated with any party. He has also asked the parties not to challenge voters on Election Day. The supervisors have said it's really never been done in Florida history. This basically is an attempt to stop the entire voting process, bring it to a halt. As for registrations, what happened was that students, mostly Democrats, students filled out petition forms for medical use of marijuana, and it turns out they were signing the back of registration forms without knowing it, reregistering themselves as republicans. This was definitely tied to a republican-paid operation, and at least 4,000 of the forged registrations, which is a felony to forge registration, have been found, and Jeb Bush's department of law enforcement says that they don't have time for the next few weeks to get around to arresting the forgers. It's just -- this is just the beginning of the game."

Residents see a pattern of prejudice  10/29/2004 Detroit Free Press: published 12/13/00, the Board is now more diverse - "The all-white and all-Republican Duval County Canvassing Board deliberately confused voters by issuing a ballot that was radically different from the sample ballot that had been released earlier to newspapers and voters. Voters were encouraged to bring the sample ballot to the polls with their choices already marked. Voters who made mistakes on the ballot and realized it were refused replacement ballots, a violation of Florida law, which allows voters up to two replacement ballots."

Racially-Based Suppression of the African-American Vote: The Role It May Play in the Upcoming Presidential Election  10/29/2004 FindLaw: "Suppression of the black vote is thus not only anti-democratic but deeply racist. It arises from a history of violent resistance to the equality of African-Americans in this country, and it thrives on the poverty and vulnerability that continue to plague the black community throughout this nation as a lasting legacy of slavery. It violates rights for which people died in the Civil War, and which are now enshrined in the U.S. Constitution. And it punishes the victims of our racist history for opposing candidates whose agendas may preclude progress in achieving a true and lasting equality."

'US al-Qaeda' warns of attacks  10/29/2004 ITV 

Tensions rise in Florida as charges of intimidation, ballot problems  10/29/2004 KVOA, Tucson 

GOP calls 925 felons illegal voters  10/29/2004 Miami Herald: "The Republican Party of Florida drew up its own list of felons it says are ineligible to vote. The party could use the information to contest election results if they are close again in Florida."

The Shadow of Jim Crow: Voter Intimidation and Suppression in America Today  10/29/2004 NAACP 

FOX Continues to Flail Away About "Voter Fraud"  10/29/2004 News Hound: "Notice how all the misdoings in the piece are by Democrats? And if the challenges in Ohio have been turned down by the courts, why is FOX still reporting on it in a piece called "Fraud File?" My feeling is that FOX is using these stories to lay the groundwork for future voter challenges in the swing states and for casting the results of the election in doubt just in case - horror of FOX horrors - the unthinkable happens and Bush loses next Tuesday."

Fla.: Kerry Takes Commanding Lead in Early Voting  10/29/2004 NewsMax: "Among 16 percent of Florida voters who said they had cast early ballots, Kerry received 56 percent of those compared to Bush's 39 percent."

IRS reviewing NAACP tax-exempt status  10/29/2004 NYT: "This is an attempt to silence the NAACP on the very eve of a presidential election," he said. "We are best known for registering and turning out large numbers of African American voters. Clearly, someone in the IRS doesn't want that to happen." He added, "It's Orwellian to believe that criticism of the president is not allowed or that the president is somehow immune from criticism." "

The Return of the 'Butterfly Ballot'  10/29/2004 NYT 

Poll watchers will keep their eyes on Florida  10/29/2004 Orlando Sentinel: "The lawyers and election observers must stand 50 feet from the entrance to the polling place, along with those soliciting votes for their candidates. Pax Christi USA, a Catholic peace group, is bringing in an international monitoring team of 30 foreign observers to scrutinize the voting in Duval, Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade counties. The team is comprised of observers from Africa, South America, Europe, Southeast Asia and Canada. "They will be looking for a lack of translators, accessibility issues for people who are disabled and voter intimidation," said spokesman Johnny Zokovitch."

Voter Intimidation, Missing Ballots in Florida Counties Set the Stage for International Observers  10/29/2004 Pax Christi/NAACP: "Thirty international observers preparing for their delegation to witness the elections in Florida circled “intimidation of voters” on their observation checklists as news reports Thursday focused on a “challenge list” of nearly 2,000 voters in predominantly black and traditionally Democrat areas of Jacksonville, Fla. A team of international observers from the Voting Justice Project of Pax Christi USA (www.paxchristiusa.org) and the NAACP (www.naacp.org) are set to document their observations at polling precincts in Duval County."

NAACP Faces IRS Investigation - Report  10/29/2004 Reuters 

"The looting of Iraq's arsenal," by a U.S. agent in Iraq  10/29/2004 Salon: "But Al Qaqaa is not the whole story. The same month it was being looted, I learned of another major weapons and ammunition storage facility, near my battalion's base at Camp Anaconda, that was unguarded and targeted by looters. But despite my repeated warnings -- and those of other U.S. intelligence agents -- nothing was done to secure this facility, as it was systematically stripped of enough weapons and explosives to equip anti-U.S. insurgents with enough roadside improvised explosive devices, or IEDs, for years to come."

NASA photo analyst: Bush wore a device during debate  10/29/2004 Salon: "Physicist says imaging techniques prove the president's bulge was not caused by wrinkled clothing."


Thursday  10/28/2004

topArmed Group Claims to Have Iraq Explosives  10/28/2004 AP: "A group calling itself Al-Islam's Army Brigades, Al-Karar Brigade, said it had coordinated with officers and soldiers of "the American intelligence" to obtain a "huge amount of the explosives that were in the al-Qaqaa facility." "

Florida ballot papers go missing  10/28/2004 BBC: ""It looks like they're trying to steal the vote again," said Diane Glasser, vice-chairwoman of the Florida Democratic Party. Both the Democrats and Republicans have already begun filing lawsuits in states across the US, challenging different aspects of the election process… "It looks like they're trying to steal the vote again," said Diane Glasser, vice-chairwoman of the Florida Democratic Party. Both the Democrats and Republicans have already begun filing lawsuits in states across the US, challenging different aspects of the election process."

Africans to help monitor U.S. elections  10/28/2004 Black America Web: "Following a vote in the House barring U.N. observers, for the first time ever, Europe’s Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) voted to send observers for a U.S. presidential election. And Global Exchange began organizing its international team of observers, who form highly respected election officials of leaders of NGOs around the world."

Black students push for big Florida voter turnout  10/28/2004 Black America Web: "TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Chanting "Vote or Die" and "Six Days Left," Florida A&M University students – along with state and local leaders – rallied in front of the Leon County Courthouse here Wednesday as part of a student-led initiative aimed at encouraging more young voters to cast ballots in this year's presidential election."

Tom Joyner leads Miami voters to polls  10/28/2004 Black America Web: "In an effort to attract more early voters to the polls in Florida – a battleground state that was riddled with complaints of voting irregularities in 2000 – syndicated radio personality Tom Joyner is leading a “March to Vote” rally in Miami Beach Friday morning. Immediately following Joyner’s Southwest Airlines Sky Show at the Jackie Gleason Theater, Joyner and film stars Jennifer Holiday and LeVar Burton, and talk-show host Star Jones will join voters in a march to early voting booths in the Miami Beach City Hall."

Black Vote Smothered by Electoral College  10/28/2004 Black Commentator: "The whites of the Old Confederacy - once Democrats, then rebels against the Union, then Democrats again, and now mostly Republicans - practice racial bloc voting to keep Black minorities - ranging from 16 percent (Arkansas) to 36 percent (Mississippi) - in political check within state boundaries. But it is the Electoral College that chains Black southern voters to their white political antagonists, in effect forcing Blacks to add the weight of their franchise to that of the Republican Party's racist base, every four years. We vote against their candidate - they walk away with the southern half of Black America's electoral votes."

Election 2004: The Vote Theft Begins  10/28/2004 Black Commentator: "Derisive terms like Uncle Tom should be used rarely. It is easier to use invective rather than well reasoned debate. Name calling can be an easy out. On the other hand, it works perfectly for the Ken Blackwells of the world. Mr. Blackwell not only has a name filled with irony, but he may have replaced Clarence Thomas as the worst Uncle Tom in the nation. Blackwell began his descent into turncoat hell by doing everything in his power to suppress the vote in Ohio, one of the so-called “swing states” that will decide this election. He tried to uphold an obscure and seldom enforced law mandating that voter registration forms only be accepted if they were on paper of a certain weight. Blackwell still wasn’t finished. A federal judge ordered him to count provisional ballots that may be cast in the incorrect voting precinct. The legal fights will continue in Ohio and many other states until well after Election Day. It is likely that on November 3rd the outcome may still be unknown."

War stories - Legendary journalist Seymour Hersh talks about Abu Ghraib, the chaos in Iraq, and the price of the Bush administration’s war on terror  10/28/2004 Boston Phoenix: "If Bush is re-elected, I think one of the things the Europeans will do is, they’ll set up another group whose whole purpose will be to combat the United States, because they really don’t like us. They really don’t like us, particularly the Germans and the French. And I think one of the things they’ll do is start talking about developing their own solution to the Middle East. I can guarantee that there’ll be a sense that they have to mobilize against America. They’ve had it with Bush, big time."

Politics Gets Uglier in Florida  10/28/2004 Capitol Hill Blue: "That's when (Garone) walked up to my car and stuck a gun to my head," Pickering said. "I said 'I'm sorry' and 'Please don't kill me,' drove away and called the cops."

Will Bad News Bring Bush a Bad Day at the Polls?  10/28/2004 Capitol Hill Blue 

U.S. to dispatch election monitors  10/28/2004 CNN: "The Justice Department is expected to announce Thursday where it plans to send about 1,000 federal election monitors charged with protecting the voting rights of citizens in the November 2 balloting."

Brother, Can You Spare a Dime? Despite the claims of some leftists, there’s a dire difference between Bush and Kerry for African-Americans.  10/28/2004 In These Times 

New Evidence of Voter Blacklist in Florida?  10/28/2004 Institute for Public Accuracy 

Iraq says “impossible” explosives taken before regime fall  10/28/2004 Khaleej Times 

Republican list of ineligible voters stirs controversy in Florida  10/28/2004 KRT: "The GOP found the allegedly illegal voters by using the same flawed list of felons that had been drawn up by the state elections division but was scrapped after news organizations exposed its inaccuracies. The party has built a list of 14,489 registered voters it says should not be allowed to vote because they are felons whose civil rights have not been restored. Of those, Republican officials say 925 thus far have either voted early or requested an absentee ballot."

5 EYEWITNESS NEWS video may be linked to missing explosives in Iraq  10/28/2004 KSTP: "Once the doors to the bunkers were opened, they weren't secured. They were left open when the 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS crew and the military went back to their base. "We weren't quite sure what were looking at, but we saw so much of it and it didn't appear that this was being secured in any way," said photojournalist Joe Caffrey. "It was several miles away from where military people were staying in their tents". Officers with the 101st Airborne told 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS that the bunkers were within the U.S. military perimeter and protected. But Caffrey and former 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS Reporter Dean Staley, who spent three months together in Iraq, said Iraqis were coming and going freely."

Missing ballots to be remailed  10/28/2004 Miami Herald: "Broward County's election office is resending about 76,000 absentee ballots to voters who say they asked for but still haven't received them, an ominous sign of voting problems just days before the nation again sets its eyes on Florida."

"It Will Be Worse Than in 2000"  10/28/2004 Salon: interview with Julian Bond - "I think it will be worse than in 2000. For one thing, in 2000 you did not have the law-enforcement apparatus of the government engaged on one side of the contest, as you do now. Attorney General [John] Ashcroft has instituted this so-called ballot integrity program. Yes, despite appeals to him to issue statements saying we're interested in protecting the voters' right to cast their votes, he's focused entirely on suspicions and allegations of fraud. I don't think anyone thinks that fraud is a widespread problem in the American electoral system. Instead, he's instructed his attorneys general across the United States to be on the alert for fraud, rather than be on the alert for people who are likely to stymie voters and keep them from casting their votes. The two parties are much more aware, taking a lesson from 2000, that every vote counts, and the Democrats take the lesson to mean we need to get all our people to the polls, while the Republicans take the lesson to mean we have to keep as many people as we can away."

Gov. Bush: Poll watchers can, should challenge voters  10/28/2004 St Petersburg Times: "Hillsborough Supervisor of Elections Buddy Johnson met with a John Kerry lawyer this week to discuss how to handle challenges from Republican lawyers. "We are hopefully going to rely on civility, and beyond that, we are going to rely on law enforcement," Johnson said. The concept of challenging voters isn't restricted to Florida. In Ohio, Republicans already have challenged the eligibility of 35,000 of Ohio's 800,000 newly registered voters. Florida Democrats on Wednesday released a memo sent to state and local election officials insisting such challenges should be rare, accompanied by irrefutable proof and not disruptive to other voters. The Democratic Party and Kerry's campaign said it will have 7,000 poll watchers in Florida on Election Day, including 1,500 lawyers."

Students Decry Registration Problems - Democrats Allege 'Scare Tactics' to Suppress Young People's Poll Turnout  10/28/2004 Washington Post: "Reports of college students being discouraged from registering by local officials in a host of college towns are growing more common in the Granite State, where Kerry and President Bush are locked in a tight race. The issue of student eligibility has also been a source of contention in other states, including Virginia, Texas and Maine. Democrats allege a systematic program of "scare tactics" designed to suppress turnout among one of their key constituencies. Republicans say they will be monitoring out-of-staters at the polls on Nov. 2 to ensure that state election laws designed to prevent voter fraud are enforced."

Phony letters tell people they cannot vote  10/28/2004 WKYC, Ohio: "The phony letter says newly registered voters signed up by the Kerry or Capri Cafaro campaigns or the NAACP, their registrations are illegal and they will not be able to vote. “That was not authorized by the Board of Elections, said Elections Director Jan Clair. “It was not mailed by the Lake County Board of Elections.”"


Wednesday  10/27/2004

topSeymour Hersh: Man On Fire  10/27/2004 Alternet: "Look, America is a very racist country and war brings out the worst in it. I have said – several times, publicly – that the one thing I've always liked about Bill Clinton is that he was the first American president since World War II to bomb white people."

International observers set to descend on Florida  10/27/2004 AP: ""We welcome people to come to the state, to watch the process we have in place," said Alia Faraj, a spokeswoman for Hood. "We're proud of the reforms and Florida's accomplishments." State law says that only the political parties and candidates can request precinct poll watchers and anyone not authorized to be inside the polling places must stay more than 50 feet away from the entrance. Faraj said no one from OSCE had yet asked for poll access. OSCE, based in Vienna, Austria, had not yet worked out the details on where monitors would be stationed or exactly what they would be doing, spokeswoman Urdur Gunnarsdottir said by e-mail."

Voter Intimidation in Jacksonville  10/27/2004 Black Voter Network: "Voter intimidation is not a myth my God I feel like I am in a third world country so far today I have handled four cases that were clear intimidation that we over turned with lawyers the office I am running has had the computers compromised, my phone bank suddenly shut down, and then a county inspector came in and shut off our water so we have no bathrooms. We are in a strip mall and we are the only ones shut down and we can't get anyone over to turn us back on, I had to go back to my host home to get computer work done."

It Can’t Get Any Closer in the Battleground States — Minority Turnout is Kerry Key  10/27/2004 Fabrizio, McLaughlin & Associates 

3 former workers: Firm paid pro-Bush bonuses  10/27/2004 Minneapolis Star Tribune: "Three former canvassers for a company working in Minnesota to reelect President Bush have come forward to say they were paid bonuses for registering Bush supporters but got nothing for registering voters who favor challenger John Kerry. One man, who worked for only a few hours for the company, Sproul and Associates, said it was implied that he could be fired for coming back with only Kerry registration cards. "I was told, your job is to bring in Republican cards. If you don't, then you won't be working here for very long," said Adam Banse, who quit after two hours."

Going through hoops to vote  10/27/2004 North Jersey Media: "In spite of being dazed by a sucker punch, Florida's black voters have rallied through aggressive outreach and have increased African-American registration by more than a third. Look at how those Jacksonville folks got knocked down and are up before the 10 count to fight for those precious few minutes to choose governmental representatives. Florida is up 18 percent overall, New Jersey 18.5, both impressive indicators of increased voter interest."

Stolen Election? This Time Around, Let’s Be Prepared  10/27/2004 Progressive Trail: by Medea Benjamin - "A new coalition, made up of peace, women, labor, civil rights, religious and environmental groups, has set up an Urgent Response Network to be activated in event of a stolen election. On the group’s website, www.nov3.us, tens of thousands of people have already signed a pledge saying that they remember the fraud-ridden presidential election of 2000 and that if the election is stolen again, they will join nationwide protests starting on November 3rd--either in their local communities, in the states where the fraud occurred, or in Washington DC. The pledge signers include personalities such as Michael Moore, Jesse Jackson, and Dolores Huerta, as well as representatives from groups such as the AFL-CIO, Sierra Club, United for Peace and Justice, Global Exchange, CodePink, and the Feminist Majority."

Police: Driver Tried to Run Over Florida Rep. Harris  10/27/2004 Reuters: "Florida motorist was arrested Wednesday on charges of trying to run down U.S. Rep. Katherine Harris at an intersection where the controversial former state elections chief was campaigning for re-election to Congress."

Counties urged to protect early voters from harassment  10/27/2004 Sun Sentinel: "The state sent the memo, which includes a recommendation to hire off-duty law enforcement or private security experts for crowd and traffic control, at the request of Gov. Jeb Bush. Over the weekend, Bush heard complaints and read newspaper reports of voters being intimidated, harassed and heckled while casting early ballots."

Bush blunders block path to reelection  10/27/2004 The Hill 

BBC report sparks Florida vote storm  10/27/2004 UPI: "Republican state campaign spokeswoman Mindy Tucker Fletcher confirmed to the BBC that GOP poll workers in Florida would be instructed to challenge voters "where it's stated in the law." But at the time she refused to deny the possibility that the "caging list" would be used to create a challenge list for black voters from overwhelmingly Democratic districts. Later, she offered another explanation for it."

THE MINORITY VOTE  10/27/2004 Washington Monthly: "Suddenly the Bush campaign's obsession with challenging voters in minority neighborhoods makes a lot of sense, doesn't it? Their own internal polling is probably telling them the same thing that Fabrizio's poll says: unless they somehow manage to keep the minority vote down, they're doomed."


Tuesday  10/26/2004

topMel Martinez: a Monster in Silk Clothing  10/26/2004 AfroCubaWeb 

AP Poll: Voters Skeptical About Election  10/26/2004 AP 

Poll reveals Florida blacks wary of touch-screen voting  10/26/2004 AP 

New Florida vote scandal feared  10/26/2004 BBC: by Greg Paslast - "Two e-mails, prepared for the executive director of the Bush campaign in Florida and the campaign's national research director in Washington DC, contain a 15-page so-called "caging list". It lists 1,886 names and addresses of voters in predominantly black and traditionally Democrat areas of Jacksonville, Florida. An elections supervisor in Tallahassee, when shown the list, told Newsnight: "The only possible reason why they would keep such a thing is to challenge voters on election day." "

Investigative Reporter and Author Robert Parry Plumbs History, Unearths the Roots of the Bush Dynasty  10/26/2004 Buzzflash: "America lives in a historical vacuum, empty of context and devoid of truthful reporting, especially when it comes to contemporary events. The corporate media cares little about actions or words from the past. As a result, Americans are left with a disjointed view of reality -- with no context."

High-Stakes Battle For The Big 3  10/26/2004 CBS 

Suppressing the overseas vote  10/26/2004 Guardian 

Early voting in Florida produces problems, fuels concerns  10/26/2004 KRT: "Lines have moved so slowly on new touch-screen voting machines that only six votes per hour are being cast in parts of South Florida, a troubling ratio for next week's expected crush of voters. Gov. Jeb Bush ordered election supervisors to "preserve order at the polls" after episodes of voter harassment arose and some workers threatened to abandon their posts when an aide was nearly choked by an angry partisan grabbing the identification badge around her neck. "I don't trust it," said Janice Monaldi of Fort Lauderdale, whose suspicions about the election system were heightened when she discovered her home address had been inexplicably changed on her voter registration, which would have invalidated her ballot had she not checked. "I just hope it's enough of a landslide so it can't be questioned.""

Democratic officials: Republicans to try to intimidate voters  10/26/2004 Las Vegas Review Journal: ""They are looking to take as many Democrats off the roll as possible," Summers said. "This a systematic approach, here and across the country."...Larry Lomax, Clark County's top election official, said a poll watcher can challenge a voter's residency or identity."

Local 10 Uncovers Big Ballot Mystery  10/26/2004 Local 10, Fort Lauderdale, FL: "Local 10 has received many phone calls from viewers in Broward County who say they have not received the absentee ballots –- and the news from the elections office doesn't sound good. Local 10 has learned that many as many as 58,000 ballots that were supposed to mailed out on Oct. 7 and 8 could be missing. The Broward County Supervisor of Elections office is saying only that the situation is "unusual," and they are looking into it."

The "Caging" of Black voters in Jacksonville by the GOP  10/26/2004 MyDD: "UPDATE: A few readers have pointed out that even if the Republicans are telling the truth that the list is only a compilation of bad addresses returned from a direct-marketing mail, its purpose could have been less than innocent -- to challenge voters on residency grounds (since the GOP would have some reason to believe their addresses didn't qualify). This is plausible; it's worth noting, and we should have noted earlier, that the RNC has in fact been accused of these actions before, and in 1987, in response to a civil rights suit, it signed a consent decree pledging not to do this. But Republicans told War Room that this was not the purpose of this list, and, so far, we have no way of proving them wrong."

No more stolen elections - Wednesday, November 3rd 2004 05:30 pm - Gainesville, FL USA  10/26/2004 Nov3.us: "A rally and march in response to vote suppression by Republicans and related election theft activities--women struggled for the vote for over a century, we're not about to let the male supremacists steal our vote now so they can take our rights next. All groups and individuals who want to see a fair and just election and want to see democracy protected and expanded are invited to join us."

Getting it on in Florida  10/26/2004 NY Daily News: datelined Jacksonville - "Corrine Brown, a Democratic congresswoman from Jacksonville, said yesterday that state officials in Tallahassee have 60,000 more registered Duval County voters on their lists than local pols ever knew about. Those names, according to Brown, are about to be struck from the rolls as "inactive" because they have not voted since 2000. The congresswoman is threatening - what else? - a lawsuit to get to the bottom of the possible purge. "Blood is thicker than water. It's thicker than good government," says Brown, referring to Gov. Jeb Bush, the President's brother."

Election Day Misdeeds  10/26/2004 NYT: "In the name of fraud prevention, the Republicans plan to use 3,600 challengers in Ohio, a pivotal state where the race is dead even and there has been a big surge in first-time registrations for Democratic voters. There is no telling how many partisan challengers there will be nationwide next week because many states do not require them to be identified in advance. If challengers behave properly, they can help make elections better. But partisan challengers acting in bad faith can do considerable damage. Aggressive challengers have been known to bully poll workers, many of whom are elderly and have only limited knowledge of election law. It is likely that some voters will be challenged next week not because they appear to be ineligible, but because partisan challengers think that they will vote for the other side. There is a long history of challengers' targeting minority precincts and minority voters. It is troubling that in Ohio this year, the Republicans appear to be focusing much of their effort on Cleveland, Dayton and other cities with large African-American and Latino populations."

Gore urges Riviera Beach crowd to take action at polls  10/26/2004 Palm Beach Post: "Gore also got in a jab at Elections Supervisor Theresa LePore, whose "butterfly ballot" design is blamed by many Democrats for confusing voters and costing Gore the election. This year, LePore has been criticized by some black leaders for not putting an early voting site in predominantly black Riviera Beach. "I believe there ought to be a place to vote early here in this community, in Riviera Beach," Gore said. When members of the crowd mentioned LePore's name, Gore said, "Is she still in office? Yes, she is. Not for long, but she still is.""

Some Fear Ohio Will Be Florida of 2004  10/26/2004 Washington Post: "But Democrats, and some election officials as well, say the most potentially disruptive action could be Republican challenges of voters' eligibility filed over the past few days. Although some of the more than 35,000 challenges have been withdrawn or rejected by county officials, about 25,000 are pending." [The same tactics are apparently being planned for Florida.]

The CIA's Disappeared  10/26/2004 Washington Post 

Florida ballot chief warns on 'observers'  10/26/2004 Washington Times: "In a related matter, the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights (LCCR) has asked Attorney General John Ashcroft to refrain from issuing directives and communications that could deter voters, saying Justice Department policy clearly shows that voter fraud investigations or the threat of them can lead to voter suppression. LCCR officials urged Mr. Ashcroft to tell U.S. attorneys nationwide that press releases about efforts to preserve voting integrity should simply provide contact information, rather than outline penalties and types of activities vulnerable to fraud. They said the releases could "scare some voters off or cause them not to seek legitimate help." " [The Rev. Moon's papre does its usual psyops job of mixing truth and propaganda.]


Monday  10/25/2004

topKerry demands answers about missing explosives  10/25/2004 AFP: "Today, the Bush administration must answer for what may be the most grave and catastrophic mistake in a tragic series of blunders in Iraq," senior Kerry advisor Joe Lockhart said in a statement dispatched before sunrise. "How did they fail to secure nearly 380 tons of known, deadly explosives despite clear warnings from the International Atomic Energy Agency to do so? Why was this information unearthed by reporters -- and was it covered up by our national security officials?"

This Time, the People Are Watching  10/25/2004 Alternet: "Citizens who care about democracy must be prepared to defend the vote. There are things that can be done to better the odds that fewer votes will be discarded this time. There is a wonderful election protection operation - Election Protection 2004 that has been put together by an alliance of civil rights groups, to defend people's right to vote at the polls. This time, because so many people have mobilized, the GOP forces will have more trouble intimidating people at the polls, getting ballots tossed out on technicalities, ignoring provisional ballots, and knocking voters off the rolls."

Judge dismisses suit seeking paper trail for touch-screen machines  10/25/2004 AP 

Portrait of a Country on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown  10/25/2004 Axis of Logic 

Philly Block the Vote -- "keep that number down."  10/25/2004 Campaign Extra: "The most powerful Republican in Philadelphia (how's that for an oxymoron) is now caught up in the GOP Block the Vote scandal here, all because of a comment he made to U.S. News & World Report. The official in question is Pennsylvania House Speaker John Perzel, who represents a rowhouse neighborhood in Northeast Philly and is considered the most powerful GOP figure in Harrisburg. He's also very active in local politics. Here's what he told the magazine: "The Kerry campaign needs to come out with humongous numbers here in Philadelphia. It's important for me to keep that number down.""

Media Disinformation on Haiti  10/25/2004 Global Research 

How the US media lost the plot  10/25/2004 Independent, UK: "But before any "next war" happens, the first and most important challenge that the mainstream US media faces is getting it right this election, one that many predict will be just as closely run as its predecessor. Whether it succeeds or not could determine just how many people decide to consult the mainstream media on defining national issues in the future."

Haiti cop killed in street-clearing raid  10/25/2004 IOL, South Africa 

Gore and Kerry Unite in Search for Black Votes  10/25/2004 NYT: "Mr. Gore presented himself on Sunday as an example of the importance of voting. It was a pilgrimage that took him to six Baptist churches on the north side of Jacksonville, where nearly every person in every pew was African-American."

Reports of intimidation mar early voting  10/25/2004 Orlando Sentinel: "Incidents from Miami to Jacksonville prompted the Republican Party on Friday to send Secretary of State Glenda Hood 13 affidavits from voters who said they were intimidated along with a letter pleading for more voter protection at early-voting sites. "We had one guy that walked away and didn't cast his vote," said Mindy Tucker Fletcher, a senior Republican adviser. "It's a problem. People shouldn't be harassed as they go in to vote." The Democrats also reported some abnormalities, including voters who called a Democratic hotline to report that they "felt intimidated" or were turned away from voting, said Christine Anderson, a spokeswoman for the national Democratic Party."

Early vote sites besieged by chaos  10/25/2004 Palm Beach Post: "Similar problems have erupted in Palm Beach County, where Supervisor of Elections Theresa LePore said Sunday that she wouldn't rule out closing one or more of the county's eight early voting sites. Staff members have been harassed by campaign partisans and unruly voters, she said. Several temporary workers have abruptly quit their posts because of the abuse, she said."

National Tracking Poll: Kerry 48% Bush 46%  10/25/2004 Rasmussen Reports 

Kerry sounds clarion call to Florida's black voters  10/25/2004 St Petersburg Times: "At Abyssinia Missionary Baptist Church in Jacksonville, Senior Pastor Tom Diamond ntroduced Gore as "president-elect" and reminded his 500 congregants in the pews of the spoiled votes in Duval County four years ago. "The Republican Party threw out 27,000 of our votes," Diamond said. "It's as if they were spitting on the graves of our ancestors, by taking away the rights we have fought for and died for." ...But for all the anecdotal evidence of heavy African-American turnout, there are hints that Kerry might not be doing as strongly as he needs to be. At a John Edwards rally in St. Petersburg on Saturday, white people held "African-Americans for Kerry-Edwards" placards. A St. Petersburg Times/Miami Herald poll released Sunday showed Bush more than doubling his support from black voters since 2000, with 19 percent support. That estimate is imprecise because the pollsters surveyed fewer than 100 likely black voters in Florida, and the Kerry-Edwards campaign says its internal polling never shows Bush in double digits. But it mirrors a national poll released last week showing 18 percent of African-Americans backing Bush. "I'm hoping that we will at least double what we did last time," said Dorsey Miller, a Broward County consultant leading Bush-Cheney's African-American outreach in Florida. "We haven't fared well on the national level giving all our support to one party, and people are beginning to think about that." Exit polls showed Bush winning fewer than one in 10 black votes in 2000, the worst Republican performance since Barry Goldwater in 1964. He could hardly do worse this time, but Rob Schroth, one of the pollsters who conducted the Times/Herald poll, questioned Bush's prospects of approaching 20 percent."

'President' Gore rallies black Florida voters  10/25/2004 Toronto Star: ""If any of you felt frustrated or angry about what was done four years ago involving 27,000 votes here,'' the former U.S. vice-president said, "I want to encourage you — not to ignore those feelings — but don't turn them into angry acts or angry words. "But turn all of that energy and all of those feelings into a non-stop effort between now and 7 p.m. Nov. 2 in making certain everyone you know who is qualified to vote gets out to the polls and votes early starting today.''"

"There is one safeguard known generally to the wise, which is an advantage and security to all, but especially to Democracies as against despots: suspicion." -- Demosthenes

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