News Poll: Was the 2004 election rigged?

  • Thread starter pattylou
  • Start date

Was the 2004 US election rigged electronically?

  • You are left leaning, and think there was electronic tampering of the vote.

    Votes: 29 46.0%
  • You are left leaning, and think there was NO electronic tampering of the vote.

    Votes: 13 20.6%
  • You are right leaning, and think there was electronic tampering of the vote.

    Votes: 6 9.5%
  • You are right leaning, and think there was NO electronic tampering of the vote.

    Votes: 15 23.8%

  • Total voters
    63
p.s. This conversation would be very different in person, and internet-style communication has its limitations. I don't have anything "against" anyone here, but also have no particular interest in "making friends" when the whole reason I sporadically visit is to share information - in both a give and take manner.

Frankly, when the hypothetical issue is that we don't live in a democracy, then every American's identity is at risk. I fail to see any way in which this important issue can be discussed in a straightforward manner without challenging people's sense of what it means to "be American."'

Nevertheless, to pretend the possibility (of corrupt vote count machines) doesn't exist, is a worse choice. I'll take candor, thankyouverymuch.
 
A

Amp1

Here hear Patty Lou, I for one agree with the above sentiment.
 
S

Skyhunter

Right on.

This issue is about the very fundamentals of democracy.

If these machines cannot be made as reliable as ATMs, by the same companies that make ATMs, then I suspect there is something else going on.
 

loseyourname

Staff Emeritus
Gold Member
1,717
4
pattylou said:
Regardless, your patronising responses (As opposed to a response that is considered, referenced, or thought-provoking in any meaningful way) are offensive to me.
Jesus Christ, Patty. Is it really so harmful for me to make a passing comment that is not in any way attacking or personal in nature? I think it's fair to say that my substantial responses to this thread have been very well researched and referenced. Allow me something more lighthearted and flippant here and there. I'm not going to apologize or compensate somehow for your oversensitivity. It's not like I was challenging your thesis. Should I add "Diebold is evil and patty is a great poster" to my signature just to make clear that no offhand remark of mine regarding the staying power of a large business is meant to imply otherwise?
 

SOS2008

Gold Member
18
0
It's obvious that pattylou has done a great deal of research on the topic, and I very much appreciate the updates she has provided. The thought of election fraud in our country is infuriating, and should be to everyone regardless of whether it works to their current advantage or not. I can only suspect some are happy with the ends so are justifying the means (imagine that).
 
S

Skyhunter

Here is a sobering look at the results of the 2004 election.

I knew that Bush was not the legitimate winner in 2000, but I felt that even though there was a lot of questionable goings on, enough people voted for him that the fraud and disenfranchisement did not amount to a stolen election in 2004.

http://www.rollingstone.com/photos/gallery/10467024/was_the_2004_election_stolen/photo/1/large [Broken]

I stand corrected.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

russ_watters

Mentor
18,583
4,819
What an excellent source they have for that article. :rolleyes:

I'll pick just one (key) "fact":
RFK Jr said:
Based on exit polls, CNN had predicted Kerry defeating Bush in Ohio by a margin of 4.2 percentage points.
CNN said:
[Ohio exit poll results]
--------------Bush---Kerry
Male -- (47%) 52% 47%
Female (53%) 50% 50%
http://www.cnn.com/ELECTION/2004/pages/results/states/OH/P/00/epolls.0.html

We've heard all that conspiracy theory crap before, Skyhunter. It doesn't get any more correct because a decendent of JFK repeats it. Nice to see he's finished with the drugs and wants to start his political career, though. :uhh:

Unfortunately, most of Kennedy's sources are a single conspiracy theory book due out soon, so we can't even see where that information comes from. Ie, perhaps earlier in the night Kerry did have a lead in Ohio. In any case, citing a book for statistics is not acceptable: it isn't a primary source. We need to know where the book gets the information from.
 
Last edited:

Gokul43201

Staff Emeritus
Science Advisor
Gold Member
6,987
14
russ_watters said:
What an excellent source they have for that article. :rolleyes:

I'll pick just one (key) "fact":
Where are you getting this? All I see from skyhunter's link is a page showing 3 pictures or "charts" - and no mention of sources. Is there an article somewhere that I'm missing?
http://www.cnn.com/ELECTION/2004/pages/results/states/OH/P/00/epolls.0.htm [Broken]
Link doesn't work for me, Russ.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

russ_watters

Mentor
18,583
4,819

Gokul43201

Staff Emeritus
Science Advisor
Gold Member
6,987
14
Russ, do you deny that there were an unusually large number of spurious voting results coming from Ohio?

Things that immediately come to mind :

1. The "faulty" Muhoning(sp?) county machines that switched Kerry votes to Bush votes, as admitted by the Election Board official there.

2. The precincts where Bush won roughly an order of magnitude more votes than there were voters in that precinct.

3. The precints where Bush's radio button was the default selected button (when all buttons were supposed to be unselected).

4. This one is circumstantial : There were one or two counties where an overwhelming majority (like 80%, maybe) of those who voted against the gay marriage ban also voted for Bush (or maybe it was the converse - I don't remember).

I imagine most of this should be within Google's reach, if needed.
 
Last edited:

russ_watters

Mentor
18,583
4,819
Gokul43201 said:
Russ, do you deny that there were an unusually large number of spurious voting results coming from Ohio?
Yes, Gokul, I do. Reports by agencies charged with monitoring such things said that as elections go, this one went relatively smoothly - with the exception of overcrowded polling places.

I don't deny that individual incidents happened - they did and they happen in every election. But individual incidents - virtually all of them fixed before the results were made official - do not constitute a wrongly swinging election, much less a conspiracy to steal it.

Bush won 2004 fair and square - in fact, it wasn't even all that close.
 

russ_watters

Mentor
18,583
4,819
Heck, Gokul, some of the key problems the bloggers cite as part of the conspiracy to help Bush actually hurt Bush a lot. Absentee ballots, in particular. Do the bloggers expect us to forget how hard Gore's associates fought to have absentee ballots in Florida tossed out in 2000? Why did they? Because the vast majority of absentee ballots are from the military and the military votes Republican by a wide margin.
 

Gokul43201

Staff Emeritus
Science Advisor
Gold Member
6,987
14
I have no idea what any blogger has said about all this. Most of what I cited above and am aware of, I'd heard on the local NPR station, in the months following the election. Nor am I aware of any reports (by the GAO or any other agency of that kind) that talked much about anything other than the problems/failures in the voting process in Ohio.
 
S

Skyhunter

I noticed that no one had mentioned this yet so I thought I should add it to this thread.

http://www.brennancenter.org/presscenter/releases_2006/pressrelease_2006_0627.html [Broken]

The Brennan Center for Justice has released the results of an extensive one year study of voting machines. And can you believe it. :surprised

All of the most commonly purchased electronic voting systems have significant security and reliability vulnerabilities. All three systems are equally vulnerable to an attack involving the insertion of corrupt software or other software attack programs designed to take over a voting machine.


Automatic audits, done randomly and transparently, are necessary if paper records are to enhance security. The report called into question basic assumptions of many election officials by finding that the systems in 14 states using voter-verified paper records but doing so without requiring automatic audits are of “questionable security value.”


Wireless components on voting machines are particularly vulnerable to attack. The report finds that machines with wireless components could be attacked by “virtually any member of the public with some knowledge of software and a simple device with wireless capabilities, such as a PDA.”


The vast majority of states have not implemented election procedures or countermeasures to detect a software attack even though the most troubling vulnerabilities of each system can be substantially remedied.
Hmmm..... looks like all those conspiracy theorists really do have some legitimate grounds to question the integrity of e-voting.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

russ_watters

Mentor
18,583
4,819
They do? All I see are hypotheticals, as always. There are lots of hypothetical ways paper can be compromised as well.
 

selfAdjoint

Staff Emeritus
Gold Member
Dearly Missed
6,764
5
russ_watters said:
They do? All I see are hypotheticals, as always. There are lots of hypothetical ways paper can be compromised as well.
Oh yes Russ, you will always see hypotheticals no matter what threats to our rights are exposed, because it would conflict with your world view to take any threat, no matter how well documented, seriously. "hyptheticals" indeed! As I believe the elder Lowell said, sometimes you find an eel in the milk.
 

Gokul43201

Staff Emeritus
Science Advisor
Gold Member
6,987
14
russ_watters said:
They do? All I see are hypotheticals, as always.
As always? Points 1,2 and 3 in my post above are well documented facts and are hardly hypothetical.
 

SOS2008

Gold Member
18
0
russ_watters said:
I don't deny that individual incidents happened - they did and they happen in every election. But individual incidents - virtually[?] all of them fixed before the results were made official - do not constitute a wrongly swinging election, much less a conspiracy to steal it.
Could you please provide credible sources for this?
 

russ_watters

Mentor
18,583
4,819
SOS2008 said:
Could you please provide credible sources for this?
Sure, but recognize that it is a bit of a blatantly-obvious tautology: We know about the problems because we know about the problems. We know about the problems because they were reported - and fixed - on election night. So the evidence comes straight from the election night reports of problems. Unfortunately, most of the reports don't specify a resolution (though due to the , but of those that do, essentially all say something to the effect of:
One Mahoning County voter told the EIRS at 1:39 P.M. on election day that he had to "re-vote five times before his votes were properly recorded." In that instance, as in others, "poll workers acknowledged that that particular machine[] had been experiencing problems."
http://nashuaadvocate.blogspot.com/2004/12/news-election-2004-study-shows-that.html [Broken]

Some had to revote several times, some machines had to be rebooted, some people caught the error on the confirmation screen and fixed it, etc., etc. So that kinda hits two birds with one stone - that's Gokul's #1.

For Gokul's #2, here are two examples of it, both detected/corrected on election night: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2004_U.S._election_voting_controversies,_Ohio#Cuyahoga_County.2C_Ohio
precinct in Youngstown recorded negative 25 million votes. However, this error was quickly corrected and the problem was isolated to the one machine.

Machine error gives Bush 3,893 extra votes in Franklin County, though error is detected and vote total is corrected.
Part of the problem here is that the conspiracy theory sites trumpet the problems, but gloss over the fact that they were fixed on election night. This irregularity type provides a wide swing and we've seen it several times in these threads where people pick up on the error and miss the fact that it was fixed due to intentional obfuscation by conspiracy theory sites.

#3 is like the ballot design issue in Florida in 2000. Sure, its real.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

russ_watters

Mentor
18,583
4,819
selfAdjoint said:
Oh yes Russ, you will always see hypotheticals no matter what threats to our rights are exposed, because it would conflict with your world view to take any threat, no matter how well documented, seriously. "hyptheticals" indeed! As I believe the elder Lowell said, sometimes you find an eel in the milk.
I think you may have misunderstood what I mean by "hypotheticals". I again feel compelled to say that I know flaws exist - I've said that a bunch of times in this thread. My main objection in this thread is to the assumption people are making that these flaws automatically mean the 2004 election was stolen. Ie:

It certainly is a fact - not hypothetical - that security vulnerabilities exist. But what is hypothetical is that they are, were, or will be exploited. It is very much like the Windows security flaws that are found and fixed by MS every month. The flaws are real, but in most cases, the flaw is found by a security company specifically tasked to find flaws. The flaws are not identified by the discovery of a virus/worm that has actually exploited the flaw. And that's what makes it hypothetical. The word "could" in that article and most like it is what denotes a hypothetical.

The machines could be hacked. Does that mean they were hacked? No.

What's more, I would like to see someone run some actual, realistic tests/simulations to see if these flaws could be exploited in reality - to reduce the hypothetical/speculative element. Many of these hypotheticals involve the insertion of faulty code or use of modified memory cards. An obvious parallel hypothetical for non-electronic ballots would be simply stealing/replacing punch cards. But is such a thing actually possible in reality? In reality, people are guarding both the machines and the punch cards and little opportunity for tampering exists. In reality, when a machine makes an obvious error or an ending count is way off (as in the issues pointed out above), the error is found and corrected.

That article, however, is three steps removed from reality. It doesn't report on something that actually happened, it doesn't involve the running of an accurate simulation, and worse, it doesn't even specifically say what the vulnerabilities are. Someone with a wireless network could hack the system? Ok - show us how. Failing even that, it is just useless idle speculation.
 

russ_watters

Mentor
18,583
4,819
Gokul43201 said:
As always? Points 1,2 and 3 in my post above are well documented facts and are hardly hypothetical.
I was talking about the article posted by Skyhunter, and when I see "conspiracy theorists" and "integrity", it looks to me like someone is alleging fraud based on speculation. The things you listed there are real, but they have nothing to do with fraud...unless you are speculating that irregularities automatically mean fraud....
 
T

Theons

Sounds like another crazy conspiracy theory, you will never be able to find proof it happend or didn't.
 
S

Skyhunter

russ_watters said:
Do the bloggers expect us to forget how hard Gore's associates fought to have absentee ballots in Florida tossed out in 2000? Why did they? Because the vast majority of absentee ballots are from the military and the military votes Republican by a wide margin.
That is not an accurate accounting russ.

The whole story is that many of the overseas ballots did not contain a proper post-mark, or were not properly filled out. A poll worker was caught filling in missing information, which is what prompted the Gore campaign to challenge all of the overseas ballots.

Not that it matters. Gore actually won the 2000 election, the SC selected Bush by illegally interfering with the State of Florida's constitutional right to conduct it's own election.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/U.S._presidential_election,_2000
There were a number of overseas ballots missing postmarks or filled out in such a way that they were invalid under Florida law. A poll worker filled out the missing information on some hundred of these ballots. The Democrats moved to have all overseas ballots thrown out because of this. These disputes added to the mass of litigation between parties to influence the counting of ballots. The largest group of disputed overseas ballots were military ballots, which the Republicans argued to have accepted.
 
S

Skyhunter

Not to derail the thread but this is just too much.:rofl: :rofl:

From 2000;
JOHN BOLTON, REPUBLICAN PARTY ATTORNEY: I'm objecting to this on the basis that I don't think there is clear and convincing evidence that we can read that for voter intent. But I want to say something else as well that follows on to what I said before. And that is that any effort by anybody, including the canvassing board, the counters or observers, to intimidate anybody participating in this process, is not just wrong, it's a potentially criminal violation. This is a serious business. And you know, you can say, why don't we all just get along? We can be polite, but we have to be firm and clear in our judgments. You have to have the courage of your convictions.
John Bolton lecturing about intimidation...:bugeye: Well I guess he is an Expert. :rofl: :rofl:
 

Physics Forums Values

We Value Quality
• Topics based on mainstream science
• Proper English grammar and spelling
We Value Civility
• Positive and compassionate attitudes
• Patience while debating
We Value Productivity
• Disciplined to remain on-topic
• Recognition of own weaknesses
• Solo and co-op problem solving

Hot Threads

Top