Tuesday, December 14, 2004

TRUTH REPORTED: Computer Vote Count Tampering Occurring -- Eye-Witness Report

Congratulations NY Times!!

UPDATE #2:

Wired News just posted a pretty good follow-up article to this story. In the article, Brett Rapp, the president of Triad, commented about this incident.

He said that when the computer experienced "a CMOS error," indicating that the rechargeable battery on the motherboard had died, the computer had lost stored information about the hard drive's specifications, which it needed to make the computer boot up. No other data on the machine was lost.

He said Barbian took the case off the computer to identify the hard drive's make and model.

"He called our office, told us the model and we obtained the hard drive parameters by looking them up on the internet," Rapp said. "That's the information we gave him over the phone. He installed no patches on the computer system. He did not tamper with it. He simply fixed a piece of equipment that was broken." He said that Eaton must have misheard Barbian say he was going to put a patch on the machine.

However, Eaton adamently denies that she misheard the computer technician. She states:

"I wouldn't just come up with that. I don't use that term or know what it means," she said. She added that Barbian used the same word with the 70-year-old chair of Hocking County's elections board, who she said also wouldn't have come up with the term on his own.
The president of Triad also had a answer for why he thought the technician asked about where specifically the recounting would be taking place:
Rapp said he believed Barbian asked about the hand-counted precinct because he was trying to make sure the election officials, who had never conducted a recount before, understood what they were doing and which precinct they were going to count.

"He was trying to help them make sure the process went smoothly," Rapp said.
Now, wasn't that nice of the computer technician?! Let's not forget that the computer technician asked that question and then went back into the computer room to make some final adjustments.

No comment was made by Brett Rapp about an additional comment made by the technician, as written in Eaton's affidavit about the incident:
He advised Lisa and I on how to post a "cheat sheet" on the wall so that only the board members and staff would know about it and and what the codes meant so the count would come out perfect and we wouldn't have to do a full hand recount of the county.
A little bit of important "truth left out" by Wired News, wouldn't you say? Even still, Eaton still believes that no wrong-doing occurred:
Still, she does not believe that Barbian tampered with the machine.
"I have had, and still do have, complete trust in Triad," Eaton said. Eaton, who is 65 and by her own admission not computer-savvy, did not understand much of what Barbian did, and said that when he asked if he could take apart the computer, he had to ask for a screwdriver from one of the office workers. "He brought no tools with him," Eaton told Wired News, "which indicates to me that he wasn't planning on working on the machines."

She also said that Barbian's office visit wasn't out of the ordinary since Triad "ran" the county's primary and general elections this year.
Bless her soul for alerting everyone about this incident, but doesn't Sherole Eaton strike you as being a bit naiive?

-----------------------------------------------

ORIGINAL POST:

Lawmaker Seeks Inquiry Into Ohio Vote
By TOM ZELLER Jr., New York Times

Published: December 15, 2004

The ranking Democratic member of the House Judiciary Committee, Representative John Conyers Jr. of Michigan, plans to ask the Federal Bureau of Investigation and a county prosecutor in Ohio today to explore "inappropriate and likely illegal election tampering" in at least one and perhaps several Ohio counties...

...But Brett Rapp, the president of Triad, said that although it would be unusual for an employee to ask about a specific precinct, preparing the machines for a recount was standard procedure and was done in all 41 counties where Triad handles vote counts. He added that he welcomed any investigation...Let the investigation begin!!!

--------------------------

Previously posted:

Here's a stunning allegation by David Cobb (Head of the Ohio Green Party & the initiator for the Recount):

Witness says voting company tampered with machines after vote and tried to plant false information into Ohio recount

By John Byrne

David Cobb, the unsuccessful Green Party presidential candidate, aired startling allegations at the Democratic House Judiciary Committee’s Columbus hearings Monday, alleging that a voting company representative tampered with voting equipment in Columbus last Friday and attempted to plant false information into the Ohio recount.

Cobb says that a witness who had requested anonymity watched a representative of Triad Systems enter the Columbus Board of Elections unannounced and tamper with a vote tabulator which then lost all data.

The representative then, Cobb said, tried to convince employees to post false information so that it would appear as if the data was valid and had never been lost.

This following is RAW STORY ’s transcript Cobb’s speech as recorded by Inside Track News’ broadcast (mp3 file), an independent media outlet that covered the event. The story has been followed in detail at The Brad Blog.

“A representative from Triad Systems came into this county’s Board of Election’s office unannounced, that is on this Friday. He said he was just stopping by to see if they had any questions about the upcoming recount.

“He then headed into the back room where Triad supplies tabulators, that is the machine that counts the ballots, is kept. This Triad representative told them that there was problem with the system, that the system had a bad battery and it had ‘lost all its data.’

“He then took the computer apart and started swapping parts in and out of it. And in another [incomprehensible] in the room. And he had spare parts in his coat, as one of the people moved in [sic] remarked how very heavy it was.

“He finally reassembled everything and said it was working but not to turn it off. He then asked which precinct would be counted in the 3 percent recount test and that one which had been selected as if it had the right number of votes was relayed to him he then went back and did something else to the tabulator.

“The Triad Systems representative suggested that since the hand recount had to match the machine count exactly and since it would hard to memorize the several numbers which would be needed to get the count exactly right, that they should post this series of numbers on the wall where they would not be noticed by observers such as to make them look like employee information or something similar.

“The people doing the hand count could then he said just report those numbers no matter what the actually


counted in the ballot. This would then ‘match’ the tabulator report for this precinct exactly.

Minority leader of the House Judiciary Committee Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) replied, “David Cobb, I need to you to arrange a meeting with our staff immediately.”

Cobb asserted that such practices were “going on across the state.”

The Cleveland Free Press’ Editor David Fitrakis also submitted a list of documented Ohio voting irregularities Dec. 8, which Conyers’ office has posted online in pdf format.

Be sure to click on the "mp3" link. The energy in the room over this is electrifying!!!

You can see the Green Party's press release about this story here.

Currently, on CNN, I'm hearing about the elections in the Ukraine and Iraq. Day by day, the U.S. mainstream media is becoming more and more irrelevant.

UPDATE: Brad Blog 2 has posted an update to this story from a inside source who was at the Judicial Committee on Monday (in Ohio).
...The eyewitness, who was unnamed in the public hearings, was later identified and interviewed privately by staffers from the office of Congressman John Conyers (D-MI), the ranking Democrat on the U.S. House Judiciary committee.

Reliable sources have informed The BRAD BLOG that the investigation into this matter by Conyers is currently "ongoing" and the conclusion of staffers so far is that the eyewitness and information presented is "100% real and credible".

Cobb noted today in emotional testimony that "this is going on all over the state of Ohio."

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