Thursday, May 27, 2010

Karen Pulled a Kerry? Part 2 of Garland Favorito's latest missive.

Are you ready for this?

Here's part 2 of Garland Favorito's latest compilation of republican candidate for Governor Karen Handle's ethical corundums. I love the title of this section.

Take it away Garland!


Former Secretary Handel’s last position statement is a textbook example of how a politician can use phrases to mislead uninformed voters. Only someone who is intimately familiar with the facts would realize that there are five deceptive or false implications in that one single sentence! I think it is worth the time to dissect the phrases I this one sentence and point out the counter facts that reveal an astonishingly different picture:

Handel: “Georgia has the most secure elections in the nation..”
Counter Facts: In 2004, Free Congress Foundation rated Georgia as having the worst voting systems in the nation in regards to “system reliability and recount preparedness” No significant change has been made in voting equipment since then.

Handel: “...due to four levels of security testing on touch-screen voting machines”
Counter Facts: The Federal Election Assistance Commission’s (EAC) Technical Guidelines Development Committee concluded that: “The National Institute of Standards and Testing & EAC Security & Transparency Subcommittee do not know how to write testable requirements to satisfy that the software in a DRE is correct” Therefore, no amount of testing levels can assure vote recording accuracy.

Handel: “our partnership with nationally renowned elections experts at the Kennesaw State University [KSU] Center for Elections Systems [CES] …”
Counter Facts: Former KSU Professor Britain Williams oversaw 2001 and 2002 certification testing for voting equipment that did not have an independent audit trail of each vote cast as required by law at the time. [21-2-301(b) of GEC 2001] Former KSU CES Elections Director, Ray Cobb admitted to being “unaware of any audit trails that are independent of the equipment” The CES has downplayed voting machine deficiencies and advocated unverifiable voting which financially benefits KSU to the detriment of all Georgia voters.

Handel: “..the dedication by county election officials to provide secure and fair elections at the local level”
Counter Facts: An investigation conducted by Inspector General, Shawn LaGrrua, provided overwhelming evidence that the Lowndes County Elections officials:
Forced 947 test votes into the live elections results for the 2008 general election,
Failed to reconcile the voter poll book totals to the voting machine vote totals to detect the discrepancy;
Certified the incorrect results;
In another case an investigation found that in 2008 Douglas County election officials:
Failed to advertise logic and accuracy testing of all voting machines used on Election Day,
Solicited KSU to create a second ballot unauthorized by the SOS for use on Election Day;
Took election results home in a spreadsheet and approved them;
Allowed a Diebold (Premier) employee to manually enter the Election Day results from the spreadsheet into the county tabulation serve (GEMS);
Failed to certify the recounted results in all county and state races except one
The original investigation by LaGrua, who was appointed by Handel, protected the Lowndes County officials. To date, the Attorney General’s office has taken no substantive action against any of the officials in either county.

Handel: “and our photo ID requirement,”
Counter Facts: The photo ID requirement for voter registration has nothing to do with the Georgia Supreme Court case to which the Secretary responded in her statement. Regardless of personal beliefs on the issue, most people agree that the stringency of Voter ID requirements has partisan implications between Democrats and Republicans. Karen Handel fought consistently and valiantly for highly stringent Voter ID requirements that are perceived to benefit her fellow Republicans. But when it came to the non-partisan issues of opening the ballot to all candidates or ensuring that the votes of all citizens could be properly verified, audited and recounted, Karen Handel took no significant action. Our potentially corrupt voting system still contains the flaws she acknowledged in 2006.

Be sure to drop by for tomorrows installment, my personal fav, Lobbyist Influence peddling! And while you're waiting, head over to Voter Georgia and see what you can do to help the hardest working single issue advocate in Georgia, Garland Favorito!

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