October 18, 2012
-- by Dave Johnson
OK I have to ask this. WHY would a bunch of Romney associates buy up a voting machine company?
The story has been circulating in the background for a couple of weeks.
Last year Hart Intercivic was bought by H.I.G. Capital. From The Free Press, Will H.I.G.-owned e-voting machines give Romney the White House? by Bob Fitrakis & Harvey Wasserman, (and please read the whole thing, about all the voter suppression going on, the importance of Ohio, and what happened in Ohio in 2008.)
Prominent partners and directors on the H.I.G. board hail from Bain Company or Bain Capital, both connected to Mitt Romney. H.I.G. employees have contributed at least $338,000 to Romney's campaign. H.I.G. Directors John P. Bolduk and Douglas Berman are major Romney fundraisers, as is former Bain and H.I.G. manager Brian Shortsleeve.
Why could this matter?
US courts have consistently ruled that the software in electronic voting machines is proprietary to the manufacturer, even though individual election boards may own the actual machines. Thus there will be no vote count transparency on election night in Ohio. The tally will be conducted by Hart Intercivic and controlled by Husted and Kasich, with no public recourse or accountability. As federal testimony from the deceased Michael Connell made clear in 2008, electronically flipping an election is relatively cheap and easy to do, especially if you or your compatriots programmed the machines.
Brad Friedman writes in, About That Voting Machine Company Tied To Mitt Romney And Bain Capital…, (this quote is full of links, so go to the original.)
Once again, we’re reminded of the dangers of the privatization of our once-public electoral system. The company’s ties to Romney aren’t the only disturbing ones we’ve seen with similar companies over the years. The fact is, that nobody other than the public should have any sort of control of our elections. The proprietary voting systems now in use in all 50 states, whether owned by Romney associates, a George W. Bush associate (as with Diebold in 2004) or even a company tied to Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez (as with Sequoia Voting Systems, which blatantly lied about that tie to public officials, and the Canadian firm Dominion which purchased Sequoia and also immediately lied about the fact that Intellectual Property of their voting systems used all across the U.S. is still owned by the Venezuelan firm), continue to be a grave threat to American democracy and confidence in U.S. elections.
This is likely to be a close election. We are going to see \states reporting for one or the other candidate after possibly hundreds of thousands of people being denied the right to vote. And some counties will pull machines out of key precincts, in an attempt to cause long line -- like Ohio did last time -- to keep people from voting.
That is a prescription of serious problems with people accepting the election results as legitimate.
So along with those problems now we have a bunch of Wall Street types -- people directly tied to Romney -- controlling the voting and counting in many areas!
Posted by Dave Johnson at October 18, 2012 7:37 AM
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