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Voodoo ACORNomics, Part One

Well, I'm delighted to see that other people have finally come to the same conclusion I did a while ago, and have filed a RICO (Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization) lawsuit against ACORN (Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now) over their long-standing and increasingly blatant fraudulent voter registrations.

I've been keeping a jaundiced eye on ACORN for some time, and they've bounced around in my subconscious quite a bit. I've given quite a bit of thought to just what they do, what their model is, and trying to grasp just what they are all about. This is all utterly half-assed speculation and a bit of fantasy mixed together, but I think it hangs together fairly well.

I'm no economist, but I've often found that an economic model is often a reliable way of understanding things like motives and goals and whatnot. At their essence, every single individual and organization is governed by the profit motive: they want to maximize their benefits.

That even works for non-profit organizations like ACORN. In those cases, you just have to recognize that their definition of "profit" is not purely economic. Once you figure out just what it is, then the rest falls into place.

Their stated goal is not very helpful. "Reform Now." That's as vague as an Obama speech or a Bill Clinton promise. And looking at their ideals -- helping the poor acquire political power as a step towards economic and social advancement -- is equally pointless.

No, what I think is important is to tune out their words and look at their deeds. Their wonderful intentions don't really matter much; it is what they do, not what they say, that truly shapes events.

And since the activities that have earned my ire -- and that of so many others -- has been the gross violations of voter registration laws, corrupting the electoral process, let's look at just what they are doing in that field in hopes of understanding how they are doing it, why they are doing it, and what possible consequences might come.

First up, let's bring back the profit motive here. In our society, once an organization declares itself a non-profit, it doesn't automatically become exempt from the basic laws of economics. It simply redefines those terms. They still need to take in money to operate, and they still need to show some productive results to sustain that income. The differences are that the productive results are not financial, and the people who supply them with the money are not the actual consumers of those productive results. In other words, they don't have to produce something of value, just convince their backers that they have -- because those backers aren't actually buying the product or service for themselves.

In ACORN's case here, they have chosen to define their "profit" as gross numbers of new voter registrations. The bigger the number they can claim to have registered, the greater their success and "profit" they can boast about and convince their backers that their money was well spent. It's a simple equation: more voters registered equals more success.

There are complications, of course. There are only a finite number of eligible voters out there to be tapped. And while that number is always expanding as people are either turning 18 or becoming citizens faster than they are dying or giving up their citizenship or becoming convicted felons, it's nowhere near as fast a growth as ACORN needs.

But it's raw numbers that ACORN is interested in, not confirmed numbers. There is absolutely no incentive for ACORN to perform any kind of quality control on those numbers. Indeed, in many states, that is barred by law -- they are obligated to turn over any and all voter registrations to local officials, even if they are utterly convinced that it is fraudulent. Sure, they can indicate those they think are suspicious, but they don't have to.

And just how does ACORN collect these registrations? By having its people -- both volunteers and hired representatives -- go out and get people on the street to fill out the forms.

Now, these people have no assigned quotas -- at least, not officially. Just like police officers and traffic tickets. But there are often unofficial quotas, and those that ACORN hires are those with very poor employment prospects of their own -- they've been caught many a time hiring convicted felons to do registrations, which is illegal. Even more appalling is that these felons have included such savory types as sex offenders and identity thieves, two groups who should absolutely NOT be allowed anywhere near this sort of thing.

So here we have a bunch of people working for ACORN who are told that their job is to collect voter registrations. A large percentage of them have no proven track record for reliability or trustworthiness. They are told that they are "expected" to produce a certain number of registrations each day they work. And they are told that the people who give them their paychecks will not be checking on their work to make sure that they don't cheat.

Is it any wonder that, in those circumstances, that so many of them will just start filling out the forms themselves, making up any old names (such as, say, "Mickey Mouse" or "Tony Romo") and filling in whatever information they feel like? The end result of doing so will be just the same as if they actually went out and tracked down twenty unregistered voters, and a hell of a lot easier. Especially when they KNOW, as an absolute fact, that the people giving them their paychecks won't be verifying a single detail.

Again, we see the danger in the economic disconnect: there is no direct tie between those who will be verifying the quality of these people's work (the public officials in charge of maintaining the voter rolls) and those paying the people producing the work (ACORN). With absolutely no incentive to produce quality registrations, and no penalty for generating bogus ones, it should come as no surprise that a lot of them will take the easy way out. Lord knows I'd be tempted, and most people -- if they were honest -- would admit the same.

So here we see that ACORN has set up a business model to generate tremendous numbers of voter registrations, with absolutely no quality control to catch and prevent bogus ones. And, indeed, a hefty incentive to allow them -- they increase the gross total of registrations that they can claim as their "profit," knowing that those rejected by government officials will not affect their "profits" in the least. The question of malicious intent is largely moot -- remember, we're judging them not on their words or intentions or goals, but actual deeds here. Remember the aphorism about the road to hell, and the pavement thereof.

OK, that covers what they are doing, and why. That still leaves the consequences of their actions. What harm is all this causing?

I'm closing in on 1200 words here already, so I think I'll save the rest of that for later today.


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Comments (42)

The election process has go... (Below threshold)
bobdog:

The election process has gotten so corrupted by ACORN and others like them that the only way to guarantee a free and open election is to break out the purple ink. But I suspect that Democrats might have some sort of problem with that, since it would likely cost them the election. Oh, yeah, it would be uh, unfair to low-income voters...somehow...

Couldn't have that.

This guy actually di... (Below threshold)
dr lava:


This guy actually did time for some of the work he did for the GOP in 2000 and 2004. I am sure Jay will be equally outraged by the abuses detailed by Mr. Raymond.

"How to Rig an Election: Confessions of a Republican Operative" by Allen Raymond

Yeah, Jay. After all, ther... (Below threshold)

Yeah, Jay. After all, there's been no end to dr lava's expressions of outrage over ACORN's practices.

How many fraudulent votes w... (Below threshold)

How many fraudulent votes were cast as a result of ACORN's registration efforts?

I'm thinking of writing a b... (Below threshold)
MichaelC:

I'm thinking of writing a book which I will title, "The Confessions Dr. Lava: a Democrap Pedophile and Slanderer Par Excellent". I don't see why it couldn't be just as successful as the aforementioned literary b.s.

I think you're being entire... (Below threshold)
Clint:

I think you're being entirely too generous.

The swamping of state election offices with thousands of fraudulent registrations, held until the last possible minute to be submitted...

It's not carelessness. It's deliberate.

Overwhelming the system is the GOAL, not a side-effect of a poorly chosen incentive system.

If you need "actions" to analyze to see this -- look at their actions in 2004 in Ohio (where they deliberately swamped the "provisional voter" forms and then used lawyers to bully election officials into allowing outright fraud) or the lawsuits they are preparing to file across the country citing the very problems their swamping of registrations have caused...

I'm thinking of wr... (Below threshold)
I'm thinking of writing a book which I will title, "The Confessions Dr. Lava: a Democrap Pedophile and Slanderer Par Excellent". I don't see why it couldn't be just as successful as the aforementioned literary b.s.

Wow, that is disgusting. Calling someone a pedophile because you don't agree with his politics is just plain sick. This is a blog pal. Pretend you are an adult and get some perspective.

At least one so far, Blue -... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

At least one so far, Blue - that's been CAUGHT. How many others have slipped through under a pretense of legitimacy, we may never know.

As it is, you're looking at a paper DOS attack. Overwhelm the system, and it breaks down.

There will be new rules put into place because of this, I'm sure. Six month cutoff for mass registration activities and the like, increased scrutiny of the potential voter - all sorts of fun and games thanks to the situational ethics of the Democratic Party.

How many fraudu... (Below threshold)
Eric:

How many fraudulent votes were cast as a result of ACORN's registration efforts?

Since Democrats keep blocking any effort to use positive identification at the polls, how would we be able to know who voted illegally?

I was in Kansas City the last week for work. I went to Home Depot to get some equipment and there was an ACORN table in front of the store. One of the guys working the table asked if I wanted to register. I told him I was from out of state. He said that didn't matter since it was a federal election.

So I could have registered in Kansas City, used my company's address as my address and voted in both Missouri and Georgia.

Blue Neponset, how many fra... (Below threshold)

Blue Neponset, how many fraudulent voter registration forms (among the thousands upon thousands) has ACORN submitted that didn't get caught? While you continue to harp on whether any actually resulted in fraudulent votes, you ignore the crux of the issue. They have completely undermined and destroyed the public's faith in the system.

If fraudulent votes are cast, that means the registration wasn't caught. We don't know, but we can extrapolate from the shear numbers of fake registrations that some actually slip through. Don't be so myopic.

Again, I use a case in point. Who voted under my daughter's name in '06?

Exactly right, Blue Nepo... (Below threshold)
Wanderlust:

Exactly right, Blue Neposet: I suspect your question is where Jay will go with his followup post here.

I believe arguments like the ones tossed about regarding ACORN thrive on straw men that miss the link: the argument automatically goes to the final result (voter fraud, in this case) by one side, and the other side blasts that straw man away by tearing it down with rebuttals that, had the groundwork been carefully explored first, would never survive the light of day.

Obama did this just recently (you'll have to Google this, sorry) by claiming that the phony registrations were the work of one, or a few, bad apples in the otherwise pristine ACORN basket - those naughty few who must have taken it on themselves to turn in fraudulent registrations just so they could make a buck when they turned in their lists.

But the truth, I suspect, is much more subtle.

Jay's post here establishes that the system is set up, by default, to be gamed by anyone - and because those who work for ACORN as voter registrars have no incentive to be honest (much less the fact that if they are working for ACORN in the first place, that may suggest their job skills aren't that great, but admittedly there is likely some mix between good and bad registrants) - the whole system of voter registration by ACORN or other similar organizations is, by definition, hopelessly flawed. Unless these groups can be held accountable for their work by some kind of verification process that must be completed before registrations are accepted by the local electorate, the system will have no incentive to correct itself.

When you follow the economic model, follow the money - and the power behind it. And regardless of what party is in power at the top, never ignore local politics.

There is a saying I like, that goes something like, "never assume malice when stupidity will suffice". At the bottom, I believe that stupidity - the fact that human nature will tempt people into gaming a system where there are no checks and balances against doing so - rules the day. I don't believe the average registrar is signing up fraudulent votes to, say, throw a Presidential election. It is on this point that Obama's rebuttal stands.

However, there are usually wheels within wheels, as it were. That is, once someone figures out that a system like voter registrations is broken, they will very likely be tempted to game that system to suit their own purposes.

Again, immediately leaping to the most egregious example of gaming allows your opponent to successfully rebut the argument. You have to establish the links.

And, to get rid of organizations whose means, methods, and outcomes are corrupt, fighting them by claiming "high crimes and misdemeanors" almost never works. The links are too numerous, and to subtle, to support such allegations once they are put under the legal microscope.

So if you want to chop down the rotten tree that is ACORN, you don't claim they are trying to throw a Presidential election.

Instead, you follow the Capone example.

Recall that back in his day, Capone ran Chicago with a ruthless efficiency that the Daley machine will likely never realize (although perhaps it can be argued that they aspire to doing just that). Capone openly bragged for years about how deeply he had his hooks into the city's economy and politics, and he knew that no one could touch him. Not that they didn't try, of course, but it seemed like no matter what charges were thrown against Capone, those charges never stuck in court.

Until the day it came to someone to figure out that Capone was cheating Uncle Sam out of his take, that is. Uncle Sam may be stupid, but he never tires of wanting his cut (income taxes). And when someone big tries to cheat Uncle Sam, they end up getting nailed. Just ask Wesley Snipes.

Also notice that while many openly espoused refusing to pay income taxes in defiance of the country's fighting the War on Terror, no one who had a sizable income actually did it (at least publicly).

So first, go after anyone on the basis that they are cheating Uncle Sam. And second, go after them if they are breaking local laws - and as Jay mentioned, use RICO as a means to open the door to a larger fight.

Therefore if, through RICO, it can be established that ACORN is not a non-profit organization (i.e., that through its funding and activities is breaking tax laws), and that they have been using both public and private funds on a national level to "break" local election boards (for any number of reasons), then someone just might have a case against them.

Food for thought.

Blue misses the point. (sur... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

Blue misses the point. (surprise) ACORN is corrupting the system, but that is all right with the lefties here, apparently. If and when republicans conduct themselves like this, they go to jail. and I say good riddance to bad trash. But the left EMBRACES the efforts of this corrupt organization. ww

At least one so fa... (Below threshold)
At least one so far, Blue - that's been CAUGHT. How many others have slipped through under a pretense of legitimacy, we may never know.

It is not easy to get away with in person voter fraud. If ACORN was really screwing up the election there would be a lot more than one example. (since the guy got caught it isn't a very good example) ACORN registered more than 1 million voters in 2004. If even .01% of those new registrations got caught that would mean 1,000 examples of in person voter fraud.

This just isn't a problem. The systems, as it is currently set up, seems to be working.

Oh, cut the faux outrage ne... (Below threshold)
MichaelC:

Oh, cut the faux outrage neponset. Democrat slanderers much like lava, and maybe even you, have spewed so much worse in a veritable tsunami of abuse during this entire campaign, and their filthy minds have littered the pages of Wizbang, morning, noon and night.

My satirical, and quite obviously "false" book title was clearly in reference to the unlinked b.s. fed to us by lava, and also to indicate to those of lesser intelligence, and by that I mean YOU, that anyone can claim anything and put it out there. It just doesn't make it so.

Now get on back to DU and Kos for some real invective that places my own snide and baseless musings in such clear perspective that even you ought to be able to draw a sane conclusion.

ACORN is corruptin... (Below threshold)
ACORN is corrupting the system, but that is all right with the lefties here, apparently.

How are they corrupting the system? The goal of the voting system is to make sure all the votes are counted properly. No illegal votes are being cast as a result of what ACORN is doing. As a result, the system seems to be working.

I find it absolutely startl... (Below threshold)
Parthenon:

I find it absolutely startling that State Secretaries of State would not have commenced an enormous overhaul of their entire process after Florida '00. End all the speculation and conjecture, and make a process beyond reproach, insofar as that's possible.

Look at it from our perspective. It looks to us like you guys know you're behind and looking for a conspiracy theory to possibly swing it a few points your way (OMG Obama's stealing the election) or firing the initial salvo in the next political war (OMG "President" Obama's illegitimate). From your perspective it's looking like Tammany Hall all over again.

The State secs. of State could have done a lot more to prevent all this, IMO. For myself, I'd rather elect Sen. McCain fairly than Sen. Obama unfairly.

Oh, cut the faux o... (Below threshold)
Oh, cut the faux outrage neponset. Democrat slanderers much like lava, and maybe even you, have spewed so much worse in a veritable tsunami of abuse during this entire campaign, and their filthy minds have littered the pages of Wizbang, morning, noon and night.

You have earned my pity.

Blue, I did a fast check fo... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

Blue, I did a fast check for you. Here is one, I am sure, of many.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008 8:22:37 AM · by Pagan Power · 4 replies · 92+ views
Pagan Power ^ | October 15, 2008 | Pagan Power
So much for a new kind of politics. After all we've heard about McCain supporters inciting violence it turns out that the Obama campaign is actually committing violence. An Obama poll worker in Summit County, Ohio physically assaulted a McCain poll worker after he discovered that the Obama worker had gone against the wishes of a nursing home resident and marked Obama's name on her ballot. Poll workers put on leave in fracas The board and Cuyahoga Falls police are investigating the incident, which occurred about noon Friday at the Gardens of Western Reserve nursing home. Manos told police that... ww

You're amusing neponset and... (Below threshold)
MichaelC:

You're amusing neponset and, apparently, illiterate. Now quit trying to pretend you invented the high ground and return to your disinformation campaign here at Wizbang.

Or, more appropriately, return now to DU or Kos and await further orders.

One effect of these false r... (Below threshold)
Sharon:

One effect of these false registrations is skewed poll numbers. Millions of new mostly democrat registrations nationwide have caused pollsters to artificially inflate the number of democrats they expect to vote changing historic breakdowns to the detriment of the McCain campaign. Instead of a 38-35% dem to rep, they have over 40% democrats to 28% republicans. It is no wonder that all the polls show Obama in the lead especially in the battleground states where Acorn has been most active. This is demoralizing the republican base and accomplishing their goal even if Mickey Mouse doesn't turn out and vote.

Parthenon -In my j... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

Parthenon -

In my job if I get glitches from the programs I use, it's an indication of an underlying problem. You can either live with the glitches, or go after them and eliminate the cause. I might end up replacing software, hardware or both - but in a lot of cases to leave the glitch (even if it's infrequent) is not an option.

You're arguing that simply because the system is flawed and open to abuse that we should tolerate it because it's 'not that bad'.

Ohio.com - Poll workers clash at Falls nursing home.
Poll workers from opposing sides in the presidential race apparently clashed in a physical altercation Friday at a Cuyahoga Falls nursing home when one accused the other of improperly marking a ballot.
.
George Manos, the 75-year-old Republican, told police that Edith Walker, the 73-year-old Democrat, jumped on his back and struck him in the head three to four times with her fists. Manos said two other elections workers had to pull Walker off his back, according to a report filed with Cuyahoga Falls police.
.
Manos said it happened after he accused Walker of ballot tampering, and he wants to prosecute.
.
The incident, which occurred about noon at Gardens of Western Reserve nursing home, is being investigated by both the police and the Summit County elections board. The board probe could lead to a closer examination of the other votes with which Walker was involved.
.
The alleged assault piqued the interest of
Sen. John McCain's presidential campaign -- as the voter in question reportedly wanted to vote for McCain but her ballot was initially marked for Sen. Barack Obama.
.
''This is a troubling report that emphasizes the importance of having a transparent and open process in every voting place in Ohio,'' said Paul Lindsay, a spokesman for McCain's campaign.
.
The elections board sent two teams of poll workers, each with one Democrat and one Republican, to the nursing home to assist residents who otherwise would be unable to go to the polls. Such early voting is a routine service offered by elections boards to nursing homes.
.
Board officials said they have received conflicting accounts -- and are trying to sort out what happened -- as Manos and Walker were attempting to assist a female nursing home resident with her ballot. Until they do, Walker won't be involved with voting.
.
''Any type of disagreement at a voting center is not appropriate,'' said Tim Gorbach, a Democratic member of the elections board. ''We need to find out exactly what happened and will take action.''
.
The voter was able to cast a new, correct ballot with her desired choices, according to elections board officials.
Makes you wonder how many OTHER votes this Walker person changed, but weren't noticed.

I certainly hope you'll agree with me that THIS is also voter fraud.


WW,That is another... (Below threshold)

WW,

That is another example of the system working. If you want to claim there are systematic problems with voter registration and/or voting in general then you need to show some examples of the system not working and allowing people to cast fraudulent votes. The example you site is nothing more than the isolated actions of a wacko.

If the problem is as widespread and fundamental as some people claim then there should be lots of examples of fraudulent votes being cast. The fact that there aren't leads me to believe this isn't a problem.

Parthenon - You sa... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

Parthenon -

You said "For myself, I'd rather elect Sen. McCain fairly than Sen. Obama unfairly."

I fully agree with your stand there - but I'm also thinking such an attitude comes too late for the majority of the Democratic Party.

We all want an honest election, but there's people who do not, who will do EVERYTHING they possibly can to make sure Obama gets elected - whether their actions are ethical, legal, or proper.

The history of the Chicago machine shows that voter preference is pretty much irrelevant. The 'proper' people win - that's all that's important.

Blue -By the very ... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

Blue -

By the very nature of the system, any fraudulent votes that slip past the checks in place will never be found.

That some are being found NOW, without a concerted effort to weed them out, indicates there's a problem. How serious it may be is open to dicussion, but when you tap on a piece of wood on a doorframe in your house that looks sound, and it splits open and disgorges termites - the thing to do is NOT paint it over and think the problem is taken care of.

In the interest of bugs eve... (Below threshold)
epador:

In the interest of bugs everywhere, I am so glad you did not directly compare BN to a termite.

Just an incompetent home in... (Below threshold)
epador:

Just an incompetent home inspector.

"It looks to us like you... (Below threshold)

"It looks to us like you guys know you're behind and looking for a conspiracy theory to possibly swing it a few points your way..."

"The State secs. of State could have done a lot more to prevent all this, IMO."

Wait. Are we making up a conspiracy or is there really a problem? It can't be both.

ACORN can get away with bre... (Below threshold)
OLDPUPPYMAX:

ACORN can get away with breathtaking, blatant fraud because republicans are too cowardly to say anything and dems are the beneficiaries of the dishonesty. Any questions?

By the very nature... (Below threshold)
By the very nature of the system, any fraudulent votes that slip past the checks in place will never be found.

I disagree. Each time there is a recount somewhere there is a de facto audit of the votes. If there were a systematic problem with the vote a recount would find a material number of fraudulent votes cast. This hasn't happened.

The evidence of a systematic problem would be easy to see in system as large as a national election. There would be thousands of people getting caught in the act of committing the fraud and after the fact. Those things aren't happening so it is hard to make a case that there is a systematic problem.

Voter fraud by anyone is ce... (Below threshold)

Voter fraud by anyone is certainly illegal and morally wrong, and undermines our election system.

My conservative friends, Is... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

My conservative friends, Is BlueN truly dumb or is he purposely not getting it? Gosh, it is amazing they even have the vote. ww

But those votes, Blue, don'... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

But those votes, Blue, don't have ANY NAMES attached to them. "Secret Ballot" and all that jazz, you know? Once you're past the gate, nobody knows who you are and nobody can track your vote. (Damned good thing too, IMHO.) So we have to make sure going in that the voters are who they say they are.

Heck, look at Washington State in 2004. The Democratic LOSER kept demanding recounts, and ballot boxes kept 'showing up' in various warehouses with a couple of votes for republicans, and hundreds for the losing Democrat. Finally there were enough for the Democrat to 'win' by a couple of hundred, at which point the vote was called complete. Any names attached to those ballots, so they could be verified? Nope - because once you've passed the registration desk when you cast your ballot - that's it.

Funny how those boxes kept being found in a close election, wasn't it? And what about all those 'dimpled chad' ballots in Florida? It was demonstrated that about the only way you could get that to happen was by stuffing 5 or 6 ballot sheets into the machine at one time and then trying to punch them all. Again, no way to verify the voter intended to punch for Gore, Bush, or Mickey Mouse. And Gore STILL lost.

(Let's not talk about the mass disqualification of military absentee ballots from the same counties that had a horde of Democratic lawyers descend to make sure all ballots were 'qualified' - that still pisses me off after 8 years.)

The system has been pretty much assumed to be honest. That assumption can lead to a LOT of abuse before the problem gets bad enough to be officially noticed. And I believe that it has.

Paul -I believe th... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

Paul -

I believe that's the shortest and most to the point item you've ever posted.

And I fully agree with you.

Oyster --The truth... (Below threshold)
Parthenon:

Oyster --

The truth is I don't know. I've only seen this on conservative blogs (admittedly I don't watch much TV, so feel free to eviscerate me with a witty retort on that). I don't know if it's legit. It certainly seems fishy, but after every election the losing side screams "Voter Fraud!" How does this NOT look like an opening salvo? That's why I gave both options.

You're arguing that simply because the system is flawed and open to abuse that we should tolerate it because it's 'not that bad'.

That's not what I meant to say, J. I meant to say that after Florida '00 there should have been a massive country-wide overhaul to prevent this kind of thing, up to and including taking the process away from the counties. More dispersal = more opportunities to muck it up.

Parthenon -"It cer... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

Parthenon -

"It certainly seems fishy, but after every election the losing side screams "Voter Fraud!"

Forgive my blatant partisanship on this - but here in Georgia the folks fighting HARDEST against voter ID are the Democratic party operatives. The Republicans want it - the Democrats emphatically do not.

This makes me skeptical about claims by Democrats of voter fraud when they lose an election. Republican claims, I believe, are more valid because they've normally done everything THEY can to make sure the possibility of fraud has been reduced.

That said - I believe if Obama loses you're going to see headlines about voter fraud like you wouldn't believe. If it's a big loss, it'll be blamed on racism AND wholesale disenfranchisement of the black vote. If it's a tight race in a battleground state that would get him a couple of electoral college votes he needs to win, then you'll see battalions of lawyers descend like locusts, and ballot boxes are going to appear like magic with just enough votes to get Obama the win.

<a href="http://www.click2h... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

http://www.click2houston.com/hot-button/17671375/detail.html

Another "harmless" vote by BlueN's friends. ww

"http://www.click2houston.c... (Below threshold)
iurockhead:

"http://www.click2houston.com/hot-button/17671375/detail.html

Another "harmless" vote by BlueN's friends. ww

36. Posted by WildWillie | October 15, 2008 11:42 AM"

So building on Willies's comment and link, here's a wild-eyed conspiracy theory:

The blatently fraudulent registrations are not going anywhere, they are too obvious, and ACORN doesn't try to hide them. I think that ACORN is providing a tactical diversion for those who are actually commiting voter fraud, such as the dead folk in Willies link.

With a huge smokescreen of ACORN shenanigans, the more nuanced and serious voter fraud can more easily slip by unnoticed, especially when election boards are so overwhelmed dealing with thousands of ACORN ballots, and don't have time to look for the subtle stuff.

But those votes, B... (Below threshold)
But those votes, Blue, don't have ANY NAMES attached to them. "Secret Ballot" and all that jazz, you know? Once you're past the gate, nobody knows who you are and nobody can track your vote. (Damned good thing too, IMHO.) So we have to make sure going in that the voters are who they say they are.

There is a record of everyone who voted. If there were wide spread and systematic fraud involved in the election you would be able to see it from the list. The mail-in registration forms would be matched against those who voted. Patterns would emerge that indicated fraud. A real audit of the vote would then be called for and viola you would have a lot of evidence that the system isn't working.

The last two presidential elections were very close. Any systematic weaknesses in the voting process would have been noted and thoroughly examined. That hasn't happened.

The last two presidentia... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

The last two presidential elections were very close -

Yep, they were. Less than 500 votes, apparently, in Florida. One source I saw a few years back had Bush winning by about 170 votes - but no count had Gore winning.

Escambia County in Florida has 90 precincts. There's 67 counties in Florida - we'll take the 90 as an average number of precincts for this argument, okay? So we'll figure there's 6030 precincts, round down to 6000 for an even number.

If you'd managed to get two EXTRA people per precinct registered, and could vote their IDs - that's 12,000 votes to put the way you want.

That would have tipped Florida solidly to Gore - and the electoral votes would have given him the Presidency.

Ohio seems to have about 11,500 precincts. Bush had 2,859,768 votes, Gore had 2,741,167. Bush won by 118,601.

An extra 11 people per precinct might ensure an Obama win.

ACORN is saying they got 100,000 in Cleveland alone.

This is, I think, even MORE reason to NOT let organizations like ACORN 'get out the vote'. Make registration easy, make it accessable. Libraries, schools, fire stations, hospitals, banks, pharmacies - but ACORN style efforts? No. No way.

"If there were wide spre... (Below threshold)

"If there were wide spread and systematic fraud involved in the election you would be able to see it from the list."

That's just it. There doesn't have to be "widespread and systematic fraud" to tip many elections. Anything that stays below a certain threshold will slide by, district by district. A few here and a few there and three recounts later and voila! you have a different Governor.

What many are focusing on too is the Presidential election, not the many state and local ones, nor the congressional ones.

This isn't all about Obama.

Whoopsie...<a h... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

Whoopsie...

About 200K Ohio voters have records discrepancies
,
CINCINNATI (AP) - Close to one in every three newly registered Ohio voters will end up on court-ordered lists being sent to county election boards because they have some discrepancy in their records, an elections spokesman said Wednesday.
There's a rotten ACORN in Ohio, apparently!

It's interesting the margin... (Below threshold)
maggie:

It's interesting the marginalization and less
than enthusiastic interest in there being
any hint of fraud that is happening all over this country.
Then we have this.
http://lawhawk.blogspot.com/2008/10/brunner-appeals-voter-registration.html

Reminds me too of the ballet boxes that kept
popping up in unique places after the last
Washington state gubernatorial elections.
Which in return reminds me of Lyndon Banes
Johnson and his run for public office in
Texas.




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