On September 13 computer scientists at Princeton University issued yet another in a series of damning reports on the Diebold AccuVote TS electronic voting machine that is currently in use in many states. The TS is the predecessor of the TSx model recently purchased by Cuyahoga County, the machine that was used in the disastrous May 2nd primary and the one scheduled to be used in this November's general elections.
The Princeton report stated: "... Malicious software running on a single voting machine can steal votes with little if any risk of detection ... Anyone who has physical access to a voting machine ...can install said malicious software using a simple method that takes as little as one minute ... AccuVote-TS machines are susceptible to voting-machine viruses ..."
In 2004 when Diebold was attempting to sell the TS model to Boards of Elections here in Ohio and around the country, they made no mention of these serious security flaws. Why was that? One can only come to the conclusion that either the Diebold engineers were too incompetent to recognize their own mistakes, or that Diebold knew of these flaws but did not tell the truth. Either way it has been shown that neither Diebold nor their machines can be trusted.
Yet "trust me" is exactly what the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections is asking of the citizens of this county to do by refusing to implement any significant polices of checks and balances to ensure that the election results, as reported by the Diebold machines, are indeed accurate.
The Board has steadfastly refused to publicly post the individual precinct results as of the close of polls on election day, even though election laws allow for such posting and even though several simple and viable methods for doing so exist. Such public postings would make it easier to catch any tampering to the vote that might occur during tabulation.
The Board has also refused to commit to a policy of auditing a statistically significant random sample of the machines to ensure that the electronic totals that the machines report match one-for-one with the voter verified paper audit trail that is produced with each voter's ballot. This is basic democracy.
The Board's refusal to take any action on these two issues, yet again, demonstrate their apparent lack of understanding of the threat posed by the Diebold electronic voting machines, and their inaction is tantamount to driving yet another nail into the coffin of our democracy. The citizens of Cuyahoga County deserve better than that, but they also need to wakeup and contact the Board of Elections to demand action now.
The Cuyahoga County Board of Elections is located at:
2925 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio 44115 (the northwest corner of Euclid and East 30th Street.)
The phone number is (216) 443-3200.
The next meeting of the Board is scheduled for Monday, October 2nd, at 9:00 A.M. Be there!