I have been concerned for years about the rigging of election results, including—but not limited to—voting machine tampering. That is why I am in favor of an audit and/or recount in the current Presidential election.
I do not think there is any realistic possibility of changing the announced election results. This would require the discovery of discrepancies in all three recount states—Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania—large enough to change the result, and all this before the Electoral College meets on Dec. 19.
What I hope will come out of the audit / recount will be an improved process for national elections—at a minimum, a paper record and a routine audit to verify the paper record.
I didn’t vote for either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton. I am not pleased that Trump is President, but I am opposed to going to extraordinary lengths to keep him from taking office, such as trying to persuade members of the Electoral College pledged to Trump to violate their pledges. I am more concerned with the integrity of the process than which of two candidates won.
On the other hand, I do not care at all whether the recount process undermines “confidence” in Trump’s supposed mandate. Confidence is to be earned, not granted automatically.
It would be unfortunate if the audit / recount process diverted attention from all the other ways in which the election process is and has been rigged.
An investigative reporter named Greg Palast has been reporting on vote rigging for years. One method is the infamous CrossCheck system, whereby somebody who has approximately the same name as somebody in another state is assumed to be the same person, and the name is removed.
We the people don’t know if voting machines were tampered with. We do know about CrossCheck.
As Palast notes, the names that are checked are almost always common last names of African-Americans or Hispanics. Here’s how he said CrossCheck affected the current election:
Trump victory margin in Michigan: 13,107
Michigan Crosscheck purge list: 449,922
Trump victory margin in Arizona: 85,257
Arizona Crosscheck purge list: 270,824
Trump victory margin in North Carolina: 177,008
North Carolina Crosscheck purge list: 589,393
It’s too late to give back the voting rights that were stolen in this year’s election. The best that can be hoped for is to fix things for the future.
It’s too bad that the Obama administration did not see fit to investigate this. I don’t hope for anything from Jeff Sessions, Donald Trump’s choice for attorney-general. Ending this corrupt and illegal system will depend on citizen activists working on the state level.
Then there are the techniques for discouraging voting by poor people and young people—burdensome requirements for voter ID, too-few voting machines and long lines to vote in black-majority districts. Those techniques, however, be overcome by voters who are determined to exercise their rights despite all obstacles.
But what can you do if your voter registration is canceled without your knowledge? Or the machines on which you vote have been tampered with?