Defensive Democracy

Anne Martens

I'm fascinated by the Washington Governor's trial (Borders v. King County), and enthralled by the evidence being offered. This is far better drama than any pedophilic pop star, and, more importantly, it's another step in the transfer of power over elections from the people to the bench.

Essentially, the Democrats are arguing that there is no such thing as a perfect election, mistakes will always and everywhere happen, but don't topple the mechanics of democracy over a few inadvertent mishaps. The Republicans have had to scuttle their "mistakes equal fraud" argument (the judge just wasn't buying that given the absence of any malicious intent) and are now arguing that "mistakes (at least the ones that favor Gregoire) are really, really bad and something ought to be done about it."

Of course both sides are right, and while nobody paid any attention to these issues until 2000, they now lead to what may be a landmark lawsuit. The mistakes were these: some felons voted, some dead people voted, some people voted but didn't sign the poll book, some ballots were misplaced, and some provisional ballots were counted when they shouldn't have been. The standard is whether these mistakes changed the outcome of the election.

For all you evidence-heads (is there such a thing?), remember good old rule 702, Frye and the two-part test, Daubert and the four-part test, and the purpose of those tests being to keep crap out of the courtroom? No? Well, nevermind, doesn't matter. As quoted by the Seattle Times, Judge Bridges said, "I can imagine how frustrated counsel has been with the court because you don't know me and you come to this court and I start making rulings which I'm sure some of you think are just not supported by any rules of evidence you've ever read."

As an aside, whatever the Republicans thought they were gaining by going to Central Washington (instead of filing in King County) has been handily foiled by a judge who is smart, funny and fair. Judge Bridges has been thoroughly professional and unbiased.

Back to evidence. Washington's not a Daubert state anyway, rather they follow the old standard in Frye, which is that specialized or scientific evidence must be (1) helpful in determining facts, and (2) generally accepted in the relevant scientific community. Because of the inevitability of appeal, the judge is letting everything in to create a full record for the high court, and reserving ruling until after hearing the evidence. And so the trial has become The Battle of The Experts, or "my professor can beat up your professor."

It is a parade of the political science and statistics departments of Washington's major university. Claiming, variously, that you either can or cannot convincingly divine from a person's precinct or county or gender or race or criminal background how that person and people near that person would have voted. Shockingly, those given data sets by the Republicans somehow determine that Rossi would win, while those given data sets by the Democrats determine that Gregoire would win. Garbage in, garbage out.

The question is which of these various claims follows a method that is "generally accepted" in the scientific community. The Republicans' main theories are an ecological inference, such that people vote the same as the majority of their precinct, and proportionate deduction, to subtract invalid votes (which votes are invalid is a contested issue) from the totals in proportion to the overall percentage of the vote each candidate received in the affected precincts.

And how many experts have to say that a theory is or is not accepted in order for it to be "generally" accepted? No one knows. The Republicans claim that the U.S. House of Representatives uses proportionate deduction, though my guess is that most Americans would find that anything the U.S. House does is not generally accepted in normal society. There was an argument that one expert wasn't really an expert because he hadn't read or been published in any peer-reviewed elections administration journals. Of which there are, oh, none. In an exercise that every student dreams of, a professor's own lecture notes were turned upon him – you tell your students to question assumptions and look for alternative explanations – did you do that? Uh, no. The judge replied that he would "run like the wind" from that class.

So, we can't use statistical sampling in the census, statistical sampling is usually in court only to show patterns of discrimination or harassment or criminal proclivity, but the Republicans would have us use statistical sampling to determine not only who voted but how they voted. This could open the door to a whole new way of conducting elections and recounts. Or at least a whole new way of conducting the cases that will decide elections and recounts.

Forget one-person-one-vote and majority rules, here the judges' evaluation of the admissibility of scientific evidence will determine the outcome. So if all the statistical assumptions get junked, what do we have? Governor Gregoire, a potential consolation prize of Cantwell's seat for Rossi, loss of public confidence in elections, a growing body of scholarly research on elections statistics, scrutiny and revision of the conduct of elections, and the assurance of future lawsuits. And if the court decides that statistics account for votes, what do we have? A rematch, new standards for evidence, loss of public confidence in elections, a growing body of scholarly research on elections statistics, scrutiny and revision of the conduct of elections, and the assurance of future lawsuits.

Could it happen here? There are mistakes in every election, and any election that's ridiculously close will cause people to seek out those mistakes and ascribe sinister motives. Many of our rules are different from Washington's: for example, our felon voting rules are far simpler, and our reliance on one voting system (mail) rather than two (polls and mail) makes administration a little easier. And our Elections Director is rightly using this opportunity to learn how to prevent such an occurrence. But the general climate has changed to one in which every election is a potential lawsuit; the judge, not the people, is the final arbiter of elections contests; and elections administrators find themselves practicing defensive democracy.

Look for a ruling on Monday, and Episode II: The Supreme Court, shortly thereafter. Watch video of the trial here.

Comments

  • Gregor (unverified)
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    Elections should be based on the most accurate count of the votes of as many eligible voters as are available. If the sitting official has to stick around a little while longer, so be it. An elected official should represent the will of people, all the people eligible. But as we know, felons are not eligible. However, if it's merely a matter of paperwork to return them to the rolls, their votes should be counted. As for the dead, they are eligible, if they were alive on election day, or had sent in their absentee ballot before they went to room temperature.

    There was a hockey game, maybe for the Stanley Cup, between the Dallas Stars and the Buffalo Sabres. The Stars were credited with the winning goal in a long, drawn out battle. I think it was the third overtime of Game 6. The Cup was brought out before the instant replay was reviewed and the Stars given the Championship. Afterall, the teams had left the ice and the carpet had been rolled out. How can we undo THAT?!? I think we can.

    The questions are these. Have we become so impatient we can't wait long enough for the truth to be revealed? Are we so conditioned by television that we reward the best actors? Perhaps we are too impatient and reward the best actors at this time. But we should reconsider this carefully, and take our time doing it to be sure to get it right, not get it right now.

  • Tom Civiletti (unverified)
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    Good piece, Anne!

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    Anne... This is brilliant. Thank you.

    Let me understand something. Are the GOPers up north arguing that if a) a precinct would normally go 80-20 for Party X, and b) voter Joe Blow illegally voted, then we should delete .8 of a vote from Party X and .2 of a vote from Party Y?

    Seriously? Are they kidding?

    That means they're trying to apply Schrödinger's cat, a bizarre yet useful illustration of a principle in quantum physics, to election law.

    Here's the problem: Joe Blow does not exist as some unidentifiable average of his precinct. We know some things about him: He's male, he's of a certain age, and he's registered with one of the parties (or none at all). Of course, we don't really know with any kind of scientific certainty about how the micro-slice of that precinct (say, 37-year-old male registered Democrats) vote. We just know that they're different than the other micro-slices.

    What's more, why should we be using the precinct as the determining slice? Perhaps the House District is a better community average! (Imagine a precinct where 50% of the homes are million-dollar houses, and 50% are college housing. Since we don't have micro-slice results for either demographic, we use precinct - but what if the precinct is inside a set of 10 precincts that are all college housing; what then for our odds?)

    Oh, you can wrap yourself in knots doing theoretical quantum physics to determine elections - but here's the only thing you'll end up knowing: It's impossible to know.

  • (Show?)

    On that note, I just remembered a great column written (but no longer online) by Stephen Goodman in the aftermath of the 2000 election.

    Measuring truth, uncertainty in Florida and beyond By Steven Goodman Many of us are troubled by this year's election. But maybe it's not by the candidates, who campaigned of fuzzy math, the fuzzy logic, or the fuzzy laws. Rather, maybe it's by our frightening face-to-face encounter with the fuzzy nature of truth itself. Maybe it's our discovery that the "truths" at the foundation of our collective sense of social stability and security are less like bedrock and more like quicksand. Philosophers and scientists who think about the nature of truth already know this. And now we have to confront it, and confront how our nation will live with a president whose legitimacy will rest on that quicksand. The problem starts with this notion of "the will of the people." The people's will is not emblazoned on our foreheads or on the night sky. It's in our hearts and our minds. And we try to measure it with elections. But, as we have learned in painful detail, the distance from the mind to the hand, the hand to the ballot, the ballot to the counter, and the counter to the count, can be tortuous and unreliable. This makes the final count a somewhat fuzzy reflection of our will. The exit polls that led to those election night network mis-calls? They may have been a more accurate measure of that will than the election itself. So an election is a measuring instrument with a limit to its accuracy. Like an unfocused microscope, it does not let us see fine detail. And in Florida we got down to that level of detail -- less than one vote difference in 10,000 -- well below the resolution of our election microscope. This has forced us to face the reality that not only can we not be sure of the truth, but when we are beyond the limits of what we can measure, there may be no absolute truth independent of what we tell ourselves. At best, this insight is uncomfortable. At worst, it's a threat to the smooth functioning of a post-election government. Scientists have been confronting these kinds of limits to knowledge for at least a century. Einstein killed off absolute space and time, and another German physicist -- Werner Heisenberg -- came up with his uncertainty principle which taught us that, on the microscopic scale, the very act of measuring alters what we are looking at in a way that keeps the absolute truth always just a quantum beyond our reach. And so to cap off the first quantum century, we have the first quantum election, in which the difference was so small that every attempt to measure the truth was seen instead by somebody as an attempt to manipulate it. The proper perspective is that, in situations like this, there is no truth -- that beyond the limits of what we can reliably measure, the principles we use to guide judgments about hanging chads, dimpled ballots and confused voters define an operational truth, and that's all there is. Whatever those principles are -- and the courts will soon help us find out -- they define us as a people and as a society. Perhaps that's why, the vast majority of Americans say they care less about who wins than that the process was appropriate. It is deeply unsettling to peer into the electoral glass and, instead of an oracle of truth, see only ourselves looking back. But we are going to have to learn to live with that. That's the only truth. Steven Goodman, a medical doctor, is associate professor of oncology, epidemiology and biostatistics in the Department of Oncology, Division of Biostatistics, at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine.
  • (Show?)

    I'm loving this thread.

    Anne thanks for the light shone on this process--I guess it takes a law degree (and the ability to explain it to us rubes).

    Kari,

    I'm also really liking the Goodman piece.

    Let me recommend again the book Freakonomics by Steven Levitt & Stephen Dubner. It's really "on topic" with Goodman if not with Anne's initial article, and also dovetails nicely with a comment made earlier today by Jeff on the "moderates vs. the extremes" thread.

    It goes back to continuously questioning your assumptions or faith or whatever you want to call it.

  • (Show?)

    Thanks for the column, Anne. It should be said that there has been some really great blogging going on for this trial, with some of the better reportage actually coming from two bloggers in Portland. One is Carla at www.preemptivekarma.com; she was very active during the period from December to March, when the Rossi allegations of fraud were flying fast and furious, and has kept up somewhat since the trial started. The other...eeek...I must immodestly say is me. (I do have the backing of Seattle Weekly, who called my reportage "the most intelligent of the lot.") My morning wrapup of today's early session is here, at Also Also. From there, you can link to each of the other near-daily wrapups from the earlier days of the trial. I say near-daily, because I spent two days in Seattle doing intercept surveys to see what people were saying about the trial. I will be posting the results of those surveys over the weekend, before Judge Bridges rules on Monday. To see my posts from January forward on the subject, look under the topic heading "Legal/Court Rulings" or "Politics Horserace".

    In Washington, Goldy at HorsesAss.org is the best blogging source for the trial, and David Postman of the Seattle Times has been doing daily dispatches that are just great MSM work--a rarity!

    From a progressive viewpoint, this trial was the triggering event that helped get NWPortal launched, the clearinghouse site of which BlueOregon is a syndicated member (as well as all three of the other blogs I mentioned above). For a time, the righty radio and blogs were monopolizing the public discourse, but since the portal went on line, we have evened things out. Andrew Villenueve, the high-school student who put the portal together, has assembled an Election Highlights page, that links to the best of the web since the trial started.

    This should be a resounding victory for the Democrats, based on everything I have learned about the case.

  • dispossessed (unverified)
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    It appears Democrats will prevail. The Republicans' case sounded better before, as it seems, they rather ineptly made it.

    But the only thing I am absolutely sure of is that most Blue Oregonians and their brethren elsewhere would never, never stop screaming bloodly murder -- or theft -- if the Democratic candidate had won on the first count, had won on the second count, and then lost on a third manual recount paid for in large part by the opposing candidate's national leader. Hardly to mention the numerous established errors, incompetence and scandals in that county's elections department.

    That is the only thing of which I have absolutely no doubt.

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    Highly doubtful--because we'd figure out quickly that the law did not countenance sneaky suspicions and leading circumstance for election contests, and if we had no evidence we had no evidence. If there's a party that has firmly assumed the better ethical position on Rule of Law, it's the Democrats since 11/04.

    This is only phase one of the GOP's plan--do not be fooled. Mark Braden and Forman are not idiots, and I think they as well as we can see how far their case falls short of the legal standards. But losing is not being perceived by them as a disadvantageous position--since at worst Dino Rossi is still not governor. They know there is a well of resentment they can tap into, in both 06 against Cantwell or 08 against Gregoire. I witnessed it firsthand in Bellevue yesterday.

    The lasting memory of this trial--Dino Rossi, Sore Loser or Dino Rossi, Screwed Martyr--is still up for grabs. Do not allow them to tell you it was a screwjob. They had a lousy case, and intentionally threw slander they absolutely could not back up, and admitted they could not.

  • afs (unverified)
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    I hate to say this about a Dem legal team, but they are really arguing this case poorly.

    Why isn't the Dem legal team using all the evidence compiled by the voting rights group that is suing Snohomish Co. about all the mistakes that computerized voting machines made in Snohomish Co. that benefitted the GOP? The Snohomish Co. studies are at least as good as any study done in the country that document how computerized voting machine gave Republicans advantages.

    Here's the press release related to the work done in Snohomish Co....

    "Election Irregularities In Snohomish County WA Friday, 14 January 2005, 12:31 pm Press Release: www.votersunite.org FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    EVIDENCE OF ELECTION IRREGULARITIES IN SNOHOMISH COUNTY, WASHINGTON, GENERAL ELECTION, 2004

    Port Ludlow, WA. Jan. 6, 2005. VotersUnite.Org announces the release of a new report completed by Paul R. Lehto, Attorney at Law, and Dr. Jeffrey Hoffman, Ph.D. The report summarizes the results of their detailed study of the general election in Snohomish County, Washington. Based on weeks of work, during which they pored over thousands of documents obtained in open records requests from Snohomish County, the report reveals evidence of irregularities that strongly suggest the possibility of electronic voting machine fraud.

    "We began this study because Snohomish County presents an opportunity to compare Sequoia voting machines to optical scanners in a real election where the demographics are the same for all voters using the machines," said Mr. Lehto. "As we examined the election data, memos, voter complaints, machine-repair reports, and other data, the evidence of serious irregularities became too obvious to ignore."

    VotersUnite.Org is proud to have assisted with the publication of this document and to have been selected as its repository.

    Among the points discussed in this document are:

    ¨ Absentee ballots composing 2/3 of the total ballots showed a Democratic lead of 97044 to 95228 votes, while the remaining 1/3 of the votes, on touch screens, showed a Republican lead of almost 5% (50,400 Republican to 42,145 Democratic).

    ¨ Vote-switching and machines freezing up occurred in 58 polling locations out of approximately 148 total. There is a strong correlation between the machine problems reported by KING5 news and the higher Republican percentages the machines reported.

    ¨ Statistical analysis of machines that recently had their CPUs repaired shows a propensity for Republican voting that is present but weak on the individual level but strong at the polling location where the machines were placed.

    ¨ The average of the 58 polling places reporting vote switching, freeze-ups, or repairs within two weeks of the election was 11.58% more favorable to Republican Dino Rossi than absentee voters did, and averaged 10.8% more votes than Gregoire on election day, while Rossi’s overall spread among all electronic voters at all polling locations was under 5%.

    The document can be downloaded from h ttp://www.votersunite.org/info/SnohomishElectionFraudInvestigation.pdf

    Paul R. Lehto is a business law and consumer fraud attorney practicing in Everett, Washington and a recently retired member of the Board of Governors of the Washington State Bar Association. Dr. Jeffrey Hoffman has a Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin at Madison and is a professor of mechanical engineering technology at Northern Michigan University.

    VotersUnite.Org (http://www.votersunite.org) is a nonpartisan organization dedicated to fair and accurate elections...."

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/WO0501/S00135.htm

  • jim karlock (unverified)
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    Of course this election is a repeat of Florida: a tie.

    So can we set up a proceedure to deal with a tie? Draw cards, pistols at 10 paces or use lawyers in court?

    Maybe define tie as any outcome within a reasonable margin of error. Or maybe exact count doesn't matter: If real people are close to 50-50, maybe we should do something different like restrict power of the winner or power sharing between the two top vote getters.

    Thanks JK

  • Walter (unverified)
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    Every state wide or national election we have we get this tremendous shift vote in King County/SEATTLE. 35 counties out of 37 voted for our Republican U.S. Senator in 2000 yet we ended up with a Democrat Multi Multi Millionaire that we never hear from.

    For those of us that live and breath in Seattle we know what has been going on and have for years. And even with that lopsided situation Rossi won the count 2 times and lost on the THIRD COUNT. So, our sitting governor is ranked the 47th worst governor in the nation and has raised GAS TAXES already. GAS TAXES when gas is through the roof and who gets hurt the worst, low income families. Oh yes, our Left Wingers along with Senator Murray are having a ball.

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    Walter, we don't vote by land mass or political boundary. People vote, and 1/3 of them live in King.

    The argument you appear to be making about "2 out of 3" is also not how we hold elections. The very best way to get a good result from an election count is a hand recount after a machine recount. Machines are more reliable (they repeat the counting process the same exact way better than humans), but humans are more accurate (they can think and interpret ballots that machines reject).

  • dispossessed (unverified)
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    Nice try, TorridJoe. Best study up a bit on the "accuracy" of the humans in King County. And like I keep saying, were the parties here reversed, you would all scream so loud we would all be deaf.

  • Walter (unverified)
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    Torridjoe, Sure, and Dan Rather is a Republican.

    I think everyone posting here understands the mechanics. I would expect if the Left Wing would do a little soul searching and if they know 981XX area even they would admit it is a cesspool of political junkstering. And the point I was making is, if you walk into work everyday and the same person steps on your foot, it just might not be an accident or negligence. This is King County/SEATTLE. For example, if you took just New York City out of the equation of the 2000 presidential vote, President Bush would have won by the popular majority verses an electoral vote. So, for the State of Washington, it would be a completely different place if you eliminated just the Seattle vote. If you look at who is running the government in Seattle and who is pushing the buttons, it is just a smaller version of New York City which distorts things too far out of normal proportions. It just steps on too many toes too many times to be an accident.

  • (Show?)

    Walter, are you suggesting that the people of Seattle have no right to help select the governor of their state?

  • Walter (unverified)
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    Let me put it this way. If I was a Left Winger and knew what was going on in Seattle I would puke my guts out but I'd be pleased with the end results. It is Larry Flynt's dream team there....

    If you think the situation in Seattle represents Seattle folks you'd be wrong. This is where the action is when it comes to all the sillyness that can be done. Here is a good example of how it works there:

    3rd vote for governor

    Total votes for 38 out of 39 counties on the hand recount:

    Christine Gregoire

    Democratic 867,168 44.8472%

    Dino Rossi

    Republican 1,021,926 52.8508%

    39th county added, King County:

    Christine Gregoire

    Democratic 1,373,362 48.8731%

    Dino Rossi

    Republican 1,373,232 48.8684%

    Now, if this would have been a Left Winger losing this way verses a Republican you know you'd have Danny Rather and every New York lawyer in the nation screaming crooks, criminal, and Dean's Rent A Ranters going wild.....

  • (Show?)

    Walter, I was born and raised in Seattle, and much like any urban center in any state, lots of people live there and lots of them are liberals and their votes get to count. So I don't think the point is that King County can swing an election - we all know that.

    As for how things run in Seattle, I know that King County Elections have had some management issues in the past, and Dean Logan (their elections director) took that job in order to help fix it - and he is well-respected in the elections community as both competent and fair. I don't believe in the evil conspiracy theories (regardless of which side floats them) because I've seen elections workers at work and I honestly believe that the vast majority take their responsibilities seriously, make an effort to be unbiased, and do their job to the best of their training and ability.

    What's more interesting to me is that the culture has now decided that it's permissible for whoever loses to not only scream about sinister conspiracies, but to take every loss to court, putting what used to be a community decision into the hands of a judge, and letting that judge decide based on matters that have nothing to do with the merits of the candidate (like the admissibility of statistical evidence).

  • dispossessed (unverified)
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    "What's more interesting to me is that the culture has now decided that it's permissible for whoever loses to not only scream about sinister conspiracies, but to take every loss to court, putting what used to be a community decision into the hands of a judge, and letting that judge decide based on matters that have nothing to do with the merits of the candidate (like the admissibility of statistical evidence)."

    So, Anne, you are saying I am mistaken in my assumption of cynical political motives? And that if Gregoire had won the first and second counts, and in a third manual recount, paid for largely by leftover campaign monies of Bush, Inc., and amid numerous allegations and admissions of election errors, you would have, nevertheless, let it rest there?

    (Separately, I think your take on Dean Logan was originally widely shared but has come under different questioning.)

  • Walter (unverified)
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    Anne, That is just what the Republicans have been talking about, everything ends up in court in front of a judge and some judges have become law makers verses law interpreters. And guess who supports the Democrats, LAWYERS! Lawyers that become judges or lawyers that become politicians that create laws that will makes sure we need more lawyers and more judges so they've got a job to fall back on or have lawyers beholding to them. One of the biggest catch 22s in the world.

    If you remember correctly, Gregoire was screaming along with Gore and Kerry every vote must be counted but unfortunately they just didn't limit it to legal votes. And after the third vote when it mysteriously went to Gregoire, she proclaimed, no more counts, the citizens of Washington have spoken and don't want anymore of this. Except about 75% that figured this was bogus. The Washington State citizens are making their feelings very clear when they have ranked Gregoire 47th out of 50 as the worst governor in the nation.

    47 Washington, Christine Gregoire, 34% approve 58% disapprove http://www.surveyusa.com

    Now we have a situation where 120 + votes is the only separation between who heads up the state. In Ohio there was 100,000 + vote difference and the Left Wingers were climbing the walls for a new vote or overturn the vote. So, I say the Republicans have at least that much right to proclaim that they know there were enough bad votes to make a difference. Most of the Washington State citizens apparently feel the same and want a legal resolution to this.

    I am familiar with voting in Seattle in a very intimate manner. I know who runs the phone banks and gets sent where to recruit who etc. etc. etc. Lucky or unlucky the majority of the election workers don't know about the bad side or if they do there is little they can do about it. So, it isn't the rank and file where the problem is, it is above that. It is very easy to just turn your head in the other direction when you know this is going on but you still know it is going on so you can only wish it is corrected. Maybe this court ruling regardless of the outcome will be the beginning of someone finally getting into the whole King County thing and clean it up once and for all so we don't have to go through this again. Unfortunately, the Left Wingers will be wanting no accountability as they have everywhere they can glitch things up. Don't want to know who is voting, dead, alive, illegal or what ever as long as the outcome meets what ever needs they have for that day.....

  • jammer (unverified)
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    So can we set up a procedure to deal with a tie? Draw cards, pistols at 10 paces or use lawyers in court?

    Ooo, I'm liking pistols at 10 paces. Granted, maybe we've moved beyond that as a civilization. How about, instead, squirt-guns filled with urine at arm's length?

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    Walter, you simply don't have your facts right.

    There was no "third vote." There wasn't even a second one. There was a machine recount, then a manual recount. There was no mystery; a huge team of observers with plenty of Republicans watched the process.

    Gregoire could not "proclaim no more counts;" the law does that. The machine recount was automatic, the manual count nearly so.

    Washington citizens have not ranked Gregoire 47th of 50 governors; their approval rating of her was ranked 47th of 50 different approval ratings nationally.

    If the Republicans believed there were illegal votes that changed the outcome, why didn't they LOOK for them? They offered not a SINGLE case of an illegal vote being cast for Gregoire. Not ONE. The only evidence--mandated by statute to provide, by the way--given about illegal votes cast, were 4 Rossi votes and a Bennett vote cast by illegal felons.

    All of the talk about "you'd press a ridiculously weak case in the public for six months after the election too, if you were in our situation" is just that--talk. And it attempts to rationalize bad behavior by speculating on the motives of political enemies in the same situation. It's a lame, lame argument.

  • Walter (unverified)
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    Posted by: torridjoe | June 5, 2005 01:39 AM

    Torridjoe, Hummm, I see I kept you up late trying to hash up something.

    First, your argument is no good by your own Democrat standards used in court in Washington State. The items that you pointed out are misleading on your part because they were minor mistakes and weren't intentional! Mistakes are made in about every post and these were nickel dime at best. So, you failed to point out that it said RECOUNT. You are certainly bright enough to understand the term vote should have said count or recount. Your post should have said, "I'm sure this is what you are saying, is that correct?"

    You can call it rats milk if you want but the line describing the survey is taken from the survey. Again, no intentional misleading or I wouldn't have put the link on there. Damn, maybe I should have been a Democrat treading around what is obvious.

    Now to Gregoire, she is the one that stood in front of all the TV cameras and proclaimed several times, the Washington residence do not want any further counts, nor do they want it talked about anymore. Case closed! Immediately a survey came out saying exactly the opposite of what she claimed as facts. And to complicate and confuse things further, our media said there would be a 4th count several times. As you know, our media here is Left leaning so if they can get it wrong then my minuscule mistake of vote, count or recount is meaningless, thank you very much.

    You've done what almost all Left Wingers do, you've pointed out something and avoided the Left Wingers in Ohio. Or even Kerry rambling on about maybe this and maybe that concerning Ohio. The Left Wingers there have proven what their reaction would be in Washington if this had been reversed. There wouldn't be a lawyer left in the rest of the United States, they'd all be parked in Seattle and Olympia. It would be just like when the Gored team emptied out Washington D.C. and New York City for all their stuff in Florida in 2000.

    I believe Rossi has shown more restraint than I think most of his fans wanted. When you're in a den full of wolves, you better act like one or look like one because they'll eat you otherwise and that may have happened to him. Maybe he heard a Patty Murray speech or something because that confuses all of us. But, since the Clinton's put her in a lock box we don't know what she is up to.

    Again, as you well know or at least I hope you know, Rossi wasn't trying to overturn the vote in a way so he would directly replace Gregoire. He wanted another vote for the office. His legal team then had to let go of certain things I expect they had originally pointed out about illegal votes. I have no idea of the advantage of doing it one way or another. See, I am humble.

    Seattle is not a large town but they like to play large town politics. The Democrat party bought and paid for King County with the exception of some small areas. Thank God for our former sheriff! So, when people start talking about splitting the state into two parts and some actually would like to do this it is time to pay attention. I would think the Democrats would want to clean this mess up immediately because their main media promoters are taking a beating. Even the New York Times is doing a staff and employee cut so things aren't going well out there for the Left. Danny Rather is gone and still goofy as ever and more to follow him out the door. But, please don't go away or change your stripes.... we need reminders....

  • (Show?)

    Walter, I was already up late writing for myself; rebutting your misstatements took little additional time. That was quite a long piece yourself, considering it aceded to all of my points.

    You have no idea what position I took on Ohio, so I reject your speculation over what could have, might have happened. When it became clear that there was no provable evidence of fraud despite provable evidence of official misconduct and ballot irregularities, all but the most partisan quit pushing on Ohio. And when the formal objection was raised without useful material to stand behind, I rejected the tactic.

    The one point you conspicuously avoided, I see, was that trying to refer back to unrelated partisan activities in other states is an extraordinarily weak argument. We're talking about Washington now, and the WSRP has behaved utterly shamefully, and wasted millions on a case they knew they could not win, simply for political PR gain. Their actions have been disgraceful, and a continuation of destructive personal politics--against non-politicians in many cases, which is indefensible. And let's not forget Rossi's lies: he claimed he would not take the office of Governor if given to him, then he decided that he WOULD, but would only stay in office to make sure a legally and logistically impossible revote would occur. Then his spokesperson changed it back to the original account.

    You must never have been to Seattle. It's a large town, all right. In 2000 it was the 14th largest metro area in the country. ??

  • Walter (unverified)
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    I see our Left Winger slept in...

    Sorry partner, Seattle (THE CITY) has a little over 500,000 people. On a non tourist season weekend you can drive through the downtown area in about 10 minutes via first ave. It is a pimple as far as big cities go. Beautiful but small which is great.

    You're falling apart there torridjoe. First of all I think you are confusing me with someone that really cares what you think. I blundered into this link through Google and since I WORK in downtown Seattle I know what it is and the article interested me. So, you can go on your merry way and do your Left Wing things even though extinction is just around the corner for the majority of your clan. I want you to keeping on flailing around along with the Deaniacs and maybe you'll get lucky tomorrow with the ruling in Washington State. God are you people transparent but you know it won't be over regardless of the June 6th outcome. So, you can get some more miles out of your jabberings........

    I'm now leaving you to continue on as a reminder of an era gone by the wayside.... bye now

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    for someone so disinterested, you keep checking back.

    I imagine the question of whose the era has gone by the wayside, would best be answered by noting which party controls nearly the entire apparatus of government in Washington. We'll see the strength of the independent judiciary--even in Wenatchee--tomorrow as well.

    Seattle has essentially the same number of people as DC or Boston. I'm not sure what the point is there.

  • Tenskwatawa (unverified)
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    I, too, liked your post, Anne. The good news (in missing the busy part of the thread while being busy elsewhere) is that all the trolls have spent their points of disruption and I can quickly summarize and flick them away. While it is going on, a person can't know what direction the jerks are going to squirt and time is wasted watching out for them. -- My own comment is that the Wash. court demeans itself to even hear the case. Rossi Republicans are somewhere between judicial contempt and election-fraud criminals. Clearly the electronic machines were illegally rigged and the only cause for Rossy to be before a judge is as a defendant facing those charges. One simple dot (at votersunite.org) is already cited in this thread, (proven evidence where "vote switching and machines freezing up occurred ...higher Republican [suspect] percentages were reported"), and the more dots one connects, the more detailed the finger of blame points at actionable Republican vote fraud. Before I read that website I already knew Wash.GOPers were frauds and liars, by this logic: 1) they complained too much, screaming their cheating should have worked and demanding to know why it didn't; 2) they retained Liars Larson's kiss of death for their Rossy project, with excessive (desperate!) pre-election free air-time and kid-gloved image grooming, and post-election phony indignation that faked with blowing hot air finding fire in cold counted ashes; and 3) a fact that Liars quoted in order to distort, namely, citing a location 'where Kerry got 1300 more votes than Gregoire,' he said meant even Dem voters disliked Governor Gregoire, (read that again, Rossy Repugnants, she's Governor Gregoire), when the sounder interpretation, after 1) and 2) is that it meant the premeditated vote fraud strategy in Washington was to apply it below the radar down-ticket, so cede the Kerry vote since it was so lopsided but defraud the gubernatorial vote to rig it for Rossy. By the time I got to http://www.votersunite.org, their fraud evidence in Washington was not news to me, it was confirmation.

    So: dispossessed -- claiming others "would never, never stop screaming..., you would all scream," and Walter -- knowing "(he) would expect ..., if (he) was a Left Winger ..., it is time to pay attention;" y'all got it exactly backwards. When, instead of reality, you squirt off into if's and would's and were-it-not-so's is the red-flag sure-sign to stop paying attention to you.

    Anne -- you've "seen elections workers at work and (you) honestly believe that the vast majority ... do their job (truly)," and I agree, but your and my honesty and decency are taken advantage of and exploited by the criminal frauds who hide their lies wrapped in a fictitious cloak that they are among 'the vast majority,' and they prey on our benefits of the doubt. When we lose our naivete, and knowledgeably start with the premise that Republican equals criminal so much of the time, then the deceits and tangents don't fool so many people so long, and abnormal vote counts and events are not mysteries. (For example, we invaded Iraq for WMDs and there were none; big mystery; where are the WMDs? "Saddam hid them." "He smuggled them away." "He fooled or bribed the inspectors." "Inspectors were incompetent." Whatever, whatever, the telltale sign is too many answers to a mystery. Start over, and presume Republicans are lying first, then look at invading Iraq. And it never could have happened. And hundreds of thousands of people could still be alive.)

    In justice, benefit of the doubt is a good thing. But in GOP politics, replace it with belittlement of them damned.

    A couple more links and I'll stop. Re: torridjoe's comment Ohio had "no provable evidence of fraud," and Walter's in "Ohio there was 100,00+ vote difference" -- actually, in a single Ohio county there were (and are) boxes of over 90,000 absentee ballots (which is as physical as evidence gets) which have never been counted. See this and this.

    And re: Walter's discourses on Seattle, and Russell Sadler's earlier post, (The Once and Future Land of Promise), mentioning wobblies, it is important to gain a context of history in these parts. That link brings you to this passage:

    The Roots of the Fellowship

    The roots of the Fellowship go back to the 1930s and a Norwegian immigrant and Methodist minister named Abraham Vereide. According to Fellowship archives maintained at the Billy Graham Center at Wheaton College in Illinois, Vereide, who immigrated from Norway in 1905, began an outreach ministry in Seattle in April 1935. But his religious outreach involved nothing more than pushing for an anti-Communist, anti-union, anti-Socialist, and pro-Nazi German political agenda. A loose organization and secrecy were paramount for Vereide. Fellowship archives state that Vereide wanted his movement to “carry out its objective through personal, trusting, informal, unpublicized contact between people.” Vereide’s establishment of his Prayer Breakfast Movement for anti-Socialist and anti-International Workers of the World (IWW or “Wobblies”) Seattle businessmen in 1935 coincided with the establishment of another pro-Nazi German organization in the United States, the German-American Bund. Vereide saw his prayer movement replacing labor unions.

    Such false points started 70 years ago, designed to defame, are today central to the crippled thinking of some (self-selecting) 'Seattle businessmen' and some longstanding locals on the subject of 'wobblies' and labor unions in general. Thinking so old and bent it possibly cannot straighten up.

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  • Tenskwatawa (unverified)
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    I forgot to mention ... Linking from Buzzflash.com (The Gropinator is Ensnared in Ohio GOP/Bush Fundraising 'Coingate' 6/5 ), and into the continuing investigative journalism of the Toledo (OH) Blade, which is 'following the money,' big time, of the millions of dollars of stolen rare coins seemingly turned into cash contributions to criminal Republican 2004 campaigns, we discover in the latest installment that Oregon's southern neighbor's GrOPe governor's moving and shaking with stolen money is as illegally tainted as the northern neighbor's.

    Article published Saturday, June 4, 2005 COLUMBUS - California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger terminated any efforts to get him to return $10,000 that Toledo-area coin dealer Tom Noe contributed to his campaign.

    On Thursday, President Bush joined a steadily growing band of Republicans opting to rid their campaign accounts of Mr. Noe's money, but the Republican governor of California is not planning to return the campaign cash he received from Mr. Noe, who is facing a flurry of state and federal investigations.

    And, again, any Washington GOP political fraud mystery disappears if we start from the premise that GOPers are criminals ... so of course they are in court, (pat Rossy down for coins in his pockets) ... so of course truthful Justice is going to be ruling against them later today.

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