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Is the California election crooked?(11 posts)

Is the California election crooked?dr hoo
Oct 7, 2003 11:33 AM
I just heard from a friend in CA. She has lived in the same house for decades. She has been voting since her teens. She received her registration materials in the mail.

She went to the polls and was told she was not registered.

She was given a "provisional" ballot, which will only be counted if her registration is confirmed. HALF the people in line (according to her) were in the same boat and had provisional ballots.

She is angry. She should be.

I don't think it is necessarily crooked, but it is certainly messed up.

Isolated case in her precinct, or widespread screw-up, or something more intentional?
handled at country levelDougSloan
Oct 7, 2003 11:43 AM
Elections are largely controlled and run at the county level. I don't perceive how any "vast right wing conspiracy" (or any other kind of conspiracy) could intervene.

The information for my wife and me was perfectly fine, and I've not heard of any other problems in Fresno County.

Her report is a minute anecdotal account. It may not reflect anything more than a few people having problems. I'm certain that in every election, given that there are maybe 15 million or so registered voters in California, there will be some problems.

sorry, *county* nmDougSloan
Oct 7, 2003 11:44 AM
Oct 7, 2003 11:43 AM
The question is, who would screw it up and why?

I would guess that this has something to do with the consolidation of polling places - but that's just a guess. I'm not a big believer in grand voting conspiricies for two reasons:
(1) they'd be hard to pull off without being caught because too many people would have to be in the loop;

(2) it would be hard to effect enough votes to skew the results in a normal election (noted that Florida in 2000 was not normal). To change an electoral outcome, you're talking about needing to effect tens of thousands of votes - and that wouldn't be easy to do without being caught.
plus, for a conspiracy to workDougSloan
Oct 7, 2003 11:46 AM
The scheme would need to work only against your opponents. Could someone "unregister" only Democrats? Possible, but as you say, that would make it even more obvious.

Ah, error during consolidation.dr hoo
Oct 7, 2003 1:10 PM
That would make sense. Still messed up, but sensible. A typo during merging, or a weird character in the data could have unexpected consequences. One would hope these things would be triple checked.

If the "errors" were made in highly democratic or republican districts, then it could sway things in a close race. I wonder how many people who showed up and were told they were not registered turned right around and left?

Yeah, inflamatory post title, I know. I was really just wondering if there were widespread problems in the process.
Same thing happened to me last go aroundNo_sprint
Oct 7, 2003 12:02 PM
However, I tend to move a lot. Regardless, I definitely figured it was some vast whacko left wing conspiracy.
maybe your friend didn't read the instructionsmohair_chair
Oct 7, 2003 12:07 PM
Maybe they changed the polling place for your friend and lots of others near her, but they all blindly went to the same location they've been going to for years.

Everything seemed to go just fine at my polling place.

My question is why would your friend receive registration materials in the mail if she was already registered???
We get registration material in the mailtorquer
Oct 7, 2003 12:47 PM
all the time. (This is New York State, granted, where incumbents may as well be preserved in amber.)
The cards list your address and polling location, and say you only need to respond if anything has changed.
But the larger question: Can we be sure any election is honest?Cory
Oct 7, 2003 2:56 PM
My brother-in-law at Microsoft and my cousin in the computer security business say any computer system can be hacked if you want to spend the time and money. There are all kinds of wildly partisan people out there (I figure they're all conservatives, your opinion may differ) who'd fiddle the results for what they honestly perceive to be the good of the country, plus any number of others who'd do it for money. If you're spending $100 million on a campaign, what's another $10 million to your computer guy? Throw in a court situation similar to that we saw in 2000, and how can we every be sure any election ISN'T crooked in one way or another?
and we owe it all to Al Gore for inventing the internet ;-) nmDougSloan
Oct 7, 2003 2:59 PM