Monday, July 31, 2006

Hard Rain Journal 7-30-06: Struggle for Fair Elections, North & South of the Rio Grande

Hard Rain Journal 7-30-06: Struggle for Fair Elections, North & South of the Rio Grande

By Richard Power

Three important updates on the struggle for fair elections in both the US and Mexico.

In Mexico City, Lopez Obrador and his followers have taken their struggle for fair elections to the next level (What would the USA look like today if Gore had refused to go away in 2000, or Kerry had fought in 2004?):

Thousands of protesters caused commuter chaos by closing off Mexico City's business district to traffic on Monday, pressing the main leftist candidate's demand for a vote recount in a presidential election he says was stolen from him. Launching a campaign of civil disobedience that raises the stakes in Mexico's political crisis, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador's supporters seized control of the capital's imposing Zocalo square on Sunday night as well as a six-mile (10-km) stretch of the elegant Reforma boulevard. They set up tents and huge tarpaulin covers in the middle of the wide, tree-lined avenue, cutting off all commuter traffic on Monday morning. The avenue is home to Mexico's stock market, many luxury hotels, government offices, headquarters of major corporations and the U.S. embassy. The several thousand demonstrators did not close down buildings so workers were allowed into their offices, but the occupation caused long delays for many commuters. ...The seven judges have to decide whether to reopen some or all of the ballot boxes by Aug. 31. That means Lopez Obrador's occupation of the capital could last for weeks. Kieran Murray, Mexico leftists choke capital in vote protest, Reuters, 7-31-06

And in San Diego, a suit was filed today in the suspect special election for the CA-50 seat:

Today, famed election attorney Paul Lehto filed an election contest lawsuit in San Diego County Superior Court demanding a count of all paper ballots in the Busby/Bilbray special election to replace convicted Republican Congressman Duke Cunningham. On the face of the pleading, Lehto, on behalf of voters of CA-50, asserts that they are entitled to a 100% ballot count at a reasonable cost because of massive security violations of federal and state law by election officials....County Registrar Mikel Haas sent the Diebold voting machines on "sleepovers" in the unsecured homes and cars of volunteer poll workers for weeks prior to the election in violation of federal and state law. When voter Barbara Gail Jacobsen filed for a recount, Haas set an exorbitant price of $150,000 but refused to provide the documents necessary for that, a network of scores of election reform organizations demanding honest and accountable elections, is handling the fundraising for this CA-50 legal challenge and donations are being accepted on its website, ELECTION CONTEST FILED DEMANDING ACCOUNTABILITY, DECERTIFICATION AND PAPER BALLOT COUNT OF BUSBY/BILBRAY ELECTION IN CA-50, Brad Blog, 7-30-06

Meanwhile, looming behind these dramatic developments in Mexico City and San Diego, a doomsday Rovian scandal may be coming to a boil in Beltwayistan, as US Justice Department investigators on the trail of corruption continue to connect the dots to election fraud:

Justice Department investigators have begun a review of Senate Rules and Administration Committee records relating to negotiations over the Help America Vote Act, involving then-Chairman Chris Dodd (D-Conn.) and former House Administration Chairman Bob Ney (R-Ohio), as they wrap up their investigation into Ney's connections to disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff, Senate sources said Tuesday. Senate aides familiar with the review said Justice officials indicated the inquiry was not focused on Dodd, who now serves as the committee's ranking member, and the type of information investigators were seeking - while not specific enough to indicate they were looking for a smoking gun - appear to point directly at Ney....Abramoff, who pleaded guilty to bribery charges late last year, had pushed Ney to include provisions in the act that would have given federal tribal recognition to the Tigua Tribe and to allow it to reopen a casino in Texas. Abramoff represented the Tiguas. Although e-mails that have surfaced as part of the Abramoff scandal revealed the disgraced lobbyist bragged that he was close to Dodd and Ney, the provision did not make it into HAVA. Feds Investigating Ney, Abramoff, HAVA Negotiations! Case Links Ney and Abramoff, a Tribe, a Casino, Millions of Dollars and a Transparent Lie!, Brad Blog, 7-26-06

I will continue to monitor these important stories, and report on major developments. To follow them more closely, go to Greg Palast, Mark Crispin Miller's Notes from the Underground, and Brad Blog


Hard Rain Journal 7-22-06 Weekend Edition: Updates on US Election Fraud and the Dan Rather Watch

Hard Rain Journal 7-18-06: Update on Disputed Mexican Presidential Election

GS(3) Thunderbolt 7-10-06: Will the Disputed Mexican Election Lead to Insurrection? Lessons for Mexico from the US, and Lessons for the US from Mexico

GS(3) Thunderbolt 7-7-06: Mexican Presidential Election Still in Doubt

GS(3) Thunderbolt 7-3-06: Greg Palast on the Case in the Mexican Presidential Election

Hard Rain Journal 6-28-06: NYU Law School's Brennan Center Reports E-Voting Software Attacks are a Real Danger

SPECIAL EDITION: “Until this issue is burning on the mind of every citizen” -- Words of Power Interviews Mark Crispin Miller

Words of Power #22: Election Fraud As Information Warfare, and a National Security Issue

Richard Power is the founder of GS(3) Intelligence and His work focuses on the inter-related issues of security, sustainability and spirit, and how to overcome the challenges of terrorism, cyber crime, global warming, health emergencies, natural disasters, etc. You can reach him via e-mail: For more information, go to

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