Thursday, July 01, 2004

Go Ratfuck Yourself 

E-voting is enough to worry about, but -- as the denizens of Chicago can tell you at length -- there are plenty of low-tech ways to game an election as well. Josh Marshall has all the background on GOP dirty-trickster Allen Raymond, who yesterday pleaded guilty to sabotaging Democratic get-out-the-vote efforts in New Hampshire in 2002. Raymond's operation jammed the phone lines of the Demoratic party and the Manchester Firefighters' Union; both groups were offering voters free transportation to the polls. Republican John Sununu won the 2002 Senate race in a squeaker over outgoing governor Jeanne Shaheen.

In a marginally-related development, Atrios reports that a Florida judge has ordered the board of elections to cough up the list of almost 50,000 potential felons it hopes to purge from the voter rolls this fall. CNN and other news organizations had sued for a copy of the list, but were blocked by a 2001 statute passed by the Republican-controlled legislature; under that law,
News organizations were allowed to inspect the list, but not make copies of it or take notes from it.

"The right to inspect without the right to copy is an empty right indeed," said Leon County Circuit Judge Nikki Clark, in her six-page order.
Voting-rights groups and the ACLU plan to scrutinize the list closely in hopes of preventing a reprise of the 2000 debacle that allowed George Bush to take office.

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