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Thursday, December 23, 2004

Irreparable Harm 

Via diarist Shunster at Daily Kos: William Rivers Pitt reports that tomorrow, weather permitting, John Kerry will file papers in support of the Ohio recount -- specifically, "a request for expedited discovery regarding Triad Systems voting machines, as well as a motion for a preservation order to protect any and all discovery and preserve any evidence on this matter." Kerry representatives were hoping to file today, but snowstorms closed the courthouse:
In order to pass muster with a judge, the individual or group requesting an emergency order for such a recount must show both irreperable harm as well as a substantial chance for success on the merits. While Green and Libertarian representatives could theoretically be able to show irreparable harm, they could not establish a substantial chance for success on the merits, because no recount would deliver Ohio to either party.

Kerry's entry into this recount effort changes the math on this matter dramatically. He can likewise show irreparable harm, and unlike the Green and Libertarian candidates, he can also prove a substantial chance for success on the merits because he lost the Ohio vote by a statistical whisker.

It should be noted that Kerry's filing of these requests does not indicate his complete entry into the recount process, but does clearly indicate that he is moving decisively in that direction. His previous stance on the matter was based simply on his desire to defend the right to have a recount in the first place. The evidence of election tampering in Ohio, specifically surrounding Triad, has motivated him to actively join the fight. The Democratic Party is also quietly putting financial resources into the Ohio recount effort.
John Conyers and at least 13 other members of the House are prepared to contest the election when Congress reconvenes in January, but the Electoral Count Act of 1877 requires that at least one Senator come aboard. (Barbara Boxer of California reportedly mulling it over.)

ContesttheVote.org has already collected almost 20,000 signatures from voters urging their senators to join Conyers et al in contesting the vote. You can add your name to the list (or print out your own petition) by clicking here.

UPDATE: In his latest roundup of Ohio irregularities, Keith Olbermann notes that Conyers is "awaiting a staff report before deciding whether or not to formally challenge Ohio’s electoral votes a week from tomorrow." However, Rep. Maxine Waters is reportedly ready to rumble.

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