should america trust the results of the election?

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    Should America Trust the Results of the Election?
    Commentary by Shane Cory
    November 5, 2004

    Days after the election, 55 million Americans are still scratching their heads and wondering how it is that George W. Bush won reelection. Garnering 8 million more votes than he earned in 2000, many are raising eyebrows as to how this was accomplished.

    While no one wants to cry "fraud" and lead a tinfoil hat brigade, a buzz is growing on the Internet that whispers to the amazed and confused that they should not close the books on this election just yet.

    Members of the discussion forum, dug in and have already found a clear error in the vote count within Ohio. In one voting precinct in Gahanna, Ohio, 4,258 voters supposedly cast an electronic ballot for George Bush while only 260 voted for John Kerry. While it is vaguely possible that over 94% of voters in the precinct supported George W. Bush, it is a hard number to believe considering that only 638 voters were counted at the polling center.

    The Columbus Dispatch has investigated the matter and the director of the board of elections within the county admitted that Bush only received 365 votes. He stated that a "glitch" occurred in the electronic voting machine during the vote tally. This glitch could have given nearly 4,000 fake votes to George Bush if it had not discovered.

    The Gahanna incident is just one confirmed mistake and was discovered by activists on the Internet. It was a fairly easy "glitch" to detect given the large discrepancy between the head count at the polling station and the votes for Bush. Given this voting error one must ask, how many more glitches occurred that only involved tens or hundreds of votes?

    In Florida, exit polling data showed the opposite of the final results provided through the state. Even more surprising are the changes in votes per party that occurred on November 2nd. Counties using e-touch voting machines in Florida showed an average vote gain of 29% for Republicans and a 23.8% increase for Democrats. However the counties that used optical scan vote machines showed drastic differences. Republicans gained by 128.45% in counties using optical scan voting machines while Democrats had a -21% loss (yes, that is negative 21%). Some districts in Florida showed gains over 400% while one, Liberty County, gained over 700% for Republicans.

    Many within the nation are left on the verge of outrage when faced with such evidence of possible fraud. Many are gearing up to investigate and determine what actually happened to the votes of millions of Americans or possibly the votes of many non-existent Americans.

    One organization that is investigating the matter is which is run by Bev Harris. Mrs. Harris has turned over evidence to authorities regarding vote fraud and has come to the conclusion that fraud did occur on November 2nd. However her group is uncertain as to the scope of the possible conspiracy. Unfortunately, Mrs. Harris has an uphill battle as no paper trail exists to verify the electronic voting data.

    Over the past few years, Republicans have fought to prevent any type of paper trail through electronic voting. Despite printable ATM type receipts being a reasonable fail-safe, Republicans and corporations such as Diebold fought hard and eventually won the battle against a verifiable voting system.

    Without question, the evidence presented thus far should raise suspicion among honest individuals. While maintaining a calm and reasonable demeanor, the results of the Novermber 2nd election should be fully investigated simply for the sake of the nation and our future confidence in the democratic process.

    Shane Cory is the editor of the Washington Dispatch.

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