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Old 08-16-2004, 10:15 PM
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Florida Cops Use Racist Police State Tactics to Intimidate Black Voters

In the 2000 election, Republican racists used an illegal scheme to strike 50,000 black people from voter roles in Florida, an organized crime that rigged the 2000 elections, which was never investigated by the Jeb Bush state governement or by the Bush Administration's Ashcroft-led Civil Rights Division. In addition, using the appartus of the state, on election day Nov 2, 2000, Florida State Police, directed by Republican racial fascists, set up road blocks on the way to polling places in black neighborhoods as another component of their blatant criminal attempt to suppress black votes in Florida. Since they are not going to get away with those two particular crimes this time:

http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9907E7DD133DF93BA15754C0A9629C8B63&fta=y

these state-employed anti-voting rights bigots are now resorting to old fashion Gestapo police state tactics in another attempt to rig the US presidential election. If you post on other forums, please cut and paste this post, as complaining to the Republican controlled authorities in Florida or in the Federal government will do no good, as they are co-conspirators in this attempt to disenfranchise blacks in Florida from voting. The only thing that will make a difference is for the people to make it known their disgust at this new chapter in the bitter history of Jeb Bush's war on black voters in his state, a key component of the installation of our only appointed president, George Bush.


Suppress the Vote?
By BOB HERBERT
NY Times


The big story out of Florida over the weekend was the tragic devastation caused by Hurricane Charley. But there's another story from Florida that deserves our attention.

State police officers have gone into the homes of elderly black voters in Orlando and interrogated them as part of an odd "investigation" that has frightened many voters, intimidated elderly volunteers and thrown a chill over efforts to get out the black vote in November.

The officers, from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, which reports to Gov. Jeb Bush, say they are investigating allegations of voter fraud that came up during the Orlando mayoral election in March.

Officials refused to discuss details of the investigation, other than to say that absentee ballots are involved. They said they had no idea when the investigation might end, and acknowledged that it may continue right through the presidential election.

"We did a preliminary inquiry into those allegations and then we concluded that there was enough evidence to follow through with a full criminal investigation," said Geo Morales, a spokesman for the Department of Law Enforcement.

The state police officers, armed and in plain clothes, have questioned dozens of voters in their homes. Some of those questioned have been volunteers in get-out-the-vote campaigns.

I asked Mr. Morales in a telephone conversation to tell me what criminal activity had taken place.

"I can't talk about that," he said.

I asked if all the people interrogated were black.

"Well, mainly it was a black neighborhood we were looking at - yes,'' he said.

He also said, "Most of them were elderly."

When I asked why, he said, "That's just the people we selected out of a random sample to interview."

Back in the bad old days, some decades ago, when Southern whites used every imaginable form of chicanery to prevent blacks from voting, blacks often fought back by creating voters leagues, which were organizations that helped to register, educate and encourage black voters. It became a tradition that continues in many places, including Florida, today.

Not surprisingly, many of the elderly black voters who found themselves face to face with state police officers in Orlando are members of the Orlando League of Voters, which has been very successful in mobilizing the city's black vote.

The president of the Orlando League of Voters is Ezzie Thomas, who is 73 years old. With his demonstrated ability to deliver the black vote in Orlando, Mr. Thomas is a tempting target for supporters of George W. Bush in a state in which the black vote may well spell the difference between victory and defeat.

The vile smell of voter suppression is all over this so-called investigation by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.

Joseph Egan, an Orlando lawyer who represents Mr. Thomas, said: "The Voters League has workers who go into the community to do voter registration, drive people to the polls and help with absentee ballots. They are elderly women mostly. They get paid like $100 for four or five months' work, just to offset things like the cost of their gas. They see this political activity as an important contribution to their community. Some of the people in the community had never cast a ballot until the league came to their door and encouraged them to vote."

Now, said Mr. Egan, the fear generated by state police officers going into people's homes as part of an ongoing criminal investigation related to voting is threatening to undo much of the good work of the league. He said, "One woman asked me, 'Am I going to go to jail now because I voted by absentee ballot?' "

According to Mr. Egan, "People who have voted by absentee ballot for years are refusing to allow campaign workers to come to their homes. And volunteers who have participated for years in assisting people, particularly the elderly or handicapped, are scared and don't want to risk a criminal investigation."

Florida is a state that's very much in play in the presidential election, with some polls showing John Kerry in the lead. A heavy-handed state police investigation that throws a blanket of fear over thousands of black voters can only help President Bush.

The long and ugly tradition of suppressing the black vote is alive and thriving in the Sunshine State.


Last edited by KirkVining; 08-16-2004 at 10:27 PM.
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Old 08-16-2004, 10:24 PM
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Kirk, I have been reading your posts for quite a while and have decided you really have a problem. You evidentally have suffered some serious discrimination at the hands of the republicans/ racists/ bigots/ conservatives. I'll bet that you really have some redeeming qualities in some respects, but you really need to lighten up a bit. There is help out there .
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Old 08-16-2004, 10:25 PM
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Its sad to see someone become so bankrupt of anything to contribute that they have to resort to a continual stream of juvenile horse$hit..
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Old 08-16-2004, 10:35 PM
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It's all part of the Karl Rove, Haliburton, insert "neo-con boogey man of the day" here conspiracy
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Old 08-16-2004, 10:36 PM
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I love it when there's a Republican president, the left wing conspiracy theory
wackjobs are so much more entertaining than right wing conspiracy theory
wackjobs
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Old 08-16-2004, 10:47 PM
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I am sure elderly black voters are a major source of crime. Perhaps if the Florida State Police, who report directly to Jeb Bush, would tell us all exactly what they were investigating. Then we could make some reasonable attempt to answer your question. It is difficult to answer otherwise, espeically as the police describe the people they are harrassing as a "random sample".
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Old 08-16-2004, 10:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Bell
I love it when there's a Republican president, the left wing conspiracy theory
wackjobs are so much more entertaining than right wing conspiracy theory
wackjobs
Yes of course, the New York Times is reknown for printing wild conspiracy theories, and it is amazing that the ACLU has found time to sue the State of Florida over the 2000 election rigging, given all the time they spend in Roswell.
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Old 08-17-2004, 12:06 AM
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More accusations of victimization of black voters in Florida


THE STENCH OF SPOILED BALLOTS
Orlando Weekly

By Greg Palast



In the 2000 presidential election, 1.9 million Americans cast ballots that no one counted. "Spoiled votes" is the technical term. The pile of ballots left to rot has a distinctly dark hue: About 1 million of them half of the rejected ballots were cast by African-Americans although black voters make up only 12 percent of the electorate.

This year, it could get worse.

These ugly racial statistics are hidden away in the mathematical thickets of the appendices to official reports coming out of the investigation of ballot-box monkey business in Florida from the last go-'round.

How do you spoil 2 million ballots? Not by leaving them out of the fridge too long. A stray mark, a jammed machine, a punch card punched twice will do it. It's easy to lose your vote, especially when some politicians want your vote lost.

While investigating the 2000 ballot count in Florida for BBC Television, I saw firsthand how the spoilage game was played with black voters the predetermined losers.

Florida's Gadsden County has the highest percentage of black voters in the state and the highest spoilage rate. One in 8 votes cast there in 2000 was never counted. Many voters wrote in "Al Gore." Optical reading machines rejected these because "Al" is a "stray mark."


By contrast, in neighboring Tallahassee, the capital, vote spoilage was nearly zip; every vote counted. The difference? In Tallahassee's white-majority county, voters placed their ballots directly into optical scanners. If they added a stray mark, they received another ballot with instructions to correct it.

In other words, in the white county, make a mistake and get another ballot; in the black county, make a mistake, your ballot is tossed.

The U.S. Civil Rights Commission looked into the smelly pile of spoiled ballots and concluded that, of the 179,855 ballots invalidated by Florida officials, 53 percent were cast by black voters. In Florida, a black citizen was 10 times as likely to have a vote rejected as a white voter.

But let's not get smug about Florida's Jim Crow spoilage rate. Civil Rights Commissioner Christopher Edley, recently appointed dean of Boalt Hall School of Law at UC Berkeley, took the Florida study nationwide. His team discovered the uncomfortable fact that Florida is typical of the nation.

Philip Klinkner, the statistician working on the Edley investigations, concluded, "It appears that about half of all ballots spoiled in the U.S.A. about 1 million votes were cast by nonwhite voters."

This "no count," as the Civil Rights Commission calls it, is no accident. In Florida, for example, I discovered that technicians had warned Gov. Jeb Bush's office well in advance of November 2000 of the racial bend in the vote-count procedures.

Herein lies the problem. An apartheid vote-counting system is far from politically neutral. Given that more than 90 percent of the black electorate votes Democratic, had all the "spoiled" votes been tallied, Gore would have taken Florida in a walk, not to mention fattening his popular vote total nationwide. It's not surprising that the First Brother's team, informed of impending rejection of black ballots, looked away and whistled.

The ballot-box blackout is not the monopoly of one party. Cook County, Ill., has one of the nation's worst spoilage rates. That's not surprising. Boss Daley's Democratic machine, now his son's, survives by systematic disenfranchisement of Chicago's black vote.

How to fix it? Let's shed the convenient excuses for vote spoilage, such as a lack of voter education. One television network stated as fact that Florida's black voters, newly registered and lacking education, had difficulty with their ballots. In other words, blacks are too dumb to vote.

This convenient racist excuse is wrong. After that disaster in Gadsden County, public outcry forced the government to change the county's procedures to match that of white counties. The result: near zero spoilage in the 2002 election. Ballot design, machines and procedure, says statistician Klinkner, control spoilage.

In other words, the vote counters are to blame. Politicians who choose the type of ballot and the method of counting have fine-tuned the spoilage rate to their liking. It is about to get worse. The ill-named "Help America Vote Act," signed by President Bush in 2002, is pushing computerization of the ballot box.

California decertified some of Diebold Corp.'s digital ballot boxes in response to fears that hackers could pick our next president. But the known danger of black-box voting is that computers, even when secure, are vulnerable to low-tech spoilage games: polls opening late, locked-in votes, votes lost in the ether.

And once again, the history of computer-voting glitches has a decidedly racial bias. Florida's Broward County grandly shifted to touch-screen voting in 2002. In white precincts, all seemed to go well. In black precincts, hundreds of black voters showed up at polls with machines down and votes that disappeared.

Going digital won't fix the problem. Canada and Sweden vote on paper ballots with little spoilage and without suspicious counts.

In America, a simple fix based on paper balloting is resisted because, unfortunately, too many politicians who understand the racial bias in the vote-spoilage game are its beneficiaries, with little incentive to find those missing 1 million black voters' ballots.
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Old 08-17-2004, 01:46 AM
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I'm on my way to the store to buy a new extra-large roll of tin foil.

I need a MUCH bigger hat for this.

Mike
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Old 08-17-2004, 02:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mikemover
I'm on my way to the store to buy a new extra-large roll of tin foil.

I need a MUCH bigger hat for this.

Mike
Hey Mike, what exactly is the tinfoil a remedy for? It seems to be a cure-all here. Jim
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Old 08-17-2004, 03:43 AM
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The tinfoil is for when you don't have anything substantive to say about an issue. Its like the "nah nah nah nah nah" you heard on the playground from the other 4 year olds.
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Old 08-17-2004, 09:30 AM
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Is this story an urban myth? Did this come out of the supermarket newspaper next to the story about the secret alien baseball player the Yankees signed?

I've never seen such bad stories written up. Can they provide some proof. Give some examples? How were they intimidated? What was said? Who were they? Let's interview some of the victims...

Why do you assume that because the victim was black, they were going to vote democrat?
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Old 08-17-2004, 12:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mplafleur
Is this story an urban myth? Did this come out of the supermarket newspaper next to the story about the secret alien baseball player the Yankees signed?

I've never seen such bad stories written up. Can they provide some proof. Give some examples? How were they intimidated? What was said? Who were they? Let's interview some of the victims...

Why do you assume that because the victim was black, they were going to vote democrat?

The New York Times is noted for printing urban legends. They have a huge photo of an alien marrying Osama Bin Laden on the front page this morning.

Of course, black people also vote 97% Republican. I forgot that too.
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Old 08-17-2004, 12:38 PM
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Officials Accused Of Intimidating Black Voters In Orlando Probe
By MIKE BRANOM
The Associated Press

ORLANDO - A voter rights group is accusing state investigators of intimidating elderly black voters while looking into possible ballot fraud in the disputed Orlando mayoral race.

The Voter Protection Coalition said Florida Department of Law Enforcement agents, while contacting people whose absentee ballots are being questioned, revealed their side arms, spokeswoman Alma Gonzalez said Friday.

``You can't do that to old black people who fought hard for the right to vote and, in fact, have seen law enforcement utilized in this kind of intimidating and harassing way through the civil rights movement,'' Gonzalez said.

The coalition is asking the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights to conduct a formal investigation, Gonzalez said.
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Old 08-17-2004, 12:51 PM
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Published on Wednesday, December 6, 2000 in the Boston Globe
Choking the Florida Black Vote
by Derrick Z. Jackson

AS THE US SUPREME COURT acts as tourniquet to stop the flow of democracy and as a crusty circuit court judge slams into pulp the fingers that would actually count the ballots, evidence continues to emerge that George W. Bush will become president with voter blood left on the floor.

Leon County Circuit Court Judge N. Saunders Sauls has ruled against manual recounts. The Supreme Court has vacated the Florida Supreme Court's extension of manual recounts. On the strictest or most cowardly notions of ''no credible statistical evidence,'' the courts are blessing the ramrodding of this election by Florida Secretary of State Katherine Harris.


The blessings come despite even more evidence in the past week that black votes are being left on the floor.


The Washington Post found that heavily Democratic and African-American precincts in Florida lost far more votes than other areas. In Duval County, while one in 14 ballots were thrown out in heavily white precincts, one in five ballots were disqualified in heavily black precincts.


In some black precincts in Jacksonville, one out of every three ballots were thrown out.


In Miami-Dade County, voters in heavily African-American precincts were three times more likely to have not recorded a vote for president than in precincts where black voters made up less than 30 percent of the population. The rejection rates were easily enough to have affected the outcome of the election.


Patronizing, if not racist, Republican strategists imply that black voters displayed a low IQ in the voting booth. ''The NAACP did a tremendous job of turnout in Florida,'' a Republican strategist told the Post. ''But in a way, they overachieved and got people out who couldn't follow instructions.''


The Republicans will not talk about how Florida suspiciously underachieved on Election Day. Black voters were far more likely than white voters to receive bad voting equipment.


The Post and The New York Times have both reported within the last week that black voters were more likely to have used punch-card ballots than white voters, while white voters had more access to voting on cards that went under optical scanners.


The Post found that about 34 percent of white Florida voters live in counties where the more modern equipment could immediately alert poll workers to ballot errors which could give those voters a second chance, compared to only 26 percent of African-American voters. The Post found that the overall rate at which voters cast ballots but did not vote for president was four times higher in punch-card counties - where there is no chance for an instant check - than in optical-scanner counties.


The Times also found that computer laptops that could have instantly cleared up voter registration problems at the polls were not distributed to heavily black precincts in Miami-Dade or the Tampa area. That left poll workers at the mercy of busy signals from county election headquarters. One poll worker at a heavily black precinct in Fort Lauderdale told the Times she turned away 100 people who said they were registered but whose names did not appear on voter lists.


''This was the first year we didn't get through,'' said the poll worker, Elease Williams, 72, who has been a clerk for more than two decades. ''I was so disgusted.''


The Times found that even though Gore won Miami-Dade, Bush won the precincts that were equipped with laptops. In Hillsborough County, which Bush won overall by 51-47 percent, his victory was 55-45 percent in precincts with computers.


In addition, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel last week found that one-third of 22,807 disqualified votes in Broward, Miami-Dade, and Palm Beach counties came from from heavily African-American precincts. The Sun-Sentinel's analysis concluded that had those votes been counted, nearly 18,000 of those votes would likely have gone to Gore. Voters in heavily black areas of Palm Beach and Broward had their votes rejected at a rate more than twice as high as the rest of the counties.


It is an ever-diminishing prospect whether any of this can change this election. But the more evidence that comes out, the more stolen and stained would be a Bush presidency. Contrary to Sauls, there always was enough credible evidence to force a more patient, thoughtful, and thorough counting of the ballots.


The courts have spoken. The fingers of democracy are black and blue. At this moment, the American flag, flying behind the candidates as they speak, is less a symbol of freedom than a tourniquet.

Copyright 2000 Globe Newspaper Company

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