Audit 2012 - Defend The Vote
Here you will find all the documents you need for the 2012 Audit of elections in Illinois.
Contact us by phone 847-382-1100
Editor Note: Who verifies signatures on absentee ballots in Suburban Cook County under the stewardship of elected County Clerk David Orr? The truth is not pretty! Are you ready to read just how bad it is...?
Defend the Vote election observers spotted numerous and serious security flaws pertaining to absentee balloting in Suburban Cook County and in Chicago. These flaws leave the door wide open to voter fraud and must be remedied immediately. This article addresses one such flaw.
Who verifies signatures on absentee ballots in Suburban Cook County?
Editor Note: Breaking News: Suburban Cook County (about 1.4 million voters) allows staff working for County Clerk David Orr (D) and contractors from Sequoia (Dominion) unfettered access to absentee vote totals before Election Day.
In addition, both Cook County and Chicago violate Illinois law by counting absentee votes before 7pm on Election Day. We will be publishing a second article about this tomorrow.
Security Lapses with Sequoia (Dominion) Optech 400C ballot-counting machines
The Cook County Clerk’s Office does not follow established and required protocols for securely handling vote tallies and election results obtained from its Sequoia Optech 400C ballot-counting machines; Illinois election results are thus rendered questionable and vulnerable to organized fraud.
Screen shot of the 400C Computer Screen
Defend the Vote positioned observers in the Cook County Clerk’s Office prior to the November 6th, 2012 election to document breaches of security protocol that could allow opportunities to commit fraud or alter election results. Election observers detected endemic security breaches in the Clerk’s Office that included:
- Votes counted before election day and revealed to third parties
- Outside vendors printing and handling official tabulation reports
- Third parties manipulating files on the machines’ hard drives and dragging files onto portable thumb drives
- Copies of vote tallies left on the Sequoia machines that outside vendors can access at any time
- Tabulations placed onto thumb drives but never secured before leaving the room
- No election judges observed the tabulation process nor were present as the results were moved from the machines onto thumb drives; leaving the counting room unsealed and unsecured
- No checks and balances to ensure votes are not changed or tampered with during the counting process
One Defend the Vote election observer named “J.P.” provided a first-hand account of several specific security breaches typical of the Clerk’s Office. His report is as follows:
Editor Note: Aaron Del Mar, Cook County Republican Chairman, is authorizing this investigation of the nursing home vote in Cook County.
From: Sharon Meroni [mailto:
Sent: Wednesday, October 31, 2012 7:06 AM
To: Noah Praetz; Clem Balanoff; 'David Orr; Jan Kralovec
Subject: RE: UNLAWFUL? NURSING HOME - Legal ALERT
Good Morning All;
This is the problem…
Noah Praetz has stated he cannot send me ANY lists of nursing home judges because he sent me wrong data before and I reacted by asking the question with all of you cc’d. This is like punishing the recipient of his error.
Time is short. Friday is voting day for the nursing homes. In March 75% of the nursing home residents’ rights were violated. Yet not one of you, except Noah, responds? How can this be? Who is going to watch these voters?
Where is the Illinois State Board of Elections?
For the FIRST time ever, Chicago managed to get voting Republicans into the appropriate nursing home election judge positions. (info via Commissioner Richard Cowen) This compared to Cook County which is COMPLETELY stonewalling all of our access… And refuses to send us the names of the election judges for the Nursing Homes? Only they know who the mysterious judges are. Judges, that Cook County has already had trainings for. Did they sign in to train anonymously?
In Cook County, our most vulnerable voters vote on Friday. Over 3000. Our election security is partisan based. The law lays out how the nursing home patient vote is to be conducted. Cook County is in violation of these laws.
Who is protecting the nursing home resident’s vote? Who has the jurisdiction? Please, I need to know, are we alone in this battle to protect the most vulnerable voters in Cook County?
For more information, please read this:
"I being a qualified voter, registered from (place your full address here) _______________________________________________________________________________ in the _______ precinct of the (Ward, or Township) _________________ in the (City or County election authority) ___________________ do hereby solemnly swear (or affirm) that the individuals who are identified by name, address, date of birth, date of death, voter registration ID and other necessary voter information in the attached electronic file are registered voters within the (Election Jurisdiction – City or County election authority) ______________________ is not a qualified voter within the voting precinct where they are registered to vote within the (Election Jurisdiction – Either your County or City)______________________ and hence I ask that each name be erased from the register of such precinct because this voter is deceased. The attached file identifies this voter as a perfect match with their name, address, date of birth, date of death, and voter ID.
Affiant further says that I have personal knowledge of the facts set forth in the above affidavit. This information was acquired from a professional data mining company with over 20 years of experience named Procysive and located at 2530 Meridian Parkway Durham, NC 27713 with a phone number of (919) 260-7189 and a web address of http://www.procysive.com/ Procysive specializes in this type of investigative research, search, and analysis. In comparing the voter registration files for (City or County election authority) ________________ this file includes only names that are a perfect match for name, address, Date of Birth and Date of Death. These names include the voter registration number.
Pursuant to: 10 ILCS 5/4-12, 10 ILCS 5-15, and 10 ILCS 6-44
Subscribed and sworn to before me on (insert date).
Such application shall be signed and sworn to by the applicant before the county clerk or any deputy authorized by the county clerk for that purpose, and filed with said clerk. Thereupon notice of such application, and of the time and place of hearing thereon, with a demand to appear before the county clerk and show cause why his name shall not be erased from said register, shall be mailed, in an envelope duly stamped and directed to such person at the address upon said register, at least four days before the day fixed in said notice to show cause.
A like notice shall be mailed to the person or persons making the application to have the name upon such register erased to appear and show cause why said name should be erased, the notice to set out the day and hour of such hearing. If the voter making such application fails to appear before said clerk at the time set for the hearing as fixed in the said notice or fails to show cause why the name upon such register shall be erased, the application to erase may be dismissed by the county clerk.
Any voter making the application is privileged from arrest while presenting it to the county clerk, and while going to and from the office of the county clerk.
From: Sharon Meroni
Sent: Saturday, October 20, 2012 7:38 PM
Subject: 80% of Suburban Cook County’s Nursing Homes Voting Rights are Violated by David Orr
Attention Legal Authorities:
Illinois and Federal laws protect vulnerable voters who are residents in Illinois nursing homes. Are these laws enforced? Do they accomplish their objective of securing the vote? I began investigating nursing home voting this year. What I am uncovering is worse than even the skeptic thought.
I can prove, without a shred of doubt, Illinois laws protecting nursing home residents are not being enforced in Illinois nursing homes. Literally, thousands of our most vulnerable citizen’s votes are unprotected and could possibly be stolen.
Every nursing home is supposed to have both a Republican and a Democrat election judge when balloting takes place there. If it is a large nursing home, each voting team administrating each vote, by law, MUST consist of a Republican and Democrat election judge. (Illinois Statute)
Let me explain just how callous elected Cook County Clerk David Orr is towards the rights of voters under his watchful eye.
With 88 homes under David Orr’s care for the March 2012 Primary Elections, 39 of the nursing homes have single party representation. 11 times there were Republican Judges only, 28 times Democrat Judges only. In addition, 4 homes had 1 election judge present. (39+4 = 43 homes with single party representation.)
Also, 25 of the 88 homes did not have a 1:1 Rep:Dem nursing home election judge representation. (For example, At Lydia Healthcare with 12 election judges and 200 votes, there was 1 Republican judge to 11 Democrat judges. At Pine Crest Health Care Center, there were 7 election judges for 86 voters. 6 were Democrats, 1 was a Republican.)
According to these facts, a minimum of 68 of the 88 homes (43+25 = 68) were operated unlawfully. This is over 77%!
Further, 2 homes appear without any record of election judges being present. Westminister Plaza is not on the list which was provided by Cook County of approved nursing homes with election judges, but they record 7 nursing home votes cast. The same situation at Church Greek Nursing Center, where no judges are listed as having administered the vote…
This means that the voting rights of citizens in close to 80% of Cook County nursing homes are in jeopardy because of the gross mismanagement of David Orr’s office. This reflects a complete disregard for the voting rights of the most vulnerable Illinois citizens![i]
To add to this unbelievable abuse of the nursing home vote, Cook County literally places commissioned Democrat election judges in Republican nursing home election judge positions. They did this about 20 times. (I lack the list of Commissioned Democrat Judges, but all Republican NH Judges in question should be on the list of Republican Commissioned Judges – 20 are not) I checked the voting record of these 20 apparently Commissioned Democrat judges serving as Republicans. These judges in particular are “Hard D’ which means they never miss pulling a Democratic ballot during the Primary elections. This practice is clearly unlawful.
One way that Orr’s office has been getting away with hiding their unlawful actions is by removing all control of where election judges in Suburban Cook County are placed. They also hide the voting history data from the Republican Party. For weeks now, David Orr has ignored the Republican Party of Cook County’s REPEATED request for information. The Party is now headed to Court to remedy this.
The question lingers: Is this deliberate action to ignore the law or is it incompetence? On October 2nd, 2012, I asked the Illinois State’s Attorney’s office to investigate to discover the truth.
Madigan’s office told me, they would not throw a single dollar of their resources into protecting the nursing home vote in Illinois, and that I had to be the one to investigate it. Unbelievably, they even complemented me on what great work I was doing as they refused to give me a case number or to take an official complaint. I was stunned. How can Lisa Madigan justify this?
Specifically, on October 2nd when I asked Lisa Madigan’s office to investigate, her Public Integrity Officer, Mary Bucaro, said no. With witnesses there and to my utter disbelief Ms. Bucaro told me three times the following:
1) The State’s Attorney Office will not investigate
2) The State’s Attorney Office will not give me a case number
3) I should ask Cook County elections to investigate themselves on this matter
4) I should work with Cook County to change this practice
I know… Time for the Fed’s!
One problem is, David Orr refuses to even provide a list of nursing homes for the November elections. They LITERALLY are refusing to provide the names of the nursing homes and the judges.
As for Chicago? They are currently completely blocking our access to the nursing home voter data. This weekend we will compile research on how they scored in the March elections. I don’t know how they will score. Chicago talks transparency, but continually blocks access on this issue.
I am demanding an investigation of the nursing home vote in Cook County. There needs to be legal authorities at every single nursing home to observe every single vote. How else will the vote be protected if the practice of assigning election judges is so corrupted in Cook County? We are short of time. We need about 150 investigators to cover all of the homes.
What are you going to do about this? I need a response on Monday so we can prepare.
Who is guarding the votes of Illinois most vulnerable voting population?
Director of Defend the Vote
[i] Our data is all supplied by David’s Orr’s office. I compared the list of all ‘Commissioned Republican Election Judges” with the nursing home judges at each facility, and compared the voting history of each judge assigned.
(10 ILCS 5/5-15)
(from Ch. 46, par. 5-15)
Any voter or voters in the township, city, village, or incorporated town containing such precinct, and any precinct committeeman in the county, may, between the hours of nine o'clock a.m. and six o'clock p.m. of the Monday and Tuesday of the third week immediately preceding the week in which such April 10, 1962 Primary Election is to be held, make application in writing, before such County Clerk, to have any name upon such register of any precinct erased. Thereafter such application shall be made between the hours of nine o'clock a.m. and six o'clock p.m. of Monday and Tuesday of the second week prior to the week in which any county, city, village, township, or incorporated town election is to be held. Such application shall be in substance, in the words and figures following:
"I, being a qualified voter, registered from No. .... Street in the .... precinct of the .... Ward of the city (village or town of .... ) of the .... District .... town of .... do hereby solemnly swear (or affirm) that .... registered from No. .... Street is not a qualified voter in the .... precinct of the .... ward of the city (village or town) of .... or of the .... district town of .... hence I ask that his name be erased from the register of such precinct for the following reason ..... Affiant further says that he has personal knowledge of the facts set forth in the above affidavit.
Subscribed and sworn to before me on (insert date).
Such application shall be signed and sworn to by the applicant before the County Clerk or any Deputy authorized by the County Clerk for that purpose, and filed with the Clerk. Thereupon notice of such application, with a demand to appear before the County Clerk and show cause why his name shall not be erased from the register, shall be mailed by special delivery, duly stamped and directed, to such person, to the address upon said register at least 4 days before the day fixed in said notice to show cause.
A like notice shall be mailed to the person or persons making the application to have the name upon such register erased to appear and show cause why the name should be erased, the notice to set out the day and hour of such hearing. If the voter making such application fails to appear before the Clerk at the time set for the hearing as fixed in the said notice or fails to show cause why the name upon such register shall be erased, the application may be dismissed by the County Clerk.
Any voter making such application or applications shall be privileged from arrest while presenting the same to the County Clerk, and whilst going to and returning from the office of the County Clerk.
(Source: P.A. 91-357, eff. 7-29-99.)
The letter below was sent to Rock Island County Clerk yesterday.
As part of our continuing research, we are looking at all training procedures to assure they are legally compliant with state and federal laws. As the letter below indicates, we are questioning Rock Island about voter registrations and new voters.
As you read below the fold, you will get the full details.
September 25, 2012
Rock Island County Clerk
Rock Island County Office Building
First Floor - 1504 Third Avenue,
Rock Island IL, 61201-8624
Dear Ms. Kinney,
I am writing for clarification on the procedures your office has established to comply with the provisions of the Help America Vote Act for certain voters who register using a form authorized under the National Voter Registration Act. Here is the relevant portion of HAVA.
We needs funds! Defend the Vote has three critical projects it is fundraising for:
Vulnerability Assessment of Election Security in Illinois: The vulnerability assessment will be completed by the gold standard in security assessments, Argonne National Laboratory. Descriptions of the vulnerability assessment were provided by Dr. Roger G. Johnston, Ph.D., CPP, head of the Vulnerability Assessment Team (VAT) at Argonne National Laboratory in last week’s news conference. Later today, I will update you on developments in this program. We have obtained funding to conduct a vulnerability assessment on Chicago and Cook County, and wish to raise additional funds to conduct similar assessments in other locations in Illinois. Each assessment is about $10K and through us, can be paid directly to Argonne National Laboratory.
The Absentee Audit of Chicago and Cook County needs to begin tomorrow. This audit will track the entire process of absentee voting. For 45 days, 5 full-time auditors will observe and document how absentee voting is conducted in Chicago and Cook County. Most of our cost is in staffing.
Security Assessments across all of Illinois. These will be done by Illinois voters and by election judges and pollwatchers in Illinois. This assessment will score the security of the vote in polling places across all of Illinois. Most of our cost is in distribution.
Defend the Vote is non profit, but we are not tax exempt. We are a small, bare bones operation. We appreciate and need financial contributions to our programs. When you contribute to our work, you can be assured you dollars are making an impact!
Regardless of all the work volunteers do in American politics, if the vote is fraudulent, your work is nullified.
On Wednesday September 19th, 2012, at the Union League Club in Chicago, Defend the Vote, an Illinois-based nonprofit organization whose mission is to empower citizens to protect the integrity of elections, held a news conference to announce a project with Argonne National Laboratory to evaluate the election security of Chicago and Suburban Cook Country's elections systems through a vulnerability assessment. This project is generously funded by Jack Roeser, Chairman and founder of Otto Engineering and Publisher of Champion News.
Speaking at the press conference was Jack Roeser, Dr Johnston, Ph.D., CPP, and Manager of the Vulnerability Assessment Team (VAT) at Argonne National Laboratory, Republican Cook County Chairman, Aaron Del Mar, and Defend the Vote Director, Sharon Meroni.
In some instances, in Illinois, gaining access to voting equipment and the software that runs it, requires the participation of the political parties. At the press conference, Republican Cook County Chairman Aaron Del Mar pledged his full support of this project. In addition he announced that the Cook County GOP is working on election security by assuring that Republican election judges are placed throughout the City of Chicago and Cook County.
Details of the vulnerability assessment project were discussed at the press conference. The assessment is set to begin immediately. Defend the Vote has contacted Dominion Voting, but they have not returned our calls. We will follow-up with further information later today.
What is a vulnerability assessment?
The procedure for reviewing an election jurisdiction’s security and offering suggestions for ways to improve it is as follows. This is similar to the procedures that the Argonne Vulnerability Assessment Team (VAT) uses for vulnerability assessment on other types of (non-election) security programs.
Wednesday news conference on Chicago and Suburban Cook County voting security evaluation project
Defend the Vote, an Illinois-based nonprofit organization whose mission to the empower citizens to protect the integrity of all public elections, will hold a news conference tomorrow, Wednesday, Sept. 19, to announce a project with Argonne National Laboratory to evaluate the election security of Chicago and Suburban Cook Country's elections systems.
The news conference will include Sharon Meroni, Director of Defend the Vote; Chairman and founder of Otto Engineering Jack Roeser, who is providing funding for the project; and Dr. Roger Johnston, Manager of Argonne National Laboratory's Vulnerability Assessment Team.
The news conference will be held tomorrow at 1:30 p.m. at the Union League Club of Chicago, Room 710, 65 West Jackson Blvd., Chicago.
- Defend the Vote Media Affairs: (847) 382-1100
This morning, someone asked one of us Vote Defenders what was the best thing she could do as an individual to combat voter fraud and we told her "get informed, stay informed, and inform others". Dust off the library card or head over to Amazon.com and see if you can find any of these books for a good price (used copies will be around $5 or so for most of these, sometimes a little less); you can also probably find a lot of these in used book stores if they carry a decent selection of public policy works:
Who's Counting -- by John Fund and Hans von Sparkovsky
Deliver the Vote -- by Tracy Campbell
Stealing Elections -- by John Fund
Steal This Vote -- by Andrew Gumbel
How to Rig an Election -- by Allen Raymond
Proving Election Fraud -- by Richard Charnin
Stealing Democracy -- by Spencer Overton
Loser Take All -- by Mark Crispin Miller
This is a good start for building up a reading list of books on voter fraud. Some of these are better than others, but you'll find that out for yourself, and some slant toward one partisan camp or the other. We think it's important to read pretty much everything out there on voter fraud and to make up our own minds, of course keeping in mind the authors' individual biases. Both parties contribute to voter fraud in some way and the "bad guys" involved don't always have a (D) or an (R) after their names. That's surprising to a lot of people, but if you read a lot on the subject you'll see that depending on the year, the issues on the ballot, and the power plays involved voter fraud can be encouraged and abetting by many different camps.
There would not be so many books on this topic if, according to the media, this was something that really never happened. It is a very complicated issue affecting all of us that unfortunately not a lot of people dedicate themselves to reading about.
Maybe we should start a Vote Defenders book club and review these books and note any particular bias in them while charting common threads and themes?
Let us know if you'd like to see that, or even participate in the reviewing!
We ran across this hyper-partisan and incredibly biased "article" dealing with efforts in Colorado to prevent voter fraud. The writer, Jackie Chazan, employs many common tactics amongst "reporters" who pack a political agenda in their writing without disclosing that to readers. We as Vote Defenders on this site certainly have personal opinions in our private lives -- but those are put to the wayside while we're working on projects for Defend the Vote. You will not see anything partisan on this site, ever, as a result.
The same can't be said for the opponents of ballot integrity in the media. There's a clear agenda amongst many in the media, such as Chazan, to perpetrate the lies told by those who seek to encourage, abet, and allow voter fraud in our elections. We'll leave it you readers out there to guess what their motivations are and whom they seek to help by preventing efforts to secure the ballot, but we suggest you start questioning more of what the media puts in front of you.
The first thing to do is to read an article like this and look for words the writer may use to disparage ballot integrity efforts. If you spot writing like this, consider the author's opinion and bias when evaluating any information you find in the article.
"Consider the source" is a good motto to live by when popping onto any webpage or picking up a newspaper or magazine.
We know it takes effort to stay informed and there isn't always a lot of time in the day to do so -- that makes it tempting to read something by a writer like Chazan and "just hope it's accurate" when in fact you're being misinformed about an important issue that affects us all.
Just something to think about on this Sunday afternoon as many of you might be reading papers at home. Skip to the Funnies. Those are often the best (and most accurate) parts of some newspapers that are out there!
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- Springfield: Tax Day TEA Party - Voter Fraud in Illinois
- Illinois Elections: What Exactly Does Best Practices Mean to David Orr?
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