william.scherk

Rigging the 2016 Presidential Election

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Interesting detail from an encounter between Greta Van Susteren and Donald Trump. Sort of on topic. I expect Mr Trump himself votes by mail in New York City.

 

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"Does that mean that anybody can just go and walk in and vote?"

Like illegal aliens?

Visiting foreigners?

Sworn enemies of the US?

Double-dipping, triple-dipping, etc., voters from other jurisdictions?

People claiming to be who they are not?

It's a pretty good question...

:evil: 

Michael

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On 8/7/2016 at 4:34 PM, william.scherk said:

Let's say it all hangs in Florida (Ohio, Pennsylvania), and it is tight.  Do we now know where the weaknesses will be?  Are we assured now that only fraud could result in a close Clinton victory in Florida, and thus an electoral college majority?

A backgrounder on Florida for those not as informed as they would like to be (looking at you, William).  One hell of a 'diverse' state.  This is from Steve Schale, a Florida Man in Tallahassee. 

Everything You Wanted To Know About Florida 2016 But Were Afraid To Ask.

 

Quote

Florida. Florida. Florida.

The largest battleground state in the country – by a lot.

The tightest battleground state in the country since 2000.

Has been won by every GOP President since Coolidge.

10 media markets – many big enough to be battleground states

20 million residents

9 million voters.

So what makes it work? What is its story? Or more simply, what is it?

Every few years, I get the same question from national media: Explain Florida to me in a nutshell, and what is the one thing that is key to winning?

If only it was that simple.

[...]

 

Edited by william.scherk
Fixed URL; thanks, Korben!

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Here is kook and right-wing conspiracy theorist Alex Jones imparting his mouth-frothing irrational ranting and bullshit for his low-information audience of yahoos and cow-turd-kickers on Julian Assange and how the polls worked when he commissioned a few.

Oh wait... where did the frothing go?

:)

Michael

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10 hours ago, william.scherk said:

A backgrounder on Florida for those not as informed as they would like to be (looking at you, William).  One hell of a 'diverse' state.  This is from Steve Schale, a Florida Man in Tallahassee. 

Everything You Wanted To Know About Florida 2016 But Were Afraid To Ask.

 

 

WSS, the link didn't work, but I found the article here:  http://steveschale.com/blog/2016/8/9/everything-you-wanted-to-know-about-florida-2016-but-were-af.html

Here is the section on North Florida, which I have some first hand knowledge of..

North Florida

Home to 3.5 million residents, or 17% of the vote, think of North Florida as the I-10 corridor, running from Jacksonville to Pensacola. It has the lowest Hispanic and highest African American percentages, but is over 2/3rds white. The region is slightly bigger in population than Iowa.

The distance between Pensacola and Jacksonville is roughly 360 miles, along a fairly sparse I-10, home to America's #1 truck stop, the Busy Bee at the Live Oak halfway point. Rural north Florida feels much more like Georgia or Alabama than the Florida that most people think of. Population is growing fairly rapidly on the coasts, creating red counties that are just getting more red. That being said, there are still literally hundreds of miles of rural coastline in this part of the state, mostly through the Big Bend area.

Florida’s two dry counties are located here, as are two of its largest universities, as well as the seat of state government. In addition, the region is bookended by two of the oldest cities in America: St. Augustine and Pensacola. Both ends of north Florida have a large military presence, as well as significant acres of state and national forests.

It is also by far the most conservative part of the state. Mitt Romney won just shy of 60% of the 1.6 million votes cast in 2012, a margin that is north of 300,000 votes. To give a sense of scale, that is almost 100,000 more votes than Obama carried Miami-Dade in 2012. Outside of the two college towns: Gainesville and Tallahassee, there are very few places for Democrats to do well.

Trump will look to grow here, particularly in the Jacksonville media market. The Bush campaign in 2004 won Duval County, home to Jacksonville, by 61.000 votes, a margin that Obama cut to 8,000 in 2008, and about 15,000 in 2012. He will also look to take advantage of population growth in places like St. Johns County, and some of the Panhandle communities between Pensacola and Panama City. For Trump to win Florida, given the changes happening down south, I would suspect he would need to carry this part of the state by about 400,000 votes, stretching Romney’s win in upstate to over 62% of the vote. For Clinton to win, anything between Obama 2012 (40%) and Obama 2008 (42%) would make it difficult for Trump to find the necessary votes elsewhere.

Good description, I wanted to add that North Florida is still considered the Bible Belt, and once you get down into Daytona the mystic population gets less, until hitting Orlando where the mystics get somewhat harder to find.  I looked a few heat maps and found this one to be the most accurate from what I know:

BibleBelt.png

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Wolf wrote and I will edit for brevity: I don't think it matters who wins, Hillary or Trump . . . . Neither one of them is a traditional candidate, zero commitment to law or political tradition. Hillary and Bill are easily the most corrupt, dangerous insiders in our nation's history. Donald Trump has zero political debts and nothing will stop him from acting like a wheeler dealer who likes hyperbolic jokes.  . . . . Hillary and Trump, Looter vs Real Estate Tycoon, two sides of the same coin. end quote

I disagree. Hillary, looter. Trump, builder. Hillary, corrupt Politician. Trump, yeah, he was bribing “political’s” to get the hell out of the way to get his projects done. Yet, I have heard Michael and Limbaugh say many times that to do business in Manhattan or Washington D.C. you must have “pull.” So who is more reprehensible, the Pol or the wannabe crony? Laissez Faire.  I think Trump will adhere to the law, but Hillary will always be one step ahead of the law. She will always be saying, "There is no proof that," or "It has not been proven that. . . "   

Rush is on the air right now. There is an investigation by the U.S. Attorney for the southern district of New York. Why is it not being made more public? That is normal at this stage of the investigation.  The Attorney has gotten the green light to go after the Clinton Foundation. It is unethical at the least, promising access to the State Department, and pay for play.  

Peter

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I saw that about a new investigation, Peter.

I think the administration wants a new trigger to pull, in case Hillary craters. This investigation could be useful by finding things she will have to be pardoned for. I assume there is still time for the Dems to replace her.

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Shit like this is not "proof" or evidence unless it is admissible in court  and subject to cross examination.  Otherwise it is unsubstantieated  allegation.  

So first there has to be an indictment based on the action of a grand jury,  then a trial in which rules of evidence apply.   Anything else is hot air.

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1 hour ago, BaalChatzaf said:

Shit like this is not "proof" or evidence unless it is admissible in court  and subject to cross examination.  Otherwise it is unsubstantieated  allegation.  

So first there has to be an indictment based on the action of a grand jury,  then a trial in which rules of evidence apply.   Anything else is hot air.

Bob,

Who ever claimed it was proof?

I didn't hear anyone do that.

Did you?

I didn't think so, so what are you griping about? 

This video the start of a public revelation process to uncover evidence and the continuation of a "take Hillary Clinton out" publicity campaign.

You express a hell of a lot of emotion against a zero--against something no one ever claimed. I wonder why, I wonder...

:evil: 

Michael

 

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1 hour ago, BaalChatzaf said:

Shit like this is not "proof" or evidence unless it is admissible in court  and subject to cross examination.  Otherwise it is unsubstantieated  allegation.  

So first there has to be an indictment based on the action of a grand jury,  then a trial in which rules of evidence apply.   Anything else is hot air.

"Shit like this is not "proof" or evidence [of shit] unless it is admissible in court and ...."

--Brant

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1 hour ago, BaalChatzaf said:

Shit like this is not "proof" or evidence unless it is admissible in court  and subject to cross examination.  Otherwise it is unsubstantieated  allegation.  

So first there has to be an indictment based on the action of a grand jury,  then a trial in which rules of evidence apply.   Anything else is hot air.

What does it say on the top left  hand corner of the video?   I see the word "proof"  there.  

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1 hour ago, BaalChatzaf said:

What does it say on the top left  hand corner of the video?   I see the word "proof"  there.  

In a question.

--Brant

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2 hours ago, Brant Gaede said:

 

3 hours ago, BaalChatzaf said:

What does it say on the top left  hand corner of the video?   I see the word "proof"  there.  

In a question.

--Brant

Brant,

I'm rooting for Bob.

I know he'll get there eventually and, I, for one, will be cheering him on.

:evil:  :) 

Michael

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The GOP candidate is calling for volunteers to 'observe' balloting, in an effort to prevent some type of shenanigans.   I need to do some research to find out just how this might be accomplished. (in Canada, the volunteer observers are called 'scrutineers' and are fully integrated into the national balloting.  Of course, as Ba'al points out, paper balloting can remove several options for chicanery).

As I understand the situation, Mr Trump is particularly concerned with 'cheating' at the polls, although the campaign and candidate have not made clear the details of their concern. I think that the following bolded items are the target of interest for the so-called observers.

On 8/2/2016 at 10:41 AM, william.scherk said:

I could be mistaken about that wisdom.  More on that in a forthcoming blog post ... 

Here is the text of the volunteer call at the official campaign site:

Quote

Volunteer to be a Trump Election Observer

Help Me Stop Crooked Hillary From Rigging This Election!

Please fill out this form to receive more information about becoming a volunteer Trump Election Observer.
Please ensure that the information you provide in this form matches your voter registration information.

-- from a fresh article at the Verified Voting site, reprinted from the New York Times -- "The Election Won’t Be Rigged. But It Could Be Hacked."

Quote

It’s unclear what mechanism the Trump campaign envisions for this rigging. Voter fraud through impersonation or illegal voting is vanishingly rare in the United States, and rigging the election by tampering with voting machines would be nearly impossible. As President Obama pointed out in a news conference last week, where he called charges of electoral rigging “ridiculous,” states and cities set up voting systems, not the federal government. That’s true, and it means the voting machine landscape is a patchwork of different systems, which makes the election hard to manipulate in a coordinated way. But it’s still a bleak landscape.

… Since 1996, Georgia has voted for the Republican candidate in presidential elections, but this year a batch of recent polls have painted a tight race — with some polls even indicating that the Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton, may have an edge. If the race is close, and the outcome questioned, voters in Georgia will have no means to audit the results. Other potential swing states, like Pennsylvania and North Carolina, also use electronic machines with no paper trail, at least in some counties. According to the nonprofit Verified Voting, people in at least a dozen states could encounter that same situation.

-- I will post later today a video or two of Mr Trump's latest comments on rigging (in Pennsylvania especially) ...

Edited by william.scherk
Added excerpt from today NYT via VerifiedVoting

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On 8/11/2016 at 10:44 AM, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

"Does that mean that anybody can just go and walk in and vote?"

Like illegal aliens?

Visiting foreigners?

Sworn enemies of the US?

Double-dipping, triple-dipping, etc., voters from other jurisdictions?

People claiming to be who they are not?

It's a pretty good question...

:evil: 

Michael

Consider Cook  County, Ill.   Where the dead vote early and often...

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Just now, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

Bob,

I live in Cook County.

It's a friggin' zombie attack.

:)

Michael

Are you a Chicago person?  Then it must amuse you to realize that Prince Barak is the spiritual child  of (Old) Mayor Daley and Saul Alinsky.  Those two fell panting and heaving on each other's bosoms  and begat Barak Obama. 

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Now it starts for real (from Politico).

Trump campaign launches drive to recruit 'election observers'

Let's see how the media and backstage establishment bosses try to spin this one. Or combat it. They are going to have to try, too. Otherwise, there will be no space for them to do any election monkeybusiness.

And what's an election to a control freak without a proper dose of voter fraud? It's a disaster, that's what...

:)

Michael

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6 minutes ago, BaalChatzaf said:

Are you a Chicago person?  Then it must amuse you to realize that Prince Barak is the spiritual child  of (Old) Mayor Daley and Saul Alinsky.  Those two fell panting and heaving on each other's bosoms  and begat Barak Obama. 

Bob,

Evanston.

Next door to Chicago.

The Big Seven employers in Evanston (see here) are: Evanston Township High School, NorthShore University HealthSystem, City of Evanston, Rotary International, Saint Francis Hospital, Northwestern University and Evanston Skokie School District 65.

Not one of them is a for-profit organization, but all of them cost up the wazoo to run. And guess where the money comes from? From anywhere but customers.

So what do you think the political climate is like here?

I'm going nuts, nuts I tell ya'...

:) 

Michael

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5 minutes ago, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

Bob,

Evanston.

Next door to Chicago.

The Big Seven employers in Evanston (see here) are: Evanston Township High School, NorthShore University HealthSystem, City of Evanston, Rotary International, Saint Francis Hospital, Northwestern University and Evanston Skokie School District 65.

Not one of them is a for-profit organization, but all of them cost up the wazoo to run. And guess where the money comes from? From anywhere but customers.

So what do you think the political climate is like here?

I'm going nuts, nuts I tell ya'...

:) 

Michael

You are a Stranger in a Strange Land...

Things have not changed all that much since Al Capon ruled from Cicero...

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Quote

Trump: Clinton Can't Win Pennsylvania Unless There's Cheating
FRI, AUG 12

During a campaign stop in Altoona, Pennsylvania, Donald Trump urged his supporters to vote in big numbers and says the only way he loses the key swing state if cheating goes on.

There you go.  There is no way a Democrat can win Pennsylvania's electoral votes, unless there is some unspecified 'cheating.'  Or chicanery. Or shenanigans. 

The Objectivish person lurking within me is hoping that there will be more detail forthcoming in the near future.  Nobody in the Trump camp has yet  given fuller details.   Objective details.  Particulars.  Dangers. 
 

1 hour ago, BaalChatzaf said:

Consider Cook  County, Ill

Yes. Consider Cook County -- by taking a look at the electoral machinery at Verified Voting ...  you will see that the county uses a mixed system, including paper ballots and DREs with VVPAT.

Once you have considered that, Ba'al, what is your conclusion?

Here is a wee excerpt from a recent Bloomberg poll. I can't yet find the cross-tabs that indicate if there is a party split on the 'sense of rigging.'

Quote

When it comes to the presidential election, is it your sense the election will or will not be rigged?


(Among likely voters in the 2016 general election; n=749. MoE: ±3.6 percentage points.)
34 Rigged
60 Not rigged
6 Not sure

Bloomberg Politics National Poll
SELZER & COMPANY Study #2142
1,007 U.S. adults ages 18 and over August 5-8, 2016
Margin of error for full sample: ± 3.1 percentage points Weighted by age, race, and education
Includes 749 likely voters in the November general election
Margin of error for likely voter subsample: ± 3.6 percentage points

 

Michael notes some news-ish news from Politico -- as I noted above.

56 minutes ago, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

Trump campaign launches drive to recruit 'election observers'

Let's see how the media and backstage establishment bosses try to spin this one. Or combat it. They are going to have to try, too. Otherwise, there will be no space for them to do any election monkeybusiness.

Are you going to volunteer for Trump, Michael?  It would be excellent to have an OL 'insider' to keep us up to date on what the Trump campaign actually wants its volunteers to do.

Here is a kind of weird note from the Election Law blog:

Quote

Donald Trump May Be Violating RNC Consent Decree Aimed at Voter Intimidation
Posted on August 12, 2016 8:05 pm by Rick Hasen
With Trump’s dangerous and irresponsible hyperventilating about voter fraud and cheating in Pennsylvania potentially costing him the election, it is probably no surprise, as reported by the Weekly Standard, that Trump is seeking “election observers” to stop “Crooked Hillary” from “rigging this election.”

However, there’s a longstanding consent decree that bars the RNC from engaging in such activities. 

As noted, there is no detail from the campaign so far, no guidance, no sense that the candidate is giving his supporters any actual tools to prevent the unspecified riggy bidness.

Quote

And what's an election to a control freak without a proper dose of voter fraud? It's a disaster, that's what...

What is the recent history of 'voter fraud' in Cook County, Michael, do you know?  I am not sure quite what you mean by 'voter fraud.'  Which of the following types of manipulation or fraud or misrecording do you expect will be attempted in your county?

(my opinion or impression so far is that Mr Trump is concerned mostly about the bolded items below.)

1 hour ago, william.scherk said:

 

Edited by william.scherk
Punctuation.

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Prior to the July 24th Wikileaks DNC email exposure Stanford, on June 7th produced https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B6mLpCEIGEYGYl9RZWFRcmpsZk0/view

"Secretary Clinton enjoys an apparent advantage over Sanders. Is this claimed advantage legitimate? We contend that it is not, and suggest an explanation for the advantage: States that are at risk for election fraud in 2016 systematically and overwhelmingly favor Secretary Clinton. We provide converging evidence for this claim."
 

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1SdmBLFW9gISaqOyyz_fATgaFupI2-n6vWx80XRGUVBo/edit

"Following our main initial report, here are the main take-aways from our extensive investigation:

  1. Clinton overperformed the polls only in states that are vulnerable to electronic hacking.

  2. Clinton’s strong performance can be traced to strong performance with African-Americans, but that doesn’t tell the full story: Even when we adjust for this alternative explanation in all sorts of ways, Clinton still performed better in states that are most vulnerable to electronic hacking (to reduce overfitting and multicollinearity we suggest trying models that merge Latinos/Asians and dropping European-Americans who are indirectly represented in resulting models.)

    1. Download data on Clinton’s popular vote %, Census 2010 ethnic breakdowns by state, and paper/no paper trail.

  3. Exit polls were particularly “off” in states that were most vulnerable to electronic hacking.

  4. Clinton’s performance boost in these types of states did not occur in 2008 (Obama did not benefit either.)

  5. It is easy to do a close inspection of some states, such as Louisiana. All of the machines in use in Louisiana are the AVC Advantage machines, which Princeton Computer Science Professor Andrew Appel describes as hackable. Our close analysis of Louisiana revealed anomalies that favored Clinton in 85% of the counties. The Republicans did seem not benefit from the statistical anomaly in any of the counties.

    1. Download Republican data: Note the flatness of the curves (results in smaller precincts are similar to results in larger precincts)

    2. Download Democratic data: Note the steepness of the curves (results in larger precincts tend to favor Clinton).

    3. Note that according to polls, Clinton was expected to get around 60%. The official result showed her at 71%.

    4. This doesn’t seem to reflect racial factors (the pattern shows up heavily White counties and in heavily African-American counties), and it doesn’t reflect urban vs. rural divide since large cities can often have small precincts and small towns can often have big precincts

    5. Potential explanation: One theory that others have advanced for this is that, if anyone were to attempt to hack electronic voting machines, they may choose to do it in larger precincts (lots of votes.) Overall, one would expect that, within the same geographical area (a county), the vote should be similar at larger and smaller precincts. However, this principle is violated for larger precincts only in the Democratic race.

  6. Two of the three main voting machine companies (Dominion Voting and Hart Intercivic, through H.I.G. Capital) are donors to the Clinton Foundation [Check Guccifer 2.0’s spreadsheet.] This brings up issues of private companies being involved in public elections. It does NOT mean the companies hacked the vote. Anyone with knowledge and access could potentially influence the machines (see report from Professor Appel.)

We will have more to say about the rest of the states soon (we will show data at the level of detail that we did for Louisiana.) Other states do not provide their data in as user-friendly form as Louisiana."

This may be the best reason yet to cast a vote against Clinton in favor of Trump. And the only way she might be held accountable. After the Sanders experience there is no reason to think that computerized voting machines wont be hacked and rigged. The Stanford analysis shows ballots with paper trails were at odds with electronic ballots that favored Clinton. Ive been reluctant to go all in with Trump though given these explanations I could get over my objections to him.

Roger Stones piece includes several links, the Stanford paper being just one.

http://thehill.com/blogs/pundits-blog/presidential-campaign/291534-can-the-2016-election-be-rigged-you-bet

 

  

 

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On 8/13/2016 at 10:29 AM, william.scherk said:

Here is a kind of weird note from the Election Law blog:

Quote

As noted, there is no detail from the campaign so far, no guidance, no sense that the candidate is giving his supporters any actual tools to prevent the unspecified riggy bidness.

I did not know that the blog was widely-read.  Since I posted the excerpt, the issue has been tackled by the Trump campaign:

Quote

Trump Campaign Responds on Election Observers/Voter Intimidation Claims
Posted on August 13, 2016 10:50 am by Rick Hasen


NPR:

Trump spokesman Jason Miller says claims that volunteer poll observers could be a form of voter intimidation are unfounded.

“To be clear, liberals love to throw out the voter intimidation card. What we’re advocating are open, fair and honest elections,” Miller said in a statement to NPR’s Sarah McCammon.

He also added that poll watchers are “standard for professional campaigns” and pointed out poll watcher guides from around the country, including New York and Texas.

In his statement to NPR, Miller echoed Trump’s concerns about a “rigged system.”

“As we’ve seen from Crooked Hillary’s willingness to use – and outright lie about – government institutions for personal and political enrichment, there’s a lot of cheating going on,” Miller said.

It is not weird to me that Miller would omit notice of the call for sheriffs and police officers and other presumably armed agents to 'go to the polls' on election night.   That call for muscle (not brains) at the polls is freaky only if that is what Mr Trump actually meant.  There is a system in place in each of the polling places for election observers already, as Miller noted.  It is varied, local and contingent, but from my first read of a couple of samples (eg Cook County, Pennsylvania) guidebook for 'official' election observers, the system is the very check on integrity that Miller would acknowledge is in place for both inside and outside the polls, wired into the GOTV effort of the parties as well as recent practice.  

So the only possible weirdness is that he would support (in his mind) the notion of calling out Sheriffs and other armed officers to somehow add something extra to the 'official' presence of official observers of both parties (and candidates on the ballot**). 

Here is another  slightly more weird thing.  When you fill out the Volunteer for Election Watch form at Trump's website, you are then sent to a Donations page. There is no information offered as of yet back to you. Nada. Nerp. Fzzz.

So, the best spin I can put on this hoopla  is that the GOP already has plans and 'positions' to fill in the actual roster of legal observers in every polling place (precinct) on their watch list. Those positions will be filled.   The folks will be trained by intelligent operatives who know the local procedures. They will have guidance from the National Desk or State Desk for each state or locality that runs the actual polls -- live all day.

It occurs to me that some OLers might be starting from the same place of ignorance as me last week.  I know about the 'official' observers in Canadian elections -- the scrutineers. They are an essential part of the election, and they are welcome and necessary in the sense that any party to the election is given access to the complete process of balloting and tabulation.  My ignorance now broken somewhat,  I can assert that the effect of Trump's nattering may galvanize all his possible voters, every last one.  He certainly is getting advice backstage that he can shut the fuck up about Sheriffs and armed somebodies at the polls. We won't be hearing that again.

It doesn't matter to Mr Trump. It does matter to Mr Trump.  I don't know if he actually thinks the forthcoming election needs extra sheriffs in any but a metaphorical sense. I hope that those who volunteer are properly trained and take their places inside the the polls as scrutineers/observers. I hope those kept informed by the Trump campaign on the campaigns 'observer' process.

I hope this dies a death quite soon. I think Mr Trump will otherwise be committing mischief via wobbly concepts.  Get yer observers in there, yes. Why? So that your own independent people can 'certify' the results.   Not so that anyone feels intimidated, not so that nutters show up at the polls as did the stupid fucking Black Panthers ... 

CpwEjyHWcAAVbzU.jpg

What is the objective support for the notion that ONLY 'cheating' can give Pennsylvania's electoral votes to Clinton?  I want objective information. I do not want innuendo.

That is the part that I find abnormal about this issue this cycle. The candidacy does not have a hierarchy of concepts in the mind of . Rigging and cheating are already defined or classified into finer electoral-context concepts that map to reality in that world (as per the Wikipedia outlines). These concepts are not difficult to understand and deploy.  There is a difference between voter fraud and ballot-box stuffing, a difference between voter intimidation and vote-buying, and so on.  There are also 'vulnerabilities.' 

To test my hypotheses, I will monitor to see if the Trump campaign has differentiated among the concepts. 

Sheriffs needed.  Police Chiefs needed.  Volunteers needed.

vounteerDeRigger.png

 

That quote again:

"We have to call up law enforcement, and we have to have the sheriffs and the police chiefs and everybody watching," Trump said. "Because if we get cheated out of this election, if we get cheated out of a win in Pennsylvania, which is such a vital state, especially when I know what's happening here, folks. I know. She can't beat what's happening here."

Trump continued, urging his supporters to personally monitor polling places for voter fraud.

"The only way they can beat it in my opinion -- and I mean this 100 percent -- if in certain sections of the state, they cheat, okay?" he said. "So I hope you people can sort of -- not just vote on the 8th -- go around and look and watch other polling places and make sure that it's 100 percent fine."

Oh, and a paragraph from New York Mag:

Quote

 

Normally, a campaign asking supporters to participate in poll-watching efforts would be standard operating procedure — and in this case would also offer a small indication that the Trump campaign is actually starting to function like an actual campaign. What is not normal or responsible, however, is how the Trump campaign is framing such work, via Trump’s rhetoric and on the website sign-up page, as a necessity to directly prevent another candidate’s ill-gotten victory. (The sign-up page also redirects to a donation page, so it’s not clear if and how the Trump campaign will work with the volunteers.)

http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2016/08/trump-asks-supporters-to-defend-against-rigged-election.html

Pushed for evidence that the election would be rigged, Trump campaign spokeswoman Katrina Pierson told CNN on Saturday that, “There is no evidence because the election hasn’t occurred yet,” adding that, “This is not far-fetched. Election fraud has been a concern for a very long time.”

 

I got five emails from either Trump or the Trump campaign or Donald Trump Junior today.  They never write back to me.  If they did, I would point them to a Pennysylvania Election Observer manual that they can offer to their new sign-ups, once they get their shit together.  

How does this sound to OLers closely watching the issue?

Quote

As an Election Observer (EO) for the campaign, you WILL:

• Serve as the campaign’s eyes and ears on Election Day by working outside polling places
• Identify and address problems as soon as they arise
• Resolve “simple” issues on your own
• Report more difficult problems to the “Boiler Room” for resolution

As an EO for the campaign, you WILL NOT:

• Represent yourself as an attorney for, or representative of, individual voters
• Engage in arguments/confrontations with anyone
• Challenge the eligibility of any voter
• Speak to the media/press
• Ask that any voter be removed from a polling place simply for wearing campaign paraphernalia

Some EOs will be paired with an Trump Official Poll Watchers (OPWs). OPWs are
principally in-state attorneys or law students who are residents of the county where the
poll is located and have a certificate that entitles them to be inside polling places. OPWs
will also try to solve easy problems and report larger problems to the Boiler Room.
Some OPWs and EOs will be assigned to more than one polling place, and will have to
rotate between two or three nearby polling places.

In addition to monitoring the polling place for voter protection issues, you may be asked
to assist an OPW in keeping track—to the extent you can—of the names of people who
have voted, to assist with the Campaign’s Get Out The Vote (GOTV) effort. (Please see
Appendix I for further instructions on the GOTV program.)

Your Role as an Election Observer


As an Election Observer (EO) for the campaign, you WILL:


• Serve as the campaign’s eyes and ears on Election Day by working outside polling places
• Identify and address problems as soon as they arise
• Resolve “simple” issues on your own
• Report more difficult problems to the “Boiler Room” for resolution


As an EO for the campaign, you WILL NOT:


• Represent yourself as an attorney for, or representative of, individual voters
• Engage in arguments/confrontations with anyone
• Challenge the eligibility of any voter
• Speak to the media/press
• Ask that any voter be removed from a polling place simply for wearing campaign
paraphernalia


Some EOs will be paired with an Trump Official Poll Watchers (OPWs). OPWs are
principally in-state attorneys or law students who are residents of the county where the
poll is located and have a certificate that entitles them to be inside polling places. OPWs
will also try to solve easy problems and report larger problems to the Boiler Room.
Some OPWs and EOs will be assigned to more than one polling place, and will have to
rotate between two or three nearby polling places.


In addition to monitoring the polling place for voter protection issues, you may be asked
to assist an OPW in keeping track—to the extent you can—of the names of people who
have voted, to assist with the Campaign’s Get Out The Vote (GOTV) effort.

 

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Thanks for bringing this forward, Geoff.

It makes for interesting reading, and sorting out the arguments made. I've taken the time to read some of the dialogues and arguments between the authors and respondents.  This is their money quote:

On 8/18/2016 at 9:45 AM, turkeyfoot said:

"States that are at risk for election fraud in 2016 systematically and overwhelmingly favor Secretary Clinton. We provide converging evidence for this claim."

The authors of the pre-publication document are Axel Geijsel and Rodolfo Cortes Barragan. There are three main arms of their argument. The overall contention  is that  election 'irregularities' can be detected -- in examining states with and without 'paper trails' in their voting systems -- by comparing tabulated 'official' results to 'exit polls' taken in that state throughout the day**.

The first arm of the argument sorts the primary states in question into two piles.  The second arm compares all of the states by two measures: 'exit polls'  and 'official' results.  The third arm purports to find no similar 'irregularities' in the Obama/Clinton primaries in 2012.

The assumption of 'election fraud' risk is in the sorting into two piles.  Those states that have a paper ballot, or Direct Recording Electronic machines (DREs] giving a Voter-Verified Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) -- or both -- are included in the 'safe' pile. The at-risk states have a variety of county systems, which may include paper ballots and electronic 'scanners' and may incude DREs that do not spit out a paper confirmation.  

The sorting of the two piles can be checked against the VerifiedVoting information.  Bear in mind that the authors did not check against VV -- they rely upon a coarser state-by-state reckoning at Ballotpedia.  So the piles are somewhat arbitrary. For example, Florida and Pennsylvania are 'mixed' at VerifiedVoting, including some 'paper' counties and others DREs without VVPAT, but judged by the authors as No Paper Trail.  In other words, in some of their no-trail states, there are indeed trails in some circumstances

Bear in mind foremost that the data going in to the paper are from Democratic primaries this year. 

The authors' "main take-aways" comprise several checkable premises and conclusions.  The main claim is that Clinton 'overperformed the exit polls' only in Ballotpedia states marked No Paper.  

Quote

Clinton’s strong performance can be traced to strong performance with African-Americans, but that doesn’t tell the full story:

This is a curiosity. The authors did not control nor 'correct' for African American 'saturation' or  hallmarks of voting habits (among which are 'early voting'). They did not correct for any changes in demographics between the 2010 census and the Democratic primary votes. They believe that the 'sample' of exit-polls they used in comparison were the 'real' figures of support, that these exit polls cannot be 'wrong.'  Their conjecture was that African American 'effect' could be accounted for  with the concept [Not]Non-Hispanic Whites.

Why not control for African-American demographic itself?

That is a red flag of an unwarranted premiss, and one that critics have noted and responded to.  It guts the analysis if we do not properly account for effects, or if we fudge out a variable.  One critic put it this way

Quote

Better controls obliterate their result

This analysis is unconvincing on its face. If you’ve read this far, it probably occurred to you a while ago that it would be helpful to control for the proportion of blacks, not just for the proportion of non-Hispanic whites. You may also have thought that counting Democratic wins in the last six presidential elections seems like a crude way to measure “blueness.” So, as a sanity check, I tested alternative controls:

Using Kaiser Family Foundation calculations based on the March 2015 Current Population Survey, I controlled separately for the proportions of Hispanics and of non-Hispanic blacks in each state. Based on abundant polling and reporting, I expect to find — and I do — that the proportion of non-Hispanic blacks is an even stronger predictor of Clinton vote share than the proportion of Hispanics.

I use Obama’s vote share in 2012 as a straightforward measure of “blueness.” (I don’t expect the results to be very sensitive to what “blueness” measure is used. For what it’s worth, my t value is similar to theirs.)

These controls aren’t wonderful. I would rather control for the demographic characteristics and liberalism of Democratic primary voters — but I would have to rely on crude exit poll data, where available. It is easy to think of other controls to add, but with only 31 states in the analysis, we need to be wary of overfitting.

Back to the authors:
 

Quote

Exit polls were particularly “off” in states that were most vulnerable to electronic hacking.

 

I have pasted here below a table of the states taken from the authors' spreadsheet.  Readers can do an eyeball of the results.  What they cannot do is find the same patterns that the authors claim (without their statistical maneuvers).  Examine these states one by one.  

Look for the pattern.  Look at the range of 'Discrepancies' from Maryland to Arizona. Ask yourself about the time of day effects on those who chose to answer an exit pollster. Ask yourself if the exit polls early in the day are as diagnostic as the whole-days exit polling totals. Ask why the underlying exit poll data is exclusively for early, uncorrected 'samples.'**

Note that the pattern we should expect to see if the authors are correct is simply not there when you look at their 'raw' numbers.

Consider that of the eight worst 'discrepancies' between final results and exit polling, a full five were in Paper Trail states. 

This suggests to me strongly that reasons for the speculative 'discrepancy' is not found in a voting machine "Black box"  skullduggery, but in the unreliability of early, uncorrected exit polls.**

State Support for Clinton in Exit Polls Support for Clinton in Results Paper Trail DISCREPANCIES
         
Maryland 65.64 63.03 Paper Trail -2.61
N. Carolina 56.34 54.58 Paper Trail -1.76
Connecticut 51.64 51.8 Paper Trail 0.16
Arkansas 66.02 66.28 No Paper Trail 0.26
Florida 63.96 64.44 No Paper Trail 0.48
Vermont 12.98 13.62 Paper Trail 0.64
Pennsylvania 54.72 55.58 No Paper Trail 0.86
Oklahoma 47.79 49.16 Paper Trail 1.37
Michigan 46.84 48.28 Paper Trail 1.44
Missouri 48.12 49.61 Paper Trail 1.49
Illinois 48.84 50.46 Paper Trail 1.62
Virginia 62.45 64.29 No Paper Trail 1.84
Indiana 44.64 47.5 No Paper Trail 2.86
Tennessee 63.17 66.11 No Paper Trail 2.94
Massachusets 46.73 50.11 Paper Trail 3.38
Texas 61.52 65.21 No Paper Trail 3.69
Mississippi 78.48 82.63 No Paper Trail 4.15
Ohio 51.92 56.5 Paper Trail 4.58
Alabama 73.16 77.84 Paper Trail 4.68
S. Carolina 68.67 73.48 No Paper Trail 4.81
Georgia 65.72 71.33 No Paper Trail 5.61
New York 52 57.99 Paper Trail 5.99
Wisconsin 37 43.11 Paper Trail 6.11
Arizona 37 57.63 Paper Trail 20.63

Back to Geijsel and Barragan:

Quote

 

It is easy to do a close inspection of some states, such as Louisiana. All of the machines in use in Louisiana are the AVC Advantage machines, which Princeton Computer Science Professor Andrew Appel describes as hackable. Our close analysis of Louisiana revealed anomalies that favored Clinton in 85% of the counties. The Republicans did seem not benefit from the statistical anomaly in any of the counties.

The 'anomaly' or discrepancy or irregularity in Louisiana is not noted in the table above; instead the authors go elsewhere:  a Real Clear Politics average (of four polls) which stood at 60.5% of voter intentions for Hillary Clinton against 21.5% for Bernie Sanders.  But, but but. But -- the final official tally had Sanders up to 23.5% and Clinton vaulting to 71.1% over the RCP average.

A closer look at the data the authors cite:

LA-GOP-Primary.png

So, the latest poll from Louisiana from Magellan estimated a 47-point-difference between the two candidates.  This is an obvious indication that the 'average' was off, not the underlying polls.  But the authors fudge this over by assuming the average instead of the trend.  Only three polls went into that average.

As for their county by county 'analysis' ... it is mired in error because it checks those counties against that same average of the polls.  They are hunting for a signal and they find it.  Look at the wording of this phrase, "According to polls, Clinton was expected to get around 60%."  This is misleading.  Now I suspect a greater bias.

Quote

Download Republican data: Note the flatness of the curves (results in smaller precincts are similar to results in larger precincts)

Download Democratic data: Note the steepness of the curves (results in larger precincts tend to favor Clinton).

Note that according to polls, Clinton was expected to get around 60%. The official result showed her at 71%. \

Back to my now suspect authors.

Quote

This doesn’t seem to reflect racial factors (the pattern shows up heavily White counties and in heavily African-American counties), and it doesn’t reflect urban vs. rural divide since large cities can often have small precincts and small towns can often have big precincts

In other words, the 47% Clinton split over Sanders was a state-wide effect. In Louisiana.  So, that last pre-election poll accurately called it, while if the 'official' books of returns show that same 47%, in the authors' reasoning this must be assigned to electoral fraud. This is very suspect cherry-picking and special pleading.

(It did not occur to the authors to do a little proportional analysis with the other two Louisiana polls (September 2015 and March 2016. It just requires a little cross-multiplication to solve for the actual proportions of the Clinton/Sanders voter intention sampling. Hint: look for the missing (neither/dunno/don't care ...

Clinton 71.1 + Sanders 23.2 = 94.4.   So in the 'official' [supposedly Clinton-hacked] results from election day we have 95% of the votes for the duo. 

To the RCP 'average' now:  Clinton 60.5 + Sanders 21.5 = 82. So some 18% of the total average is 'missing' or unassigned. 

To the last, most recent, of the LA polls:  we get 'missing' numbers too.  In that case a full 25% has not answered Clinton or Sanders. She tops 60, but he gets only 14.  

The point here is probably one Merlin Jetton would better explain mathematically. But by my figures, the last polling numbers 'map up' to the official count.  The proportion between Bernie and Hillary was more or less the same.  

Quote

One theory that others have advanced for this is that, if anyone were to attempt to hack electronic voting machines, they may choose to do it in larger precincts (lots of votes.)

That link goes to speculative fantasy politics at Madison.com.  The key word here is "if" ... 

Quote

Overall, one would expect that, within the same geographical area (a county), the vote should be similar at larger and smaller precincts. However, this principle is violated for larger precincts only in the Democratic race.

What is interesting here is the misdirection, which again deepens my suspicion that the 'hacking' is done by the authors.  We are invited by this phrase to dig into several county-level comparisons.  What the authors are suggesting is an anomaly.  They are speaking of proportions and percentages, in that a given county will have a mix of precinct sizes in actual practice. "Larger" is undefined.  And any difference between larger and smaller is unexplored.

Here the author veers off into material that has no bearing on the argument presented, the three arms.  It is separate and apart, and can be judged apart from the main claims.

Quote

Two of the three main voting machine companies (Dominion Voting and Hart Intercivic, through H.I.G. Capital) are donors to the Clinton Foundation [Check Guccifer 2.0’s spreadsheet.] This brings up issues of private companies being involved in public elections. It does NOT mean the companies hacked the vote. Anyone with knowledge and access could potentially influence the machines (see report from Professor Appel.)

We will have more to say about the rest of the states soon (we will show data at the level of detail that we did for Louisiana.) Other states do not provide their data in as user-friendly form as Louisiana."

Bear in mind that in your weird system of primaries, the party is in control of the machinery during the primaries. You don't find a GOP 'watcher' over Democratic primary races and vice versa.  In the general election the two parties (and third and fourth parties) are both in the actual procedures. So, whatever implied threat to election integrity suggested by the bad math and wobbly warrants of the authors needs to be checked against the landscape for November's big day.

(another thing to look at in the large table above is that of the subset of states that the authors flagged as showing discrepant results between exit polls and official tallies, there are more outliers from Paper states.  Indeed, the greatest outliers were in states that the authors would describe as very low risk:  Arizona, Ohio, North Carolina, Ohio, New York, Wisconsin and Alabama.

That's right. The (more 'perfect' or 'true') uncorrected early exit polls showed Wild Inaccuracies in Paper Trail states too.  For example, Arizona showed a full 20 percent gulf between 'exit poll' "predictions" and the final result.

So, my preliminary conclusion writes itself:  the authors have used statistical mischief to flog an unsupported insinuation. That shouldn't be good enough for an Objectivish person.

Verify, then maybe trust.)

Quote

This may be the best reason yet to cast a vote against Clinton in favor of Trump. And the only way she might be held accountable. After the Sanders experience there is no reason to think that computerized voting machines wont be hacked and rigged. The Stanford analysis shows ballots with paper trails were at odds with electronic ballots that favored Clinton. Ive been reluctant to go all in with Trump though given these explanations I could get over my objections to him.

Roger Stones piece includes several links, the Stanford paper being just one.

http://thehill.com/blogs/pundits-blog/presidential-campaign/291534-can-the-2016-election-be-rigged-you-bet

 

Geoff, the material support for the "Clintonists Hacked Out Bernie" suggestion is wanting.  For me it boils down to: "How was Bernie 'hacked' in exactly the same way in Arizona and the other states on the 'Safe' list?"

You say, "The Stanford analysis."  In fact, the paper does not carry any 'Stanford' weight -- at the moment it is a self-published (on a Bernie site) monograph at best. More importantly, I have shown in my analysis that the paper's supposedly cogent data is misrepresented in several ways.   In any case, their point was not that paper-trails were different from electronic ballots, but that the final totals were ONLY explainable by hackery.  

I can recommend voting for Trump.  The best reason for voting for Trump is to prevent a Clinton victory under 'normal' conditions. I do suggest discounting wild claims of unspecified 'rigging' and investigating other claims that appear more plausible.  

A final sort of helpful suggestion for those properly vigilant against hanky-panky assumed or imagined or made-up -- keep your Rand Goggles On.  Use the epistemological rigor of Rand's Reason Razor to help sort out contradictory information.  Always assume that there is going to be a Response or Replies-To any strong allegation.   

Trump can use help in expanding his voter pool.  There are 80 days to sail in the election balloon.  I would advise Mr Trump, his supporters and his campaign teams to Get Out The Vote.  Volunteer, volunteer, volunteer.  "Sacrifice" your time to persuading waverers in your social group that Mr Trump deserves their votes. 

Griping and speculating about a Big Bad Wolf of fraud is not going to pay any dividends if the get out the vote efforts fall short.  In the end, Clinton will be inaugurated if the Trump campaign does not amass enough electoral votes to prevent it.

______________________

** -- the source of the suspect exit-poll data is from the blog of a semi-famous guy called Richard Charnin, according to citations at the authors' main spreadsheet.  Here he is taking the time to explain himself:

Quote

 

JFK: Proving the Warren Commission was a Hoax and Oswald was framed


Richard Charnin
Aug. 15, 2016


Reclaiming-Science: The JFK Conspiracy

Online trolls who try to discredit my election fraud analysis say that I am a JFK Conspiracy nut. I must be doing something right. For those who are interested, this is a quick JFK conspiracy course.

https://richardcharnin.wordpress.com/category/2016-election/

 


 

 

Edited by william.scherk

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