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Florida Election Hacked?
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Posted 2004-11-07, 12:33 PM
When I spoke with Jeff Fisher this morning (Saturday, November 06, 2004), the Democratic candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives from Florida's 16th District said he was waiting for the FBI to show up. Fisher has evidence, he says, not only that the Florida election was hacked, but of who hacked it and how. And not just this year, he said, but that these same people had previously hacked the Democratic primary race in 2002 so that Jeb Bush would not have to run against Janet Reno, who presented a real threat to Jeb, but instead against Bill McBride, who Jeb beat.

"It was practice for a national effort," Fisher told me.

And some believe evidence is accumulating that the national effort happened on November 2, 2004.

The State of Florida, for example, publishes a county-by-county record of votes cast and people registered to vote by party affiliation. Net denizen Kathy Dopp compiled the official state information into a table, available at http://ustogether.org/Florida_Election.htm, and noticed something startling.

While the heavily scrutinized touch-screen voting machines seemed to produce results in which the registered Democrat/Republican ratios largely matched the Kerry/Bush vote, in Florida's counties using results from optically scanned paper ballots - fed into a central tabulator PC and thus vulnerable to hacking – the results seem to contain substantial anomalies.

In Baker County, for example, with 12,887 registered voters, 69.3% of them Democrats and 24.3% of them Republicans, the vote was only 2,180 for Kerry and 7,738 for Bush, the opposite of what is seen everywhere else in the country where registered Democrats largely voted for Kerry.

In Dixie County, with 4,988 registered voters, 77.5% of them Democrats and a mere 15% registered as Republicans, only 1,959 people voted for Kerry, but 4,433 voted for Bush.

The pattern repeats over and over again - but only in the counties where optical scanners were used. Franklin County, 77.3% registered Democrats, went 58.5% for Bush. Holmes County, 72.7% registered Democrats, went 77.25% for Bush.

Yet in the touch-screen counties, where investigators may have been more vigorously looking for such anomalies, high percentages of registered Democrats generally equaled high percentages of votes for Kerry. (I had earlier reported that county size was a variable – this turns out not to be the case. Just the use of touch-screens versus optical scanners.)

More visual analysis of the results can be seen at http://us together.org/election04/FloridaDataStats.htm, and www.rubberbug.com/temp/Florida2004chart.htm. Note the trend line – the only variable that determines a swing toward Bush was the use of optical scan machines.

One possible explanation for this is the "Dixiecrat" theory, that in Florida white voters (particularly the rural ones) have been registered as Democrats for years, but voting Republican since Reagan. Looking at the 2000 statistics, also available on Dopp's site, there are similar anomalies, although the trends are not as strong as in 2004. But some suggest the 2000 election may have been questionable in Florida, too.

One of the people involved in Dopp's analysis noted that it may be possible to determine the validity of the "rural Democrat" theory by comparing Florida's white rural counties to those of Pennsylvania, another swing state but one that went for Kerry, as the exit polls there predicted. Interestingly, the Pennsylvania analysis, available at http://ustogether.org/election04/PA_vote_patt.htm, doesn't show the same kind of swings as does Florida, lending credence to the possibility of problems in Florida.

Even more significantly, Dopp had first run the analysis while filtering out smaller (rural) counties, and still found that the only variable that accounted for a swing toward Republican voting was the use of optical-scan machines, whereas counties with touch-screen machines generally didn't swing - regardless of size.

Others offer similar insights, based on other data. A professor at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, noted that in Florida the vote to raise the minimum wage was approved by 72%, although Kerry got 48%. "The correlation between voting for the minimum wage increase and voting for Kerry isn't likely to be perfect," he noted, "but one would normally expect that the gap - of 1.5 million votes - to be far smaller than it was."

While all of this may or may not be evidence of vote tampering, it again brings the nation back to the question of why several states using electronic voting machines or scanners programmed by private, for-profit corporations and often connected to modems produced votes inconsistent with exit poll numbers.

Those exit poll results have been a problem for reporters ever since Election Day.

Election night, I'd been doing live election coverage for WDEV, one of the radio stations that carries my syndicated show, and, just after midnight, during the 12:20 a.m. Associated Press Radio News feed, I was startled to hear the reporter detail how Karen Hughes had earlier sat George W. Bush down to inform him that he'd lost the election. The exit polls were clear: Kerry was winning in a landslide. "Bush took the news stoically," noted the AP report.

But then the computers reported something different. In several pivotal states.

Conservatives see a conspiracy here: They think the exit polls were rigged.

Dick Morris, the infamous political consultant to the first Clinton campaign who became a Republican consultant and Fox News regular, wrote an article for The Hill, the publication read by every political junkie in Washington, DC, in which he made a couple of brilliant points.

"Exit Polls are almost never wrong," Morris wrote. "They eliminate the two major potential fallacies in survey research by correctly separating actual voters from those who pretend they will cast ballots but never do and by substituting actual observation for guesswork in judging the relative turnout of different parts of the state."

He added: "So, according to ABC-TVs exit polls, for example, Kerry was slated to carry Florida, Ohio, New Mexico, Colorado, Nevada, and Iowa, all of which Bush carried. The only swing state the network had going to Bush was West Virginia, which the president won by 10 points."

Yet a few hours after the exit polls were showing a clear Kerry sweep, as the computerized vote numbers began to come in from the various states the election was called for Bush.

How could this happen?

On the CNBC TV show "Topic A With Tina Brown," several months ago, Howard Dean had filled in for Tina Brown as guest host. His guest was Bev Harris, the Seattle grandmother who started www.blackboxvoting.org from her living room. Bev pointed out that regardless of how votes were tabulated (other than hand counts, only done in odd places like small towns in Vermont), the real "counting" is done by computers. Be they Diebold Opti-Scan machines, which read paper ballots filled in by pencil or ink in the voter's hand, or the scanners that read punch cards, or the machines that simply record a touch of the screen, in all cases the final tally is sent to a "central tabulator" machine.

That central tabulator computer is a Windows-based PC.

"In a voting system," Harris explained to Dean on national television, "you have all the different voting machines at all the different polling places, sometimes, as in a county like mine, there's a thousand polling places in a single county. All those machines feed into the one machine so it can add up all the votes. So, of course, if you were going to do something you shouldn't to a voting machine, would it be more convenient to do it to each of the 4000 machines, or just come in here and deal with all of them at once?"

Dean nodded in rhetorical agreement, and Harris continued. "What surprises people is that the central tabulator is just a PC, like what you and I use. It's just a regular computer."

"So," Dean said, "anybody who can hack into a PC can hack into a central tabulator?"

Harris nodded affirmation, and pointed out how Diebold uses a program called GEMS, which fills the screen of the PC and effectively turns it into the central tabulator system. "This is the official program that the County Supervisor sees," she said, pointing to a PC that was sitting between them loaded with Diebold's software.

Bev then had Dean open the GEMS program to see the results of a test election. They went to the screen titled "Election Summary Report" and waited a moment while the PC "adds up all the votes from all the various precincts," and then saw that in this faux election Howard Dean had 1000 votes, Lex Luthor had 500, and Tiger Woods had none. Dean was winning.

"Of course, you can't tamper with this software," Harris noted. Diebold wrote a pretty good program.

But, it's running on a Windows PC.

So Harris had Dean close the Diebold GEMS software, go back to the normal Windows PC desktop, click on the "My Computer" icon, choose "Local Disk C:," open the folder titled GEMS, and open the sub-folder "LocalDB" which, Harris noted, "stands for local database, that's where they keep the votes." Harris then had Dean double-click on a file in that folder titled "Central Tabulator Votes," which caused the PC to open the vote count in a database program like Excel.

In the "Sum of the Candidates" row of numbers, she found that in one precinct Dean had received 800 votes and Lex Luthor had gotten 400.

"Let's just flip those," Harris said, as Dean cut and pasted the numbers from one cell into the other. "And," she added magnanimously, "let's give 100 votes to Tiger."

They closed the database, went back into the official GEMS software "the legitimate way, you're the county supervisor and you're checking on the progress of your election."

As the screen displayed the official voter tabulation, Harris said, "And you can see now that Howard Dean has only 500 votes, Lex Luthor has 900, and Tiger Woods has 100." Dean, the winner, was now the loser.

Harris sat up a bit straighter, smiled, and said, "We just edited an election, and it took us 90 seconds."

On live national television. (You can see the clip on www.votergate.tv.) And they had left no tracks whatsoever, Harris said, noting that it would be nearly impossible for the election software – or a County election official - to know that the vote database had been altered.

Which brings us back to Morris and those pesky exit polls that had Karen Hughes telling George W. Bush that he'd lost the election in a landslide.

Morris's conspiracy theory is that the exit polls "were sabotage" to cause people in the western states to not bother voting for Bush, since the networks would call the election based on the exit polls for Kerry. But the networks didn't do that, and had never intended to.

According to congressional candidate Fisher, it makes far more sense that the exit polls were right - they weren't done on Diebold PCs - and that the vote itself was hacked.

And not only for the presidential candidate - Jeff Fisher thinks this hit him and pretty much every other Democratic candidate for national office in the most-hacked swing states.

So far, the only national "mainstream" media to come close to this story was Keith Olbermann on his show Friday night, November 5th, when he noted that it was curious that all the voting machine irregularities so far uncovered seem to favor Bush. In the meantime, the Washington Post and other media are now going through single-bullet-theory-like contortions to explain how the exit polls had failed.

But I agree with Fox's Dick Morris on this one, at least in large part. Wrapping up his story for The Hill, Morris wrote in his final paragraph, "This was no mere mistake. Exit polls cannot be as wrong across the board as they were on election night. I suspect foul play."
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Posted 2004-11-07, 12:36 PM in reply to Demosthenes's post "Florida Election Hacked?"
Well I know a friend told me that a week before the election, some documents were leaked to the BBC about planned GOP operative activity.

From what I understand, the document included the plan to have operatives set up road blocks in black neighborhoods during voting day, for obvious reasons.

Secondly, there is a report of a woman in Florida who had to try to get the machine to register her vote for Kerry as Kerry instead of Bush ten times, before finally calling a technical assistant.
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Posted 2004-11-07, 12:39 PM in reply to Grav's post starting "Well I know a friend told me that a..."
This election shit just never dies does it? I'm glad Canada's system is just so simple that you can't screw it up. What could be easier than "The dude with the most votes wins"
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Posted 2004-11-07, 02:04 PM in reply to wilma's post starting "This election shit just never dies does..."
i r lives in flordia!!! lo lo

hay did u kno flordia has teh worst highschool grad rate evar!?!? 44% dont grad!! lo lo but i r smart i grad!!!!! go TEAM!!
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Posted 2004-11-07, 02:34 PM in reply to Mantralord's post starting "i r lives in flordia!!! lo lo hay..."
That's plagiarize, MJ. I will give a F for this thread.
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Posted 2004-11-07, 02:35 PM in reply to Ganga's post starting "That's plagiarize, MJ. I will give a F..."
Ganga said:
That's plagiarize, MJ.
Please tell me you're kidding. It's so obvious that I didn't write this from the first line, that the fact that I didn't write this should never even be mentioned.
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Posted 2004-11-07, 02:49 PM in reply to Demosthenes's post starting "Please tell me you're kidding. It's so..."
This should be in conspricy. MJ just give up on the election its over, America has gone with Bush, deal with it.
!King_Amazon! said:
Just ask the married chick he fucked.

Who Delivers ten times out of ten?
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Posted 2004-11-07, 02:57 PM in reply to MightyJoe's post starting "This should be in conspricy. MJ just..."
MightyJoe said:
This should be in conspricy. MJ just give up on the election its over, America has gone with Bush, deal with it.
Move it to conspiracy then. It's just conversation, I happend to say nothing about Bush in this particular thread. I have given up on the election. I can't do anything about it, but it's conversation so I'm posting it.

Bush sucks.

Now I've said something about Bush.
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Posted 2004-11-07, 03:05 PM in reply to Demosthenes's post starting "Move it to conspiracy then. It's just..."
I think you should atleast put the source link? So i know if this information is from a bullshit site or not.
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Posted 2004-11-07, 03:41 PM in reply to Ganga's post starting "I think you should atleast put the..."
How would you know that? even if the site was posted...
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Posted 2004-11-07, 03:43 PM in reply to Mantralord's post starting "i r lives in flordia!!! lo lo hay..."
mantralord said:
i r lives in flordia!!! lo lo

hay did u kno flordia has teh worst highschool grad rate evar!?!? 44% dont grad!! lo lo but i r smart i grad!!!!! go TEAM!!
44% holy fucking shit batman
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Posted 2004-11-07, 08:01 PM in reply to Demosthenes's post "Florida Election Hacked?"
My friend and I believe that there was something wrong with this whole election. Though he is pro-Bush, he agrees that this election was somehow rigged.
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Posted 2004-11-07, 08:04 PM in reply to KagomJack's post starting "My friend and I believe that there was..."
KagomJack said:
My friend and I believe that there was something wrong with this whole election. Though he is pro-Bush, he agrees that this election was somehow rigged.
What lead you to that conclusion?
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Posted 2004-11-07, 08:06 PM in reply to Demosthenes's post starting "What lead you to that conclusion?"
Bush got the more votes than any other US president (which is what I heard from the radio...a pro-Bush radio place i was forced to listen to)
that and he won some places that were expected to go to Kerry (I dont' recall them right off)
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Posted 2004-11-07, 10:42 PM in reply to KagomJack's post starting "Bush got the more votes than any other..."
Ofcourse he got more votes, more people voted.

I don't really care... Bush and Kerry are essentially the same person.
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Posted 2004-11-07, 10:56 PM in reply to `Insolence`'s post starting "Ofcourse he got more votes, more people..."
I actually don't believe much of the stuff said above. I just posted it because I figured it would spark some conversation, plus it'd piss of the Bush supporters.
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Posted 2004-11-08, 06:22 AM in reply to Demosthenes's post starting "I actually don't believe much of the..."
Lmao the democrates are such poor sports.
I use to be a shoe shinner now I sip Aunt Jamima, I go to sleep in Europe and wake back up in China. CLUB 977 The 80's Channel!!!!! -winamp radio is heaven on earth
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Posted 2004-11-08, 01:18 PM in reply to zagggon's post starting "Lmao the democrates are such poor..."
Stop acting as if you actually have a political allegiance or know anything at all about politics. You're an immature idiot who can't even vote.
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Posted 2004-11-09, 06:52 AM in reply to Demosthenes's post starting "I actually don't believe much of the..."
mjordan2nd said:
plus it'd piss of the Bush supporters.
I'm a Bush supporter and it didn't piss me off in the least bit. I laugh at your redundant attempts to get back at us. Hah.
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Posted 2004-11-09, 02:45 PM in reply to Thanatos's post starting "I'm a Bush supporter and it didn't piss..."
Thanatos said:
I'm a Bush supporter and it didn't piss me off in the least bit. I laugh at your redundant attempts to get back at us. Hah.
Here's another one for you to laugh at:

George W. Bush’s vote tallies, especially in the key state of Florida, are so statistically stunning that they border on the unbelievable.

While it’s extraordinary for a candidate to get a vote total that exceeds his party’s registration in any voting jurisdiction – because of non-voters – Bush racked up more votes than registered Republicans in 47 out of 67 counties in Florida. In 15 of those counties, his vote total more than doubled the number of registered Republicans and in four counties, Bush more than tripled the number.

Statewide, Bush earned about 20,000 more votes than registered Republicans.

By comparison, in 2000, Bush’s Florida total represented about 85 percent of the total number of registered Republicans, about 2.9 million votes compared with 3.4 million registered Republicans.

Bush achieved these totals although exit polls showed him winning only about 14 percent of the Democratic vote statewide – statistically the same as in 2000 when he won 13 percent of the Democratic vote – and losing Florida’s independent voters to Kerry by a 57 percent to 41 percent margin. In 2000, Gore won the independent vote by a much narrower margin of 47 to 46 percent.

[For details on the Florida turnout in 2000, see http://www.msnbc.com/m/d2k/g/polls.a...ice=P&state=FL. For details on the 2004 Florida turnout, see http://www.cnn.com/ELECTION/2004/pag...00/index.html]

Exit Poll Discrepancies

Similar surprising jumps in Bush’s vote tallies across the country – especially when matched against national exits polls showing Kerry winning by 51 percent to 48 percent – have fed suspicion among rank-and-file Democrats that the Bush campaign rigged the vote, possibly through systematic computer hacking.

Republican pollster Dick Morris said the Election Night pattern of mistaken exit polls favoring Kerry in six battleground states – Florida, Ohio, New Mexico, Colorado, Nevada and Iowa – was virtually inconceivable.

“Exit polls are almost never wrong,” Morris wrote. “So reliable are the surveys that actually tap voters as they leave the polling places that they are used as guides to the relative honesty of elections in Third World countries. … To screw up one exit poll is unheard of. To miss six of them is incredible. It boggles the imagination how pollsters could be that incompetent and invites speculation that more than honest error was at play here.”

But instead of following his logic that the discrepancy suggested vote tampering – as it would in Latin America, Africa or Eastern Europe – Morris postulated a bizarre conspiracy theory that the exit polls were part of a scheme to have the networks call the election for Kerry and thus discourage Bush voters on the West Coast. Of course, none of the networks did call any of the six states for Kerry, making Morris’s conspiracy theory nonsensical. Nevertheless, some Democrats have agreed with Morris's bottom-line recommendation that the whole matter deserves “more scrutiny and investigation.” [The Hill, Nov. 8, 2004]

Erroneous Votes

Democratic doubts about the Nov. 2 election have deepened with anecdotal evidence of voters reporting that they tried to cast votes for Kerry but touch-screen voting machines came up registering their votes for Bush.

In Ohio, election officials said an error with an electronic voting system in Franklin County gave Bush 3,893 extra votes in suburban Columbus, more than 1,000 percent more than he actually got.

Yet, without a nationwide investigation, it’s impossible to know whether those cases were isolated glitches or part of a more troubling pattern.

If Bush’s totals weren’t artificially enhanced, they would represent one of the most remarkable electoral achievements in U.S. history.

In the two presidential elections since Sen. Bob Dole lost to Bill Clinton in 1996, Bush would have increased Republican voter turnout nationwide by a whopping 52 percent from just under 40 million votes for Dole to just under 60 million votes for the GOP ticket in 2004.

Such an increase in voter turnout over two consecutive election cycles is not unprecedented, but has historically flowed from landslide victories that see shifting voting patterns, with millions of crossover voters straying from one party to the other.

For example, in 1972, Richard Nixon increased Republican turnout by 73.5 percent over Barry Goldwater’s performance two elections earlier. But this turnout was amplified by the fact that Goldwater lost in 1964 to Lyndon Johnson by about 23 percentage points and Nixon trounced George McGovern by 23 percentage points.

What’s remarkable about Bush’s increase over the last two elections is that Democrats have done an impressive job boosting their own voter turnout from 1996 to 2004. Over this period, candidates Al Gore and John Kerry increased Democratic turnout by about 18 percent, from roughly 47.5 million votes in 1996 to nearly 56 million in 2004.

What this suggests is that Bush is not so much winning his new votes from Democrats crossing over, but rather by going deeper than many observers thought possible into new pockets of dormant Republican voters.

Bush’s Gains

But where did these new voters come from, and how did Bush manage to accelerate his turnout gains at a time when the Democratic ticket was also substantially increasing its turnout?

While the statistical analysis of these new voters is only just beginning, Bush’s ability to find nearly 9 million new voters in an election year when his Democratic opponent also saw gains of about 5 million new voters is the story of the 2004 election.

Exit polls also suggest that voters identifying themselves as Republicans voted as a greater proportion of the electorate than in 2000 and that Bush won a slightly greater percent of the Republican vote.

The party breakdown in 2000 was 39 percent Democrats, 35 percent Republicans, and 27 percent independents. In 2000, Bush won the Republican vote by 91 percent to 8 percent; narrowly won the independent vote by 47 percent to 45 percent and picked up 11 percent of the Democratic vote compared with Gore’s Democratic turnout of 86 percent. [See http://www.cnn.com/ELECTION/2000/epolls/US/P000.html for details.]

According to exit polls this year, the turnout broke evenly among Democrats and Republicans, with about 37 percent each. Independents represented about 26 percent of the electorate. Kerry actually did better among independents, winning that group of voters by a narrow 49 percent to 48 percent margin.

However, Bush did slightly better among the larger number of Republican voters, winning 93 percent of their vote, while matching his 2000 performance by taking about 11 percent of the Democratic vote.

Registration Up

While this turnout might strike many observers as unusual in an election year that witnessed huge voter registration and mobilization efforts by Democrats and groups aligned with Democrats, the increased GOP turnout does seem to fit with the campaign strategy deployed by the Bush team to run to the base.

From the start of the 2004 campaign, political strategist Karl Rove and the Bush team made its goals clear – maximize Bush’s support among social and economic conservatives – including Evangelicals and Club for Growth/anti-government conservatives – and turn them out by driving up Kerry’s negatives with harsh attacks questioning Kerry’s leadership credentials.

This strategy emerged from Rove’s estimate after the 2000 election that 4 million Evangelical voters stayed home that year. The Bush/Rove strategy in 2004 rested primarily on turning out that base of support.

But, even if one were to estimate that 100 percent of these Evangelical voters turned out for Bush in 2004 and that 100 percent of Bush’s 2000 supporters turned out again for him, this still leaves about 5 million new Bush voters unaccounted for.

Altogether, Bush’s new 9 million votes came mainly from the largest states in the country. But nowhere was Bush’s performance more incredible than in Florida, where Bush found roughly 1 million new voters, about 11 percent all new Bush voters nationwide and more than twice the number of new voters than in any other state other than Texas.

Bush increased his turnout in all 67 Florida counties, marking the second consecutive election in which Bush increased Republican vote totals in all Florida counties, and overall achieved a 34 percent increase in Florida votes over his 2000 total.

Since Bob Dole’s 1996 turnout of 2.24 million Florida votes, Bush has increased the GOP’s performance in the state by an astonishing 74 percent. Making Bush’s gains even more impressive, Kerry also saw gains in all but five Florida counties and in 22 counties earned at least 10,000 more votes than Gore earned in 2000.

Exceeding Kerry

But Bush’s vote gains exceeded Kerry’s in all the large counties in the state except in heavily Democratic Miami-Dade, where Kerry increased his turnout by 56,000 new votes compared with Bush’s 40,000 new votes. This Democratic improvement in Miami-Dade seems to have come in large part from Democratic success in registering new voters in the county by almost a 2-to-1 margin over Republicans.

In spite of this new-voter registration advantage, Kerry only earned a 7-to-5 increase of new voter turnout over Bush in Miami-Dade, a statistical oddity given the fact that Kerry did a better job than Gore in turning out his Democratic base, earning a vote total equaling 85 percent of all registered Democrats in the county compared with Gore’s total in 2000 equaling 83 percent of all registered Democrats.

In other Democratic strongholds of Broward and Palm Beach counties, Kerry gained 114,000 new voters, earning nearly 770,000 votes, and bested Bush by more than 320,000 votes. But, this was actually a modest improvement for Bush over 2000, thanks to Bush’s increase of 119,000 new voters in these counties, from 330,000 votes in 2000 to 449,000 votes in 2004.

Bush’s performance in these two counties is worth studying in greater detail. In both counties, Democrats saw a significant increase in new voter registration since 2000, more than 77,000 newly registered Democrats in Broward and 34,000 newly registered Democrats in Palm Beach.

Republicans on the other hand only registered 17,000 new voters in Broward and a bit more than 2,000 new voters in Palm Beach. While both counties saw substantial numbers of new unaffiliated or third party registered voters, the Democratic advantage in both counties combined of more than 111,000 newly registered Dems against fewer than 20,000 newly registered GOP voters, as well as the voter intensity that these new registration rates usually represent, suggested that Kerry should have done better than Bush relative to the 2000 election.

Instead, Bush actually increased his vote total in the two counties by earning about 5,000 more new voters than Kerry.

New Level

Beyond southern Florida, Bush took turnout throughout the state to a new level, testing the bounds of statistical probability by winning votes seemingly from every corner of the state, from the panhandle to the Gulf Coast, from the I-4 corridor to the Atlantic Coast from Jacksonville to Miami.

Another county worth examining in some detail is Orange County, a swing county home to Orlando in the center of the state. As in Miami-Dade, Palm Beach, and Broward counties, Democrats successfully registered substantially more new voters than Republicans, about 49,000 new Democrats against about 25,000 new Republicans.

These gains broke what was once a statistical tie in registered voters between the parties, giving Democrats a 214,000 to 187,000 advantage across the county. But Kerry only managed a narrow countywide victory with 192,030 votes against 191,389 votes for Bush. In 2000, Gore carried the county with 140,115 votes against 134,476 votes for Bush.

While it's conceivable Bush might have achieved these and other gains through his hardball campaign strategies and strong get-out-the-vote effort, many Americans, looking at these and other statistically incredible Bush vote counts, are likely to continue to suspect that the Republicans put a thumb on the electoral scales, somehow exaggerating Bush's tallies through manipulation of computer tabulations.

Only an open-minded investigation with public scrutiny would have much hope of quelling these rising suspicions.
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