Thursday, August 19, 2004

Problems already with the 2004 Florida election

Unsettling stories are already coming out of Florida, presenting ominous signs that the 2004 presidential election may be as tainted as the 2000 election.

New York Times columnist Bob Herbert (8/16/04) reports

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

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

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


Many of the elderly black voters subjected to investigation by state police officers in Orlando are members of the Orlando League of Voters, which has been very successful in mobilizing the city's black vote.

Concerning absentee voting, Paul Krugman (8/17/04) reports, "Recently the Florida Republican Party sent out a brochure urging supporters to use absentee ballots to make sure their votes are counted." This suggests they are expecting problems with the new electronic voting machines installed in Florida --- voting machines that don't provide a paper record.


Other problems include the controversial felon list, which in 2000 provided the basis for denying a large number of legitimate voters the right to vote. It's still got problems....

For comprehensive information about electronic voting machines, check out Black Box Voting (