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Buchanan Vote 2000 Hoax

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Pat Buchanan Votes Hoax

MOST PUZZLING STATEMENT SO FAR CONCERNING BALLOT CONFUSION IN FLORIDA



"PEOPLE VOTED FOR BUCHANAN BY MISTAKE!!! MORE THAN ONCE!!! ME, TOO." Ricki Golden-Olden (wrong-button-golden girl), a senior citizen who doesn't know anybody who would have voted for Pal Buchanan in her neighborhood, claims that after checking her name was spelled correctly on the absentee ballot listing posted near the voting booth she entered the confusing and claustrophobic place and only pushed the wrong button once - and then the correct button only once, interviewed on Hardball with Chris Matthews, LIVE - 5:55 PM Eastern Standard Time 6:66 PM Central Standard Time 7:77 PM Western Standard Time. Interesting and developing.

YES, PEOPLE - AT LEAST RICKI IS ALIVE TO TALK ABOUT HER VOTES, MISTAKEN OR IRREGULAR VOTES - SHE DIDN'T SAY WHETHER SHE WAS IRREGULAR THAT DAY, OR TODAY, EITHER. OH, WHAT FUN FREEDUMB LOVING PEOPLE ARE, RIGHT PAT? DUH P-AL.

STILL DON'T KNOW WHAT TIME IT IS IN FLORIDA. DEVELOPING...

HERE'S SAMPLE OF THE BALLOT RICKI CLAIMS SO CONFUSING TO GOLDEN-AGE VOTERS

Courtesy of Sun-Sentinel.compalmbeachballot



 
November 14, 2000

Palm Beach Vote Not "IRREGULAR"
Statistically, Gore's complaints don't add up

By Christopher DeMuth

The legal and public-relations battles over the Florida presidential vote are likely to come down to a single question: Should hand-counted ballots be added to the regular (machine-read) election returns for a few counties where the Democrats have requested hand counts, or should they be added for all counties, or should they be added for none?

In the key battleground of Palm Beach County, the Democrats' argument for adding hand-counted ballots rests in turn on a single assertion. The unadjusted Palm Beach vote, it is said, was anomalous as compared to other Florida counties, with Pat Buchanan receiving an inexplicably high number of votes. The "high" Buchanan vote--combined with complaints about the "butterfly" design of the Palm Beach ballot and the statements of some voters that they mistakenly voted for Buchanan rather than Gore--suggests that the county's voting procedures artificially suppressed the Vice President's vote.

The "high" Buchanan vote is essential because, without it, all that remains are the arguments over ballot design and the morning-after complaints of voters selected by the Gore organization. These factors alone cannot be grounds for a ballot hand-count, court intervention, or any other form of post-election adjustment--unless we are prepared to do the same in hundreds of other counties in Florida and other states where the vote was close. The butterfly ballot was used in other jurisdictions, and there are both pros and cons to this (and other) ballot designs. The Bush and Gore organizations could undoubtedly produce an endless stream of voters who failed for one reason or another to register their "true" choices in the voting booth. If these issues justify post-hoc adjustment, the election result will be postponed indefinitely and, perhaps, effectively nullified.

But there was not, in fact, anything anomalous or irregular in the Palm Beach County election returns, and nothing in the returns to suggest that Buchanan "took" votes from Gore. The arguments to the contrary consist of two assertions. The first is simply that Buchanan received more votes (3,412) in Palm Beach County than in any other Florida county. But Palm Beach is one of Florida's most populous counties, and 16,695 of its residents are registered with the Reform, American Reform, or Independent parties--the second largest county registration for these parties in all of Florida. Taking account of the county's size and party registration, Buchanan's Palm Beach County vote was strong but not a statistical "outlier." In several other counties, Buchanan received a higher percentage of votes cast than his 0.79% in Palm Beach County. And in several others, he garnered more than 20 percent (3,412/16,695) of the Reform, American Reform, and Independent Party registration.

The second, more sophisticated assertion is that Buchanan's Palm Beach County vote was much higher than would have been projected by statistical methods. Last week, two economists associated with the Vice President released the results of a regression study that compared the Buchanan, Gore, and Bush votes across all Florida counties. If Buchanan had received the same votes relative to Bush in Palm Beach as in other Florida counties, his Palm Beach vote would have been only 1,200. This, they said, "appears to suggest some irregularity" in the Palm Beach County vote.

Their study, however, entirely omits party registration data. Party registration varies considerably from county to county, and it is obviously a powerful measure of voters' inclinations--unaffected by ballot design and other voting procedures. It makes much more sense that a candidate's vote would correlate, county by county, with his party's voter registration than with the votes cast for the other candidates.

Kevin Hassett of the American Enterprise Institute and John Lott of the Yale Law School have since analyzed the Florida voting data with party registration data factored in. They independently reached the following conclusions:

First, most though not all of Buchanan's "excess" Palm Beach County votes (compared to his votes in other counties) can be explained by the high Reform, American Reform, and Independent Party registration in Palm Beach County.

Second, Gore also received "excess" votes in Palm Beach County. Whether compared to Democratic Party registration or to the votes received by Bush and Buchanan, Gore did better, not worse, in Palm Beach County than in other Florida counties. Gore's Palm Beach "excess" was even greater than Buchanan's.

Third, Bush received fewer votes in Palm Beach County than in other Florida counties. As in the case of the Gore "excess," the Bush "shortfall" in Palm Beach exists both when Bush's votes are correlated with the votes received by the other candidates (the Gore analysts' procedure) and when they are correlated with Republican Party registration (the procedure used by Hassett and Lott).

Statistical analysis cannot account for all of the variation in voting patterns from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. But it can and does say that there was nothing "irregular" in the Palm Beach County voting returns, and nothing to suggest that Buchanan's votes somehow suppressed Gore's. If anyone can complain about losing "mistaken" votes to Buchanan on the butterfly ballot, it is not Gore but Bush (Buchanan appeared between Gore and Bush on that ballot). There are many possible explanations for the relative performance of the three candidates that have nothing to do with ballot design. Buchanan's part-time residence in Palm Beach County may have boosted his votes. Palm Beach County is heavily Democratic, and perhaps some of the dominant Democratic voters talked their Republican friends into voting for Gore. We cannot say for sure, but we can say that nothing in the voting returns invites further scrutiny or special adjustments to add votes for Gore.

Indeed, precisely because Palm Beach County is predominantly Democratic, even "neutral" adjustments, such as hand counts that add all "partially perforated" ballots, will artificially skew the Florida vote in Gore's direction if applied only in that county (or only in other Democratic counties). The initial Palm Beach hand counts demonstrate this--and also provide further evidence that the election-night count in that county was not anomalous. The hand count has not unearthed a mountain of uncounted Gore votes, as would have happened if the "irregularity" thesis had been correct. To the contrary, and consistent with the Hassett and Lott analyses, the hand count has found relatively fewer new Gore votes and relatively more new Bush votes than would have been expected from the county's party registration and election night votes. Rather than correct an anomaly, all the procedure can do is to add more votes for Gore than for Bush because confined to a Democratic county. In sum, considerations of fairness as well as finality argue for taking the Florida recount--including absentee and overseas ballots but not hand-counted ballots from counties selected for partisan purposes--as final.

Christopher DeMuth is president of the American Enterprise Institute. He was a policy adviser to Governor Bush during the election campaign.

The American Enterprise Online - www.TheAmericanEnterprise.org

The Buchanan Votes Hoax
Desperate Spin from Florida Democrats

By Jay C. Robbins
November 13, 2000


Anyone who actually votes in Florida knows that Rep. Robert Wexler's claim that over 3,000 voters accidentally voted for Buchanan instead of Gore is at best a Gore-style exaggeration. More likely, it is a deliberate lie, calculated to cast a shadow over what is so far a calm, orderly, and by-the-book election recount. Truth be told, the mere fact that we can conduct this process without guns, tanks, and violence is proof positive that democracy is the ambrosia of all human political systems.

First the facts. In Florida we vote with old-fashioned punch ballots. No fancy bells and whistles in the voting booth. No levers to pull. No buttons to press. No voting machines and curtains. It is just a card that you stick into a slot. After you do that, you secure the cardstock ballot on two unmistakable red pins that make it next to impossible to improperly position your ballot. Finally, you start punching away with what looks like a long push pin.

I'll admit, when you are finished voting with a punch ballot, you do not come away with the spine-tingling feeling that this strip of cardstock, which still looks exactly as it did before you performed your civic duty, has attained some sort of legal significance. It just has a few holes now. Since I'm a bit of a control freak, this worries me sometimes. Therefore, like most voters, when I'm finished I inspect the numbers of the punched holes on my ballot and compare them to the numbers assigned to the candidates. It takes about 10 seconds.

I've never known this simple process to fail. Ever. There are no moving parts. The push pin thing always perforates the card. And the print is large enough for even the visually impaired to read with ease.

Once you are finished punching, the last step is even easier. You put the ballot in a box. It's like mailing a letter. And if you have any trouble, there are people at the polls to help you. These attendants are so good at what they do that I watched one yesterday stop a soccer mom who almost walked out of the polling place with her ballot, purse, and car keys in the same hand. Whoops.

That said, if Mr. Wexler is telling the truth that he saw "about 3,000" Floridians vote for the wrong man "with my own eyes," he must have either 1) been a partisan illegally watching the polls from inside, which is a serious crime in Florida 2) have x-ray vision; 3) be fibbing to the country. I'll let you, the reader, decide what's most likely the truth here.

Why Mr. Wexler would even do this is beyond me. He knows that there is no way to document his accusations. And any hearsay evidence he could bring forth is beyond suspect, and bordering on laughable. Why, then, is he trying to muddy up the water?

The answer probably is to set Mr. Bush up for future accusations that the Democrats really won this unprecedented race. And perhaps the move is also calculated to steal from the soon-to-be President-elect the strong moral position and mandate that a clean and clear victory in Florida will necessarily carry.

In any event, it is not going to work. And that's not because Mr. Wexler doesn't have the will to try. He surely is doing everything he can to confuse and skew this issue. The real reason that he will fail is because our system and our voters are too strong and too wise to swallow his type of ill-conceived poison.

Mr. Robbins is a writer from Florida. This article is courtesy of The National Review.

Accuracy In Media

The Buchanan Votes Hoax
Desperate Spin from Florida Democrats
By Jay C. Robbins
November 13, 2000
An excerpt:

First the facts. In Florida we vote with old-fashioned punch ballots. No fancy bells and whistles in the voting booth. No levers to pull. No buttons to press. No voting machines and curtains. It is just a card that you stick into a slot. After you do that, you secure the cardstock ballot on two unmistakable red pins that make it next to impossible to improperly position your ballot. Finally, you start punching away with what looks like a long push pin.

I'll admit, when you are finished voting with a punch ballot, you do not come away with the spine-tingling feeling that this strip of cardstock, which still looks exactly as it did before you performed your civic duty, has attained some sort of legal significance. It just has a few holes now. Since I'm a bit of a control freak, this worries me sometimes. Therefore, like most voters, when I'm finished I inspect the numbers of the punched holes on my ballot and compare them to the numbers assigned to the candidates. It takes about 10 seconds.

I've never known this simple process to fail. Ever. There are no moving parts. The push pin thing always perforates the card. And the print is large enough for even the visually impaired to read with ease.

Once you are finished punching, the last step is even easier. You put the ballot in a box. It's like mailing a letter. And if you have any trouble, there are people at the polls to help you. These attendants are so good at what they do that I watched one yesterday stop a soccer mom who almost walked out of the polling place with her ballot, purse, and car keys in the same hand. Whoops.

That said, if Mr. Wexler is telling the truth that he saw "about 3,000" Floridians vote for the wrong man "with my own eyes," he must have either 1) been a partisan illegally watching the polls from inside, which is a serious crime in Florida 2) have x-ray vision; 3) be fibbing to the country. I'll let you, the reader, decide what's most likely the truth here.

SO WILL TRUTH ON-LINE READ FOR YOURSELF. OBSERVE FOR YOURSELF.

THE BUCHANAN VOTE HOAX:

Jay C. Robbins
Accuracy In Media
nationalreview.com

World Net Daily Letter-To-Editor
 
WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 15, 2000 Caught chad-handed During the '70s, I was an election judge for the Democratic Party in Austin, Texas. At that time, they used the same machines for voting. It was not unusual for some of the chads to come off the card when inserted in the machine. When that happened, the voter would return the card, we would record the reason, and allow the voter to select another card and vote again. Part of the responsibilities were to remove the cards from the ballot box, make sure they were all face up and align them so they would pass through the counting machine. Here too, some chads would drop off of the cards, and there was not a thing we could do about it, as we did not know where it came from. If a person or party wanted to make sure of the outcome of an election, it would be easy to do so when checking the cards by hand. In my opinion, Gore is stealing the election from Bush with the help of his followers.
 
CHARLES MATHESON, SR.
 
 Worldnetdaily.com

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