Washburn's World

My take on the world. My wife often refers to this as the WWW (Weird World of Washburn)

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Location: Germantown, Wisconsin, United States

I am a simple country boy transplanted from the Piehl Township in northern Wisconsin to the Milwaukee metropolitan area who came down "sout" in 1980 for college and have stayed in the area since.
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Wednesday, April 06, 2005

The Canvassing of Wards 188 and 189

I watched the part of the canvass of wards 188 and 189 which took place at the polling place, 3301 S. 55th. It was different than the local canvasses I have observed in Hales Corners or Germantown. I am not sure if it was illegal.

The chief inspector (Wendy I believe) stated there were 196 electors for ward 189 and 246 electors for ward 188. This is a total of 442 electors for the polling place. The Opti-Tech III machine clearly displayed 440 ballots cast. There was no effort to reconcile these numbers. When as the machine tape was read, the tape contained a report for each ward. I asked what was the numer of ballots casts for each ward as reported on the tape. I was rebuffed and was directed to look at the LED display of 440. There was no effort by the chief inspector that I saw to determine the number of ballots cast or that those numbers reconcile to the number of electors for the ward. Statute 7.51(2)(a)

I asked again what were the numbers of ballots cast in each ward and why the numbers (electors and ballots cast) have not been reconciled. I was told "I have a good crew here." and "you are interfering with my closing this poll." She then took my name and day phone number so she could turn it over to the city attorney. Poll watching can be intimidating is you ask questions.

The second thing I noticed is that the ballots were never secured. I saw no counting of write-ins, no separation of ballots (write-in, damaged, challenged, etc.). In fact what I saw was that the lock box to the opti-tech III was opened. Into this chamber were added the several hundred unused ballots. This does not seem to be the usual meaning of secured.

It seemed the canvass was ajourning to a central counting location. But, I was told there was no central counting location. I then asked where they (the 4 non-chief inspectors) were going. I was told home. Even if the canvass is adjourned to a central counting location, the counting of write-ins must still be done at the polling place. I am confused as to when and by whom were the write-in ballots counted.

By 8:21 the Lyon's Park pavillion was empty and locked.


Anonymous steveegg said...

Very troubling. I'll wager that at least a few of those "unused" ballots were destined to be marked up.

Wed Apr 06, 03:46:00 PM CDT  
Blogger John Washburn said...

After I checked the statutes this mornign I call Let 'em Go Mike. The Milwuakee county DA's response to me; Tell the election commission.

The election commission did confirm the procedure is for the write-ins to be counted at the polling location. If that is the case that portion of the canvass was not open to the public. I was told in no uncertain terms to leave.

Wed Apr 06, 06:57:00 PM CDT  
Anonymous steveegg said...

Nothing like the old circle-jerk (guess McCan't didn't have his hot cocoa yesterday). I almost wish that there was a federal office here so the US Attorney just might have found a federal hook.

It certainly appears that there was no counting of write-ins. It certainly would be interesting to make an open-records request for those ballots and tape totals.

Thu Apr 07, 08:48:00 AM CDT  
Blogger John Washburn said...

First, no need for the OR request. The records are available for inspection at the City and county election commission. I'll be there Tuesday barring further platlette incidents.

As for the federal hook I sent a fax today to Biskupic regarding the pattern and practice of the poll inspectors. If the same crew of inspectors committed the same state felony (submit false canvass reports [12.13(2)(b)4]) over the course of 6 elections, you have an organizatin (crew) committing felonies. This is either a RICO hook or a 1964 Voting Rights act hook ro both. Either is federal. The inspectors' actions are the better target. you have identifiable people to whom particular acts at specific times can be assigned. A procecutor's dream.

Now the question is: Does Steven Buskupic agree with my amatuer analysis? We will see.

Thu Apr 07, 11:22:00 PM CDT  
Anonymous steveegg said...

Works for me (though I think an OR request would have to be made for the ballots; don't know if that would be successful because those are destroyed after a set period).

Too bad we can't film the process; that would make prosecution so much easier.

Fri Apr 08, 05:32:00 AM CDT  

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