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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Friday, September 21, 2007

Paper work in City Ward 1 was not forged

I had reported earlier that the numbers for Ward One did not reconcile and that the signatures on the inspectors' report appeared to be all in the same hand and not that of any of the election inspectors and asked if this was evidence of forgery.

There is no explanation as to why the numbers do not reconcile other than the official explanation of: "mistakes were made". The questions regarding the inspectors' report though have been investigated and answered by the Milwaukee Deputy District Attorney, Bruce Landgraf. Here is the complete email chain explaining the inspectors' report.

Yes, the signatures are in the same hand. No, the signatures were not made by any of the election inspectors for City Ward 1. But, this is not a forgery or false canvass report. The copy of the inspectors' report given to me as the inspectors' report for city ward 1 was in fact the sample inspectors' report used during the training of chief inspectors during the summer and fall of 2004.

There is no statutorily required inspectors' report from city ward 1 ("mistakes were made"), but this is different than forgery or a false canvass report which is what I had asked to be investigated.

Given that Detective Saxton had already investigated this (or at least noticed the oddness of the inspectors' report), this whole set of questions could have been avoided if the final report from by the US Attorney/Milwaukee county Joint Task Force Investigating Possible Election Fraud during the November 2, 2004 Election had been released by now.

The whole inspectors' report from ward 1 is a mistake not forgery. I'm relieved. Aren't you?

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Report on WI SEB Meeting (20070912)

Last Wednesday (September 12, 2007), the Wisconsin State Elections Board met and considered 2 items for action; my March 9, 2005 complaint and the comments of Paul Malischke on the proposed rule ElBd 5.

Most of Paul's comments were to convert MAY's to SHALL's and to include ballot bags as something that should be sealed with numbered, tamper-resistant seals. All of his suggestions were excellent and the board directed the staff to consider incorporating the proposed changes into the new regulation. [Update: Here are the complete ammendments proposed by Fair elections Wisconsin]

A non action item was presented by Kathy Nickolaus asking the Board to propose legislative change so that poll workers can be drawn from the same county instead of the current requirement from the same municipality.

On the matter of my complaint the board's findings were:
  1. My contention that failing to canvasses votes correctly three times does not rise to the level of "willful negligence". No prosecutions of poll workers will happen.

  2. This matter needs further study by the staff. The Board directed the staff to come back with a recommendation for detecting and correcting such procedural omission in the past.

Bullet points on the discussions regarding my complaint:
  1. I did win over the point that my complaint was not just about Milwaukee nor was it just about the November 2, 2004 election. My specific complaint covered two other municipalities and 2 other elections.

  2. Susan Edman was put in an uncomfortable position in have to answer the points of my complaint when she was not around at the time of the events under discussion,

  3. I stated to the board and repeat it here election administration under Susan Edman is significantly better then it was under Sharon Robinson, Lisa Artison, or Julietta Henry.

  4. I still think there is room for improvement as the report from the Board Staff on the single ward audited from the November 7, 2006 election shows. Beneath the focus on the machine tapes and uncertain marks for Green is the fact that 3 ballots were not secured on election night, no write-in tally was done, and the inspectors' report was not properly signed. But, this is a fantastic improvement over the blank inspector's reports from wards in Madison and Milwaukee from the November 2004 election.

  5. It is the position of Kevin Kennedy that 7.51(2)(h) is only relevant in a recount or other election contest. So, if you PROVE the optical scanner miscounted some of the statistics printed on the end of day report (as Germantown district #1 did for November 2, 2004 and the City of Milwaukee did on September 12, 2006 for every polling locations with one scanner and more than one ward), then every other number printed by the miscounting machine is to be accepted as if correct on election night. Once the election inspectors document the machine's inability to count their statutory duty ends. it is up to a candidate or elector to contest the correctness of the machine-generated numbers.

  6. Kerry Dwyer of the board seemed a bit dismayed with a policy of Ex Machina Ex Cathedrum est. But the question then is what should be done and who should do it? Should the poll workers count all races by hand (my position), should the matter be brought to court and a hand recount only done when a court orders it (Mr. Kennedy's position) something in between (e.g. routine audits)?

Tasered America

As many of you have probably seen the government of the United States is now tasering people for peacefully asking inconvenient questions of those in power. If you have not here are two YouTube videos of the incident;

As conservative writer Craig Roberts points out: America is No More. The saddest irony is that this happened on September 17, Constitution Day. The point of Mr. Craig's article should not be lost. The agents of the state (the police in this case, BATF and marshals in others) commit brutalityand violate both the Constitution and their oaths to uphold it in broad daylight because no one, not rich or poor, not the powerful or the common is outraged by it. As a matter of fact most in the crowd initially cheered.

Some have commented that the young man's fears of being disappeared (at the end of the second video clip) are unfounded. But, are they? How far are we from the disappearing of people as happened under Juan and Eva Peron, Pinochet, Noriega, or Somoza?

I have been asked why I think government may be unnecessary and my stock response is to ask back what is the difference between the Government and the Mob? What is the difference between the Chicago Police and Al Capone's white fedoras? The answer is brutally simple, government agents can do things and the people of society will watch and cheer where if criminals do the same things the people of society resist, report and fight back. What makes this incident particularly grotesque is that a US Senator (nor any of his body guards) did not come to this citizen’s defense. The crowd did nothing.

How low the mighty have fallen.

The closest thing to resistance is a WOMAN yelling at the police to stop. How far are we from the blood of assassination staining the Senate steps and the august senator Kerry and his 99 brothers stepping over puddle to get to their offices?

We, as a society, are unworthy of the freedom granted to us by a loving creator.

Monday, September 10, 2007

March 9, 2005 Complaint to be Heard

My March 9, 2005 complaint to the Wisconsin State Elections Board will be heard this Wednesday, September 12, 2007.

Here is the meeting notice on the WI SEB web site and here is the memorandum from the staff to the board members which explains the complaint and offers the staffs interpretation of the merits of the complaint and the staff's recommendations to the board on the disposition of the complaint.

The summary the complaint found on page 6 is succinct and correct.

I must object to the attempt to dismiss the complaint for lack of personal knowledge. The staff report states:
    Predicating a complaint on “published reports” does not meet the personal knowledge standard. A complaint should be based on the personal knowledge of the complainant or of an affiant whose affidavit is the basis for the complaint.

But, the memorandum fails to note that I have no samples from the City of Milwaukee for the November 2, 2004 election, solely because the City Election Commission allowed me once to inspect the election records but never let me the copy the election records. Now that I have the November 2, 2004 election records I can bring in my summary of all 314 wards.

Complicating the complaint is the matter of the underlying election records. In the 30 months from the filing of this complaint to the hearing of this complaint, the records have been destroyed for 4 of the 5 elections cited in the complaint. The election records from the City of Milwaukee for the September 14, 2004 and February 15, 2005 elections have been destroyed. The election records for November 2, 2004 election for the villages of Germantown and Menomonee Falls have be destroyed. This is because I did not know enough at the time to demand a protective order for the records. Nor, did the staff of the Elections Board notify the three municipal clerks and 3 county clerks that the records were subject to a complaint and should be preserved pursuant to WI Stats 7.23(2) and subject to some other contest. Either of us could have asked for the preservation of the record, but neither of us did, so the records were destroyed when the 22 month retention period elapsed.

This should be an interesting meeting. Since, it seems I will alone against the legal counsel of the Board staff, and the 3 municipalities, I would ask you to pray on my behalf for wisdom, discernment, and a temperate tongue.

Friday, September 07, 2007

Follow-up on Ward One

As I reported earlier and on BradBlog.com, the election records for ward one did not reconcile and the signatures are certainly suspicious.

I contacted the office of the Milwaukee County Distric Attorney for a progress report. The answer was simple: "The investigation is ongoing."

The Election Commission has Lost 42 poll books

The Milwaukee City Election Commission has lost 42 poll books out of a total of 624. This is 6% or about 1 in 15 poll books have gone missing.

The most distressing part is that the Milwaukee City Election Commission does not know when the poll books went missing.

    Were the poll books delivered to the polling location on the morning of November 2, 2004 but were not returned to the Election Commission by the poll workers?

    Were the poll books return to the Election Commission by the poll workers, but disappeared prior to the donation of records to the Joint task force on or about April 1, 2005?

    Were the poll books donationed by the Commission to the Joint task force on or about April 1, 2005 but were lost by the Joint Task force some time prior to July 10, 2007?

Nobody knows. No inventory records were kept.

There are no records of the poll books having been returned by poll workers to the election commission on the night of November 2, 2004. There is no record of which original election records were donated by the Election Commission to the Joint Task Force. The Commission did not demand nor did the Joint Task force offer a receipt of the records transfered.

All that is known is that sometime between 7:00 am on November 2, 2004 and July 10, 2007, one in fifteen poll books, official election records, have disappeared.

WI SEB Complaint Filed Regarding Donating of November 2, 2004 Election Records

On August 29, 2007 I filed a complaint with the Wisconsin State Elections Board against Sharon Robinson, Interim Executive Director of the City of Milwaukee Election Commission and the three Milwaukee Election Commissioners at the time: Allen E. Campos, Victoria Toliver, and Edward Schultz.

You can read the complaint, my affidavit, and the supporting exhibits.

The summary of the complaint is that contrary to popular myth, the November 2, 2004 election records were NOT confiscated by the Joint Task Force between the US Attorney of Eastern Wisconsin and the Milwaukee County District Attorney. Contrary to Wisconsin State Election law (WI Stats. 7.24)the records were transfered voluntarily by the City of Milwaukee Election Commission to the joint task force.

The state law requires the Election Commission to do the same thing as a private citizen with a fiduciary to retain the records must do when when a DA or US attorney demands to search or seize records. Both the citizen and the commission are required to answer: "Yes, you may have the records as soon as you show me a warrant signed by a judge." The Election Commission violated state election law by not demanding such a warrant or judicial order.

Aside from this significant statutory violation, there is a far more obnoxious aspect to this voluntary donation of records.

For two and a half years the City Election Commission has denied public access to the November 2, 2004 election records based on the claim that the election records were confiscated by the Joint Task Force and thus out of the control of the Election Commission.

This was untrue.

Since the transfer from the Commission to the Joint task force was voluntary, the Election Commission could have demand access to the records at any time in order to make the copies requested by the public over the course of the last 27 months. The attorney who was copied on all of these false claims was Melanie Swank, Assistant Attorney for the City of Milwaukee. Ms. Swank has literally written the book on public records law. It is entitled: Wisconsin Public Records & Open Meetings Handbook. You would think the author of such a book would give her client, the Milwaukee Election Commission, better legal advice. But that is for her clients, city supervisors, and the Wisconsin Bar Association to sort out.

This donation of records by the City Election Commission with the Commission then claiming the public may not access the records could be a criminal violation of Wisconsin State Open Records law, but that is a decision for the Attorney General, J.B. Van Hollen, to make.

Milwaukee is still a Prosecution-Free Zone

It's official. The Joint Task Force will not investigate election fraud in the City of Milwaukee committed during the November 2, 2004 election. More precisely no one on the task force will inform the taxpayers how the time on a 30 month "investigation" was wasted spent. There will be no final report explain the results of the continuing "investigation" promised in the preliminary findings published on May 10, 2005.

There will no description of how 40% percent of the ballots scanned by the optical scanner of Ward 192 have no record in the poll book as coming from an elector. No report of which election officials were or were not interviewed. There will be no report on how ward 192 at the French immersion Scholl has 640 extra ballots scanned by the machines, but the other two wards at the same location are only off by only 5 ballots and 1 ballot.

There will no report explaining the discrepancies in both wards of Riverside High school. There will no report explaining the discrepancies at Jericho Baptist Church. There will no report explaining the discrepancies found at Cass Street School or the Marquette Alumni Union.

There will be no report on which wards account for the 4606 extra ballots reported in the preliminary report. There will be no report on which election records were or were not examined to determine this total of 4606 extra ballots.

There will be no report on why the failure to create legally mandated election records such as poll books signature pages and inspectors’ reports has not resulted in prosecutions.

There will be no report on how 42 poll books have disappeared or whether the City of Milwaukee Elections Commission lost them or the 42 poll books were lost by the Joint task force. This is because when the City Election Commission illegally volunteered to give the original records of the November 2, 2004 election to the Joint task force, no one bothered to do an inventory of the records or create a receipt of the materials given to the Joint Task force. All is known at this time is sometime between 7:00 am November 2, 2004 and July 10, 2007 42 poll books disappeared.

According the office of the Milwaukee County District Attorney, it is not the responsibility of the Milwaukee County DA to produce a final report on 30 months of "investigation". According to Richard Frohling, assistant US attorney of Eastern Wisconsin, it is not the responsibility of the US attorney to account for 30 months of "investigation" with a final report either. Thus, both halves of the Joint Task Force claim there no one is responsible for writing a final report.

Milwaukee is still a prosecution-free zone for election fraud.

The task force will and has investigated and prosecuted voter fraud by individuals where each case created a single fraudulent vote. The task force will not investigate, prosecute, nor report on election frauds which stuff 4606 extra ballots in ballots boxes or investigate, prosecute, or report on the election officers who allowed it to happen.

But, if the joint task force should put out sweets and milk along with a stack of papers and if helpful brownies happen to write the final report, then rest assured, this brownie-produced final report will be published without delay.

February and November 2008 ought to be interesting as our reputation as a fraud-tolerant state increases and spreads across the country.