Lots of Smoke in Broward County, after ballots destroyed

From Alternet via TruthOut: Was the Heated 2016 Democratic Primary Rigged for Debbie Wasserman Schultz?  <read>

In August 2016, Florida Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz faced off against progressive maverick and Bernie Sanders supporter Tim Canova — her first-ever primary challenger — after six terms in Congress…

Now new evidence of original ballots being destroyed and cast ballots not matching voter lists calls into question the results of that election…

According to a transcript of the November hearing, the attorney for the Supervisor’s office Burnadette Norris-Weeks claimed the ballots were destroyed, “Because they can’t just store hundreds and hundreds of thousands of boxes.

It’s possible that lack of storage space is not the only reason Broward County officials wanted to destroy the ballots. Months of investigating the Supervisor’s office and analyzing election data reveal that in the vast majority of precincts in the race, the number of cast ballots does not match the number of voters who voted…

Canova is not the first one to take the Broward County Supervisor of Elections’ office to court. He is in line behind the Republican Party that sued in November of 2016 over absentee ballots being opened in secret, and a not-for-profit that sued in October last year when Broward County left a medical marijuana amendment off some ballots.

Problems with the county’s elections go further back than that. In 2006, according to documents provided by the Florida Fair Elections Coalition, the Broward County Supervisor of Elections’ office admitted to a “loss of data” that included over 100,000 ballot images.

W do not buy the explanations/excuses. Two respected computer scientists characterize it succinctly:

Duncan Buell, a professor of computer science at the University of South Carolina, said, “I see what I would call a high likelihood of massive incompetence. Either that or there is fraud. I don’t think you should see numbers this big in this many precincts.” Buell has examined election records extensively in South Carolina.

Douglas Jones, a computer science professor at the University of Iowa sputtered in disbelief at the data. “This is really weird.” He continued that they ought to be reconciling the number of voters with ballots and if they’re not doing it, “they’re grossly negligent.” Jones served on the Election Assistance Commission’s Technical Guidelines Development Committee for four years, but said “I’ve never seen a county that looks like this.”

This is reminiscent of 2004 across Ohio, there officials kept the ballots for the required time, yet worked to run out the clock on Freedom Of Information Requests. This helped Richard Hayes Phillips expose many issues there in his book Witness to a Crime

We do applaud Florida and Ohio for their unquestioned stand that ballots are FOIable public records.

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