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Excerpt: "The months of campaigning, endless media bloviation, and millions in campaign expenditures can all be funneled down to about a minute of one hired hacker doing a few quick keystrokes that no one will ever be able to fully unearth or overturn."

Republican presidential candidates. (photo: NBC)
Republican presidential candidates. (photo: NBC)

Will the GOP Strip & Flip the 2016 Election?

By Mimi Kennedy, Bob Fitrakis and Harvey Wasserman, Reader Supported News

08 January 16


t is midnight, Election Day, 2016.

The votes (80% of them electronic) have been cast all across the United States. Except in Hawaii, the voting stations are now closed.

By all credible calculations, the Democratic presidential candidate (Bernie Sanders or Hillary Clinton) has won a solid victory in the public vote. All polls have shown a strong national margin. A solid majority of the key swing states have gone to the Democrats, giving them an apparent victory in the Electoral College.

With that have come solid advances in the US Senate and House races, plus major gains in statehouses and local elections across the board.

Divisions among the Republicans, shifting demographics, revulsion against the concentration of wealth, gun issues, civil rights, women’s rights, gay rights, Social Security, Medicare, Obamacare, climate chaos, green issues, and a wide range of other factors are generally viewed as the key reasons for the Democratic sweep.

But as of midnight, the Electoral College could still be flipped by six key swing states where there are Republican governors and Republican secretaries of state. Those states are Florida, North Carolina, Ohio, Michigan, Iowa and Arizona. Taken in tandem they have more than enough electoral votes to swing the presidency, and enough clout to decide who will control the US Senate and much of the House.

In each of these “decider” states, the governor and secretary of state control how the election is administered, and how the votes are counted and reported.

In the lead-up to Election Day, millions of African-American, Hispanic, elderly and young voters (especially college students) have been systematically purged from the voter rolls. Without those purges, far more than just these six major swing states would be in play.

Meanwhile, the Koch Brothers, Sheldon Adelson, and other GOP multi-billionaires have poured in limitless dark money millions. The corporate media has duly reported the usual late “shift in momentum” to the Republicans.

But even that has not been enough. The people have spoken.

From Tallahassee to Raleigh to Columbus, Lansing, Des Moines and Phoenix, the governors and secretaries meet quietly and alone with a shadowy third party – their chief of Information Technology. They know full well how the popular vote has gone, and what the consequences might be.

So they ask the IT expert what can be done about it.

The expert tells them what they already know: that the electronic voting machines from which the official vote count must now be extracted are owned by private corporations, nearly all of them with strong Republican roots. The courts have ruled that the source code is proprietary.

There have been various feints loudly staged to simulate a paper trail. They’re meant for public consumption. Any recount in any of these states is pre-rigged to be a sham.

In fact, as in Ohio 2004, there is no way for the public or the media or the Democrats or international monitoring agencies or anyone else on this Earth to definitively monitor or verify how the American people have actually voted in 2016.

So the question is asked: having already stripped the voter rolls, how long will it now take to flip the outcome?

The IT expert gives the obvious answer: about 60 seconds, maybe less. Not only the presidency but control of the Congress, statehouses, state legislatures and much more can be flipped in tandem.

In the process, the expert says, it’s customary to plant media stories of “glitches” in the voting process that will delay the reporting of the vote count. In Ohio 2004 the flipping process was stretched from 12:20 am to 2 am, during which John Kerry’s 4.2% margin of victory became a 2.5% George W. Bush margin of victory, giving him a second term.

But the process is clear, simple and long-since prearranged. Funded by the Help America Vote Act of 2002, the vast majority of America’s electronic voting machines date back at least a decade. Many can be flipped at the precinct level by operatives driving by with WIFI apparatus. In other cases, “technicians” from the voting machine companies have already recalibrated the tabulators while Election Day was in progress, or immediately after.

So the months of campaigning, endless media bloviation, and millions in campaign expenditures can all be funneled down to about a minute of one hired hacker doing a few quick keystrokes that no one will ever be able to fully unearth or overturn.

All that’s then needed as follow-up is to adjust the pre-election exit polls, which are usually extremely accurate, to match the official vote count, which will have been flipped by 2 or 3 am. (Sooner or later, such polling will be banned altogether).

In the meantime, in this dark post-democracy night, there is a pause. Each IT expert asks each governor and secretary of state in each of these key swing states what they wish done. And how much the Koch Brothers will be paying them to do it.

See if you can guess the answer.

And then look for what to do about this in our upcoming articles, along with Bob Fitrakis & Harvey Wasserman’s “The Sixth Jim Crow: Electronic Election Theft & The Strip/Flip Selection of 2016,” all due out in 2016.

Mimi’s Action Tips:

First learn your state’s laws and voting systems on The Verifier. Then visit National Election Integrity Coalition or Black Box Voting for ideas for action based on your voting system. Definitely be a poll worker. You’ll learn your system’s strengths and vulnerabilities. Who services machines when they fail? Are many voters forced to vote provisionally? Why? Is it a problem that can be corrected before the General Election? Ask to tour your county elections office. If you’re denied, ask why, and publicize the answer. Observation deters crime. Ask to observe the count. If told you’re obstructing well-run elections, bravo! You and your election officials are on common ground. You both want well-run elections – which require public oversight! Finally, learn to hand-count ballots. Copy an online template or ask for your county’s sample test ballot. Copy a dozen of those and vote them randomly. Copy that dozen to a precinct-sized batch (about 300) then go to People Demanding Action and follow the instructions. You are not a Luddite. You’re learning the election equivalent of jury duty – by which democracy will be regained.

Mimi Kennedy, Bob Fitrakis & Harvey Wasserman are election protection activists.

Reader Supported News is the Publication of Origin for this work. Permission to republish is freely granted with credit and a link back to Reader Supported News. your social media marketing partner


A note of caution regarding our comment sections:

For months a stream of media reports have warned of coordinated propaganda efforts targeting political websites based in the U.S., particularly in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election.

We too were alarmed at the patterns we were, and still are, seeing. It is clear that the provocateurs are far more savvy, disciplined, and purposeful than anything we have ever experienced before.

It is also clear that we still have elements of the same activity in our article discussion forums at this time.

We have hosted and encouraged reader expression since the turn of the century. The comments of our readers are the most vibrant, best-used interactive feature at Reader Supported News. Accordingly, we are strongly resistant to interrupting those services.

It is, however, important to note that in all likelihood hardened operatives are attempting to shape the dialog our community seeks to engage in.

Adapt and overcome.

Marc Ash
Founder, Reader Supported News

+70 # RicKelis 2016-01-08 15:08
Let's hope Anonymous will be watching and will flip the votes back - like they did in 2012 against Karl Rove. We do have our own cyber-security entities in times like these..
-23 # HowardMH 2016-01-09 11:24
Yea, that Hopie - Changie works so good.
+10 # bmiluski 2016-01-09 11:44
Gee, I don't know Howard. You might want to as the 17,000,000 people who finally have health insurance due to ObamaCare.
+13 # David Starr 2016-01-09 12:41
@HowardMH: How's that "Mission Accomplished" going.
+71 # Dust 2016-01-08 15:59

That's utter insanity. Any judge issuing that verdict is either being paid off, or (more likely) completely ignorant of how computers and code work.
+88 # sea7kenp 2016-01-08 18:20
Open Source is the only way. Also, paper receipts, and audits. Otherwise, electronic voting machines should be illegal.
-64 # MidwestTom 2016-01-08 22:06
This article is not reporting on anything. RSN is not supposed to be a fiction writing site. NEWS this isn't. It may be good reading, but it is NEWS.
+30 # RGV.REG 2016-01-09 01:32
What make you think this is fiction, Tom?
We have seen the discrepancies in voting machines in the last 4 elections. And as Mimi states the facts of exit poll readings compared to the machines are way out of statistical probability... and the electronic polls somehow favor the Republicans. Maybe that's because the companies that own the machines are run by Republicans. Coincidence???
+10 # bmiluski 2016-01-09 11:46
You are wasting your time RGV...Tom never backs up anything with facts. He just apes GOP sound bites.
+7 # fletch1165 2016-01-10 04:03
Midwest Tom is our "hanging chad" on the RSN boards. We don't take him very seriously but he is useful to show what the indoctrinated believe. It seems certain people are perfectly happy with a system that overtly cheats them. To accept fault in it challenges their view of American Exceptionalism.
-35 # zach 2016-01-09 07:40
Agree with Tom. This is fear mongering, yellow journalism. There are ways to raise issues, and voter fraud has always been a legitimate issue. This is not the way.
+6 # fletch1165 2016-01-10 04:05
FOX awaits you. They have message boards too to show your falsely placed hubris. No way is this yellow journalism. That is 100% insulting. I hope you awaken to the fact we are being cheated clearly and there is more than ample proof if one investigates.
0 # Puck 2016-01-17 19:05
Voter fraud has surely been a problem, Zach. Ithe last 79 years (since 1936) there have bee 6 count them SIX!!! convictions for voter fraud. If this is not stopped democracy is doomed!
-1 # SHK 2016-02-05 14:22
Convictions do not necessarily mean ALL or even any sort of significant percentage of voter fraud was even caught, much less prosecuted therefore much less convicted.
+12 # JonathanLogan 2016-01-09 11:02
Dust & see7knep - you are exactly right. (1) no proprietary source code for voting machines; (2) duplicate digital repositories, (3) dual paper receipts coded to an on-line verification simultaneously printed & 1980's style IBM punch cards - with (4) a yellow copy going to the voter for proof and voter online voting record review - like checking your visa bill, (5) a white copy going into a vote record box for physical verification and recounting. That's data 3 methods, and 6 copies.
+31 # jcdav 2016-01-08 20:20
IMHO a paper ballot which MUST be retained for 3 years is about the only a recount could be considered valid..the electronic machines are eye candy to placate the sheeple.
+86 # REDPILLED 2016-01-08 18:06
As long as the Dems allow such shenanigans without protests, investigations, and threats of lawsuits, as they so cowardly did in Florida in 2000 and Ohio in 2004, such a scenario is entirely possible.
+76 # jon 2016-01-08 18:10
I am so glad to see this article and conversation happening.

I hope it increases in intensity and loudness.
+23 # tedrey 2016-01-08 20:56
Bet it's never shown in the NYT or WaPo though.
+10 # corduroyz 2016-01-08 18:48
Copy an online template or ask for your county’s sample test ballot. Copy a dozen of those and vote them randomly.

WHAT does this mean?
+2 # fletch1165 2016-01-10 04:11
Hit the link in that paragraph underlined to take you to the website to find out how to train yourself to be a watchdog at precinct stations. gathering these ballots is the first step in the training process so you understand how to talley the votes AS THEY COME IN TO the precinct you will volunteer to monitor.
+36 # Doc Mary 2016-01-08 19:27
How long have we all known this? Since 2000. So why aren't we doing something about it?

I've never forgiven Nader - not for running independent, but for saying that the Florida count didn't matter because there was no difference between Bush and Gore. PEOPLE'S VOTES WEREN'T COUNTED. THAT MATTERS. It doesn't matter what you think of the other candidates.

You can vote absentee (take a picture of your vote and get it notarized). But the better thing to do would be to get rid of those machines in the 11 months we have left to do it.
+5 # GreenBee 2016-01-10 19:22
Good question, why has the American public given allowed this issue to be neglected all these years?

Maybe getting a Black Democrat elected president pacified their paranoia?

George Carlin was right, I think, when he said elections are now just a charade to make the people in this country think there is a democracy.

we have let it happen to us.
+27 # btraven 2016-01-08 19:28
Obama and the Democrats had seven years to do something about voting machines and did nothing. Never appeared on their "to do" list while they were busy triangulating Republican issues and Obama ( the republican ("Manchurian candidate")cons tantly offered them "partnership". Don't make the same mistake again with Hillary whose husband invented "triangulation" .
+26 # ForceFoxFive 2016-01-08 19:37
Mimi Kennedy is a courageous champion for progressive thought alerting us to the folly of trusting unauditable electronic voting devices as programmable as electronic slot machines, reminding us of transgressions as Ohio's still unaudited electronic records that gave Bush the 2004 election via the (alleged) nefarious collusion of the right leaning Diebold company headquartered in that state.
+22 # PABLO DIABLO 2016-01-08 19:40
Some people make money off of war, lots of money. (See Prescott Bush, George H.W. Bush, George w. Bush for example) and can continue to buy politicians who will push for war ( See Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama for instance). The media is pushing Hillary to go against THE DONALD and ignoring Bernie Sanders in order to make Neocon Hillary “our” next President
+36 # Pikewich 2016-01-08 19:41
Since they can't win it, of course they will steal it. That is just business as usual in a capitalist oligarchy.
+17 # davehaze 2016-01-08 20:07
And whose fault is this? The Democratic party. Gore was not interested that his win was stolen, nor was Kerry. They refused to go after governers stiffling voters and stealing votes. They're refused to push for a voters receipt. They have irrationally, suicidely, been uninterested.

What was that?
Oh, it's Ralph Nader's fault? Even for Kerry?
+16 # tedrey 2016-01-08 20:59
Time for some good patriotic whistle-blowers with evidence. When these heroes show up, back them this time.
+14 # CTPatriot 2016-01-09 07:29
There was one who was about to spill the beans. His name was Michael Connell and he died in a very suspicious plane crash after being subpoenaed to testify.
+9 # jon 2016-01-09 08:47
In a brand new airplane, too.
+1 # fletch1165 2016-01-10 04:22
The aircraft was a 1997 Pipper Saratoga that crashed in 2008. Connell was a far right GOP swiftboater against KErry, one of the ones who made up the false info about his military career. He was also an IT expert and President of a company called Gov TEch solutions. He refused to testify. He was chairman of the OHIO Bush re-election campaign in 2004. There is nothing I can find indicating he was spilling the beans or a whistleblower in any way? He is instead considered an election manipulator as the second link provided indicates. And if the info got out somehow it would damage the GOP's credibility.
+7 # TSA 2016-01-08 20:56
The Governor and Secretrary of State do not control the election process in North Carolina. There is a separate State Board of Elections, which is bipartisan and generally (although not always) fair.
+13 # maverita 2016-01-09 07:34
that's nice but the voting machines themselves seem to have backdoor access. and come from republican owned companies like diebold. not sure how officials can stop that. they have not done anything because it is impossible to prove. no paper trail. exit polls are used to monitor how free elections are in third world countries. they are incredibly accurate. several states in '04 were way off, and way off by btwn 6-7% in most cases. the chance of exit polls all being off by the same percentage throughout several states AND being due to natural circumstances is astronomical. this would raise major red flags in any other country but USA. Davehaze's query about why the Democratic party has done nothing since is a very good question.
-15 # Robbee 2016-01-08 21:02
one of very few issues i have with bernie is hilighted by - # Dust 2016-01-08 15:59 "NO EFFING PROPRIETARY SOURCE CODE FOR VOTING MACHINES! ..."

- what are the headache, worry and heartache of stolen democracy, as in, electoral defeat, worth? - how do we feel about bush 2 winning the 2000 election, not at the polls, but in scotus?

canada and australia require paper ballots, counted by humans, watched by humans! - that shows just how important democracy is to a coupla real democracies!

because we allow electronic thieves to steal our elections, we get what we deserve! shit elections! shit public representatives!

meanwhile we have our own slimy underground of pledgers to write-in bernie, to elect a zomblican, to bring on someone else's revolution? - what the hell kinda democracy is that? there is too much shit for brains going on around here! a-holes can steal our election without any cheating! - my point is that we have to worry, especially, about cheaters who want bernie to win, only too much! - enough to cheat! enough to steal democracy for zomblicans! - there is more going on here than meets the eye! - who say they are your friends! - smiling faces! - choose carefully!

+12 # CTPatriot 2016-01-09 07:32
WTF are you talking about?! Both Democratic and Republican party establishments are against Bernie but somehow one of them is going to rig the election for him? You have to be smoking some damn good stuff to believe that.
+2 # fletch1165 2016-01-10 04:30
LOL. Maybe he should pass it to us if its that good. I think he got confused by the last paragraph. Its not endorsing making fake ballots. Its linked to a website about training you how to count paper ballots so you can be an election watchdog at your local precinct.
+15 # Henry 2016-01-08 21:14
Meanwhile, go here tonight, tomorrow, or Sunday to cast your vote for Bernie Sanders so he'll receive MoveOn's endorsement. Voting ends Sunday at 11:59 p.m.
+2 # fletch1165 2016-01-10 04:31
Done that. But I also told them I am done with MOVE ON if they endorse anyone else(Hillary).
+13 # Robbee 2016-01-08 21:22
thanks! i voted! go bernie!
+20 # iris.1 2016-01-08 21:46
maybe u.n. monitors should be called in.
+15 # SHK 2016-01-08 22:45
Quoting iris.1:
maybe u.n. monitors should be called in.

+12 # lfeuille 2016-01-08 22:57
Jimmy Carter said our election are unmonitorable because of the lack of uniform rules.
-3 # zach 2016-01-09 07:43
+5 # RNLDaWy 2016-01-08 23:18
Grand Ole Prickheads ... definitely stole it in Ohio ... they can only be stolen if it's two shit candidates against one another .. otherwise no amount of electro rigging will get it done ..
+14 # mh1224jst 2016-01-08 23:44
Democracy: It was fun while it lasted.
+3 # fletch1165 2016-01-10 04:34
There was that small window after Vietnam from 1975-1980 wasn't there?
+13 # Farafalla 2016-01-09 01:00
County level election rules are the problem. Uniform national election standards are needed.
+9 # maroloh 2016-01-09 02:21
Anonymous seems possible,
***BUT SEEoSee Fitrakis & Wasserman, 12/20/08, 'The Suspicious, Disturbing Death of Election Rigger Michael Connel:.' (

I don't have time to edit this down enough, and in any case there's lot s more than is given in this article. But Connell, a GOP IT man, stole Ohio in 2004, and stole in 2000 as well. Reads the article.

So how did Obama win? 1) The deposition the dat before his election; 2) it's likely they badly underestimated the vote for Obama.

Connell was told they'd probably sabotage his plane He called off 3 prior flights because he saw signs of tampering.

I fund this story increduble, but researched it . . . and it does check out.

Watch out this year!!
+2 # fletch1165 2016-01-10 04:39
Its similar to what they say about Kennedy's real assassins. That they were systematically all murdered by the ring leaders so no one would find out the actual trigger men who might brag about it like some did. The mobster Sam Giancana is purported to be one of the trigger men and wrote a book about the mob's inner workings and was one of them that paid the price.
+10 # djnova50 2016-01-09 11:00
In Washington state, all ballots are mailed out to all registered voters. The ballots usually show up about two weeks before the election day. Voters can vote the same day they get their ballot and mail them back in or drop them off at the ballot box. I take mine to the ballot box inside the courthouse.

There are no polls to go to in order to vote. I think this saves time and is more convenient for people who travel for their jobs and can't always plan on being home on election day.
+2 # fletch1165 2016-01-10 04:43
Nice system. Its only done if you apply for absentee or mail in status in California. Then you get the mail in version every election sent to you. If you move though you have to re-register, the only downside. Many poor are transient making it even more stifling to vote this way.
+13 # SSS 2016-01-09 12:16
We in Vermont are lucky to have a paper ballot which is read electronically, but if outcome is questioned we have physical ballots for recount. PLUS Vermonters still believe every vote must count. Even those in prison here are able to vote. Too bad we don't have a lot of votes, because of our small population.
+2 # fletch1165 2016-01-10 04:40
You live in a very wealthy state too.
+2 # 2016-01-11 00:23
"30 Full Voting Rights" has answers for
the election/voting concerns and issues
cited in this post...... Our country is
239 years old and NO voter in all 50
states is honered nor granted their Full
Voting Rights. ... Let's push/fight/
revolt for our 30 Full Voting Rights!
..... (Oh, by the way revolting is the
last option called for in the New
Hampshire state constitution Article 10.
..... Thanks and Good Luck,... Frank
Henry,... Full Voting Rights Advocate,..
+4 # elizabethblock 2016-01-11 17:06
I live in Canada. We use PAPER BALLOTS. In municipal elections, we have machines that count the vote, but what they count are paper ballots.
Eat your hearts out.
+2 # elizabethblock 2016-01-11 17:07
And yes, prisoners are allowed to vote. (Do they? I don't know. But they can if they want to.)
0 # terrasegura 2016-02-29 03:24
We (Democracy Counts!, a nonprofit organization) has created an audit system for elections, such that citizens groups, campaigns, research organizations etc can audit the election results in real time. If the official results come back significantly different, the audit results, which are composed of sworn copies of ballots and polling place info, can be taken into court the next day to request an injunction against certification of the results and for an investigation.

We support end-to-end verifiable voting and counting, and paper ballots are the best way to do that, but advocating for that is not a solution for this election. Indeed, it may take a decade or more to get good voting systems in place - especially if the wrong legislators keep getting "elected".

Check out our system at

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