3 votes

Proposal to Combat Iowa Election Fraud

We're learning Iowa Governor Terry Branstad may not approve of a Ron Paul 1st place Iowa win. Now that Dr. Paul is increasingly favored to win he talks of giving attention to the #2 and #3 slot results...

Aside from that we know election fraud is a HUGE concern, especially with a candidate like Ron Paul.

This election it appears Iowa will use paper ballots to be fed to an optical scanner. I'm encouraged that paper is involved (hence a trail), but of course paper ballot boxes have been known to disappear entirely too.

Is there anything we can do to protect against election fraud? I think so. Just as the Internet has allowed Dr. Paul's message to spread whether the establishment likes it or not, so too it can help communicate and ensure a fair election.

I see two choices:

#1 Ron Paul Claim Booths

This idea often comes up, and involves stationing volunteers at voting locations to flag Ron Paul vote casters to check in for vote confirmation. This way we can have an independent count of Paul votes to be displayed on a website.

I like this idea since it's pretty simple, straightforward, and easy to set up. One problem with this is a question of integrity of the final count. Since the operation is conducted by Paul supporters, any result favoring Dr. Paul would be subject to challenge as being padded. The other problem, even if slight, is compromising voter confidentiality.

However, some independent result would at least be something to go on, possibly for the purpose demanding a recount.

#2 Implement David Bismark's E-voting without fraud

For those that haven't seen it I think this is the future of all voting. It does make undoubtedly fair elections possible. View it here:


We probably can't get this implemented officially for the Republican nomination, but this system's implementation is not beyond the reach of a Ron Paul movement capable of inventing Moneybombs, and flying the first ever presidential Blimp!

It's based on just a few components:

1. Paper handouts
2. On-site scanner (can be camera phones)
3. Website

We could organize a website like makesuremyvotecounts.com or something.

We get volunteers in Iowa to give a paper voting handout to every voter that receives an official paper ballot. The voter then allows the Vote Representative to snap a scan of the official vote ballot on top of the identifiable voting handout. The voter then goes to their private booth and marks their choice on both official and unofficial paper forms. Upon exit they turn in the official ballot, and allow the Vote Rep. to rescan their marked voting paper. The voter saves that as a their receipt which can be later looked up on the website.

In this way we would have undeniable evidence for vote results as outlined by Mr. Bismark in the video. It would be anonymous and tally all candidates too. The only variance would be people that didn't take part in the unofficial vote, but a reasonable margin of error could be factored in for that.

I can handle a lot of what is needed for the website part of this.

What does everyone think?

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I'm glad there is some monitoring work being done, but it appears they only want volunteers to announce the vote totals given.

The optical scanners are bad news

The fact that all the ballots are going to be counted in optical scanners means that the results can be easily manipulated 7 ways to Sunday!!!

The answer is doing Exit Polling at each precinct. Exit polling is accepted by voting experts as hard evidence of possible voting machine manipulation. If exit polling is organized, it will give Dr. Paul a legal stand to contest the final vote count.

I really like Bismarck's

I really like Bismarck's idea. Heck, I would check 3 dollars on my income tax every year to support that!

I also support a GPS-type device with each box. When I was in the military, we had them in boxes to make sure our items were delivered to us from the U.S. to Iraq, so why can't we have them on ballot boxes to make sure they get to the precinct?

The fundamental problem I think is how can we really be sure our electronic vote is truly what it says it is? There is a CNN? report about hackers trying to disrupt the Iowa caucus. Probably won't happen, but what if it does....

Sometimes I think the paper/pencil method, with immediate counting and the ballot going nowhere is the best method. You would have instant results and eyeball verifiable information.

I agree about

checking an income tax box in support of Bismarck's idea! As I said it truly should be the way all elections work. Ironically it would cost less than the current system and faster/easier to count votes because of the way the technology works.

I like the GPS device in the box idea. Then we'd only need to be sure each box didn't arrive 3/4 or 1/2 full ;)

The reports about hackers interrupting voting are valid. Some election processes are more susceptible to hacking than others. For this reason Iowa is using paper ballots which leave a paper trail which can be hand counted if necessary.

I agree the paper method is the best method possible because of the availability of a paper trail and hand counts if necessary. If it was convenient I agree the vote count should take place without ballots being transported anywhere. That's why Bismarck's system is so great. It solves all these problems


with time this short here is what we do instead. (and what I'm planning on doing)

I'm going to use my cell phone to record the counting and the announcement of our tallies to the precinct. This way there is a complete record.

As the precinct captain you get to watch the counting. We will all do this and report to the campaign the tallies.


Pottawattamie County Iowa

"Capitalism should not be condemned, since we haven't had capitalism." -Dr. Ron Paul

But couldn't

ballots, even entire boxes, go missing before getting to the count?

My understanding is they will use an optical scanner to feed the ballots, so how would a cell recording identify count or manipulation?

Last, would we have full coverage of Iowa with cellphone recordings and reporting?


The caucuses are so informal it is like going to a hoe-down.

Literally we sign people in, the votes are collected on scraps of paper, we all read the votes and count the tallies.

Fraud at a caucus is TOUGH AS HELL.

A primary is another thing though. I worry about NH

Pottawattamie County Iowa

"Capitalism should not be condemned, since we haven't had capitalism." -Dr. Ron Paul


Yeah, I thought caucuses were a bit more people oriented and therefore tamper resistant. So the whole state's results will be that up close? What about this ballot being fed to optical scanners I heard about?

I worry about NH too. I think we had questionable results there in the '08 election.