2004 Ohio Presidential election hacked?

Had Ohio voted for Kerry, as polls and exit polls predicted, Kerry would have won the 2004 election.

Those believing Ohio’s results were hacked, yes, criminally hacked by Republicans, include noted computer security expert Peter G. Neumann.

Someone will call this “old news” and thus unworthy of consideration. But if this scandal doesn’t merit attention, what does?

Thanks for posting these links. This should be front page news. Also, it’s pretty impossible to read those links and not suspect that Connell was murdered.

If I understand the Free Press story, what they have is an entity that had access to the data, that could have changed the data undetected, and that nobody knows what purpose was served by allowing them access to the data.

Also an election that shifted surprisingly from exit polls.

I want to take allegations of fraudulent election seriously, but I’m not sure one can ‘convict’ with that.

I will not be surprised if at some point we learn Ohio fraud re-handed Bush the white house in 2004, but where would one take this evidence? What’s the next step? Could Nate Silver do anything with the shift in vote reporting itself as prima facie (sp.) evidence of fraud?

Then again, I miss details often. Am I missing something in the story? Is there a smoking gun there?

Before one of the board’'s Resident Republicans shows up to say it, let me observe that Ken Blackwell, Karl Rove, et al., have not been found guilty in a court of law. Based on the evidence here, however, and what can reasonably be expected to be found as these assertions are followed up, I’ll go with the Old West aphorism about men like them: “They deserve a fair trial and a first-class hanging!”

My question: will these allegations gain any traction at all in the media?

It’s been well-known for some time how easily hackable the machines were. The evidence keeps piling up, but their hackability was never seriously in question. If the media didn’t pay much attention the first time, why would they now?

Of course, I haven’t seen any smoking gun evidence that the election was hacked. But that’s not really the point here - the fact that it would have been trivial for the election to be significantly influenced in a virtually untraceable way is gob-smackingly scary.

We all should have marched on Diebold with pitchforks and torches back in 2004, regardless of who won the election.

To elaborate on this, they also have the facts that a) the person running the software in Ohio was sent home unexpectedly, b) the data was shifted over to the Tennessee company (the “entity” in your quote) and c) the major jump in Bush’s numbers occurred after the data was filtered through.

It’s not just that the entity could have changed the data, it’s that the entity had its hands on the data, for no clear reason, and that the numbers changed after they touched it.

There’s also the fact that SmarTech was only supposed to mirror the data received in the election. A mirror is just a back up. It was supposed to be just simple redundancy. In order to turn SmarTech into a “man in the middle” hack, someone went out of their way to deliberately allow SmarTech to do that.

For example, I automatically backup my computer files online at Amazon’s Simple Server. To do this, I use a piece of software called Jungle Disk. The files are encrypted and (far as I know) no one at Jungle Disk or Amazon can view or alter them.

Now suppose someone hacks Jungle Disk, and alters the software to upload the files to a different website, where they get unencrypted and changed, then re-encrypted and passed on to their correct destination at Amazon. That’s a “man in the middle” attack. That’s what the software at SmarTech was built to do. There was no legit reason why SmarTech should even have been allowed to touch the election data. But someone at SmarTech went out of their way to set up the system so that they could.

It’s sort of like being caught with in a building after hours with a pocketful burgler’s tools. Yeah, there might be a perfectly reasonable explanation for how you came to be in that situation - but the cops are going to arrest you anyway. What SmarTech did was build themselves a set of electronic burglars’ tools.

This will get no traction, because voter fraud in the US is officially impossible. As in, this is America, that kind of thing doesn’t happen here.

Wait, is it literally impossible? There are no laws for it? Or are you just saying it.

It’s impossible by edict.

A good friend of mine lived in a mixed-race neighborhood of Cleveland and said he and his wife waited 10 hours to vote. They simply didn’t put in enough polls in this neighborhood.

See, this is why we need to limit polling places to only certain areas where voter intimidation is impossible. Suburbs would be good. And we need to make sure that everybody has identification, photo ID is a start, but a birth certificate and photo ID would be better. Finally, proof of residency: say 2 paychecks, 6 months worth of phone bills, an active checking account, this kind of thing. If we could institute these kinds of changes, I am sure we could stamp out this kind of election fraud…

Damn it, my cheek and tongue are hurting again!

To make sure the checking account is active, they could just make a nominal debit from it, too. Just something piddly like $250. It would get fully refunded through the next tax return, though, so who could complain?

That is a stellar idea!

What is somewhat remarkable to me (one who believes that there was voting machine shenanigans in 2000 & 2004) is that they did not continue (to any noticeable degree) in 2008. Did the somewhat limited reporting on the possible hacking scare them into submission? Did the “powers that be” take a pass on McCain? Or was it simply that the bad actors had moved on and no one filled in behind them?


They didn’t gain any traction in 2004 (and yes, there were suspicions and allegations starting the minute the polls closed) because John Kerrey refused to make an issue out of it.

The people “smart” enough to steal elections were smart enough to know 2008 victory would be very much a Pyrrhic victory.: The economy was headed inevitably for the worst beating in decades. It made much more sense to play as the “Opposition” for a while, the better to focus on the Blame Game.

To throw the election to McCain in 2008 you’d have to hack so many machines in so many states that it starts looking pretty improbable. In 2004, a single state could plausibly turn the election.

There is no smoking gun. I’m reasonable sure it happened, but unless someone involved fess’s up and turns State’s evidence, *nothing *will come of it.

Someone involved was going to testify - Michael Connell. He was killed in a small plane crash before he could spill all the beans. From the article in the OP: