Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Secretary of whaaaaaaa?????

Ok....I've waited long enough for a response from Dardene's office...Louisiana Secretary of State, P.O. Box 94125, Baton Rouge, LA 70804-9125.

I need help and here's what I need.

I need someone...no everyone....to write a formal request to Secretary of State, Jay Dardene's office requesting a detailed explanation of the voting process in Orleans and Jefferson Parishes. Particularly the technology aspects.

Here are the particulars I am interested in:

1. Brands of voting machines used in the 2006 Mayoral election locally and at the satellite voting stations in other cities.

2. Are the votes tabulated electronically...and if they are...are the tallies from the machines transferred to a central point over a network. If So whose network is being used (if it is a specific network, i.e. Cox, ATT) or are the votes simply sent over a general IP network?

3. Do the machines generate a paper record (per machine), and if so, how are those paper records accumulated and transferred to a physical (as in buidling), amalgamated point?

hold on....more coming...

4. Which voting machine companies are certified for use by the state?

5. Who is responsible for the physical transfer of the votes?

6. Who is reponsible for each district's voting?

7. Who records and delivers each machine to each voting station during an election? In other words...who is responsible for the machines from beginning to end during an election?

And finally,

8. What "areas" of the voting process cannot be disclosed due to proprietary information or for security reasons?

If we can get answers to these questions...I would be a very happy zombie.


vern51 said...

There used to be a lady in Ed Lombard's office named Abby. She knew ABSOLUTELY everything there was to know about the voting process, including how the returns were tabulated. I am not sure if she is working for the Clerk's office anymore but I bet someone can tell you how to get in touch with her.

Anonymous said...

Most of what you are looking for is here..


Jason Brad Berry said...

- Most of what you are looking for is here..

uuhhh....not so much...no.

Jason Brad Berry said...

- Most of what you are looking for is here..

uuhhh....not so much...no.

Anonymous said...

Hmmm... You can figure the answers to several of your questions from that PDF file...
Like are the voting machines networked.. NO....
Can they print.. YES

How do the votes get from the precinct to the registrar of voters..

it's all spelled out in there for you.

Not ALL your questions.. but many are in those pages.

Jason Brad Berry said...

Is the document specific to the very exceptional circumstances which constituted the mayoral election?


Anonymous said...

Now there is this:

"Testing/Sealing Voting Machines: For information on the testing and sealing of voting machines prior to election day, please contact your parish Clerk of Court. For a list of the voting machine warehouses and their locations, please click here."

You have: Clerk of Court Hon. Arthur A. Morrell (read: lifelong connected pol; preceded during the election by former ostracized Nagin CAO Kim B. Williamson); Registrar Hon. Sandra L. Wilson (really, who the heck is she and how did she get that job?); President PBES (Parish Board of Election Supervisors - uh, just *who is on that board) Hon. John H. Musser, IV (itle, again, who is he and why is he "Hon."?) and Betsy Williams, (Exec. Admin., who by the way uses a personal "bellsouth.com" email address for her work apparently).

Where's the Orleans warehouse location you may ask?:


Well, what could possibly go wrong out there?

Now, I really, really, really want someone to do a Google Map search and then do a Street View looksie: THAT IS WHERE THEY KEEP THE ELECTION MACHINES???

The word "warehouse" is used very loosely here I think. It could be that big red block building on the left (even numbers), which looks hollowed out. Or it could be that strip mall on the right (odd numbers, right? So maybe that's not it?). Either way, either side of the block, it doesn't look good.

Next question: who "guards" this "warehouse"?

Anonymous said...

As a follow up to that last comment, maybe that strip mall is the right address (8870 Chef) because City Cathedral is 8801 Chef (an odd numbered address, across the street and down a block and a half). That's actually worse than the hollowed out brick building if that's the case.

I mean, is this really possible, or is this a question of Google maps being off a bit?

Anonymous said...

Ok, I think I have this now (sorry about all the posts), larger better looking building, across from the City Cathedral church, at the corner of Old Gentilly Rd. (Google was a little off on the exact address). But, again, why all the way out there?

Jason Brad Berry said...

I'm gonna head out there and look at it.

Anonymous said...

So Clerk Arthur Morrell has an email address, but it's for "dplombard". Here's betting that's Darren Lombard, who I am betting is the cousin or other close relative of longtime clerk Edwin Lombard. Edwin Lombard was clerk from 1974-2003 and he stepped in for former Nagin CAO Kimberly Butler when she had her "problems" during her term. (As an aside Frank Minyard began as coroner starting in 1974, and Charles Foti was criminal sheriff starting in 1974 also (ending in 2003 when he was succeeded by former Marc Morial CAO Marlin Gusman)). Arthur Morrell of course is the husband of Councilmember Cynthia Hedge-Morrell. Oddly enough Hedge-Morrell is the councilmember for District D, the district seat once held by the now criminal sheriff, Marlin Gusman.

Marlin Gusman, I am guessing, oversees the OPCSO sheriff's deputies who likely guard the warehouse and polling places while the Criminal Clerk, Mr. Morrell, ensures that all of the following is done:

"Arthur Morrell, Clerk of Criminal District of Orleans Parish is the chief election officer of the parish. Also the clerk is the ex officio (custodian) of voting machines. In addition to other duties vested in him by law, the clerk:

Provides instruction of election commissioners and issuance of certificates of instruction.

Notifies candidates in each election of the date and time when they may examine the voting machines.

Certify public counters are set at zero on the machines, and certify to the number on the protective counter of the machines prior to an election.

Supervise and have custody of the machines from the time they taken from the warehouse for distribution to the polling places until the machines are turned over to the election commissioners and from the time the machines are surrendered by the election commissioners until they are returned to the secretary of state at the warehouse.

Notify candidates of the date, time and place of the opening of machines and supervise the opening of machines."


Here's an article from Shreveort indicating that in the last presidential election Orleans was dead last in turning in results to the LA SOS, around midnight.

>"This always happens," several exasperated reporters and editors complained. Not necessarily says Jacques Berry, secretary of state spokesman. Larger parishes, typically Jefferson, St. Tammany and Caddo, usually take a bit longer to report results. That's because often they have the most voters, more ballot choices and other issues, such as faraway precincts, that can influence a parish's ability to speedily report results. Berry explained that electronic voting machines capture a voter's choices in a cartridge that must be removed and transported to the parish clerk of court for downloading and transmittal to the secretary of state. Sometimes, the cartridges arrive late due to last-minute voters or a lengthy travel time. Sometimes an election worker forgets to take the cartridge out and, on occasion, a cartridge is damaged. (No worries, each machine also produces several paper printouts of votes that can be used for counting.)<

Of course always being late means always having more time to be late. Somebody should give Richard Angelico a call.




Anonymous said...

And guess who Vincent Sylvain is proposing for the next Mayor of New Orleans:

Ed Lombard

Do you think there's any chance Council emails will play a role in the next mayor's race?

I wonder if they will play a role in whether Fielkow even runs for mayor, whether that means as opposed to running for another office or for anything at all. It's a heck of a thing to hold over Fielkow, Head and Midura in any case.

Lombard weirdly enough just heard an appeal by Nagin about being deposed in the civil crime cameras case, though he ruled against him along with the other two judges.


Anonymous said...

Ciber has one of only three "independant testing centers" for voting Deibolt machines in the USA. There have been problems with the way they do the testing; sometimes the machines they test are not as kosher as they certify them to be.

Greg Palast has been on Democracy Now! alot to talk about voting machines and voter fraud. He did stories about this in the run up to the Presidential election.

There was a court case in the Midwest involving a guy who had been instrumental in setting up the GOP strategy in the two Little Bush 'victories'.

Maybe the guy died before he sang? But anyway, at issue was something called the "man in the middle" way of sending in the results. For some reason, things were being routed through some place in Tennesse.

Obama's Chicago boys got out their knuckledusters to make sure that that option was off the table for the 2008 election. Democracy Now! can fill you in. Greg Palast might be the man to contact to help you break this story.

Does this have anything to do with Katrina car Churchwell? He seems like such a nebbish, some sad little fart with an illegal auction house. It is hard to believe he would have the smarts or the pull.

What I want to know is did the Katrina cars that ended up in Latin America leave NOLA, cross state lines to get clean papers, and then head South from some other port, or did they leave town out of a NOLA warehouse?

If so, which warehouse, and who at the port got his palm greased to turn a blind eye, and who did the greasing? Who does Nagin send to port authority meetings?

Cars go out, drugs come in: is it one or two warehouses run by crooks, or do we have larger problems?