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View Diary: 20,000 more votes than ballots (Waukesha, 2006) [updated-Tue] (272 comments)

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  •  now you're just wrong (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    elmo, haensgen, think blue, DollyMadison

    If you look at the state website for official turnout statistics, you will see a different number. Actually, haven't you done that already? If so, why aren't you reporting it, and if you haven't, what on earth are you doing? If you're going to lecture me about data, don't you have some responsibility to, y'know, look at data?

    An EMS report per se isn't official. It isn't reviewed by the canvass board; it isn't reported to the state; it isn't necessarily reported at all.

    •  I am relying on what the county is reporting. (16+ / 0-)

      I don't know if she may have reported a different number to the state to make sure all of her numbers add up, especially in the wake of the manner she reports in her results.

      Regardless, if you had done a proper analysis on Waukesha for your own diary and looked at what the Clerk was reporting you'd have caught this error yourself. You were looking to prove your own point so you didn't dig deeper into the numbers nor cast an skeptical eye on the Clerk.

      You make outlandish claims like, oh voter rolls surpassing 100% happens. That demands more inspection rather than being dismissed. In fact another Kossack who works with BOE numbers all the time has addressed that topic in my diary.

      Either way, based on your prior diaries you have a horse in this race and need to prove your point.

      I've been pretty patient with how condescending you've been to me and again I say, it's time to move on.

      In the words of Willy Wonka "I said good day!".

      •  sorry, no (5+ / 2-)
        Recommended by:
        elmo, jam, think blue, DollyMadison, rockhound
        Hidden by:
        Bmeis, lunachickie

        The official turnout figures are here. They may or may not be correct -- but it makes no sense to insist that the EMS numbers must be right and the official numbers can't be.

        Why would I have reported unofficial numbers from 2006 in my diary?

        You make outlandish claims like, oh voter rolls surpassing 100% happens.

        That's not "outlandish," it's true. If you don't believe it, have the courtesy to put some money on the table -- I should have something to show for my time.

        By all means, feel free to investigate it, not dismiss it. The trouble is when people automatically score everything they do as "investigating," and everything anyone else does as "dismissing."

        •  Oh please. (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          elwior, trumpeter, lunachickie

          Let me ask you a question, do you believe there has been any case of election fraud in the past 15 years?

          If so where and when?

          •  Put. Your. Money. On. The. Table. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            DollyMadison, rockhound

            Were I Karl Rove his evil self, that would have no bearing on the facts about registration and population. I've called your bluff. Call, or fold, but don't throw sand.

            (Dude, people have in fact been convicted of election fraud in the last fifteen years. What, do you think my tongue will burst into flames or something?)

            •  Put yours on the table. (6+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              elwior, Thumb, Glic, JVolvo, lunachickie, slave138

              Links to all of the counties with over 100% voter registration?

              I provided data that was provided by the clerks office that directly contradicts the states results, where is your proof that  EMS results are typically wonky?

              There is no bluff, call, or fold. I provided data directly from the clerk. You have provided opinion with no fact to back it up.

              And no, we are not talking voter fraud. We are talking election fraud. And again I am asking YOU if you can point to any instances of election fraud in the past 15 years. Please do.

              •  what, you don't accept the official results (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                think blue, DollyMadison

                as a factual basis for the official results? Why wouldn't the state's turnout figures be the authoritative ones? Have you presented any factual basis for your opinion that "ballots cast" in the EMS report is an official declaration of turnout, or whatever you think it officially declares?

                I'm sure you don't realize this, but what you're doing here is very closely analogous to using an online government database of airline on-time performance to argue that the planes hijacked on 9/11 actually never took off. I'm not saying anything about your opinions on 9/11; I'm saying that your appeal to the authority of that line in the EMS report is wrong in exactly the same way.

                Pretty much every town and city clerk in the county, as well as the county canvassing board, would have been in a position to detect massive vote inflation. So there is a clear preponderance of evidence against your view. But you won't be able to see it unless you look around.

                Links to all of the counties with over 100% voter registration?

                All? How much do you want for the money you don't have the guts to lose?
                I am asking YOU

                I think you might find this flowchart helpful.  I would be happy to entertain your attempted ad hominem derail once we conclude the present discussion, which actually pertains to your diary.
                •  So again... (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  elwior, lunachickie

                  Please provide evidence of this 100%+ count, I think we'd all like to see if it's well within the norm. It's unlikely to be widespread but be my guest. I'm sure there are a couple of examples but I'd like you to show us all how common place this is.

                  No links to back up your EMS claim either? Big surprise.

                  So essentially in the past 15 years you can't point to one single instance of election fraud which means all of your research is meaningless, you haven't actually researched the data which reflects that fraud and it's unlikely that there hasn't been a single case of election fraud in the past 15 years.

                  Big talk, multiple people continue to debunk your stance but you stick with it because it fits your narrative. You are harping on what was reported to the state rather than looking at what the clerk posted on her own site and can't really point to any reason why what the clerk posted might be incorrect. Isn't this an example of exactly what happened in Waukesha just a week or so ago?

                  •  interesting that you ignore my questions (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    think blue, DollyMadison

                    My favorite example of over-the-top registration figures is Cuyahoga County, Ohio. In 2008 its voting-age population was right around 1 million (the 2005-09 ACS estimate is 990,168, and as of November 2008 there were 1,112,501 registered voters.

                    In Wisconsin in 2006, also using ACS estimates, I found that Waukesha ranked fifth in the state in the registration/VAP ratio (after election day registration), behind Ozaukee, Eau Claire, Dane, and Vilas. You're welcome to be suspicious of Ozaukee, but then it's only fair to be suspicious of Dane as well.

                    I admit that I never thought to keep a clip file of misleading EMS reports from the middle of last decade.

                    So essentially in the past 15 years you can't point to one single instance of election fraud which means all of your research is meaningless...

                    Part of the problem here is that quantitative evidence can be absolutely devastating without making clear the cause of the problem. I don't know whether the undervotes in New Mexico in 2004 were due to fraud or not, but it's likely that they cost Kerry the election. Similar problem with the undervotes in Sarasota County in 2006.  Everyone agrees that the numbers were hinky; it just isn't clear what kind of hink.

                    What you have in Waukesha, at this point at least, is nowhere near the evidence in those cases, or the machine misallocation in Franklin County in 2004, or several fiascos in Florida in 2000 (or some odd numbers out of South Carolina -- not relating to Alvin Greene, by the way -- that I haven't studied as closely). You're just not there yet. Blasting me may get you a few more recs on Daily Kos, but I don't think that will ultimately help.

                    I most certainly pointed to a reason why the EMS ballots cast figure could be incorrect: because some ballot types didn't have ballots-cast figures. However, that same clerk didn't post enough information to reverse-engineer specifically where that number might be from -- and even if she had, someone could always argue that that is part of the cover-up. But if you seriously want to posit that she added many thousands of votes in that election, you have some data analysis to do in order to make that more plausible, and you'll also have to give some account of how no one in the county managed to notice.

                •  questions (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:

                  1/ What does EMS stand for?
                  2/ Why does the link that diarist posted for Waukesha county have the words "official election" in it twice if it isn't official? (I know, you can't possibly know that ... sigh)
                  3/ Are you sure you can't prove Scott Brown stole the election? (sorry, disaffected MA-Dem here grasping at straws ;)

                  Causation was, is, and ever shall be a slippery bitch, so we're best sticking with noting the facts

                  by jam on Tue Apr 12, 2011 at 12:43:08 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  1. Election Management System (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    jam, DollyMadison

                    To be cynical about it, some of the voting machine manufacturers sometimes have seemed to reckon that they can sell the machines a bit cheap (at least cheap enough to make the sale) because election officials will be at their mercy paying programming / consulting fees to configure the software, along with other "gotcha" continuing expenses. Some of that has to do with real complexity, but a lot seems to be "You pay for our buggy software, and then you pay for the workarounds." That's not really my area, but I've heard stories.

                    2. Actually, I've seen some pretty demented links, so the question is meta all the way down. I think that the vote counts in that report are considered the accurate ones, so the clerk probably figured it was "official enough," even though it indicates more votes than ballots, and even though it indicates an entire precinct missing (IIRC). But I haven't checked the vote counts, so maybe it's even wronger than I realize.

                    3. I'm afraid not. However, even though I don't buy the argument about the difference between hand count and op-scan results, I strongly favor routine audits that would help to reveal whether or not the scanners did what they should. Given the trajectory of pre-election polls, I suspect the counts were pretty good, but more direct evidence would be better.

                    •  I'm dealing with something similar (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:

                      in a  completely different world. The embedded computer and the web app have two different numbers for what should be the same value. The PLC is considered the "authoritative" value - but, but, but, ... why? And if the PLC is authoritative, why isn't the web app simply querying the PLC and reporting the same number? So now the entire historical record contained in the database is "wrong"... It's just insane.

                      Causation was, is, and ever shall be a slippery bitch, so we're best sticking with noting the facts

                      by jam on Tue Apr 12, 2011 at 09:08:25 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  yes, probably quite similar (0+ / 0-)

                        Even before one gets to the EMS "back-end," there are all sorts of interesting ways in which voting systems can give internally inconsistent results, innocently or through subversion. Little hardware glitches, thread bugs, faulty assumptions buried deep in the source code, user settings that aren't clearly or correctly documented.... And then the EMS can go wrong or get bent in all sorts of ways.

                        From memory... you may remember a firestorm of controversy about a precinct in Gahanna, Franklin County, Ohio that reported thousands of votes although it had hundreds of voters. That precinct was using an old push-button Direct Recording Electronic system. Supposedly, the board consulted with the manufacturer and found that the votes were intact on the original system, but that it was possible to replicate the reporting failure through some sequence of actions. I think it was that if you queried for the vote totals and then did something else too soon, one or two bits that were "supposed" to be zero would get set to one, and you would end up with vote counts from Bizarroworld.

                        The details (which are out there in a county report somewhere) had a strong ring of "you can't make this sh*t up." However, they were fundamentally unverifiable to anyone without the skill and access to take apart the voting machine, and not entirely verifiable regardless. Super. Neat little case study in the trouble with DREs: maybe you can convince yourself that you got the right answer -- maybe you're even right -- but why would anyone else believe you?

                        Maybe I should say that's the problem with elections. Some of our present election procedures give unwarranted confidence; others give warranted confidence to some people, but not necessarily to people who don't participate in them. A county may have dreadful chain-of-custody procedures or brilliant ones, but we can't really tell the difference.

                        Blah blah blah. Thanks for humoring me while I wax philosophical, or whatever this was. It seems to me that the problem is much harder and much more interesting than some people who accuse me of dismissing it realize.

                  •  I don't think that word means what you think (4+ / 0-)

                    it means...

                    Trolling is a sad reality of internet life. Most trolls tend to be blatant, posting comments or diaries that are clearly intended to provoke an angry response. Other trollish messages are posted simply to disrupt the conversation in a diary. But some people like to label others trolls who aren't. This is typically done to stifle someone's point of view or to deflect attention away from a real troll. Such promiscuous use of the term muddies discussions and is just another form of name-calling that reduces productive interaction on the site. Be judicious in calling someone a troll or in treating someone as such.

                    Causation was, is, and ever shall be a slippery bitch, so we're best sticking with noting the facts

                    by jam on Tue Apr 12, 2011 at 01:12:42 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  D Kos FAQ (0+ / 0-)

                    "Any and all insults are HRable. Although users are never required to uprate any comment, it is considered a violation of site policy to uprate a comment with an insult in it. "

                    “Until justice is blind to color, until education is unaware of race, until opportunity is unconcerned with the color of men’s skins, emancipation will be a proclamation but not a fact.” LBJ

                    by JohnInWestland on Tue Apr 12, 2011 at 07:50:15 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                •  my friend (a lawyer)'s response to the flowchart (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Vicky, HudsonValleyMark
                  This is awesome awesome awesome. It should be mounted on the walls, nay embroidered into the carpet, in legislative chambers everywhere. It should have a dedicated position next to cameras in every tv news studio everywhere.

                  Causation was, is, and ever shall be a slippery bitch, so we're best sticking with noting the facts

                  by jam on Tue Apr 12, 2011 at 12:58:22 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  Well... (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:

                  Apparently the Wisconsin GAB is taking this seriously and isn't as dismissive of the discrepancy as you are. You can check the original diary for additional details.

        •  I think it is safe to say INCORRECT (5+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          elwior, OHdog, freesia, Bluehawk, wiseacre

          Just number rambling showed up an impossible combination.

          The county of Green Lake had 8171 voters ( I am assuming that absentees are included in this number, if not the error is even worse as there would be more votes than registered voters), for a total of 8293 registrations (the sum of old late and same day) giving a 98.5% turnout.

          More importantly, the City of Berlin had 1811 voters against a total registered pool of 3504 voters, which means that 1693 voters didn't vote. However the county wide number is 8293-8171 = 122 non voters.

          Therefore the statewide total of registerd voters who did not vote, is smaller (less than 10%) than the number of voters who did not vote in one of its constituent towns.

          "you(sic) existence arose from a popcorn fart out of nobodies ass." - A Kossack who wishes to remain anonymous.

          by senilebiker on Tue Apr 12, 2011 at 10:21:02 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I'm sorry I missed this earlier (0+ / 0-)

            It's a neat example of why it's helpful to approach election reports with balanced skepticism.

            A major reason -- perhaps the reason -- that Green Lake County reported more voters than registrants is that it reported that five of its 16 jurisdictions contained no registered voters at all.

            That probably isn't right. Of course, there is no way to tell just by staring at the report whether it is an innocent clerical error, an effort to cover up vote-stuffing, or what.

            I don't think it's a binary -- that a data report is either CORRECT or INCORRECT. Generally, the longer the report, the more likely it is to contain obvious errors.

        •  Oh, yes (0+ / 0-)

          because now you're badgering and you're being condescending.  

          REPEAL the Telecomm Act & REVIEW this decision. NO journalist should be fired because their boss can't have the truth told.

          by lunachickie on Tue Apr 12, 2011 at 07:06:01 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  y'know... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            Someday, if you post here often enough, you will say something that you know to be true, and someone will say it is ridiculous, and maybe throw in some speculations about your motives for saying it. And then you can search for the pitch-perfect response.

            "Condescending" is what people said about Al Gore when he tried to rebut George W. Bush. Clearly I'm not cut out to run for president, but things could be worse. (And, no, I'm not suggesting that anyone here is 'just like Bush,' only making a point about why I think the name-calling is really off-point.)

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