This week’s Guests, engage with Congress:
— Activist DAVID SWANSON on war, impeachment
— Activist BERT JOHNSON on election reform and H.R. 811: Voter Confidence? or Voter Con?
– Activist DAVID SWANSON on war, impeachment
Ray McGovern, Cindy Sheehan, and David Swanson
photo by Doreen Key
David Swanson has been active in a number of progressive battles over the past few years.
We’ll talk with him about his recent face to face meetings with members of Congress, attempting to get them to defund the war in Iraq. Also, David can tell us about upcoming protests in September. We’ll also look at impeachment momentum, and at the campaign to impeach Alberto Gonzales — did it hasten the AG’s resignation? And, what about Iran?
David is the creator of ImpeachCheney.org, the Washington Director of Democrats.com and co-founder of the AfterDowningStreet.org coalition, a board member of Progressive Democrats of America, of the Backbone Campaign, and of Voters for Peace. He serves on a working group of United for Peace and Justice.
He has worked as a newspaper reporter and as a communications director, with jobs including Press Secretary for Dennis Kucinich’s 2004 presidential campaign. In April and May 2007, Swanson consulted part-time for Kucinich for President 2008. He serves on the steering committee of the Charlottesville Center for Peace and Justice. He obtained a Master’s degree in philosophy from the University of Virginia in 1997.
“Get Out of the Valley of Elah”
By David Swanson
September 6, 2007
Let’s Try Democracy .. http://www.davidswanson.org/
Also see www.BetrayUsReport.com
With the New York Times finally calling for a ban on DREs this week (see BradBlog’s story, http://www.bradblog.com/?p=5037), and the Secretary of State of California putting severe restrictions on use of DREs in her state, there is finally some momentum to ban DREs at the federal level.
Bert Johnson is active in the Coalition for Voting Integrity, based in Bucks County, PA.
Bert recently has met with Congressmember Rush Holt of NJ, after asking him pointed questions in a town hall meeting. Holt’s HR 811 bill to reform elections would NOT ban DREs, and would not even create a real paper ballot that could easily be handled and recounted. (Holt’s “paper” is a flimsy roll of paper called a “paper trail”.) HR 811 finally was being rushed for a vote this past week, but the House Rules Committee stopped the bill in its tracks. Bert will tell us how Holt isn’t even calling the bill his own any more, and the impact of citizens throwing some obstacles in the way of passing it.
Even Louise Slaughter, chair of the House Rules committee which controls much about what will happen with HR 811, has serious doubts:
“I am very concerned that we are passing this law that you have to have it by a date certain when experts tell us that there is not a [voting] machine that will do this right …
I have got to tell you I am scared we are waltzing off a cliff here, and I am worried about it.”
A poll done in August showed that 55% of likely California voters have “some confidence” or “only a little confidence” or “no confidence” that their votes are being accurately counted (Story: http://www.votetrustusa.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=2573&Itemid=113). Congress has stated it wants voters to have confidence in elections. But, is the Holt bill designed for confidence, or is it a Voter Con bill?
(Among its activities, the group is home for a weekly radio show on elections called “Voice of the Voters.”)
YouTube Clips re Holt’s bill:
Paper or Vapor? .. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xBG7yDu8cA4%20
Federalized elections .. http://youtube.com/watch?v=vZfOkkTP6CY
Microsoft811 .. http://youtube.com/watch?v=nAmji1msSWU
Eight Points on HR 811, the Holt Bill:
“Will HR 811 Reform Our Elections? No!”
If you missed it, Pokey’s research piece on electronic voting:
Peering Through Chinks in the Armor of High-Tech Elections
by Pokey Anderson
May 27, 2007
CONTACT INFO FOR YOUR CONGRESSPERSON:
Capitol Switchboard: 202-224-3121
Find the phone, fax and email for your congressperson: http://www.visi.com/juan/congress/index.html
Key Player on what will happen to the Holt bill:
LOUISE McINTOSH SLAUGHTER (NY) – Chair of House Rules Committee
Phone: (202) 225-3615
Fax: (202) 225-7822
Houston members of the US House:
o Ted Poe 281-446-0242; (www.house.gov/poe)
o Al Green 713-383-9234; 202-225-7508 (www.house.gov/algreen)
o John Culberson 713-682-8828; 202-225-2571 (www.culberson.house.gov)
o Michael McCaul 281-398-1247; 202-225-2401 (www.house.gov/mccaul)
o Ron Paul 409-766-7013; 202-225-2831 (www.house.gov/paul)
o Sheila Jackson-Lee 713-655-0050 ; 202-225-3816 (www.jacksonlee.house.gov)
o Kevin Brady 936-441-5700 (www.house.gov/brady)
o Gene Green 281-999-5879; 202-225-1688 (www.house.gov/green)