Election Risks, Frauds, & Follies

As requested by CompuGator

A place to discuss various oddities in the election. Risks of fraud. Exposures. Shenanigans.

My contribution was pointing out that anyone with a postage meter can set any postmark date they like. You are not supposed to do it, but it’s just a dial. (I had one for my 2 person business so it isn’t like it’s exotic).

Then there’s this, Registering Dead People:

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About E.M.Smith

A technical managerial sort interested in things from Stonehenge to computer science. My present "hot buttons' are the mythology of Climate Change and ancient metrology; but things change...
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63 Responses to Election Risks, Frauds, & Follies

  1. Nancy & John Hultquist says:

    Another take on this:
    “Though officials said no mail-in ballots were requested or cast under the falsified voter IDs, the scheme exposes weaknesses in Florida’s voter registration process, which relies partially on the honor system.”

    Honor system!
    I’m shocked. Shocked I tell you.

    So what was a person from S. C. doing and why?
    “An unknown person in Columbia, S.C., submitted at least 54 new voter applications in July in the same neat handwriting to the Broward elections office, several in each of 19 envelopes. Many of the voters were elderly, and had recently died in the Northeast.”

    Broward County is just north of Miami.
    Fort Lauderdale is therein.

  2. Compu Gator says:

    Well!  So here we are!

    At the outset, I offer thanks our host E.M., but of course, he’s not responsible for any of my analysis, opinions, nor errors.

    It seems that as Democrats and their minions accuse the Trump Train of lying about the impact of voting fraud, disingenously proclaiming loudly & widely that there’s no evidence of voting fraud affecting the results of past elections. Yet it seems that no one in the Trump Train has yet pointed out the principle that’s overdue for much repeating: You can’t prove a negative!

    It is fundamentally foolish or dishonest to claim certainty about the absence of fraud. By its nature, it’s effective and useful to its perpetrators only when hidden; it must remain undetected until its usefulness has been exhausted!

  3. p.g.sharrow says:

    It would seem that the Democrats will start claiming massive vote packing by the Republicans to cover their own. This will be their excuse to explain their losses in the vote count and serve to justify their “Counter coup” attempt. I believe that the Trump Administration is laying for them and will use this to roll up the “Dark State”.
    Lots of popcorn will be needed over the next week or so…pg

  4. E.M.Smith says:

    The Dems seem to have “stepped in it” in a couple of ways.

    1) Their forced focus on identity politics blinded them to the revulsion of Hispanics who escaped Socialism or Communism (but I repeat myself…) for any candidate that reminds them of it. In the Florida rally, Trump tossed out the statistic that he had 96% approval in the Cuban American community… So all those Hispanics they imported over the years are not fond of them.

    2) Mail In Votes push coupled with the “Covid Panic Promotion”. They didn’t expect that Republicans would not panic while their base would panic. So attendance at rallies or willingness to stand in line to vote is lowest among Democrats. Mail in voting has a much higher failure rate and rejection rate. So an “Own Goal” as they herd the Democrat voters into a less effective vote process. Also, turns out a lot of them are not bright enough to handle the ballot process properly and get rejected…

    3) Blacks are not dumb. The Democrats thought they could just keep repeating the same old “racist” crap lines. Blacks got a taste of economic gain from a guy who actually cared about making them successful (as it is part of his success metric of low employment and high productivity). Blacks NOTICED that Antifa are a bunch of white brats burning down black owned businesses. Destroying black neighborhoods. Blacks NOTICED that Trump was calling for them to get better police protection. Trump is getting a record share of the Black vote because he kept his promises to them and because he really cares about success for everyone.

    I’m sure the Panic Driven Dimocrats will be trying all sorts of propaganda, cheats, and other mischief. The big question is just “Will it work?”. That will depend on the margin of win by Trump. I’m hoping for a massive win, so much so that the fraudulent areas with 120% of voters voting stand out starkly and folks get busted. We need an “Audit The Vote” regardless of how it goes.

  5. Compu Gator says:

    The states attempting to require photo identification seem to be mostly Republican-controlled, whereas those preventing such requirements seem to be mostly Democrat-controlled.

    The rationalizations for preventing photo identification are unashamedly dishonest, given that the Democrat Party doesn’t oppose identification being required to purchase alcoholic beverages or tobacco products, or to drive public transportation vehicles, or to enter certain government buildings (and per Sean Hannity, photo identification is required even to be admitted to that party’s own national political conventions). Florida is among those states that facilitate id. requirements by issuing free official identification to senior citizens who are not drivers (I assume that Florida will issue official identification to younger nondriving adults at a tolerably low cost).

    Alas, Minnesota or Wisconsin allows registration-to-vote as late as election day itself: It’s a stunningly foolish, if not plainly subversive, law that practically eliminates any & all time for election workers to verify whatever documentation such a state might require, and any & all time for election workers to apply sanity checks to anything else that raises suspicions. Honest U.S. citizens might need Divine intervention if such laws become a trend across the U.S.A.

    Combining crippling identification requirements with voter-registration on the day-of-election would be unarguably subversive to the integrity & security of elections, not just for specific states, but also for Congress and the Electoral Colege, thus the presidency. Criminally dishonest politicians who could recruit & deliver busloads of similarly minded people to polling places would have a frighteningly high potential for flipping what would otherwise be the legitimate results of an election. So what if it’s discovered later that the turnout at a polling place was 125% of the voters registered for it? The damage is done. Arrest & charge whoever did it? Hah!  People got off a bus at a polling place, registered & cast ballots whithout presenting a photo id., got back on the bus, and it drove away, into the dark of night.

  6. philjourdan says:

    Registering dead people has been done since the 60s or before. But it does seem to be getting more brazen this year.

  7. cdquarles says:

    Yep. Election fraud is quite old. Ask LBJ about it ;p. Locally, absentee related fraud has been prosecuted. I know of people who have done time for said violations. The poor, nice county clerk went to prison. The jerk politician got 6 months. What’s so galling is that said pol was a repeat offender that was run out of one county only to get caught again.

  8. Compu Gator says:

    I’ve been wracking my brain, including night hours waaay too close to dawn EST today, because I’d really like to believe that there could be an effectively designed & implemented computer system “out there” that would help blow the lid off voter-identity fraud.

    Alas, under U.S. law, data from the U.S. Census is forbidden to be used. There are potential surrogates, e.g., combinations of local real-property appraiser and state personal-income tax-collection data, but the combination couldn’t identify who, among people attempting election-day registration, is not a local resident. Someone, please, please, confirm that those subversive election-day registration laws do at least require the prospective legally registering voters to be local residents (don’t they)?  It seems to me that such a system ought to be able to detect fake addresses fraudulently claimed as local addresses. County coroners, hospitals, and related institution, ought collectively to have records of people who have died, so repeated surveys of graveyard tombstones wouldn’t contribute to identity fraud. The mainstream newspapers have lost so much advertising revenue to the Internat, and lost so much public confidence as reflected in sometimes-drastic declines in subscriptions, that they no longer attempt complete coverage of local deaths, and treat obituaries as a form of paid advertising (e.g., Orlando Sentinel), nearly eliminating a substantial source for identity fraud.

    Altho’ if such a computer system could exist in an election-subverting state, election workers would have to be allowed & able to use it, and making it available and providing training would require the state & local governments to spend money & time that’s not strictly required to conduct an election. I guess from the state’s choices in laws, that in many Democrat-controlled counties, not only would election workers not have such a computer system available, but they wouldn’t even know that it existed.

  9. E.M.Smith says:

    You must present a “One ID” identification ( drivers license with birth cert on file or passport) to get on an airplane to fly 50 miles…

    BTW, in Florida I tried to register using my mail drop store address. It was refused. (I was in a sublet vacation trailer at the RV Park…). They already have the system to know what are real residence physical addresses.

    The credit reporting companies also know where everyone with an address lives. This isn’t a technical problem.

    Today on Gorka, he played a cut where some guy on pMSDNC (msnbc) said they needed to start getting ready, given the polls say Biden is winning, to refuse to accept a Trump win, AS IT MUST BE THE RESULT OF CHEATING, and contest it every way possible. Be ready for riots and other trash post election.

  10. Terry Jackson says:

    The nice WA County Clerk sent us ballots to our AZ address, as per usual over the years. In August we got AZ licenses for cars and drivers, and voter registration. Voting twice, easy peasy. I called the Clerk’s office in WA and asked for 10 more ballots, pretending to be from Chicago circa Mayor Daley, or perhaps to de-register in WA. They emailed the form to de-register and we sent it back. So, lots of snowbird double voting, undetected, but discoverable with effort. There does not seem to be a reporting loop back to the previous state when you change licenses.

  11. E.M.Smith says:

    Oh this is fun…NOT!

    Judge rules California Gov. Nuisance election law changes illegal, but we’re stuck with them anyway… so will the California vote be illegal?

    https://patch.com/california/across-ca/court-rules-against-newsoms-mail-ballot-executive-order

    Court Rules Against Newsom’s Mail-In-Ballot Executive Order
    Gov. Newsom’s executive order required counties to mail ballots to all California voters amid COVID-19 safety concerns.
    By Kat Schuster, Patch Staff
    Verified Patch Staff Badge Nov 2, 2020 4:35 pm PT Updated Nov 2, 2020 6:18 pm PT

    CALIFORNIA — A State Superior Court judge ruled Monday that Gov. Gavin Newsom’s executive order to enact changes to the general election to mitigate the spread of coronavirus was unconstitutional. In a tentative decision, Judge Sarah Heckman also moved to prohibit Newsom from issuing directives that “amend, alter, or change” California laws.

    California Assemblymembers James Gallagher (R-Yuba City) and Kevin Kiley (R-Rocklin) challenged Newsom’s executive order in court on Oct. 21 at the Sutter County Superior Court in Yuba City.

    Heckman issued a permanent injunction Monday, preventing Newsom from issuing any more executive orders. The ruling however, does not affect the Governor’s stay at home orders, as State Senator Melissa Mendez tweeted Monday.

    “To clear any confusion, the ruling in the case against Newsom does not end the lockdown,” Melendez tweeted Monday. “It means he cannot amend, alter, or change existing statutory law or make new statutory law or legislative policy.”

    The executive order, No. N-67-20, enacted a new law that required counties to send all registered and active voters in California a vote-by-mail ballot. Another order also thinned the amount of vote centers throughout the state, requiring just one polling place per 10,000 residents from Oct. 31 to Nov. 2 for 8 hours and on Election Day from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.
    […]
    The ruling won’t affect the General Election Tuesday,
    but as the likelihood for a Special Election amounts, possibly for 2021, the judge sought to prevent Newsom from enacting anymore changes to an upcoming election.

  12. Compu Gator says:

    (I began drafting this to be an introduction or summary of modest length. But the more I turned toward details, the longer this stretched. I concede that my phrasing probably has rough spots, but for such analytical efforts, I typically sacrifice readability in favor of eliminating ambiguity. I’m once again struggling with the principle that an eventual “nearly perfect” is a potent enemy of the timely “good enough”.  I hope that at least a few readers find this useful.)

    There are numerous ways that election laws can differ between any 2 states:

    • Registering to vote (uncategorized):
        • Where can a person register to vote?  Only in official election offices, or at other official offices, or even at temporary ad hoc places (e.g., a table at a street fair)?
        • Who is allowed to possess individually identifiable voter-registration forms and documentation, under what conditions, and for how long?  [◉]
        • What U.S. citizenship status is required?  The U.S. Constitution establishes the right of voting only for U.S. citizens aged 18 or older [✪]. Beware that it does not legally prevent permitting voting by other classes of individuals (e.g., noncitizen or aged under 18) who might be authorized by any state.
        • What documentation is required to verify a prospective voter’s identity?
        • What documentation is required to verify (U.S.) citizenship?  E.g., Florida relies on what’s sometimes called the “honor system”,  i.e., the state accepts a marked check-box and oral oath or affirmation. Sigh.
        • Are documents that are written in languages other than English either provided or accepted for any purposes of voter registration?  Amazingly, there are people who will insist that we can trust people illegally present in the U.S.A., who have already broken U.S. law just by their presence here, not to break our perjury laws by lying about their citizenship. And certainly, they would not lie when they require an official translator to convey that oath or affirmation to election officials.

    • Registering to vote/Residency:
        • How long in advance of an election must a person be established as a resident of a local jurisdiction?
        • What documentation is required for a person to be established as a resident of a local jurisdiction?
        • What types of address are acceptable for registration?  E.g., in Florida it must be an address that’s verifiable as a residence address; no P.O. boxes, nor business addresses, nor apartment/condo-office addresses are allowed, and there is a county database used to verify that requirement.
        • How long in advance of an election is a person allowed to register as a voter?  E.g. Minnesota or Wisconsin allows registration-to-vote on election day itself: It’s a stunningly foolish, if not plainly subversive, law that practically eliminates any & all time for verifying whatever documentation such a state might require, and any & all time for sanity checks on anything else that raises suspicions, e.g.,

    I have Ali and Fatima standing here in front of me. They both seem to be middle-aged. They handed me a note whose wording is surprisingly legalistic. It claims that they were both born in Mad Paul, Wiscysota, lived all their lives here in the U.S.A., but they have no birth certificate to present. They speak almost no English, and their note insists that we provide them with Somali interpreters to help them with registration and voting. They are carrying a photocopy of a marked sample ballot, with blank space where the original recipient’s name & address should be.

    Well!  Nothing suspicious to see there!
        • How & when are obsolete voter registrations (e.g. deaths, fleeing/flown residents) detected & purged?  Is there cooperation with federal, state & local officials (e.g., undeliverable “do not forward” mail, morgues, tax collectors) [###]?
        • How long in advance of an election must a person be registered in a jurisdiction, to be allowed to vote in the same jurisdiction?
        • How long in advance of an election must a voter who moves to a new in-state residence be registered to vote in the new jurisdiction?  E.g., Florida uses a state database of all registered voters in the state, when verifiable identification and proof-of-residence is presented, to provide manual update by election-workers of existing registration, as late as election day at a polling place with access to that database (if the process is not started at the designated polling-place for the new residence, the voter will be directed to it; there is no legal remedy if the polls close before the voter arrives).

    • Polling places:
        • What distribution & abundance is required for polling-place sites?  Is it equitable & effective for the state’s terrain?
        • What hours are the polling-places open for voting?
        • What remedies are available to a voter whose designated polling-place fails to open on time for voting (e.g., can you say “Miami-Dade”)?  In Florida, the governor has the power to compensate by ordering extension of polling-place closing times (when most recently done, the open hours were extended for all polling places in the state).
        • Are there any areas at or around a polling place in which only voters assigned to that polling place, its poll-workers, and specially authorized individuals (e.g., poll-watchers) are allowed?  The goal is to reduce interference from political advocates or potentially violent protesters who are not present to cast ballots.
        • Who has the authority to enforce such areas if they exist?  What arrangements are needed to summon law enforcement officers, and can they legally remove troublesome advocates?
        • Is photography allowed inside polling places?  Altho’ photography can provide sentimental photos of #1 son casting his 1st vote in a presidential election, it can also provide proof of a vote illegally cast for sale to the highest bidder.
        • Is use of cell-phones and computer tablets allowed inside polling places?  The potential for facilitating illegal selling of votes
    is much the same as for photography.

    • Voting:
        • What documentation is required to verify a registered voter’s identity before issuing a ballot?  If it’s photo identification, which creators of identification are legally acceptable (e.g., a private-company employee badge, or a government-issued id. only)?  It’s worth noting that the states attempting to require photo identification seem to be mostly Republican-controlled, whereas those avoiding such requirements seem to be mostly Democrat-controlled. The rationalizations for the latter are unashamedly dishonest, given that the latter party doesn’t oppose identification being required to purchase alcoholic beverages or tobacco products, to drive public transportation vehicles, or to enter certain government buildings (and per Sean Hannity, even to be admitted to that party’s own political conventions). Florida is among those states that facilitate the requirement by issuing free official identification to senior citizens who are not drivers (I assume that Florida will issue official identification to younger nondriving adults at a low cost).
        • What information is saved whenever a voter is issued a ballot?  Ballots might bear serial numbers and various bar-codes; are those logged as being issued to a specific voter?
        • Where, relative to a registered voter’s residence, is a voter allowed to be issued a ballot and cast it?  Can a ballot issued for a particular precinct in 1 polling place be successfully cast in the polling place for another precinct?  Orange Co. has several dual-precinct poliing places; they host 2 precincts worth of voters in 1 physical polling place; voters have been known to cross formal dividers in a polling place (e.g., velvet ropes strung between posts, as in theaters) in hopes of taking advantage of the shortest waiting line they see, but the tabulators reject the ballots as cast in the wrong place; the ballot is simply returned to the voter, and remains usable in tabulators for the precinct for which it was issued. I imagine that other voters might drop in to their designated polling place near home, be issued a ballot, exit and commute to work, mark the ballot at work, then try to cast it at a polling place near their workplace before they start their commute home; that also would fail in Florida.
        • Will a registered voter who is is merely in line to enter her|his designated polling place at its designated closing time nevertheless be issued a ballot, be allowed time to mark it, and finally cast it?  In Florida, the answer is “yes”; certain sites have a history of seeing the final ballots cast quite late, notably the U. of Central Fla. Arena, ca. 11 p.m. for scheduled poll-closing at 7 p.m. in local time [⚒].
        • What additional procedures & technology are available to assist voters whose disabilities (e.g., blindness, muscle control) prevent them from voting using the regular procedures & technology?  What, if any, are the delays involved before starting hands-on use?  Is each polling place equipped with a complete set, or must it be transported on request from some centralized location?  Since at least 2016, Orange Co. has machines guided by a synthesized voice that enumerates the ballot races or questions and their choices, controlled by buttons easily distinguishable by shape, with privacy provided by headphones. The machines were designed & tested in coõperation with a reputable nongovernmental organization that assists vision-impaired people. Perhaps the most important factor in the machine’s favor is that its output is a marked regular ballot, which can then not only be tabulated as usual, even for recounts, but also retained as a hardcopy public record as required for all other ballots cast.
        • Who, in the sense of personal relationships, is allowed to assist disabled voters with casting a ballot?  Are they required to identify themselves for polling-place records?
        • How are all ballots, i.e., issued, provisional, cancelled/voided, and never-issued, accounted for after a polling place closes?

    • Tabulating: t.b.d.

    • Recounting: t.b.d.

    ——–
    Note ◉ : individually identifiable personal information imposes various restrictions that are enforceable under U.S. federal law. I will not attempt elaborate, because of the fading in my memories of the issues.

    Note ✪: The U.S. Constitution did not even mention voting as a act of individuals, never mind as a right, until nearly a century after the Bill of Rights: Amend. XV: (“Elective Franchise”), ratified in 1870:

    The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude. [….]

    It’s Amend. XXVI (“Voting Age”), ratified in 1971, that guarantees the right to vote to U.S. citizens aged 18 or older. Seniors who were then coming of age in the U.S.A. will remember its rather compelling rationalization: “Old enough to be drafted and killed (in action), old enough to vote”.

    Note ### : Under federal law as it stood ca. 2010 (i.e., when it last mattered personally to me, altho’ I doubt that it’s changed since then), U.S. Census Bureau data on individual people and residence addresses is forbidden from being used for any purpose except the U.S. Census. So fuggidabout access by elections officials to USCB “demolished” and “unoccupied residence” address data, which is provided by Census enumerators (i.e., the Censūs “boots on the ground” workers), and could be helpful; alas, in Florida, flipping real estate has become an industry of sorts, so the status of property might change quickly (altho’ not in 2010 in the Great Recession that followed the state’s earlier Real-Estate Bust).

  13. E.M.Smith says:

    In California, illegal aliens are encouraged and allowed to get a Drivers License (evidence of prior driving not required.. multilingual instructions provided.). We also have “motor voter” registration. Check a box, you get registered.

    Think about it…

  14. Compu Gator says:

    IIITTTTTT’s HEEEEEERE!

    Up & down the Florida Peninsula, and no doubt elsewhere in the Eastern Standard Time Zone, alarms are disturbing the sleep of election staff and their temporary election-workers.

    I suppose that the early birds spring out of bed. I know that the night owls grope for the snooze switch, for all the good it might do them. Depending on the preparation for their assignments, they might’ve gotten no better than a fitful night of off-&-on sleep.

    Poll-workers for Orange Co. are required to arrive at their assigned polling place no later than 6 a.m. (11:00 GMT), to begin setting up that polling place for its required opening at 7 a.m. (12:00 GMT).  Some indirectly lost sleep by doing the physical arrangement on Election Eve, that being their 1st opportunity after all the equipment and furniture had been delivered. It’s a major time-saver for Election Morning, providing breathing room to deal with any difficult issues. Like assigned poll-workers who are no-shows: A local crisis if it’s the operator of the only tabulator in the polling place. The field technicians have to begin their assigned rounds by arriving with their bag of tech tools at any of their not-quite-dozen assigned polling places at the same 6 a.m.. These are the election-workers responsible for fixing equipment problems at their polling places, or arranging replacements, the more urgently when tech problems hinder or halt voting.

    The polls are scheduled to remain open until 7 p.m. (24:00 GMT). It’ll be a long day for all.

  15. H.R. says:

    I get to watch a polling place at a church out of my back window. There’s been a nice steady stream starting at just before opening time at 7:00 am EST.

    If it starts getting out of the ordinary crazy busy during the day, I’ll post an update.
    .
    .
    .
    On the topic of this thread, there is a church with a township cemetery on the back half of the property. That property borders one side of of our neighborhood. Our lot backs to that border and we are half-way down the line. The cemetery starts at the corner of our lot. Our view is of the church overflow parking area that is packed gravel, but the grass grows through it, so it looks like there’s a big field behind our house. The church is towards the front and the rear entrance is about 150 yards from our back porch.

    That set-up I gave is just so you can perhaps visualize how easy it was for the Mrs. and me to walk out the back door over to the church and vote any time we saw a quiet spot during the day or evening. I also let the neighbors know it was A-OK to cut through our property to vote, and some did.

    About 3 – 4 years ago, due to population growth, they added another voting precinct. The polling place for the new precinct is at another church about 2 miles away.

    Our neighborhood’s polling place was changed to the new location! Say what?!? When I can just walk out my back door?

    Today it just struck me that the change was a subtle attempt at voter suppression.

    Our county was solid Red up until a few years ago. You could not get elected if there was a (D) by your name. Dems had to run as (R)s in disguise. But they have been steadily building homes up here because the Dems want to escape the Blue hellhole Dem-run city to the South. So our corner of the World has gone purple-ish over the last 6 – 8 years.

    Now we have some Dems in County government where the voting precincts are determined. I think that the additional precincts and then the voter reassignments to precincts was done to increase the inconvenience factor of as many voters as possible. I believe it was done to discourage Red votes.

    I believe that is true based on the Dems frantic efforts over the past 4 years to nullify the efforts of Trump and his Deplorable supporters.

    Anyhow, that thought just occurred to me this morning.

    P.S. That plan doesn’t seem to be working 😁

  16. E.M.Smith says:

    @H.R.:

    I heard a comment the other day that got me thinking about polling district shenanigans. It was an interesting one about a method of cheating.

    Say you have a pile of ballots. Once they are “in”, they are anonymous. So you have a Deep Red area and a toss up Blue area. What to do? Sort your ballots (like for counting up who’s which) and then move some Dem ballots from the deep Red area where they do no “good” over to the marginal Blue and move some Rep ballots from it over to the Deep Red where they will not matter..

    All it takes is a willing set of workers and a car… No audit can catch it as the votes are private / anonymous by then. Total vote counts stay the same. You catch it in progress via monitoring, or not at all.

    Got me wondering about how hard the Democrats fight “poll watchers”…

    This would be facilitated by bunching up voters in tighter groups. Easier to grab a batch of the desired ‘kind’ and move them just a little ways over to the next square…

  17. Compu Gator says:

    Terminology overdue from the outset of this discussion, which I’m basing heavily on technical & operational experience on & around election days in & for Orange County (Fla.  🇺🇸 )

    In the 21st Century, Orange County has based each major election on dividing the population of the county into a total, more or less, of 250 precincts, depending on the year (I vaguely recall totals varying during 2008–2016 in the range 220–270). Precincts are geographic divisions, used as the basis for situating a county’s polling places, which are temporary physical centers whose purpose is to conduct voting for, but not necessarily within, a precinct. The combination of precincts & polling places is the basis on which the county organizes and supplies voting and poll-workers.

    Orange Co. does not have wards, which would be familiar to voters, whether living or dead, in big northern cities, notably New York. Perhaps the New-Yorker infested counties, i.e., Palm Beach, Broward, and Dade have them. To my knowledge, even the most rural counties in Florida do not have townships.

    The precincts are really subdivisions of the larger geographic divisions of the county into several contiguous political districts that are drawn as the basis for represention of residents by a county commissioner. Fairly simple thus far?

    Alas, the U.S. Congress is also involved. According to federal law (I’m guessing it’s the Voting Rights Act ca. 1965), election results must be reported to the U.S. House of Representatives as totalled on the basis of congressional districts. Did Congress assemble its districts by combining whole precincts?  Of course not (silly readers)!  So when congressional boundaries gerry-&-mander thro’ individual precincts (can you say “Corrine Brown”?), they are subsubdivided, with the pieces, which could be called subprecincts, identified by a letter suffix. So the Congressional races on ballots might differ for 2 voters residing on opposite sides of a street in a single precinct. There’s 1 precinct that’s close to me that uses ‘a’,  ‘b’,  and ‘c’ (I don’t recall any ‘d’).

    To accomodate the combinatorial complexity, the assortment of ballots that need to be printed, issues, and tabulated to conduct an election are organized into ballot styles, whose identifying code corresponds to a unique combination of contests (a.k.a. “races”) and ballot questions. The ballot-style id. is printed in plain text on each ballot, because 1 important step in issuing a ballot is to tell the voter which ballot style he|she should expect to be issued, then require the voter to orally confirm that it is indeed the style he|she received.

    To assist the integrity of the election, each ballot bears bar-code-like markings to encode not only a voter’s assigned or issuing precinct, but also the ballot style. Some of those markings are printed flush (which I suspect is a feature that some common printing equipment cannot accomplish).

    Ballots might bear serial numbers, as they do in Orange Co.  To preserve the principle of the secret ballot, the serial numbers are not logged when a ballot is issued to a specific voter. There’s at least 1 drawback: After a ballot has been tabulated, even though it’s physically retained for recounts &c., there’s no way to identify, retrieve, and cancel a ballot that was cast by a person who’s later somehow discovered to be ineligible to vote. It’s possible that a ballot cast by an ineligible person could be manually identified based on the distribution of the assigned ballot styles issued to voters who cast ballots at an early-voting center [×]. By contrast, the state’s vote-by-mail and provisional ballots are definitely not secret (but of course, the denizens of Chiefio already figured that out).

    ——–
    Note × : It is possible, but I’ve never heard of it being done. And it might not be legal to do it. That conceded, whoever issued the ballot would need some reason to remember the person (e.g., the really fit-&-tough-looking youngish guy wearing the “Allah Akhbar” sweatshirt) and the ballot style issued. Even so, that voter would have to be the only person casting a ballot in that style. It’d be more possible if someone witnessed which tabulator that person used.

  18. philjourdan says:

    @CD Quarles – ask Richard Daly and JFK about it.

  19. Compu Gator says:

    U.S. President Lyndon Baines Johnson (1963–1969), a Southern Democrat, who became nationally known by his initials “LBJ“,  was branded as “Landslide Lyndon” early in his political career. Some readers might remember LBJ’s landslide victory in his 1964 presidential campaign against Republican nominee Barry Goldwater, which stalled the latter party’s conservative movement.

    Yet it was 16 years earlier: in 1948, that LBJ became “Landslide Lyndon”. Back then, he was merely an ambitious U.S. Congressman (TX-10, 1937–1949) centered on Austin, Texas, determined to move upward & onward into the U.S. Senate. He had a major problem: His opponent in the Democrat primary for Senator was immediate-former Texas Governor Coke Robert Stevenson (1941–1947). Might there have been a major difference in state-wide name-recognition to overcome?  LBJ was plainly beaten, altho’ only by several percentage points [#]. But he and the 3rd candidate pulled in enough votes to deny Stevenson an outright majority. So Texas election law automatically gave LBJ, as 1st runner-up, a 2nd chance: He would challenge Stevenson in a 2-man run-off primary.

    See, e.g., either or both of these articles that cover somewhat different aspects of the story:

    https://todayinhistory.blog/2017/08/28/august-28-1948-landslide-lyndon/.
    https://www.realclearinvestigations.com/articles/2018/11/09/investigative_classics_landslide_lyndon_by_robert_caro.html.

    ——-
    Note #: Wikipedia claims the difference among the leaders in the 3-man Democrat primary was Stevenson’s 39.7% to Johnson’s 33.7%: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coke_R._Stevenson. In Texas back then, as in several states nowadays, the winner of the Democrat primary was practically guaranteed to win the state’s general election.

  20. Compu Gator says:

    (I drafted this commentary on Sunday, 1 November 2020, thus at least 24 hours before Election Day arrived. So this commentary is not a reaction to election, ummm, activity in Arizona, Georgia, Nevada, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin)

    I expect to be criticized for expressing my belief that the legal process that provides for vote-by-mail ballots as an alternative to casting in-person ballots in an official polling place is a legally unnecessary concession from election officials that fundamentally risks the security & integrity of their election system, while imposing processing burdens beyond those required to support traditional in-person voting at polling places.

    When a voter decides to use vote-by-mail ballots, that voter ought to agree that he|she is accepting extra risk & responsibility in return for the concessions needed from election officials to provide the potential convenience to voters who have decided not to vote in person:
    • If the rationale for requesting the ballot is a planned absence, perhaps that simply is a clear expression of a voter’s priorities in life. Contrast that with some other registered voter who places a high priority on casting his|her own ballot in person, but finds herself|himself unexpectedly unable to do so because of a sudden hospitalization [♥].
    • The voter becomes responsible for timely submission of a request for an unmarked ballot.
    • The voter becomes responsible for correctly marking a ballot to cast votes as he|she intended (in contrast, election equipment & staff can assist voters who foul up their ballots during in-person voting, includng 2 replacements of mismarked ballots).
    • The voter becomes responsible for providing a verifying signature in the manner that’s required by law or election officials. This is a great opportunity for fraud, thus a risk to voting integrity, that’s largely avoided when individual voters appear in-person at a polling place and present legal photo & signature identification.
    • The voter becomes responsible for timely return of a marked ballot to a place designated by election officials. The speed of delivery by the U.S. Postal Service varies; it’s the responsibility of the voter to take that into account (e.g., as they must for distant shipment of Christmas gifts).
    • Honest & ethical politicians will refuse to scapegoat the USPS to justify changes in election procedures that risk the security & integrity of their election systems.
    • Honest & ethical judges will refuse to legislate from the bench to grant powers or other concessions to a state’s election officials that were not granted by that state’s legislature (perhaps quite deliberately refused), and risk the security & integrity of their election systems.

    ——–
    Note ♥ : Yes, it’s resorting to argument by invoking feelings, but II personally know 3 people who’ve been hospitalized for several days this year after a heart attack or a stroke: a family member, a neighbor, and a neighborhood shop-owner (the latter is still hospitalized).

  21. Compu Gator says:

    Project Veritas is reporting (in an interview on the Sean Hannity radio show) that 2 employees of the U.S. Postal Service, 1 each in Michigan and Pennsylvania, were directed by their supervisor on 4 or 5 November to set postmark stamps to 3 November, then use them to stamp absentee or “mail-inballots. That would change ballots from being disqualified by their postmark into ballots eligible to be tabulated (i.e., counted).

    I assume that the stamps would be the old-fashioned manually-set stamps known as round cancels, which are still universally acceptable as official postmarks. Those postmarks are what postal customers request at the counter of a post office, when a mailing absolutely, positively, must bear the same day’s postmark.

  22. Compu Gator says:

    Listening to the excerpted report I cited above left me uncertain about what was the origin of the individual return-by-mail ballots in Project Veritas‘ reports of postmark fraud by the U.S. Postal Service in Michigan (16 electoral votes) and Pennsylvania (20 electoral votes):
    • Ballots found in postal drop-boxes and as outgoing mail for letter-carriers (e.g., after missing the last pick-up on Election Day), then sorted out into a separate input stream, or
    • Ballots arriving straight from illegal “boiler rooms” full of people fraudulently marking ballots bearing assorted names of alleged voters, living or dead [†].
    Why not both? Sigh.

    An important aspect of budgeting by election h.q. for each election is figuring out how many ballots of the “by-mail” and “in-person” methods to print in advance, to be mailed out in individual ballot packets to voters before the election. With good guesstimates of voter demand and turnout (respectively), there should be only a little overage (i.e., printed copies in excess of a printing order) of each ballot-style [∆]. For systematic voting fraud by political machines in Philly and Detroit, I assume that all the overage will be cleared off the election h.q. shelves and sent to the illegal boiler rooms. Underestimates of demand are met by filling individual ballot packets with ballots freshly printed by using the ballot-on-demand hardware & software, which prints any ballot-style needed for each early voter. The only limits to cranking out illegal ballots are enough laser-toner, plus whatever special paper is needed for whatever machinery would tabulate the freshly fraudulent votes. The latter realization is damned depressing [🍺].

    ——–
    Note † : “illegal ‘boiler rooms’” as mentioned in interviews by Project Veritas of participants in Ilhan Omar’s election-fraud operation in Minneapolis. Altho’ I’m not suggesting that U.S.-born Democrats need a notoriously ingrate Muslim immigrant to show them how to conduct large-scale voting fraud.

    Note ∆ : “ballot-style” &c. as explained by ‘Compu Gator’, 3 November 2020 at 8:00 pm GMT: https://chiefio.wordpress.com/2020/11/01/election-risks-frauds-follies/#comment-134402.

    Note 🍺 : Please excuse me while I go retrieve an adult beverage. No cheer right now.

  23. E.M.Smith says:

    In California, upon arrival at the polling station, you must hand in your “mailed to you” ballot and then they print a fresh one on the spot that you fill out and feed to the tabulating scanner.

    Essentially they can just run the printers as long as needed and print as many as desired (not to mention ‘reusing’ the unused ones you turned in to vote in person).

    Essentially EVERY polling station can print all the ballots necessary AND scan them in to be counted. So, think those places are guarded after closing for the day. They were open for about a week prior to election day…

    As for the ones mailed out:

    Noting prevents them mailing extras to known Democrat households… Had we gotten moved to Florida on schedule, OUR ballots would have arrived at this address despite us being Florida residents then (hypothetical case). What would prevent someone filling them out and mailing them in? At most a signature check (IF they bothered to do one). Even there, all that’s needed is open the ballot, if it is for Trump, toss it as “signature doesn’t match” and if for Biden, approve it regardless of how bad the signature.

    We no longer have election integrity nor any effective audit for tampering. Then with $Trillions on the line, and a very clearly very corrupt DNC, clearly no “moral compass” is going to keep them clean. So think about it: $Millions of payola and bribe money so $Billions can be “redistributed” and $Trillions of spending with preferred “friends of the DNC and NGOs” and zero moral barriers in a system with zero effective policing.

    What could possibly go wrong?.. Well it did.

  24. beththeserf says:

    Ye postman stamps – trust – but – how – do -ye -verify…that is the question?

  25. Compu Gator says:

    I’m strongly recommending this link from a previous comment by ‘Another Ian’ [*], who did not indicate any reason why we should click & read it instead of any other link:

    WE’RE CALLING IT!  TRUMP WON AGAIN
    By Howell Woltz – November 8, 2020
    https://richardsonpost.com/howellwoltz/18787/trump-won-again/

    It’s not groundless optimism & hope, but serious Constitutional analysis, including this encouraging gem:

    The Constitution has protections against such illegitimate seizures of power. In case of a tie or dispute, yes, The U.S. House of Representatives will choose the president, “But in chusing [sic] the President, the Votes shall be taken by States, the Representatives from each State having one Vote.”  That’s Article II, §1 folks, and that’s the ball game! How you ask?  Because of the 50 States, 26 delegations are Republican and their 1 vote each will be for Donald J. Trump. Doesn’t matter if it’s California with 55 electoral votes or Delaware with just three – each state delegation has but one vote in case of dispute or tie. Game, set, match. Four more years for President Donald Trump.

    But I caution readers: Don’t overlook the possibility of subversion of Woltz’s Constitutional scenarios by these “Republicans”:
    • RINOs and Never-Trumpers, who are eager to return the GOP establishment to dominance for the 2024 election cycle; and
    • defeatists and cowards, who’d rather bask in the praise they’ll receive from the mainstream media as “realists” (or somesuch) for conceding this election, no matter how criminally it’s eventually proven to have been stolen.

    ——-
    Note *: 8 November 2020 at 7:13 am (GMT): https://chiefio.wordpress.com/2020/11/03/its-d-day/#comment-134541.

  26. E.M.Smith says:

    I think there will be issues of later amendments having force too. Such as the 20th:

    Section 3
    If, at the time fixed for the beginning of the term of the President, the President elect shall have died, the Vice President elect shall become President. If a President shall not have been chosen before the time fixed for the beginning of his term, or if the President elect shall have failed to qualify, then the Vice President elect shall act as President until a President shall have qualified; and the Congress may by law provide for the case wherein neither a President elect nor a Vice President elect shall have qualified, declaring who shall then act as President, or the manner in which one who is to act shall be selected, and such person shall act accordingly until a President or Vice President shall have qualified.

    So if China Joe is in dispute, Kamala is POTUS (acting) and if both are not yet qualified, then Congress (in total per this…) will decide via law. IIRC, the present law says it’s Nancy PillLousy…

    https://constitution.congress.gov/constitution/

    Ya gatta read the whole thing, not just the first part…

  27. Compu Gator says:

    E.M.Smith replied 10 November 2020 at 6:53 am GMT:
    Ya gatta read the whole thing, not just the first part.

    Silly host!  I am reading “the whole thing“, courtesy of your own state legislature, from back in better days: The Constitution of the United States of America and the Constitution of the State of California. California Assembly, 1987 [🐻].

    E.M.Smith replied 10 November 2020 at 6:53 am GMT:
    if China Joe is in dispute, Kamala is POTUS (acting) [….]

    Huh?  What combination of law are you envisioning that places Biden “in dispute“,  but not Harris (Amend. XX §3)?  She’s on the same ticket, and benefitted from exactly the same instances of voting fraud. So selection of the V.P. would be thrown into the Senate that’s held by Republicans now, and might still be in the new session [†].

    I assume that Woltz believes that his combined scenarios will see Trump reëlected according to the exceptional provisions of the Constitution and 3 U.S. Code no later than the 20 January specified for inauguration by Amend. XX (§1).

    // Recall that the President of the Senate, who presides over the joint Congressional session on 6 January, and there opens and announces the electoral votes from the states (Art. II §1 ¶3, 3 U.S.C. §15 [☆]), will still be V.P. Pence. The Congress will not be a lame-duck session, because all 6 freshman Republican members will have taken their seats on 3 January (Amend. XX §2).

    The period 6–19 January spans 14 day, which might seem to be plenty of time for counting the electoral votes. Except that there’s also a process for written objections from members of Congress to the reported votes from the states, and a nontrivial procedure for their resolution.

    Dang!  Am I still holding back my earlier-drafted comments that cite 3 U.S.Code [☆]?  Discussions or debates dare not ignore it in these days of an unremedied presidential election.

    ——–
    Note 🐻 : U.S. Constitution as amended thro’ 1986 (i.e., Amend. XXVI). Plus other foundational documents, with indexes added for the 2 featured Constitutions. 256 pp. (bound volume).

    Note † : Georgia will be conducting a run-off election for each of 2 seats in the U.S. Senate, each of whose incumbent is Republican.

    Note ☆ : “3 U.S. Code Title 3— The President”.  Cornell Law School Legal Information Institute (LII): https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/3. Esp. its Chap. 1 (=§§1–21)— “Presidential Elections and Vacancies”: https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/3/chapter-1.

  28. philjourdan says:

    @EM – sorry, if the election is thrown to the House, then the Senate selects the VPOTUS as that election is also thrown to congress. So it will not be Kammy as interim president. It will be Pence as the Senate will be 51/2 to 49/8.

    The only way it gets thrown to the House is if neither has a majority of EC votes. Which can happen in a 269/269 tie (unlikely) or some states refusing to name their electors due to a tainted vote (more likely). And in both those cases, there is no VPOTUS Elect, UNTIL the Senate designates one.

  29. E.M.Smith says:

    It was an “IF” clause guys. IF Biden in dispute, then Kamala AND IF Kamala in Dispute then… A programmer does not presume the status of the IF test… So yes, they are both almost certainly to be in dispute, but that doesn’t change how the text reads and what IF chain it sets up.

    (Maybe more after I finish my noodles ;-)

  30. E.M.Smith says:

    So, OK, into the weeds…

    We have an election, and electors are to be chosen. There’s 3 cases.
    1) Someone gets the majority, everyone agrees, and becomes POTUS.
    2) It is a tie.
    3) It is disputed.

    We can ignore #1 as there’s no question what happens.

    IF it is a tie (#2) it is Article II section 1 (as the 20th A doesn’t talk about ties).

    The Person having the greatest Number of Votes shall be the President, if such Number be a Majority of the whole Number of Electors appointed; and if there be more than one who have such Majority, and have an equal Number of Votes, then the House of Representatives shall immediately chuse by Ballot one of them for President; and if no Person have a Majority, then from the five highest on the List the said House shall in like manner chuse the President.

    So the House chooses then. But subject to the rule:

    But in chusing the President, the Votes shall be taken by States, the Representation from each State having one Vote; A quorum for this Purpose shall consist of a Member or Members from two thirds of the States, and a Majority of all the States shall be necessary to a Choice.

    You gotta have 2/3 of the States voting, and it’s one vote per State. Trump wins.

    BUT, I find it highly unlikely we’re going to have exactly equal Electoral College numbers for both of them.

    NOTE: This is only for the case of a tie…
    NOTE2: Which “House” will matter. Congress gets seated earlier than POTUS.

    Twentieth Amendment
    Section 1
    The terms of the President and Vice President shall end at noon on the 20th day of January, and the terms of Senators and Representatives at noon on the 3d day of January, of the years in which such terms would have ended if this article had not been ratified; and the terms of their successors shall then begin.

    Section 2
    The Congress shall assemble at least once in every year, and such meeting shall begin at noon on the 3d day of January, unless they shall by law appoint a different day.

    So back up at Article II

    The Congress may determine the Time of chusing the Electors, and the Day on which they shall give their Votes; which Day shall be the same throughout the United States.

    So what date as Congress chosen?

    https://crsreports.congress.gov/product/pdf/IF/IF11641

    December 23, 2020: Certificates Must Be Delivered
    to the Designated Officials
    Certificates of electoral vote results must be delivered to
    above mentioned officers by the fourth Wednesday in
    December, in 2020, by December 23 (3 U.S.C. §12).
    […]
    January 6, 2021: Joint Session of Congress to Count
    Electoral Votes and Declare Election Results Meets
    On January 6,
    or another date set by law, the Senate and
    House of Representatives assemble at 1:00 p.m. in a joint
    session at the Capitol, in the House chamber, to count the
    electoral votes and declare the results (3 U.S.C. §15). The
    Vice President presides as President of the Senate. The Vice
    President opens the certificates and presents them to four
    tellers, two from each chamber. The tellers read and make a
    list of the returns. When the votes have been ascertained
    and counted, the tellers transmit them to the Vice President.
    If one of the tickets has received a majority of 270 or more
    electoral votes, the Vice President announces the results,
    which “shall be deemed a sufficient declaration of the
    persons, if any, elected President and Vice President.”

    So it will be the NEW Congress that is running the show (unless something gets changed by the old Congress?…)

    So in case of an Electoral College TIE, the NEW Congress (House) will pick the POTUS.

    But a dispute is Not A Tie

    The Likely Icky Case

    So for disputes, we’re back at the text.

    No POTUS chosen in time, no full slate of State’s Electors.

    We’re back at the 12th and 20th Amendments. The Twelfth basically says the what and how while the 20th polishes some bits. A Quorum stays 2/3 of the States (and there’s enough not in dispute to stop that – i.e. a LOT of Red States).

    Keeping in mind that we’ve got to overlay this with the 20th, here’s the relevant part of the 12th:

    But in choosing the President, the votes shall be taken by states, the representation from each state having one vote; a quorum for this purpose shall consist of a member or members from two-thirds of the states, and a majority of all the states shall be necessary to a choice. [And if the House of Representatives shall not choose a President whenever the right of choice shall devolve upon them, before the fourth day of March next following, then the Vice-President shall act as President, as in the case of the death or other constitutional disability of the President.–]The person having the greatest number of votes as Vice-President, shall be the Vice-President, if such number be a majority of the whole number of Electors appointed, and if no person have a majority, then from the two highest numbers on the list, the Senate shall choose the Vice-President; a quorum for the purpose shall consist of two-thirds of the whole number of Senators, and a majority of the whole number shall be necessary to a choice. But no person constitutionally ineligible to the office of President shall be eligible to that of Vice-President of the United States.

    So ONLY in the case where the House is hung, AND there’s a choice open for VP, then the Senate gets to pick (per the 12th) with a 2/3 quorum and a >50% vote. Unless, of course, the VP up for grabs is held to not be a “Natural Born Citizen” or has other disqualifier. (Insert Senate food fight here… with SCOTUS ordering in popcorn…)

    On to the 20th:

    And we’re back at the clause I cited before. So to get here we’ve got to have a dispute, such that the NEW House can’t get a vote together and pick one, and the Senate didn’t pick a V.P. ’cause they couldn’t get a quorum or make a choice or…

    Section 3
    If, at the time fixed for the beginning of the term of the President, the President elect shall have died, the Vice President elect shall become President. If a President shall not have been chosen before the time fixed for the beginning of his term, or if the President elect shall have failed to qualify, then the Vice President elect shall act as President until a President shall have qualified; and the Congress may by law provide for the case wherein neither a President elect nor a Vice President elect shall have qualified, declaring who shall then act as President, or the manner in which one who is to act shall be selected, and such person shall act accordingly until a President or Vice President shall have qualified.

    So we’ve reached Jan 20 and the start of the presidential term. New Congress is a mess. Electoral College is in dispute (AND the messed up State doesn’t just have their congress pass a law saying “We choose our electors to all vote for FOO for POTUS” as is their right to do…) So no POTUS chosen. It drops on the V.P. (IFF any was chosen by the above process in the Senate… and remember it’s now time for Trump & Pence to no longer be POTUS and VPotus…)

    At this point, no P-elect, no VP-elect, No Potus nor VPotus left: we drop through to the clause that states “the Congress may by law provide for the case wherein neither a President elect nor a Vice President elect shall have qualified, declaring who shall then act as President, or the manner in which one who is to act shall be selected, and such person shall act accordingly until a President or Vice President shall have qualified.”

    Which dumps it onto the law as it stands that I think is the same as the succession in case of debility and that is, at present, Speaker Of The House. (There is the open question of IF the New House will choose to keep Pelosi in charge… one hopes not.)

    So while it is highly unlikely you would reach this point, I think that IS the end point. The fuzzy bit being is debility succession the same as “no decision” succession in law.

    Now, in that chain of events, I think it highly likely some Democrat Controlled State would just pass a law saying “BUGGER OFF on the election, all our electors are for FOO” and get themselves off the hot plate. (which I’m sure would send them off to SCOTUS but with a likely win as the Constitution says essentially”whatever way the State wants”.

    Then it will depend on who gets the Senate, how many Never Trumpers and how many Dems, what they might do. Several Senate seats are not determined and 2 in Georgia go to a runoff election, so the election might depend on an election in Georgia…

    But, even if they choose a VP, that doesn’t resolve the POTUS issue. Just the acting POTUS. We’re still in “until a President or Vice President shall have qualified.”
    so the Cat Fight over Electors drags on… POTENTIALLY with any of Pence, Kamala, Pelousi, or New Speaker as acting POTUS, all dependent on what happens in the IF Chain above.

    (My bet would be on Pence as VP chosen by the Senate, but who knows…)

    At least, as a non-lawyer, that’s how it reads to me.

    At this point you can go back to that chain of IFs and insert whatever you think will happen in the House and Senate elections and / or Elector picking and make guesses as to the outcome. But that it’s a complicated mess at all levels is not in dispute. Nor is it in dispute that I have no idea how to set the likely status of the the IF toggle inputs…

    Oh, and one other bit: I don’t see anywhere that it says what a quorum of electors might be. Can they just tally up the votes NOT in dispute and turn that in? (Off to SCOTUS land again, I’d think…)

  31. philjourdan says:

    The selection of electors is left up to the States. They do not have to follow the popular vote of their State. In most cases, the legislature is the backup to the voters. In all cases, the legislature can select the electors. SO no new laws are needed. It has been almost 150 years since any state selected their electors that way, but it is Constitutional. So no new laws are needed.

  32. E.M.Smith says:

    I think everthing a legislature votes to do is enacted as a “law”. But I could be wrong. My expectation is that for, say, Georgia to dump the voter’s choice, the Georgia legislature would need to meet, vote to do that, and pass enabling legislation to enact it.

    But perhaps their law already has in it “unless the legislature says otherwise”… but then what is the thing the legislature passes to say otherwise if not legislation / law? Just a resolution or what?

  33. H.R. says:

    E.M.: “I think everything a legislature votes to do is enacted as a “law”. But I could be wrong.”

    Yeah, you’re forgetting proclamations and declarations. Some beloved people are recognized by legislatures with Official Proclamations that XX/YY/19ZZ is officially declared to be Joe Sixpack Day.

    I think laws have to have penalties tied to them, otherwise what kind of law is it that prohibits a behavior (“There will be NO copulating with porcupines!”) without a fine or threat of incarceration?

  34. H.R. says:

    Hey, I just went over to the Conservative TreeHouse to see whassup.

    I ran across a comment that said that the Dems were skimming Trump votes and giving them to Biden. The evidence was that the down ballot was straight (R), but somehow they preferred to vote Biden at the top of the ticket.

    I hadn’t heard about that fraud.

    This election, the Commie/Dems went all out using every technique available to pump the numbers.
    .
    .
    .
    Oh, it seems the commie/Dems went to the appropriate database to get maiden names and other necessary ID (SSN, addresses, DOB) to manufacture a seemingly valid vote, yet who knows how the real, married, person voted? Just another way to get ghost voters.

    “Democrats: It’s not just dead people’s votes anymore.”

  35. H.R. says:

    Oh, they are Resolutions that legislatures pass. I don’t know if that is instead of or in addition to Declarations and Proclamations. I think maybe it’s the Guv or President that do Proclamations.

    As I recall, Pelosi has passed several Orange Man Bad resolutions.

  36. p.g.sharrow says:

    @HR, the Obamanation bragged that they had lifted and compiled the information of everyone in America, so they know about everyone living and dead to create lists of those that they can use, Where they are now, how they vote or if they vote, and where they are living or have lived.
    but, the hacked Dominion computers that transferred votes seems to be a biggie that a recount might find. Fake ballots once mixed in will be much harder to pick out. Faking a few thousand votes here and there is doable, but coming up with several million votes in a week would be a logistic nightmare. They would have to make mistakes that can be found.

  37. philjourdan says:

    @EM – in every state, except PA, the law states that if no victor can be determined by certification day (and that is not clearly defined), the legislature will select the Electors. PA would have to be tossed to them by SCOTUS. Or they could accept the vote of SCOTUS and just remove those 1m votes for Biden which gives the State to Trump.

    That is why I said they have the law. The post 11/3 PA votes are clearly illegal based upon existing law.

  38. philjourdan says:

    The “no victor can be determined” is what is not clearly defined. – Just to clarify.

  39. Compu Gator says:

    I wonder: Has anyone resumed the call for open-source election software?  E.g., to enable public-interest oversight that prevents, ummm, surprising features? Are any of the machine designs based on anything other than intel IA-32 chips? The signed-numeric range -2147483648–+2147483647 (i.e., approx. ±2 billion)[#] is plenty adequate for tallying votes in sovereign countries, even for the supreme leader of Red China or chief executive official(s) of India.

    In the current U.S. regulatory environment, the election software would need to be approved by each state, as is their voting hardware. And I mean “approved” down to the level of the last legit minor fix as installed, with its distinctive hash code. I fear that open-source software would allow rogue jurisdictions, notably Democrat-ruled states, to arrange for, ummm, special versions with added special capabilities that subvert election integrity, and approve those instead.

    Imposing auditing that carries criminal penalties is appealing, but how could that be administered, and its penalties enforced, when Hillary “lock her up!” Clinton has clearly shown that high-ranking officials can set up illegal private servers, destroy subpoenaed evidence, and get off scot-free, because law-enforcement officials will coöperate in the crime(s) by refuse to do their jobs (even in the following administration of the opposition!), and also get off scot-free?

    ——–
    Note # : As I noted sarcastically back in 1980, it’s tallying the U.S. federal deficit for which the 64-bit arithmetic of a processor then being designed was especially worthwhile. Altho’ it also was worthwhile for the U.S. federal budget and global human population.

  40. V.P. Elect Smith says:

    FWIW, I’ve called for a dissassembly or de-compilation of the software ON the machines to be able to audit what they actually do.

    That’s sort of quasi open-sourcing it…

    What is absolutely clear is that Dominion who’s wrapped up with Venezuela and the DNC and Soros so tight you can’t get any light through… is NOT were we ought to be counting votes.

  41. Compu Gator says:

    The data-type “double” (C terminology implying floating-point, e.g., as specified in in IEEE 754 (1985)) is a 64-bit datum (e.g., Harbison & Steele 1995, §5.2 (p. 119, 120 Tbl. 5-4)), thus for FORTRAN fans, approx. REAL*8 (altho’ in the common case of IBM S/360, the range of the exponent is not increased by the additional 32 bits beyond REAL*4).

    I suspect that using nonintegers to accomodate fractional votes in voting-tabulators was originally motivated by the theories of a past nominee for the U.S. Dept. of Justice position Asst. Atty. Gen. for Civil Rights (who supervises the Division of the same name): “Loonie Lani” Guinier [♠]. She was a Friend of Bill&Hillary [♥] from Yale Law School, who had promoted unconventional proposals for voting methods, which she defended as remedying (alleged) racial disenfranchisement of voters, or somesuch. I recall them as potentially enabling her newly empowered voters to cast fractional votes, multiple votes, and maybe even negative votes. She was eventually withdrawn (1993) by Pres. (Bill) Clinton, who recognized that putting some of Guinier’s theories into law & practice was not politically defensible, esp. among his moderate supporters. In retrospect, I suspect that Hillary supported at least some of Guinier’s theories, and was infuriated by Bill’s withdrawal of the nomination. But in 2016, the irrestible Hillary Administration (“it’s her turn!”) would be able to remedy their shared disappointment from 24 years earlier.

    ——–
    Note ♠ : E.g.:
    • “Born in New York City [1950], Guinier is the daughter of a Jewish mother and civil rights activist, Eugenia “Genii” Paprin, and Ewart Guinier, a black Panamanian-born and Jamaican and Harlem-raised scholar who [….] ultimately returned to Harvard as a professor and chair of the Afro-American Studies Department in 1969.”  Her formal education is from “Radcliffe College (B.A. [1971]) [and] Yale Law School (J.D. [1974])”. Her Wikipedia photo is from 1993https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lani_Guinier; and
    • “Opinion [:] The Lani Guinier Mess”. N.Y. Times,
    June 5, 1993, Sect. 1, P. 20″: https://www.nytimes.com/1993/06/05/opinion/the-lani-guinier-mess.html.
    And for fans of passively watching video:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8xYL7T-DEJQ, which I caution is probably gushingly laudatory.

    Note ♥ : Wellesley College (1969) and Yale Law School (J.D., 1973). Nothing says “women who know what it’s like to be disenfranchised” like holding degrees from Radcliffe & Wellesley.

  42. President Elect H.R. says:

    @President Elect Compu Gator – Lani Guinier! That’s a blast from the past.

    I see you were paying close attention back when. I was on it, but clearly not paying as close attention as you. Bad news, was she, and she still leaves a bad taste in my mouth to this day.

    I should show my dogs her picture, should she ever come ’round. “Permission to bite, granted.”
    .
    .
    .
    P.S. – I’m noshing on some Ghost Pepper tortilla chips. They are HOT! Finally! Someone who is not kidding when they say their chips are hot. Most are only joking when they say their product is “Hot!”

    It reminded me of you and prior discussions of your garden and hot pepper crop: C.G.: “Hot for thee. The merely zippy ones for me.” 😁

  43. Compu Gator says:

    E.M.Smith replied 13 November 2020 at 4:27 pm GMT [*]:
    [….] Votes stored as double floats?  Why?  On what planet does it make sense to store discrete integer events as a floating point number? Only if you want to do float math on them (like, oh, multiply and divide…)

    Seems amateurish to hoist such a red flag and have it waving thro’out tabulator code. The scheme would be even more obvious if source code were disassembled into machine code, thus revealing instructions that are exclusively for floating-point.

    The red flags could be nearly eliminated by using long-established techniques of integer-arithmetic strength reduction, but maybe “extreme” modern programmers are clueless about such old-fashioned primitive things, now that the programming dinosaurs are gone.

    ——–
    Note * : https://chiefio.wordpress.com/2020/11/03/its-d-day/#comment-134828.

  44. philjourdan says:

    @CompuGator – there is a way around the double data-type binary to decimal translation for any competent programmer – result=int(votes+.5). I used that when converting dollars and cents back in the 80s. Because of the inaccuracy of the floating point conversion. That the fraudsters were either not that competent or in that much of a rush are the breadcrumbs they left behind.

    @President-Elect H.R. – What is the brand name of the Ghost Pepper chips and where did you get them from? Daredevils want to know.

  45. cdquarles says:

    Yeah, lots of folk label stuff as hot when it isn’t so for the acclimated. I’ve not yet tried ghost pepper. My ulcerative colitis might not like it ;p.

    Re: floats when 128 bit integers are now available, sheesh. FORTRAN lives!

  46. V.P. Elect Smith says:

    Or just do it in a script with “bc” to arbitrary precision:

    https://www.computerhope.com/unix/ubc.htm

    On Unix-like operating systems, bc is a language for performing arbitrary-precision math calculations, and an interactive interpreter for that language.
    […]
    Numbers
    The most basic element in bc is the number. Numbers are arbitrary-precision numbers. This precision is both in the integer part and the fractional part. All numbers are represented internally in decimal and all computation is done in decimal. Some versions of bc truncate results from divide and multiply operations.

    There are two attributes of numbers, the length and the scale. The length is the total number of significant decimal digits in a number and the scale is the total number of decimal digits after the decimal point. For example:

    Been around for decades. Forget ‘word length’. You can get any length precision you want from any word size machine. (though lots of precision on an 8 bit machine can take a while ;-)

  47. llanfar says:

    My cousin started a hot sauce company that’s doing quite well. Their tag line: flavor first, heat second. Which is not to say they don’t have stuff that packs a punch (their Carolina Reaper recipe is great, but I prefer their Carolina Reaper 10x).

    https://www.doubletakesalsa.com/

  48. philjourdan says:

    @llanfar – Thanks for the link. I will try one of the milder ones and then work up to the hotter ones. I eat Habeneros with no problem. But I have not tried the big scovil ones yet!

  49. philjourdan says:

    I created that function before there was a Linux. Never looked for an alternative since it was simple and sweet. But I am always open to alternatives.

    It works for any precision as well – just multiply by the precision before taking the integer. For storing it, use string.

  50. President Elect H.R. says:

    Ghost Pepper tortilla chips – The brand is PAQUI…..

    …I’m back. I went and got the bag.

    The Style is “Haunted Ghost Pepper.” They also have a Carolina Reaper version and I suppose a few others.

    They have a website: paquichips.com, and are on twatter: @paquichips, and they are on Farcebook.

    They are based in Austin, Texas. I’d hope the website has a “where to buy” function.

    Oh, at the bottom on the back of the bag, it reads

    “Distributed by Paqui
    Austin, Texas 78701”

    So I’m not 100% sure if they are owned by a larger food company and they just run that brand out of Austin. Corporate headquarters may be somewhere else.

  51. philjourdan says:

    They sell on line and also locally. Will have to check out the local stores.

  52. llanfar says:

    @philjourdan they only have 2 10x bottles – the Carolina Reaper and Scorpion pepper. Most of their stuff is no/low to moderate heat. And none of that Xanthum Gum crap to allow them to cut ingredients down.

    If you like brat, try the Scotch Bonnet mustard

  53. philjourdan says:

    @llanfar – LOVE Brat! Until Aldi’s came to town, it was impossible to find the real stuff. I am ordering a bottle now. And one of the hot ones. I got to try it! If just once. :-)

  54. Compu Gator says:

    Alert to readers of Chiefio trying to follow updates on important General-Election 2020 news:

    There’s important news over in the current “W.O.O.D.” topic, apparently reporting a U.S. raid on an election-server farm over in Europe, with the host country’s acquiescence.

    E.M.’s initial response, not to put words into his keyboard, seems to have been that the report was ummm, not-obviously fraudulent. I’ll be trying to catch up no sooner than other readers might be; it begins with this comment:

    ‘p.g.sharrow’,  16 November 2020 at 4:08 am (GMT = Sun., 15 November 2020 at 11:08 pm EST):
    https://chiefio.wordpress.com/2020/10/14/w-o-o-d-14-october-2020/#comment-134965.

  55. V.P. Elect Smith says:

    @CompuGator:

    Don’t get too excited yet. We don’t have any independent confirmation. So far it is just a german tweet and Gohmert expanding it,then internet amplification.

  56. A C Osborn says:

    EM, there is another non official confirmation, that states that it was a CIA server which was on German/US soil, hence using the armey an none of the 3 letter agencies.
    https://meaninginhistory.blogspot.com/2020/11/larry-johnson-on-scytl-raid.html#more

    But there is also a comment by newsmax that the story is false, so who knows.

  57. V.P. Elect Smith says:

    @A.C. Osborn:

    A.P (Associated Prestitutes) says it is fact checked as false, so I guess we have confirmation that it really happened.

    1/2 8-) and 1/2 /snark; -y truthy…

  58. philjourdan says:

    So it is true! If a liar says it is a lie, it is the truth! That is a fact.

  59. Compu Gator says:

    Compu Gator replied 17 November 2020 at 1:00 am GMT (8 pm EST):
    E.M.’s initial response, not to put words into his keyboard, seems to have been that the report was
    ummm, not-obviously fraudulent.
    [*]

    Arrrgh!  A fresh look this morning revealed that I almost certainly led just about every reader to an incorrect parse!  I did not mean that E.M.’s preliminary assessment was, e.g., “it’s fraudulent, but with its fraud well concealed”.  Instead, I did mean, e.g., “it’s free from obvious signs of fraudulence, but no confident judgement yet“.  Moving the hyphen in my erring comment, i.e., to “not obviously-fraudulent”,  might have helped clarify my intent, altho’ such a change would not conform to standard U.S. English [×].

    So I apologize to our host for my foul-up, and for any damage to his reputation for assessing news. I should’ve been able to write even an alert more carefully & clearly [☽].

    My preliminary assessment?  Despite the ‘p.g.sharrow’-linked article in DISTRIBUTED NEWS being written under the pseudonym “healthranger”,  it is well written, and seems meticulously compiled. Having been released this past Friday, now on Tuesday after at least 3 days have passed, the topic might be unlikely to lead U.S. conservative-host radio shows like Rush or Hannity. But that would’ve provided more time for clarifications & confirmations.

    And nooowww, with a fresh mug of coffee, down again into the rabbit hole of the foreign server-seizure topic [_].

    ——–
    Note * : ‘V.P. Elect Smith’, 16 November 2020 at 5:41 am: (GMT): https://chiefio.wordpress.com/2020/10/14/w-o-o-d-14-october-2020/#comment-134970. Also his, shortly afterward: 6:00 am (GMT):
    https://chiefio.wordpress.com/2020/10/14/w-o-o-d-14-october-2020/#comment-134972.

    Note × : There’s a rule in standard U.S. English that a hyphen is not allowed to connect an adverb to an adjective that it modifies in a compound adjective, e.g., hyphenless “obviously fraudulent”, “insanely great”.  Whereas any sequence of adjectives, participles, or nouns is allowed to be combined into a compound adjective by using a hyphen, e.g., hyphenated “celebrity-obsessed”.

    Note ☽ : If posting it in mid evening (local time) disqualifies me from claiming the excuse of writing too late at night, then how about claiming disorientation from the recent U.S. return to standard time, which shifted local sunsets to 5:30 pm?

  60. Compu Gator says:

    DISTRIBUTED NEWS‘s news link to “dw.com“:  Could that be?  Yes!  It iiisss Deutsche Welle!

    An overseas broadcaster, founded in 1953, was already well known by the 1960s among the radio-techies called Short-Wave Listeners (SWLs).

    Deutsche Welle (DW) is Germany’s international broadcaster and one of the most successful and relevant international media outlets. In 2020, our multimedia content in 30 languages reaches 249 million weekly user contacts [….]  Initially, DW broadcast via shortwave and only in German. The first foreign languages were added in 1954. In 1992, DW expanded into television and, shortly thereafter, the Internet. [….]  The ⟨Federal Republic of Germany’s⟩ DW Act, issued in December 1997 and amended in 2001 and 2004, defines DW as a non-profit, public broadcasting institution for foreign broadcasting.

    did see the celebratory group shot that included the East-German native Frau Chancellor »Maulwurf« Merkel (probably politically unavoidably), but I still hope that DW is trying to emulate the respected BBC of Old(e), instead of the left-slanted NPR & PBS of the present.

    Its article’s cited source Süddeutsche Zeitung (i.e., South-Germany News(paper)) [♦] is 1 of the highest-circulation newspapers in Germany; it’s published in Munich (Bavaria). Frankfurt (on-the-Main) has its own major-circulation daily Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (i.e., Frankfurt General News(paper)), but perhaps it’s too close to dare reporting such matters? 

    Coffee’s long gone. Ach!  I have my last few bottles of Spaten Oktoberfest (Ur-Märzen) being chilled in my freezer!  Prosit!

    ——–
    Note ♦ : Süddeutsche.de (formerly sueddeutsche.de per Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S%C3%BCddeutsche_Zeitung).

  61. V.P. Elect Smith says:

    No need for apologetics. All we have so far is speculation and rumor and that can go either way, hyphens or not. I’m not even sure which way I’d put the hyphen. Perhaps as a | ?

    BTW, as a long time SWL’er (since about 1963 ?) I’ve heard a lot of DW… and BBC… and VOA… and Radio Havana ;-) and even too many hours of “number stations”…

    A Sony ICF-2002 sits 2 feet from my bed. The bigger cousin in the closet. Just FYI…

  62. Compu Gator says:

    Maybe I ought to devise an intellectually elegant name for the State of Georgia‘s procedure for signature verification for absentee voters: I’m thinking of, maybe, “tautological verification”.  That’s instead of plain speakin’ phrases, like damned stupidity, or the more sinister deliberate obtuseness.

    U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R–S.C.), presumably acting in his role as Chair of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Cmte., conducted telephone interviews with State-of-Georgia officials, including the state’s chief elections official, who’s made decisions that favored the Democrat schemes. Sen. Graham discovered that election officials in the Dawg State don’t compare signatures of voted & returned absentee ballots to signatures in the corresponding voter-registration records. Oh, no!  They compare the signature of each returned absentee ballot to the signature on the request for the ballot that the state received by U.S. Mail. As Sen. Graham explained for, ummm, slower listeners of the Hannity radio show today, that means that a fraudulent signature on a voted & returned absentee ballot would be officially “verified” by comparing it to the likely fraudulent signature on the mailed-in request for that same ballot. Let’s hear that cheer of Georgia pride from up in Athens: Woof, woof, woof!  [🐊]

    ——–
    Note 🐊 : A pleasantly hollow cheer this season: Gators 44, Dawgs 28 (7 November). Chomp!

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