The Gun is Smoking - 2004 Ohio Precinct-Level Exit Poll Data Show Virtually Irrefutable Evidence of Vote Miscount

The Gun is Smoking - 2004 Ohio Precinct-Level Exit Poll Data Show Virtually Irrefutable Evidence of Vote Miscount

The National Election Data Archive (NEDA) is the first mathematical team to release a valid scientific analysis of the precinct-level 2004 Ohio presidential exit poll data. NEDA's analysis provides virtually irrefutable evidence of vote miscount.

(PRWEB) January 17, 2006 -- There is significant controversy about whether the 2004 presidential election was conducted fairly and its votes counted correctly. According to results of the major national election exit poll conducted for the National Election Pool by Edison/Mitofsky (E/M), Kerry won Ohio's pivotal vote, though the official tally gave the state, and thus the presidency, to Bush. The conduct of Ohio's election was formally debated by Congress in January 2005.

The National Election Data Archive (NEDA) is the first mathematical team to release a valid scientific analysis of the precinct-level 2004 Ohio presidential exit poll data "The Gun is Smoking: 2004 Ohio Precinct-level Exit Poll Data Show Virtually Irrefutable Evidence of Vote Miscount" available at http://electionarchive.org/ucvAnalysis/OH/Ohio-Exit-Polls-2004.pdf. NEDA's analysis provides significant evidence of an outcome-altering vote miscount.

The analysis is based on the most accurate statistical method yet devised for determining whether exit poll error, random variations, or vote count manipulation cause the discrepancies between exit polls and official vote tallies. This analysis method was made public recently by NEDA in "Vote Miscounts or Exit Poll Error? New Mathematical Function for Analyzing Exit Poll Discrepancy" available at http://electionarchive.org/ucvAnalysis/US/Exit-Poll-Analysis.pdf

The Gun is Smoking - 2004 Ohio Precinct-Level Exit Poll Data Show Virtually Irrefutable Evidence of Vote Miscount


A Republic, If You Can Keep It - The Last Stand of the American Republic

He is right. We are witnessing the fall of what America used to mean. And everyone is quiet, waiting for someone else to act... Sigh...

Goodbye America. You were great while you lasted.


Clowntime is Over: The Last Stand of the American Republic

Wednesday, 28 December 2005
So now, at last, the crisis is upon us. Now the cards are finally on the table, laid out so starkly that even the Big Media sycophants and Beltway bootlickers can no longer ignore them. Now the choice for the American Establishment is clear, and inescapable: do you hold for the Republic, or for autocracy?

There is no third way here, no other option, no wiggle room, no ambiguity. The much-belated exposure of George W. Bush's warrantless spy program has forced the Bush-Cheney Regime to openly declare what they have long implied -- and enacted -- in secret: that the president is above the law, a military autocrat with unlimited powers, beyond the restraint or supervision of any other institution or branch of government. Outed as rank deceivers, perverters of the law and rapists of the Constitution, the Bush gang has decided that their best defense -- their only defense, really -- is a belligerent offense. "Yeah, we broke the law," they now say; "so what? We'll break it again whenever we want to, because law don't stick to our Big Boss Man. What are you going to do about it, chump?"

That is the essence, the substance and pretty much the style of the entire Bushist response to the domestic spying scandal. They are scarcely bothering to gussy it up with the usual rhetorical circumlocutions. The attack is being led by the fat, sneering coward, Dick Cheney, who has crawled out of his luxurious hidey-holes to re-animate the rotting husk of Richard Nixon and send it tottering back onto the national stage. Through the facade of Cheney's pig-squint and peevish snarl, we can see the long-dead Nixonian visage, his grave-green, worm-filled jowls muttering once more the lunatic mantra he brought to the Oval Office: "If the president does it, it can't be illegal." This is what we've come to, this is American leadership today: ugly, stupid men mouthing the witless drivel of failed, dead, discredited, would-be petty tyrants.

But not even Nixon was as foul as this crew. When he was caught, he folded; some faint spark of republican conscience restrained him from pushing the crisis to the end. He was a vain, stupid, greedy, grasping, dirty man with blood on his hands, but in the end, he did not identify himself with the government as a whole. He did not say, "l'etat, c'est moi," he had no messianic belief that the life of the nation was somehow bound up with his personal fate, or that he and his clique and his cronies had a God-given right to rule. They just wanted power and loot -- as much of it as they could get -- and they pushed and pushed until the Establishment pushed back.

It has long been evident, however, that Bush and Cheney do believe their clique should by all rights rule the country -- and that anyone who opposes their unrestrained dominion is automatically "anti-American," an enemy of the state. For them, there is no "loyal opposition," or even political opponents in any traditional understanding of the term; there are only enemies to be destroyed, and herd-like masses to be manipulated. They believe that their dominion is more important than democracy, which they despise as a brake and hindrance to the arbitrary leadership of an all-wise elite -- i.e., them. They are the state; a police state.

Yet "we live in hope and die in despair," as my father always says. In the back of the minds of many an embittered dissident, there has been a spark of hope that somewhere down the line, one of the many, many Bush outrages would somehow take hold, gain critical mass, and force the Establishment to act, to rein in the renegade, break him, box him in if not remove him from office.


it will have to be the Establishment that breaks Bush -- or he won't be broken. All the blogs in the world won't bring him down, no matter how much truth they tell, how much bloodsoaked Bushist dirt they expose. Yes, perhaps if we had millions of outraged citizens marching in the street day after day across America, a sustained mass movement and popular uprising for liberty and democracy, this might obviate the need for Establishment action. But we all know that such marches are not going to happen. If there was sufficient fire for liberty and democracy in America, there would have already been a popular uprising -- and Bush would never have garnered enough public support to keep the election results close enough to be fudged. No, it will be the Establishment -- or no one.

That's why the spy scandal is so pivotal. Because it is a direct, open and unignorable challenge to the institutional life of the American Establishment. In it, the Bush Regime is saying to the various powers-that-be, especially in Congress and the courts, but also to centers of power and influence outside government: you no longer have any power. All real power is now in our gift. Your laws, your institutions, your traditions, the whole complex infrastructure of checks and balances that have sustained society are now essentially meaningless. As in ancient Rome, we will keep the old forms, but the life of the state has now passed into the hands of the autocrat and his court. His arbitrary will can override any law -- although of course, strong law will still be applied to his enemies, and to the riff-raff in the lower orders.

How will the Establishment deal with this direct challenge? The past few years give little grounds for hope: the Democrats spineless, conflicted, co-opted and corrupt; the Republicans slavish, bellicose, cruel and criminal; the media timorous, witless, corporate-controlled; big business absolutely rolling in gravy from the autocrat's larder; academia cowed, silenced, ignored, demonized; the military acquiescent in criminal aggression, top-heavy with time-servers currying autocratic favor. Only the courts provide some stray sparks of hope, although they too are now loaded with political sycophants, corporate bagmen and knuckle-dragging throwbacks produced by the Right's decades-long devolution of American jurisprudence. Prosecutors like Patrick Fitzgerald and Elliot Spitzer "keep hope alive," but their efforts will mean little in a system where lawlessness at the top has been countenanced by the rest of the Establishment. And in any case, the outcome of their work lies ultimately with the Supreme Court -- the same court that shredded the Constitution in awarding power to Bush in the first place, and which is now led by a Bushist apparatchik.

Still, you don't go through a constitutional crisis with the Establishment you want; you go through a constitutional crisis with the Establishment you have. And this sad, sick crew, ladies and gentlemen, is all we have. If they swallow the spy scandal, if they don't push back now -- and I mean really push back, not just make a lot of harrumphing noise or hold a few toothless hearings or get a couple of underlings offered up as ritual sacrifices to save the Leader -- then we will have well and truly and finally lost the Republic that Franklin, Jefferson and Madison gave us so long ago.

The next few weeks will show us if there is still some hope of restoring the Republic through the old institutions...

And my hope is nil... -- law
Chris Floyd - Empire Burlesque - High Crimes and Low Comedy in the Bush Imperium - Clowntime is Over: The Last Stand of the American Republic


Daily Kos: Time reporter: Bush lied

Time reporter: Bush lied
by kos
Thu Dec 01, 2005 at 10:51:35 AM PDT

Yeah, yeah, Bush lied. Remember when that was a controversial line? Think Progress brings us the latest:

Yesterday, President Bush claimed that Iraqi security forces "primarily led" the assault on the city of Tal Afar. Bush highlighted it as an "especially clear" sign of the progress Iraq security forces were making in Iraq.

The progress of the Iraqi forces is especially clear when the recent anti-terrorist operations in Tal Afar are compared with last year's assault in Fallujah. In Fallujah, the assault was led by nine coalition battalions made up primarily of United States Marines and Army -- with six Iraqi battalions supporting them...This year in Tal Afar, it was a very different story. The assault was primarily led by Iraqi security forces -- 11 Iraqi battalions, backed by five coalition battalions providing support.

TIME Magazine reporter Michael Ware, who is embedded with the U.S. troops in Iraq who participated in the Tal Afar battle, appeared on Anderson Cooper yesterday. He said Bush's description was completely untrue:

I was in that battle from the very beginning to the very end. I was with Iraqi units right there on the front line as they were battling with al Qaeda. They were not leading. They were being led by the U.S. green beret special forces with them.

Think Progress has the actual video of the interview.

Daily Kos: State of the Nation




Zack Kaldveer, Communications Director, CASE America, 510-938-2664

Susan Truitt, President, CASE America, 614-270-5239

Joan Krawitz, Executive Director, CASE America, 847-962-5290


Experts conclude unprecedented 5.5% discrepancy between exit polls and final tallies indicate possible systematic, nationwide shift of the vote

(US) –
A new study (See report at www.USCountVotes.org)
was released today co-authored by prominent statisticians and vote-analysis experts from a diverse range of Universities including Notre Dame, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Cornell, and Temple. Their study strongly refutes the ‘explanation’ by pollster Edison/Mitofsky (E/M) that their exit polls (Kerry winning by 3%) differed so widely from the final certified tally (Bush by 2.5%) due to Kerry voters’ answering pollsters questions at a higher rate than Bush voters. The US Count Votes report “debunks” this hypothesis and adds to the mounting evidence that the answer to the exit poll mystery lies in the vote counting, not the accuracy of the exit polls.

“The new Edison/Mitofsky report fails to provide any evidence to substantiate the hypothesis that Kerry voters participated in exit polls at a higher rate than Bush voters, or that exit polling errors caused exit polls to favor Kerry by 3% when Bush won the election by 2.5%,” said Kathy Dopp, President, US Count Votes. “The possibility that the overall vote count was substantially corrupted must be taken seriously and investigated thoroughly."

Among the revelations uncovered in the study was that the response to exit pollsters was actually higher in precincts that strongly favored Bush than in those that strongly favored Kerry. This contradicts the E/M hypothesis that Kerry voters’ tended to cooperate more, and suggests that if anything, the exit polls may have been skewed towards President Bush, not Senator Kerry.

“The report’s findings add one more study to a growing list that indicate our democracy was compromised on November 2nd by an assortment of un-democratic tactics,” said Susan Truitt, President and Chief Counsel, CASE America. “Putting faith in partisan corporations to correctly count our vote ‘with secret proprietary software’ was a catastrophic mistake. We should be spending less time worrying about bringing democracy to Iraq and more time working to ensure we practice it here at home.”

CASE America (The Citizens’ Alliance for Secure Elections) is a non-partisan, pro-democracy organization that is partnering with The National Ballot Integrity Project to ensure elections are free, fair, accountable, and accurately reflect the intentions of the voters. The group plans to achieve these goals through research, information and education, grassroots organizational and leadership development, and support and pursuit of various legal and legislative initiatives.

Other key reports detailing the overwhelming evidence suggesting possible electoral fraud are: “Preserving Democracy: What Went Wrong in Ohio”, by Rep. John Conyers; “Evidence of Election Irregularities in Sohomish County Washington”, by Paul R. Leto and Dr. Jeffrey Hoffman; "Myth Breakers: Facts about Electronic Elections", by VotersUnite.org; “The Unexplained Exit Poll Discrepancy”, by Dr. Stephen Freeman; and “New Mexico State Election Data”, by Ellen Theisen and Warren Stewart.

Problems found in nearly every post election investigation, all of which favored the re-election of the President, include: voting machine shortages; ballots counted in secret; lost, discarded, and improperly rejected registration forms and absentee ballots; touch-screen machines that registered “Bush” when voters pressed “Kerry”; precincts in which turnout was suspiciously high, including many which had more votes recorded than registered voters; precincts in which the reported turnout was suspiciously low; and high rates of “spoiled” ballots and under-votes in which no choice for president was recorded.

View report directly here


Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) vows to object to 2004 election results

Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) vows to object to 2004 election results

On November 3, 2004 Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) said that he would contest the 2004 election results if election fraud was found. This was in response to a question asked by a citizen at a Medford Oregon Town Hall Meeting that was attended by 150-200 Oregon voters. Ron Wyden knows that systematic voter disenfranchisement is not OK and is evidence of election FRAUD. - picture linked from the Mail Tribune Online ->

Watch him live showing his support for fair U.S. elections on C-Span at 1:00 pm EST on January 6, 2005

On January 6, 2005 Congress will meet in joint session to certify the 2004 presidential election. On that day, if one member of the House and one member of the Senate object to the certification of the vote, then all members of Congress will finally discuss these issues. On January 6, 2001, not a single Senator would join with the Representatives who demanded an inquiry into the Florida recount. Let's help our Senator take this stand.Please support Ron in this historical action with faxes, emails, phone calls before Jan 5, '05 Individually fax and email him all 4 letters below to all of his offices. Then call him with support for contesting '04 votes. Include the letter title, your name, address, phone, and email (email form link can be found at the top left of this page)

letter to Senators from (Rep. John Conyers):Title: Please debate and object to the counting of 2004 Ohio electoral votes

Dear Senator Ron Wyden,

As you know, on January 6, 2005, at 1:00 P.M., the electoral votes for the election of the president are to be opened and counted in a joint session of Congress, commencing at 1:00 P.M. I and a number of House Members are planning to object to the counting of the Ohio votes, due to numerous unexplained irregularities in the Ohio presidential vote, many of which appear to violate both federal and state law. I am hoping that you will consider joining us in this important effort to debate and highlight the problems in Ohio which disenfranchised innumerable voters. I will shortly forward you a draft report itemizing and analyzing the many irregularities we have come across as part of our hearings and investigation into the Ohio presidential election.

-- snip --

please see the Vote Wyden site to show support and read the letters...

And pleeeeeasssee provide your own support for the critical effort to contest this election!


Pitt: Proof of Ohio Election Fraud Exposed

Man OH man, election fraud finally hits the fan?!

by luaptifer

Wed Dec 15th, 2004 at 03:52:57 EDT

Proof of Ohio Election Fraud Exposed

William Rivers Pitt Wednesday 15 December 2004

...everyone was looking the wrong way. The company that requires immediate and penetrating scrutiny is Triad Systems.

Triad is owned by a man named Tod Rapp, who has also donated money to both the Republican Party and the election campaign of George W. Bush. Triad manufactures punch-card voting systems, and also wrote the computer program that tallied the punch-card votes cast in 41 Ohio counties last November...

Given the ubiquity of the Triad voting systems in Ohio, the allegations that have been leveled against this company strike to the heart of the assumed result of the 2004 election.

...Triad is contracted to do much of the elections work in this county and elsewhere in Ohio

...They also have a technician in the office on election night to actually run the tabulator itself...

Triad also supplies the network computers on which all of the voter registration information and processing is kept for the county...

The source of this report believes that the Triad representative was "making the rounds" of visiting other counties also before the recount. This person also stated they would not pass on the suggestion of the "posted" hidden totals, and would refuse to go along with it if it were suggested by the others in the office at the time.

The source of this information believes they could lose their job if they come forward. The source of this information is named Sherole Eaton, Hocking County deputy director of elections. She has since written and signed an affidavit describing her experience with the Triad representative, the text of which is here:

Go to Original

December 13, 2004
Sherole Eaton
Re: General Election 2004 - Hocking County, TriAd...

...He advised Lisa and I on how to post a "cheat sheet" on the wall so that only the board members and staff would know about it and and what the codes meant so the count would come out perfect and we wouldn't have to do a full hand recount of the county. He left about 5:00 PM.
My faith in Tri Ad and the Xenia staff has been nothing but good. The realization that this company and staff would do anything to dishonor or disrupt the voting process is distressing to me and hard to believe. I'm being completely objective about the above statements and the reason I'm bringing this forward is to, hopefully, rule out any wrongdoing...

Conyers, upon hearing these allegations, sent a letter to both the FBI Special Agent in Charge in Ohio and the Hocking County Prosecutor. The text of that letter is as follows:

December 15, 2004
As part of the Democratic staff's investigation into irregularities in the 2004 election and following up on a lead provided to me by Green Party Presidential Candidate, David Cobb, I have learned that Sherole Eaton, a Deputy Director of Board of Elections in Hocking County, Ohio, has first hand knowledge of inappropriate and likely illegal election tampering in the Ohio presidential election in violation of federal and state law...

I have information that similar actions of this nature may be occurring in other counties in Ohio. I am therefore asking that you immediately investigate this alleged misconduct and that, among other things, you consider the immediate impoundment of election machinery to prevent any further tampering...

Third, it is important to recognize that the companies implicated in the wrongdoing, Triad and its affiliates, are the leading suppliers of voting machines involving the counting of paper ballots and punch cards in the critical states of Ohio and Florida. Triad is controlled by the Rapp family, and its founder Tod A. Rapp has been a consistent contributor to Republican causes.4 A Triad affiliate, Psephos corporation, supplied the notorious butterfly ballot used in Palm Beach County, Florida, in the 2000 presidential election.

John Conyers, Jr.

The New York Times published a report on the matter late Tuesday night:

Go to Original

Lawmaker Seeks Inquiry Into Ohio Vote
By Tom Zeller Jr.
The New York Times
Wednesday 15 December 3004

The ranking Democratic member of the House Judiciary Committee, Representative John Conyers Jr. of Michigan, plans to ask the Federal Bureau of Investigation and a county prosecutor in Ohio today to explore "inappropriate and likely illegal election tampering" in at least one and perhaps several Ohio counties...


Daily Kos :: BREAKING: Witness Says Voting Company Tampered With Machines

BREAKING: Witness Says Voting Company Tampered With Machines
by sixmoreweeks

Mon Dec 13th, 2004 at 22:31:58 CDT

This is breaking news here from The Blue Lemur (Raw Story) that concerns the witness that Presidential candidate David Cobb (Green Party) brought up at the hearing today in Ohio with John Conyers.

The story is below the fold.

Diaries :: sixmoreweeks's diary ::

Correction from RAW STORY: An earlier version of this article and headline incorrectly stated David Cobb was the Libertarian candidate. Cobb was the Green Party candidate.

Witness says voting company tampered with machines after vote and tried to plant false information into Ohio recount
Filed under: General-- site admin @ 10:15 pm

Green says voting company tampered with recount effort

By John Byrne | RAW STORY Editor

David Cobb, the unsuccessful Green Party presidential candidate, aired startling allegations at the Democratic House Judiciary Committee’s Columbus hearings Monday, alleging that a voting company representative tampered with voting equipment in Columbus last Friday and attempted to plant false information into the Ohio recount.

Cobb says that a witness who had requested anonymity watched a representative of Triad Systems enter the Columbus Board of Elections unannounced and tamper with a vote tabulator which then lost all data.

The representative then, Cobb said, tried to convince employees to post false information so that it would appear as if the data was valid and had never been lost.

This following is RAW STORY ’s transcript Cobb’s speech as recorded by Inside Track News’ broadcast (mp3 file), an independent media outlet that covered the event. The story has been followed in detail at The Brad Blog.

“A representative from Triad Systems came into this county’s Board of Election’s office unannounced, that is on this Friday. He said he was just stopping by to see if they had any questions about the upcoming recount.

“He then headed into the back room where Triad supplies tabulators, that is the machine that counts the ballots, is kept. This Triad representative told them that there was problem with the system, that the system had a bad battery and it had ‘lost all its data.’

“He then took the computer apart and started swapping parts in and out of it. And in another [incomprehensible] in the room. And he had spare parts in his coat, as one of the people moved in [sic] remarked how very heavy it was.

“He finally reassembled everything and said it was working but not to turn it off. He then asked which precinct would be counted in the 3 percent recount test and that one which had been selected as if it had the right number of votes was relayed to him he then went back and did something else to the tabulator.

“The Triad Systems representative suggested that since the hand recount had to match the machine count exactly and since it would hard to memorize the several numbers which would be needed to get the count exactly right, that they should post this series of numbers on the wall where they would not be noticed by observers such as to make them look like employee information or something similar.

“The people doing the hand count could then he said just report those numbers no matter what the actually counted in the ballot. This would then ‘match’ the tabulator report for this precinct exactly.

Minority leader of the House Judiciary Committee Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) replied, “David Cobb, I need to you to arrange a meeting with our staff immediately.”

Cobb asserted that such practices were “going on across the state.”

The Cleveland Free Press’ Editor David Fitrakis also submitted a list of documented Ohio voting irregularities Dec. 8, which Conyers’ office has posted online in pdf format.


Correction: An earlier version of this article and headline incorrectly stated David Cobb was the Libertarian candidate. Cobb was the Green Party candidate.

MORE: http://www.bluelemur.com/index.php?p=490

Daily Kos :: BREAKING: Witness Says Voting Company Tampered With Machines


Judiciary Cmte Dems: "'Free' Exit Poll Data", "Ken Blackwell Riddle Me This", etc.

House Committee on the Judiciary Democratic Members

If you experienced voting problems or have first-handknowledge of voting irregularies in the 2004 Presidential election,please contact the Committee by clicking here.
December 3, 2004
Text of Letter from Rep. Conyers to Warren Mitofsky of Mitofsky International Requesting the Release of Exit Poll "raw data"

December 3, 2004
Text of Follow-up Letter from Judiciary Democratic Members to Ohio Secretary of State J. Kenneth Blackwell Concerning Ohio Election Irregularities

December 3, 2004
Conyers and Other Congressmen to Hold Forum on Voting Irregularities in Ohio

December 2, 2004
Conyers, and Other House Judiciary Democrats Ask Blackwell to Explain Alleged Ohio Election Irregularities

December 2, 2004
Text of Letter from Judiciary Democratic Members to Ohio Secretary of State J. Kenneth Blackwell Concerning Ohio Election Irregularities


VoteLaw: Comparing Ukraine and Ohio

James K. Galbraith writes on Salon.com: The election was stolen. That's not in doubt. Secretary of State Colin Powell admitted it. The National Democratic Institute and the International Republican Institute both admitted it. Sen. Richard Lugar of Indiana -- a Republican -- was emphatic; there had been "a concerted and forceful program of Election Day fraud and abuse"; he "had heard" of employers telling their workers how to vote; yet he had also seen the fire of the resisting young, "not prepared to be intimidated."

In Washington, former National Security Advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski demanded that the results be set aside and a new vote taken, under the eye -- no less -- of the United Nations. In the New York Times, Steven Lee Myers decried "the use of government resources on behalf of loyal candidates and the state's control over the media" -- practices, he said, that were akin to those in "Putin's Russia."

Personally, I don't know whether the Ukrainian election was really stolen. I don't trust Lugar, Powell or the National Democratic Institute. It's obvious that U.S. foreign policy interests, rather than love of democracy for its own sake, are behind this outcry. Russia backed the other candidate in Ukraine. For Brzezinski, doing damage to Russia is a hobby.
But if the Ukraine standard were applied in Ohio -- as it should be -- then the late lamented U.S. election certainly was stolen. [emphasis added at Counting Coup.] In Ohio, the secretary of state in charge of the elections process was co-chairman of the Bush campaign in the state. He obstructed the vote count systematically -- for instance, by demanding that provisional ballots without birth dates on their envelopes be thrown out, even though there is no requirement for that in state law. He also required that provisional ballots be cast in a voter's home precinct, ensuring that there would be no escape from long lines. Republicans fielded thousands of election challengers to Democratic precincts, mainly to try to intimidate black voters and to slow down the voting process. A recount, demanded and paid for by the Green and Libertarian parties, has been stalled in court, so that it won't possibly upset the certification of Ohio's electoral votes.

-- Salon.com Democracy inaction

This entry was posted by Edward at 07:50 AM

Voting errors tallied nationwide

By Brian C. Mooney, Globe Staff December 1, 2004

More than 4,000 votes vanished without a trace into a computer's overloaded memory in one North Carolina county, and about a hundred paper ballots were thrown out by mistake in another. In Texas, a county needed help from a laboratory in Canada to unlock the memory of a touch-screen machine and unearth five dozen votes.

In other places, machine undercounting or overcounting of votes was a problem. Several thousand votes were mistakenly double-counted in North Carolina, Ohio, Nebraska, and Washington state. Some votes in other areas were at first credited to the wrong candidates, with one Indiana county, by some quirk, misallocating several hundred votes for Democrats to Libertarians. In Florida, some machines temporarily indicated votes intended for challenger John F. Kerry were for President Bush, and vice versa.
In the month since the election, serious instances of voting machine problems or human errors in ballot counts have been documented in at least a dozen states, each involving from scores of ballots to as many as 12,000 votes, as in a North Carolina county. On Election Day, or in later reconciling tallies of ballots and voters, local officials discovered problems and corrected final counts. In some cases, the changes altered the outcomes of local races. But in North Carolina, the problems were so serious that the state may hold a rare second vote, redoing a contest for state agriculture commissioner decided by fewer votes than the number of ballots lost.
After the disputed vote in Florida four years ago, Congress passed the Help America Vote Act of 2002 and authorized $4 billion so states could create central computerized voter lists and replace outdated voting systems such as punchcards by 2006. But many states have not completed the overhaul, and this year's election unearthed enough problems -- both with older technologies and newer electronic touch-screens -- that two federal agencies plan unprecedented nationwide inquiries. The investigations by the Government Accountability Office and US Election Assistance Commission will begin early next year and be completed by mid-2005, at the earliest.
In addition, minor presidential candidates requested recounts in four states -- a partial one completed yesterday in New Hampshire, and statewide in Ohio, New Mexico, and Nevada.
None of the recounts or inquiries is expected to affect the results of the presidential election, which Bush won by more than 3.3 million votes.
Those who believe that either or both of the past two presidential elections were manipulated by a vague conspiracy to elect Bush have done statistical analyses of voting patterns in Florida and argued that the voting discrepancies were much larger and systemic, but their studies have not stood up to scrutiny from academics and other analysts.
Most of the concerns, which have rocketed through the Internet, center on computerized voting or tabulating machines, including some that do not keep a paper record for audits and recounts. Some computer scientists acknowledge that these systems could be vulnerable to tampering.
''I would hesitate to take seriously the conspiracy theories, but there are certainly gaps and vulnerabilities that have got to be addressed," said DeForest B. Soaries, chairman of the US Election Assistance Commission, which was created by the 2002 law and plans to conduct hearings around the country on the voting.
''We are convinced that while the election went relatively smoothly compared to what many had expected, that does not eliminate the need to study the results and collect data to document machine malfunctions and other administrative matters," Soaries said.
Since 2000, watchdog groups have intensified their monitoring and cataloging of complaints and errors. The nonpartisan Verified Voting Foundation and other groups built a database of more than 30,000 ''election incidents" reported across the country this year. Most were routine, but nearly 900 involved significant e-voting problems, including malfunctions that shut down machines, lengthening waits at the polls. There were 42 reports of total breakdowns of machines in New Orleans and 28 in Philadelphia and ''15 reports of catastrophic machine failure" in Mercer County, Pa.
The most serious problems occurred in North Carolina, where 4,438 e-votes disappeared in Carteret County. In at least five other counties, major double-counting or undercounting was discovered and corrected by North Carolina officials during their tabulations.
Johnnie McLean, deputy director of the State Board of Elections, attributed many mistakes to ''the human element, brought on by fatigue." In Carteret, for example, election workers apparently did not notice the ''Voter Log Full" message on the black box as the UniLect touch-screen failed to record the electronic votes, she said.
''If we had problems in the past, they were not magnified like this," McLean said, referring not only to the closeness of the statewide race, but also the extraordinary scrutiny of voting since 2000.
Examples of other major problems that were reported on and after Nov. 2, then later corrected, include:
Thousands of ballots were mistakenly double-counted in Sandusky County, Ohio; Sarpy County, Neb.; and Grays Harbor County, Wash. Democrats in Washington ust decide by Friday whether to seek a second recount in the closest governor's race
in state history. One recount has been held, reducing Republican Dino Rossi's 261-vote lead to 42 votes over Democrat Christine Gregoire.
In Gahanna, Ohio, a suburb of Columbus, Bush was temporarily credited with 3,893 more votes than he actually received in a precinct where only 638 voters cast ballots on a Danaher electronic voting machine.
In Franklin County, Ind., a tabulator credited about 600 straight-ticket Democratic votes to Libertarian Party candidates.
In Collin County, Texas, the memory card of a Diebold Election Systems touch-screen machine had to be sent to a laboratory in Canada a week after the election to extract information about 63 votes cast before the machine froze and was taken out of service.
In South Florida's Broward County, ''multiple misrecordings" occurred when votes for Kerry on touch-screens made by Election Systems & Software Inc. appeared as Bush votes, and there was at least one account of a Bush vote going to Kerry, the Verified Voting group reported. Broward voters discovered the problem on screens that allowed them to check their selections before entering them electronically.
The long list of documented problems has fueled the suspicions of conspiracy theorists, activists, and the minor presidential candidates who requested the New Hampshire and Ohio recounts.

Ohio decided the 2004 contest, but since the 2000 election, Florida remains the focus of the doubters and the devotees of various scenarios that suggest skullduggery, in part because early exit polls overstated Kerry's strength.
No group has been more aggressive than Seattle-based Black Box Voting, which bills itself as ''consumer protection for elections." Led by founder Bev Harris, the organization is seeking election records from around the country for audits of the results. The primary focus is Florida, where internal computer records have been requested in all 67 counties, and the results in glitch-plagued Volusia County, in the east-central part of the state, are being contested.
Four years ago, during vote-counting on election night, a faulty memory card initially deducted 16,022 votes from Democrat Al Gore's vote total in Volusia. Despite spending about $300,000 to upgrade equipment and avert a repeat, there were memory card problems this year in tabulators for six Volusia precincts. The optically-scanned paper ballots were re-fed into other counting machines to reach an accurate tally, a county election official said.
''All day long, I get desperate calls from people who are in so much pain," said Harris, the Black Box founder, who said she is convinced fraud occurred in some places Nov. 2. ''They say: Can you fix it? Can you solve it? Can you turn around the presidential election? We're not trying to turn the election around. We're trying to get elections to be more transparent, because with the new machines, it's not transparent."
Deanie Lowe, Volusia's supervisor of elections, said she has complied with Harris's record requests and offered to recount, free of charge, any three of Volusia's 179 precincts selected by Harris.
Harris, however, said records for all precincts were not turned over, and Black Box will seek a 50-precinct recount in the county, which Kerry won but by a smaller margin than Gore did in 2000.
Much of the postelection focus on Florida resulted from a pair of analyses that claimed Bush's vote totals in the state were inflated by two vote-counting technologies.
The first analysis originated on the Web and cited results in rural, overwhelmingly Democratic counties in Florida's panhandle, where Bush crushed Kerry. All use optical scanners. What the analysis failed to note is that Bush routed Gore by nearly equal margins four years ago in the same conservative counties that have been tilting Republican for years in national elections. A team of Miami Herald reporters reviewed 17,000 ballots in three of the counties, basically confirming the election results.
Then, a broadly reported second study by a team at the University of California at Berkeley, using an academic statistical method, asserted that ''Irregularities associated with electronic voting machines may have awarded 130,000 excess votes to President George W. Bush in Florida." In Broward County alone, the study said, Bush ''appears to have received approximately 72,000 excess votes." Palm Beach and Miami-Dade counties, which also use touch-screens, were also cited as anomalies.
But if Bush had actually received 72,000 fewer votes in heavily Democratic Broward, his total this year would have been less than it was in 2000 -- even though nearly 132,000 more ballots were cast. Kerry won all three key counties, Broward by more than 209,000 votes.
Bush carried the state by 380,978 votes, or about 5 percent of 7.6 million cast.
If recounts are the skeptics' best hope to uncover systemic irregularities, they got off to a rocky start in New Hampshire. Completed yesterday at the request of independent candidate Ralph Nader, the Granite State re-tally of 50,600 votes in 11 towns and city wards that use optical scanners increased Kerry's total by 87 votes and Bush's by 62.
Secretary of State William M. Gardner said scanned ballots have worked well in New Hampshire. Indeed, the largest discrepancies found this year were in a legislative race involving hand-counted ballots, he said.
On deck is Ohio, which tipped the Electoral College to Bush. At the earliest, the recount of 88 counties won't begin until Dec. 13, according to the secretary of state's office, the same day the Electoral College is scheduled to formalize Bush's reelection. The recount could take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks. Minor presidential candidates Michael Badnarik and David Cobb of the Libertarian and Green parties, respectively, have said they would formally seek the recount once the state certifies the official results Monday. They will incorporate the review of 155,000 provisional ballots, which were not included in preliminary tallies that showed Bush winning Ohio by 136,483 votes, or about 2.5 percent.
How long the recount takes will depend on whether Badnarik and Cobb ask for a manual inspection of any or all of the 5.5 million ballots, said Carlo LoParo, spokesman for Ohio's secretary of state, J. Kenneth Blackwell.
Of complaints about long lines that discouraged some from voting and allegations that there was a shortage of machines in some urban Democratic areas, LoParo said such decisions in Ohio are made by county boards of elections with two Republicans and two Democrats.
Long waits in Ohio and elsewhere resulted from the system being overwhelmed by a high turnout, said Doug Chapin, director of the nonpartisan electionline.org, which monitors reform efforts.
More attention should be paid to providing an adequate number of machines in polling places, he said, as well as ''finishing the job" mandated by the Help America Vote Act. Forty states, for example, have yet to comply with a mandate to establish a central, statewide database of registered voters. That will reduce questions about voter eligibility at election time, Chapin said.
Whatever the outcome of the recounts and the official inquiries by federal agencies, the impetus for improve voting systems will not fade, he said.
''This is not a fringe issue, because a sizable group is interested in pursuing this as a policy issue going forward," Chapin said. ''There's now a critical mass of people involved who want to address the problems that occurred in 2004. This issue is not going to go away."