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Why the election is at risk and what you can do to keep your right to vote

Exercise your right and vote on or before November 4th.  Vote locally, regionally and nationally to Beat Climate Chaos.  Think of how the people and propositions you vote for will best help you and your community Beat Climate Chaos. When you vote, make sure your vote really is one that’s counted, not stolen – read on to find out how…


Election at Risk


The 2008 election is at risk at local and national levels regardless of what the polls show.  The Help America Vote Act enables state election officials to prevent and purge voter registrations.  Tens of thousands of voters will not be allowed to vote or their votes won’t count on November 4th even though they think they’re registered.   Thus the outcome of the elections at local levels, state levels and national levels will not reflect the will of the people.  Are you surprised?  Don’t take my word, the national press is reporting on this:

“Tens of thousands of eligible voters in at least six swing states have been removed from the rolls or have been blocked from registering in ways that appear to violate federal law, according to a review of state records and Social Security data by The New York Times.”  From the article States’ Actions to Block Voters Appear Illegal (New York Times October 9, 2008, page A1 New York edition).  Bill Moyers covered this issue on 10/17 when he talked with Mark Crispin Miller

If you or a friend is from Michigan, for example, and you recently moved, your house has been foreclosed or you got a driver’s licenses in another state because you’re a student, or you’re away serving your country at war, it’s likely your voter registration has been canceled without you knowing it.  See article in U.S. News & World Report ACLU Sues Michigan Over Voter Purge Program, Saying It Hurts College Students.  CBS news reports on the Voter Purges report from the Brennan Center for Justice (see link to the report itself below).   Now that you know your vote may be stolen, what can you do?


What Can You Do So Nobody Steals Your Vote?


To understand what’s going on and what you can do to prevent your vote being stolen, go to, watch the movie and read the comic book by Greg Palast and Robert Kennedy Jr. (they’re asking for a donation – as little as 1 cent, to download the comic book).  The comic book is non-partisan so you can bring it with you when you vote.  It’s got the election protection number to call if you run into trouble while trying to vote.  You can also read their article in Rolling Stone called Block the Vote.  Fran Korten and the staff of Yes! Magazine produced a checklist you can download: 12 Ways You Can Safeguard the Vote.

Check for yourself and tell your family and friends to make sure they:

1) are registered.  Their registration could have been purged per the articles above.

2) Know where and when to vote.  Know your rights to vote.  Some campaigns are reducing opposing votes by claiming to be from their opponent’s campaign and telling those likely voters to show up on the wrong day after the election or sending out incorrect poll location information or threatening that they might be arrested if they show up to vote or stating that they are ineligible to vote.

3) If you can vote early in-person, do so.  It will give you more time to correct any problems that turn up.  If possible, avoid voting by mail or voting on a provisional ballot.  If you can, turn in your vote-by-mail ballot at a polling station.  Votes by mail can easily go astray.  Election officials often do not count provisional ballots.

4) Do not select “straight-party” when casting your ballot.  In states that offer this option, voters who select “straight-party” report that their ballots end up with blanks for president and U.S. senate – see and


How Do You Find Out If You’re Still Registered To Vote?


If you are not sure you’re registered or not sure where and when to vote you can find out by going to  Tell your friends to check their registrations.  The National Association of Secretaries of State produced this website.  The organization is the nation’s oldest, nonpartisan professional association for public officials – its members are the chief state election officials in 39 states.  Another website that helps you check your registration and find your polling place is:

Some campaigns are trying to scare people by telling them they’re ineligible to vote or will be arrested if they have an outstanding traffic ticket.  Don’t let them scare you or any of your family and friends.   If you have any questions about your eligibility to vote, is a helpful nonpartisan resource.

Common Cause launched the “Protect the Vote” campaign.  Go to and click on your state to find out what voting issues have occurred in the past, what are the voting requirements in your state and state election officials’ contact information.

If you’re a student get the The Student Voting Guide from the Brennan Center to help you figure out your voting rights despite common myths and confusing registration and voting laws.


Why Is The Voter Registering Organization ACORN In The News?


The attack on ACORN that’s in the news is a ruse to distract you from what’s really going on.  It’s an attempt to scare you about voter fraud, which is when individuals vote where or when they shouldn’t.   Voter fraud is extremely rare.  A recent report found only 24 cases nationwide between 2002-2005.  That’s in comparison to hundreds of millions of votes cast.  In fact, “Attorney Gate” was the result of the Administration pressuring U.S. Attorneys to find cases of voter fraud.  When they couldn’t find such cases the Attorney’s were fired.  On the other hand, election fraud, in which election officials or others steal millions of votes, is rampant as you can see from the articles above.  Some believe the complaints against Acorn are preparation for election challenges after the election.  For more information, see Brad Friedman’s article in the U.K.’s Guardian or Amy Goodman’s article in Madison’s Capital Times or Laura Flanders article

The Obama campaign sent a letter requesting that Attorney General Mukasey assign a special prosecutor to investigate whether the White House and Justice Dept motivated the FBI raids on Acorn to support the McCain-Palin campaign much as in “Attorney Gate”  TPMMuckraker’s article about this action includes a link to the full letter .   For their coverage on the ACORN issue, see


What Can You Do To Help During And After The Elections?


Call the nonpartisan at 1-866-687-8683 to report voting problems. Their hotlines are: 1-866-OUR-VOTE (administered by the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law) and 1-888-Ve-Y-Vota (administered by the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials Education Fund).  They are recruiting attorneys, law students, and paralegals to volunteer.

You can sign up to take videos as a way to help monitor the election process at

You can conduct a citizens’ audit at your polling place. To learn how, see and you can get the Comprehensive Guide to Monitoring Computerized Elections from

If you’re a Democrat, is organizing volunteers and donations to monitor voter registrations and actual voting before and on November 4th as well as to fight the expected challenges of the election outcome.   At their site you can sign up to help expose, spot and report election theft.


Do You Want To Learn More?


To learn more about vote purging see the links at the NYT article above or go directly to:

  • and click on the report Voter Purges (Brennan Center for Justice, 2008) (The Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law is a non-partisan public policy and law institute that focuses on fundamental issues of democracy and justice.) While you’re at the Brennan Center site look around at the articles.
  • Vanishing Voters: Why Registered Voters Fall Off the Rolls (pdf, U.S. Public Interest Research Group Education Fund, September 2008)

Other links you may find helpful:

Go Out And Make Your Vote Count!   Beat Climate Chaos!