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LA Video the Vote Dispatch Center Report

by Hieronymous_D Wednesday, Nov. 08, 2006 at 4:50 PM
malkavai@mac.com 213-481-2004

Below please find a news release detailing incidents addressed by the Los Angeles Video the Vote Rapid Response Task Force today, Election Day, November 7, 2006.

VIDEO THE VOTE RAPID RESPONSE TASK FORCE DOCUMENTING
WIDESPREAD PROBLEMS AT THE POLLS
Los Angeles Video the Vote Dispatch Center Report


LOS ANGELES, Nov. 7, 2006 — Reports are widespread around the country concerning an extremely large variety of voting issues, including fraud, disenfranchisement, irregularities, voting machine and pollworker meltdowns. California and Los Angeles County are no exception. As of 12 noon Pacific Standard Time, California ranked fifth on the list of the ten states reporting the most voting incidents and/or problems to the non-partisan hotline 1-866-OUR-VOTE, outranked only by Pennsylvania, New York, Michigan and North Carolina. This national hotline is a project of Election Protection, the nation’s largest non-partisan voter coalition.

The Los Angeles Video the Vote Dispatch Center is based in Echo Park at the Clothing of the American Mind flagship store, located at 1284 W. Sunset Boulevard (90026). Since 6:00 this morning, the local hotline at 213.481.2004 has received approximately 200 phone calls from voters around Los Angeles County who are experiencing problems at the polls. The Los Angeles hotline is also receiving dispatch requests directly from the 1-866-OUR-VOTE national hotline.

Visible trends are emerging among the countless voter incident reports that have flooded the LA call center, the most widespread of which appears to be the malfunctioning of the electronic voting machines and the pollworker’s lack of training to solve and/or troubleshoot these malfunctions. Other poll monitoring incidents include a lack of paper ballots, the absence of ballot materials in languages other than English, electronic voting machines rejecting ballots, confirmed registered voters not listed on voter rolls (requiring these voters to vote provisionally), long lines, too few voting booths for the amount of voters assigned to specific polling locations, polling stations not opening on time and pollworkers requesting voters to come back to vote later in the day due to various issues at specific polling places.

Once a local incident is called in and assessed, a team comprised of a videographer and producer is dispatched to the voter’s polling location to document the incident on video supplemented with a written incident report. Video is then sent to one of two local upload centers where the video is then edited and uploaded to a public server where the media can access the footage.

Video the Vote has organized more than 8,000 volunteers nationwide who are participating in the activities of pollwatching and documentation of voting incidents. Los Angeles’ Video the Vote effort, organized by activists Matthew Gerbasi and Carly Miller, is one of the country’s largest endeavors under the Video the Vote umbrella.

Also available for media interviews is Robert Carrillo Cohen, producer of Hacking Democracy, a documentary that exposes major flaws in America’s electronic voting system. Hacking Democracy premiered on HBO on November 2nd.

The Video the Vote effort is the natural evolution and organization of an increased vigilance on the part of real people to document voter suppression and intimidation tactics in elections. For more information, visit http://www.videothevote.org or call the Los Angeles hotline at 213.481.2004. The LA Dispatch Center at the Clothing of the American Mind store is located at 1284 W. Sunset Boulevard in Echo Park, just east of Elysian Park Avenue.

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