Appendix F – WTV Report on the 2016 California Primary
Watch the Vote (WTV)
Final Report of Election Problems in California’s 2016 Primary
Kelly Mordecai (revised by Jeff Liberty 08-13-2017)
WTV discovered many problems in the California Democratic primary on June 7th, 2016. This report provides a general overview of the problems noted. In addition to numerous declarations of actual problems acquiring and submitting ballots, 90% of those participating in the “online declaration drive” mentioned they do not trust the election system in California. There appears great disenfranchisement, discouraging voters to vote in future elections. Voter disenfranchisement (or discouragement) should be of the greatest concern to government officials in a representative government.
What is the cause of this? What suspicions emerge? In the quest for convenience, electronic systems (computers) are used that may allow unseen vulnerabilities.
Computer experts agree that, “Once a physical ballot is turned into electrons, it is easily subject to hidden computer manipulation.” The same could be concluded about the voter registration database. Software is vulnerable to computer hackers:
Removing someone from the poll precinct roster;
Flipping their party affiliation;
Removing from the database a voter’s registration who would vote by mail;
Switching a “mail in voter” to a “poll—voter”;
Switching a “poll-voter” to a “mail in voter”;
Flipping an overall vote to a candidate of the computer programmer’s choosing.
This is all subject to a programmer’s bias toward a candidate.
If this is happening in the “electronic world”, then, there should be results in the physical world. WTV observed these in California, by declarations and callers into state-wide conference calls.
In conclusion, the present problems have risen to a level that appropriate legislative action should be immediately implemented in California to remedy this in future elections. Also, in California county CIVIL grand juries will be investigating the situation, county by county, and future updates from these will display the depth of this problem in a more official, authoritative capacity. These may produce the physical evidence [needed to prove] the suspect “black box” vulnerability in our electronic systems. Recommendations to avoid similar future problems are provided at the end of this report.
With this mentioned, let us look to the physical experiences for evidence. First, one must understand the spectrum of electronic (computer) systems in the registration and election process.
Electronic Systems used in the Registration and Election Process
It is a fact that voters can register via website in California. It is a fact that registration specifics are in a computer data base. It is a fact that vote by mail addresses are in a computer data base. It is a fact that the voter roster used at the polls is printed from computer data bases. It is a fact that computerized scanners scan the vote and turn the vote into a database. Then, computers take this data, and “count the vote.” We voters have no choice but to blindly trust this system put forth from corporate developed software. Should we blindly trust these systems?
Electronic systems are all well and good if the computer software is honest, and not subject to tampering. A software program is only as honest as the human programmer. Ask any software programmer. For example, programmer Clinton Curtis, who testified in a legislative hearing, where he stated that he quit his job because he was asked to program the outcome of an election for a client, with the results of an election of 51 to 49%. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JEzY2tnwExs
Electronic voting assistance systems are all subject to a programmer’s bias toward a candidate and the bias of the corporation employing said employee. Consider the occasional data leaks from Wikileaks, and others. Is the electronic equipment used in registration and elections harder or easier to hack into?
All this “computer manipulation” is in “secret”, as software vendors often require election officials to agree not to sue to obtain the software code. The computer is a “black-box” that few understand. This “computer programmer” tampering is hard to prove, however, voter disenfranchisement did occur on a large scale in the California Primary.
US Supreme Court
In the big picture, one must ask if there is a court case prohibiting counting votes in secret, or removing one from the voting roster. The U.S. Supreme Court weighed in:
US v Mosley (1915)
“We regard it as equally unquestionable that the right to have one’s vote counted is as open to protection by Congress as the right to put a ballot in a box.”
The court then traced the history of § 19 from its origin as one section of the Enforcement Act of May 31, 1870, which contained other sections more specifically aimed at election frauds, and the survival of § 19 as a statute of the United States notwithstanding the repeal of those other sections. The conclusion was that § 19 protected personal rights of a citizen including the right to cast his ballot, and held that to refuse to count and return the vote as cast was as much an infringement of that personal right as to exclude the voter from the polling place. The case affirms that the elector’s right intended to be protected is not only that to cast his ballot but that to have it honestly counted. Page 387 c. 114, 16 Stat. 140, as amended by c. 99, 16 Stat. 433.
Wesberry v. Sanders (1964)
OPINION OF THE COURT – Justice Black: “Not only can this right to vote not be denied outright, it cannot, consistently with Article I, be destroyed by alteration of ballots, see United States v. Classic, 313 U.S. 299, or diluted by stuffing of the ballot box, see United States v. Saylor, 322 U.S. 385. No right is more precious in a free country than that of having a voice in the election of those who make the laws under which, as good citizens, we must live. Other rights, even the most basic, are illusory if the right to vote is undermined.” https://www.law.cornell.edu/supremecourt/text/376/1
Reynolds v. Sims, 377 U.S. 533 (1964)
[Footnote 40] As stated by MR. JUSTICE BLACK, dissenting, in Colegrove v. Green, 328 U. S. 549, 328 U. S. 569-571:
“No one would deny that the equal protection clause would… prohibit a law that would expressly give certain citizens a half-vote and others a full vote… [T]he constitutionally guaranteed right to vote and the right to have one’s vote counted clearly imply the policy that state election systems, no matter what their form, should be designed to give approximately equal weight to each vote cast…. [A] state legislature cannot deny eligible voters the right to vote for Congressmen and the right to have their vote counted. It can no more destroy the effectiveness of their vote in part and no more accomplish this in the name of ‘apportionment’ than under any other name.” https://supreme.justia.com/cases/federal/us/377/533/case.html (Underline added.)
When the right to vote is taken away by a voter not receiving a ballot by mail or their name removed from the roster at the polls, is there criminal behavior involved?
Of the worst, is a biased programmer programming the software for a biased result for their chosen candidate. Again, this is all in secret against the statements of the U.S. Supreme court regarding “the right to have one’s vote counted clearly.” (Reynolds v. Sims referencing Colegrove v. Green)
Again, If this biased programming is happening in the “electronic world”, then, there needs to be a clear method to prove it in the physical world. WTV received eye witness reports of such election machinery and software tampering in California, by way of declarations and state-wide conference calls.
Other Concerns Prior to Physical Evidence
What happens to physical ballots in “transport” from poll locations to the county clerk’s office to be counted by electronic machines? How does one know they are not switched in transport, or storage?
What happens when poll workers are mis-trained? Mis-trained to not hand out a ballot in a semi-closed state like California? Votes for president will be lost for those registering as a Non-Partisan Party (NPP), in which the NPP voter is only given an NPP ballot that has no presidential candidate.
What happens when poll workers are mis-trained, and from this provide a wrong ballot to an NPP voter?
That answer to the last two questions, is a large number of provisional ballots needing special attention. And this also from people possibly being removed from the voting roster, or possibly having their party affiliation flipped (in the case of hacked or altered software). The poll workers would defer the voter to a “provisional ballot.” The large number of provisional ballots in California is itself a strong indicator of election fraud.
From the declarations received, and conference calls, much doubt was expressed whether the voter’s vote for president was actually counted properly.
PROBLEMS Discovered in the 2016 California Primary
From the “online declaration drive”, in summary, the following problems were observed:
Registration & pre-Election: Problems occurred even before the election that created problems in the election.
Online registration had a “Box” to check indicating one wanted to “vote by mail.”(VBM) However, many reported they could not “uncheck” that box. This forced them into a VBM voter.
Many NPP (No Political Party), VBM voters do not remember receiving their “March Notice”/ “Notice Card.” A notice on a postcard that they needed to send back to the county clerk’s office requesting a VBM ballot of the party of their choice. (Ie… Check the box on the “Notice Card”/ post card requesting a Democratic Party, Libertarian Party, or American Independent ballot.) NPP ballots have no presidential candidate.
Some VBM voters never received their mail-in ballots.
(The “persistent voters ” then went to the polls, and voted “provisional.” Others who didn’t. couldn’t vote)
Some NPP VBM voters had sent in the “Notice Card”, requesting a Democratic Ballot, but received an NPP ballot in the mail. (Again, with no presidential candidate. A couple of Declarants stated they could not participate in the primary election because of this.)
Some Voters registering as a Democrat received an NPP ballot in the mail. (If they didn’t go to the polls, they could not vote. The persistent voters went to the polls to vote, and some experienced the problems at the polls described below.)
Voting at the Polls: Voters appeared in person at their precincts, and many experienced:
Many found they were somehow removed from the voter rolls.
➔ Provisional Ballot (vote may not be counted.)
Many had their party affiliation had been flipped. (Ie. Dem. to another party other than NPP. This nullified their presidential vote, per state law.)
➔ Provisional Ballot (vote will not be counted.)
Many NPP voters could not easily obtain a Democratic Crossover Ballot, even when it is their legal right in requesting and receiving same.
➔ Provisional Ballot (vote may not be counted.)
Many NPP voters were refused a Democratic Crossover Ballot, when requesting same. This is illegal. The voter received an NPP ballot, yet many wrote in “Bernie Sanders” for president. (Legally, in California this “write-in” does not count.)
Many found The roster displayed that the voter was a “Vote by Mail”, when they never requested this.
➔ Provisional Ballot (vote may not be counted.)
Unusual reasons requiring them to vote “provisional.”
➔ Provisional Ballot (vote may not be counted.)
The attached comments from Declarants confirm this. (Attachment A)
Statistics of Declarations
144 Declarations received
Participants from 25 Counties filed declarations;
LA County had the most declarations (42);
Between two “trust questions”, 90% stated they did not trust the California election system;
Over 84% of the Declarants provided comments of frustration. In these comments, many reiterated that the system was rigged, stolen, or untrustworthy.
The final vote was certified on July 15th, 2016, by the California Secretary of State – Alex Padilla. However, there was much delay because of the large number of provisional ballots that had to be counted. Was this planned?
The larger counties of LA, San Diego, Santa Clara, Alameda, etc.. seemed to have the most “provisional ballots.” Smaller counties didn’t seem to have as many problems, and were county certified relatively early.
Election fraud is much harder to commit and cover up in small precincts, or small counties. For those wishing to commit fraud, small counties are “high-risk/ low-reward.” The fraud is most likely to occur in large counties, as these yield “low-risk/high-reward.” One could consider that counties of small populations might be close in prediction, similar to an “thorough unbiased exit poll”, (which technically does not exist).
For example, in the North State the county certification came relatively quickly in Siskiyou, Shasta, Trinity, and Humbolt Counties. In these four North State counties, Bernie Sanders was the clear winner over Hillary Clinton, where the lowest spread was seven points in one county (Shasta BS: 51%, HC: 44%). In Humbolt County Sanders held the largest spread of 33 points (BS: 65%, HC 32%).
It should be noted that Humbolt County has an election “Transparency Project”, that makes election fraud about impossible to commit. The “Transparency Project” was initiated by private citizens, and with the cooperation of the Registrar/Clerk. This private group scans all ballots at the clerk’s office on private scanners. The ballots are turned into digital images, and anyone can obtain the DVD of the ballot images, and do a recount. Again, in Humbolt County, it is about impossible to get away with election fraud.
From conference calls, and other sources, we were made aware that three California counties officially had their vote winner changed from Hillary Clinton to Bernie Sanders, due to the successful diligent efforts of “vote observers.” One of these “observer” groups is “Ballots for Bernie.” The preliminary report of the election was in favor of Hillary Clinton. However, due to this observer group’s actions to protect the integrity of the vote count the following counties yielded these final corrected results:
BS HC Total Votes*
Santa Barbara County: 51.4% 48.6% 65,644
San Louis Obispo County: 53.0% 47.0% 46,014
Sonoma County: 52.4% 47.6% 116,672
* These percentages are from only the votes for Bernie Sanders, or Hillary Clinton.
The numbers of voters in the seven counties just mentioned is insignificant statewide compared to the large population of Los Angeles County. The greatest amount of gain from election fraud would likely be in Los Angeles for reasons noted above. WTV received the most declarations, from LA County, with 42, or 29% of the total declarations in this on-line declaration drive.
Again, election fraud often occurs in large counties, as these yield “low-risk/high-reward.”
From the WTV conference calls, there were callers reporting a critical problems by restricting access to view up-close the votes being counted in the Clerk’s office. One verbal report from San Francisco County, displayed that the observers were not allowed to be within 10 feet of the counting effort. This nullified any valuable observations.
Judy Frankel, writer for the Huffington Post published two stories of the situation in California as well. Her findings indicate similar observations. (Attachment C.)
From the Declarations received and callers into the weekly WTV conference calls, there are more problems that can be discussed in this report.
One specific problem (from a conference caller) in LA County was what vote-count observers saw. They stated that in several precincts, the NPP’s were given a Democratic Cross-over Ballot, and they voted provisionally. However at the county clerk’s office, vote count watchers noticed votes on a Democratic Cross-over ballot were transferred over to an NPP ballot at the county clerk’s office. This eliminated a vote for president since NPP voters were not allowed to vote for President in the Democrat Primary. 6,000 ballots were slated to be transferred, and 1,000 had already been transferred eliminating a presidential vote. Although hard documentation of this is not in this document, it is not surprising. These are worrisome allegations that must be investigated.
Another specific problem in Santa Clara County was that poll-workers were mis-trained, and would not give an NPP a cross-over ballot unless a precise phrase was spoken. One poll worker claimed, “I watched an election be stolen before my very eyes.” Although hard documentation of this is not in this document, a Declarant from Monterey County stated that a poll worker was refusing to give NPP’s a Democratic ballot. This is the first comment in Attachment A.
Another observation from the declarations was the degree of difficulty required for a person to vote. There was much confusion. A Declarant from Los Angeles County stated it took him 4 hours to vote, and the police were called in. At the polls, they finally got it straightened out. A lady from San Diego County mentioned, “people shouldn’t have to go to the lengths of obsession to avoid confusion, it should[be]easy….”
From the conference calls, and declarations, one common theme was “confusion.” Mis-trained poll workers, resulting in a lot of voter frustration.
It should be noted that those that called into the weekly WTV conference calls, and the declarations, their one “action” of coming forward possibly represented 100’s to 1000’s of people that didn’t come forward. It appears that the primary registration and election was set-up to hide election fraud in confusion. Individual voters were even made to feel intimidated (by Clerk Staff & Poll Workers) and that the difficulties and confusion were their own fault. This may have caused few to come forward in this “Declaration Drive”, leaving many thinking that they actually did something wrong.
Additional Note: Voting “Provisional” is a necessary tool for solving problems, but only under a few circumstances. For example, if someone moves, and does not re-register to vote, their vote will still be counted. However, one lady declarant from San Diego stated, “I know people personally who were given provisional ballots who weren’t supposed to get them.”
Further Actions by California Citizens
Due to the number and severity of the problems observed with the 2016 Presidential Primary, the public is being notified via the efforts of WTV and other “Election Integrity” organizations and activists. Once aware of the scope of the problems associated with the Primary, as well as how the rights of many voters were infringed upon, many Californians will submit complaints/ “petitions’ to their county CIVIL grand juries. These grand juries are composed of “everyday people”, and have subpoena power, and the full power to investigate the equipment of the county, the processes of the county, the procedures of the county, and the training of poll workers. And much more, including corporations operating in the county… ie… electronic election equipment venders.
As a “Watchdog” body, the grand jury power is found in case law, as well as the statutes of California. (Calif. Penal Code §§888 – 939.) The grand juries can walk into the county clerk’s office, and obtain a list of poll workers. When the grand jury can start asking questions of clerk office staff, and poll workers. From these efforts, “whistleblowers” will come forward. (Eventually, the results as “whistleblowers” come forward may yield results like when whistleblowers came forward resulting in the famous “Watergate 7 Grand Jury indictment”, filed on March 1st, 1974. From this, eventually, President Nixon resigned the office of the presidency.)
These grand juries will eventually discover the great depth of the problems. These grand juries can work to remove corrupt or incompetent county employees from office, from a one-day poll worker to the election clerk. This is provided via a filed grand jury “Accusation”, as provided in California Government Code §3060.
The CIVIL grand juries can also file reports and recommendations from their investigations. The CIVIL grand jury in special circumstances can even “Indict” for “willful misconduct in office by public officers.” In other situations, they can get their discoveries over to the CRIMINAL Grand Jury through the district attorney. (Note: Some counties have both a criminal, and a civil grand jury.) As these CIVIL grand juries act, the will of the California voters will be respected! Watch for reports and accusations coming from these grand juries on a later date.
Something went terribly wrong in the 2016 California Primary election, and should be changed. The greatest evidence of this was the unusually large number of provisional ballots. (Was the present mess and confusion deliberate, or due to “government bureaucracy?” Or was it deliberately set up to be blamed on “government bureaucracy?”)
Voters have been disenfranchised, and the results of the 2016 Primary Election have been left to question, causing disenfranchisement and distrust of the California election system, to the tune of 90% distrust from the declarations received (Attachment A). (And for every declaration received, possibly 100’s or thousands didn’t come forward.)
In future elections, the 2016 disenfranchisement may induce future low voter turn-out, eroding the keystone in a representative government. The frustrations throughout California are causing more and more voters preparing and turning in complaints to CIVIL grand juries within their county. The depth of these problems will be revealed in the future.
The following recommendations are not just from the 2016 California Primary, but also from years of observation and experience from the members of WTV. California’s primary mess is not the first time this has been observed, but can be avoided in the future with the following:
NPP Primary ballots should list all presidential candidates. This will eliminate much confusion, and the disenfranchisement of voters. To clarify, NPP Primary Election ballots should be just like NPP General Election ballots – all eligible presidential party candidates should be listed on both the primary and the general election ballots..
Database security of the voter rolls should be carefully monitored and protected. An outside corporate contractor managing this is beyond concerning, suspect of fraud. Especially via the internet. This will stop party affiliation flip in a semi-closed primary.
Ballots should be counted at the precinct, by hand, in public view after the polls close before the ballots are taken or moved from public view. Should provisional ballots be used, they too should be counted, reported, and separated from normal ballots for the clerk’s office to manage.
Extra poll workers should be employed for the task of recommendation #3. (Present poll workers are exhausted from a long “day shift”, and may not be physically capable of counting the ballots at the close of the polls. Extra poll workers should come in after the polls close to count ballots. These should be called “poll counters”, and serve a “2nd shift.”)
Remove any and all touch-screen voting devices from all precincts and replace with easily marked paper ballots. Since the votes are counted in secret, this practice using touch screen voting machines and computerized tabulators conflicts with two U.S. Supreme Court Cases. (Case law, case law.) It should be noted that once a vote is turned into electrons, or computer data, the votes are subject to easy computer manipulation. (Search for computer programmer Clinton Curtis’ Legislative hearing testimony on Youtube. It is frightening.)
If California is stuck with electronic counting/ scanning machines, then each poll building (voting location) should have a counting/scanning machine. Poll counters should perform a completely random manual count of at least 10% of the ballots yielding nearly a 90% confidence level for their precinct and this manual count must be performed at the voting location in public view with proper eye witnesses and before the ballots have been moved from public view (to avoid any chain of custody issues). These ballots must be selected randomly to comply with proper statistical methods. In addition, there should be two reports of the count. One for “non-provisional”, and one for “provisional.” See also recommendation #4 above. In a precinct, with 1,000 voters, 4 “poll counters” in pairs could count 50 random ballots as a team, for a total of 100 manual counts. This would not take more than two hours to perform, and summarize.
Civil Grand Jury committees of 2-3 members should be visiting polls (obviously at random) on election day. For example, in Los Angeles County, with 21 grand jury members, this would allow 7 committees to “canvas” larger precincts for problems, and attract “whistleblowers.” (They should also learn about the complicated and confusing election process a week before.)
Before the election, Civil Grand Jury committees of 2-3 members should be visiting poll worker’s “training sessions” to ensure the training is not contrary to state law. (As explained in the poll worker’s manual.)
Citizens experiencing problems in the election process should send the Civil grand jury a complaint of their problems. If a voter reading this, experienced frustrations, then likely others have as well. When the grand jury receives dozens of complaints, then they will more likely act. (Search on-line for your “county Civil grand jury complaint form“.)
Citizens and County election officials should adopt the “Transparency Project” from Humbolt County into their county.
The California State Legislature should pass laws to ensure that voter disenfranchisement does not occur again. In addition, the Legislature should look into the “loopholes” and problems with electronic voting assistance devices, vendors and corporate contractors, then pass laws to ensure an honest vote count.
County boards of supervisors should extend additional funding for election day workers (poll counters), and funding for an additional special grand jury (PC §904) just for election day, and up until three weeks after.
It should be noted that these recommendations rely heavily upon the implementations of the county CIVIL grand juries in the election process. A grand jury system in California has been in place for over a century. According to Kelly Z. Mordecai, of California, a board member on WTV, and an author of a book about the grand jury, “Few if any states have a civil grand jury system like California. Let California lead the way to attract other states to establish through state legislation such a civil grand jury system. Then these will produce an honest vote count, and other government “watchdog” purposes operating like the California CIVIL grand jury.
We at WTV believe that if these recommendations are followed, the credibility of the California election system will skyrocket. Naturally, disenfranchisement of voters will diminish. Over the years, this will then result in higher voter turn-out, a keystone to representative government.
WTV is Available to Assist in Positive Change
We at Watch the Vote are available to assist legislatures, county clerks, county supervisors, attorneys, and Civil grand juries to discuss this further. We can be contacted through www.watchthevoteusa.com Or: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Board of “Watch the Vote”,
Report approved in the 07/25/2016 WTV Board weekly meeting.