January 01, 2005
Bombshell: More signs of fraud in Precinct 1823

Seattle's Precinct 1823 counted 343 ballots, which is 71 more ballots than the 272 voters who cast them. This is the single largest discrepancy between ballots and voters in all of King County. Nearly all of the discrepancy is due to "provisional ballots".

I earlier reported on the notorious Precinct 1823, where hundreds of voters are registered with a residence address of 500 4th Ave, the King County Administration Building, Some of these are homeless individuals, who are entitled by statute to register at government buildings. But other "residents" of the county office building are listed on the property tax rolls as owning homes elsewhere in King County, and therefore illegally registered. Dozens of other "residents" of 500 4th Ave voted absentee from overseas mailing addresses. Hundreds of other Precinct 1823 voters give as "permanent addresses" temporary homeless shelters. This is all questionable enough and an obvious potential source of vote fraud. But it gets worse.

As noted earlier (here and here), King County now reports a discrepancy of 3,539 more ballots counted than voters who voted. The manual recount precinct canvass combined with Wednesday's voter list reveals that there are 684 precincts with more voters than ballots and 725 other precincts with more ballots than voters, for something approaching 1,512 ballotless voters and 4,593 voterless ballots. [I'll go into more detail on this in a future post]. Precinct 1823 has the dubious distinction of being the precinct with the largest number of voterless ballots.

These are the numbers of the various kinds of ballots that were counted in Precinct 1823, according to the precinct canvasses of the three counts. The final line shows the number of voters who cast each type of ballots.

Count Absentee Polling
Place

"Add-on"/
Provisional

Total
Initial Count 173 60 111 344
Machine Recount 174 60 111 345
Manual
Recount
? ? ? 343
Voters 168 59 45 272

In the manual recount, they commingled the various types of ballots so there's no way of knowing how exactly the 343 "final" ballots break down into Absentee, Polling Place and Provisional. What is clear is that there were about 66 more provisional ballots accepted from Precinct 1823 than there were voters identified as voting them. Countywide there are a net of over 500 more provisional ballots than provisional voters.

There may well be an explanation why the numbers of voters and ballots are still so far apart two months after the election -- especially in a precinct full of transients, unknowable overseas voters and illegal registrants. But the explanation will have to be a very good one. The canvassing board certified the vote count three times, with the countywide ballot total increasing every time without explanation. At none of these certifications did the canvassing board seem to care whether or not the number of voters reconciled with the number of ballots. This would seem to be willful ignorance, perhaps criminal negligence. If that is what happened, a number of "public servants" need to be fired, recalled and/or prosecuted.

King County Elections claims it will provide a final voter list by the end of next week. But at this point, none of us should trust them unless a team of observers is watching every step of the process. Posted by Stefan Sharkansky at January 01, 2005 03:48 PM | Email This

Comments
1. stefan


great job again!!I have to think you really
must have the dems running for cover.
keep it up.remember what the state gop chair
race is not as clear cut as seems.not by
a long shot.

Posted by: phil spackman on January 1, 2005 04:09 PM
2. I vote for prosecution... just make sure there's a non-Rino Republican around to count it, I live in KC.

Posted by: Jim on January 1, 2005 04:13 PM
3. I have a question about how provisional ballots are tabulated - are they applied against the precinct totals where they are handed in? Unfortunately I wonder if what's happening is that provisional votes are counted in one precinct while the voter is then recorded as having voted in another precinct. Anyone know how it's actually recorded?

Posted by: seattle todd on January 1, 2005 04:29 PM
4. The difference could be the "federal write-in" ballot. Military personnel and citizens overseas can cast these, even if they are not currently registered. When these ballots are received, they must be counted if the voter meets the basic qualifications for voting (claim over 18, claim U.S. citizenship, claim last resided in WA, etc.). If they are registered already, it is counted in the precinct they are registered in (hopefully). If not already registered, then the vote must be counted, and they must be registered.

It will be necessary to test the hypothesis that these people voted by federal write-in ballot and were assigned to precinct 1823 for some reason. If so, they will need to be added to the registration rolls (which really should have been done at the same time the ballot was processed!). If someone claimed their last residence was in King County, but was unsure of the address (born 25 years ago while daddy was grad student at UW), then they would probably be assigned precinct 1823 with the elections office address.

Posted by: Richard Pope on January 1, 2005 04:41 PM
5. "As noted earlier (here and here), King County now reports a discrepancy of 3,539 more ballots counted than voters who voted. The manual recount precinct canvass combined with Wednesday's voter list reveals that there are 684 precincts with more voters than ballots and 725 other precincts with more ballots than voters, for something approaching 1,512 ballotless voters and 4,593 voterless ballots."

Shark, that should be 5,051 voterless ballots (5,051 - 1,512 = 3,539). If you are somehow only coming up with 4,594 voterless ballots, you need to see what is causing the discrepancy of 457 voterless ballots.

Posted by: Richard Pope on January 1, 2005 04:46 PM
6. You don't suppose these are "stuffed" ballots by any chance. Stefan, do the GOP have reps down there watching this thievery be tabulated?

Posted by: CP on January 1, 2005 04:47 PM
7. I agree with Richard Pope that the large number of voterless ballots in 1823 is consistent with overseas provisional or absentee votes. KC Elections has stated that these are some of the voters not yet credited with having voted in the database, and it would make sense that they are concentrated in Precinct 1823, which clearly seems to be the "catch all" precinct.

E.g., say I'm a member of USAF stationed in Ramstein AFB in Germany for a 5 year tour. Given the length, I decide to move my spouse and dependents. I and my spouse no longer have a KC permanent address, but KC was my last county of residence, so that is where I am entitled to vote.

In general, all these ballotless voters and voterless ballots are definitely disturbing. Clearly there shouldn't be an inconsistency. How close to reconciling ballots & voters has King County come in previous elections, and how has this compared to other counties in Wa state? If on a percentage basis an inconsistency of X% is average, it would seem hard to prove fraud or even negligence.

Posted by: Peter Carlin on January 1, 2005 04:57 PM
8. I watched my neighbor vote provisional at the precinct, I can't figure out why she didn't just use her absentee and drive a block to the post office if she was so worried about her vote counting. All she did was delay her vote from being counted. Was there a union message in a mailer in October telling people to use the provisional ballot? Were their more this year than in previous elections? I think I'll type in my neighbors name on the seattle times web site.

Posted by: CJensen on January 1, 2005 05:03 PM
9. I watched my neighbor vote provisional at the precinct, I can't figure out why she didn't just use her absentee and drive a block to the post office if she was so worried about her vote counting. All she did was delay her vote from being counted. Was there a union message in a mailer in October telling people to use the provisional ballot? Were their more this year than in previous elections? I think I'll type in my neighbors name on the seattle times web site.

Posted by: CJensen on January 1, 2005 05:03 PM
10. Richard,

Regarding the discrepancy you mentioned -- part of this is explained by the 566 "Larry Phillips" ballots that were included in the final count of 899,199, but were segregated from the precincts in the final canvass. It doesn't affect the 3,539, but it does alter the other numbers. I've asked for a list of these voters and their precincts, but until I get this, these numbers are all approximations.

Posted by: Stefan Sharkansky on January 1, 2005 05:04 PM
11. I see four possible reasons for this:

1) King County has yet to release all of their information... (or fabricate it, if you believe that is what they do).
2) King County Elections workers as a group are grossly mismanaged. This is quite likely (and some would believe this website has shown beyond a reasonable doubt), and may have resulted in #1 above.
3) Major acts of fraud. This isn't as likely. Think logically through this - though the chances of getting caught are minimal, the chances of fraud paying off are also minimal. Personally, I wouldn't wage my own freedom on trying to get someone elected. Sort of defeats the purpose, ya think?
4) Distributed voter fraud. I think Jim Miller is definitely on to something here. Jim, I wish you the best in getting more recognition for your work.

Readers/Commenters: Definitely check out the posts of Jim Miller regarding distributed voter fraud.

What does this mean? If #1 is correct, we just need to wait longer. I believe we can agree that #2 is correct - and this leads us to encourage management turnover and new voting procedures. One I would recommend would be showing photo identification. If #3 did actually happen, it would be the most likely grounds for contest -- though don't expect much media investigation on this front. #4 is by far the most likely, though in my mind, it is also the hardest to remedy. I am also unsure if Dino Rossi could contest the election successfully -- even if his backers and the general public (such as readers of this site) were able to show over 130 acts of distributed voter fraud.

Forgive me for being cynical, but I see this fight dying a slow death. The local Mainstream Media has not been able to follow the investigations done by Stefan, this race has gotten little to no coverage in national political circles -- the recount in Ohio made far greater news, and with other major world events taking place, I don't see this story and investigation getting the tracking that it needs.

What do I suggest? Not much... the only thing I could hope for is more education. If you're a Rossi backer, don't mindlessly spout rhetoric about a "stolen" election. Speak to the truths -- that there were irregularities, and has been reluctance by those involved to release the information that has been requested. If you're a Gregoire backer, realize what her campaign has released as statements. Realize that the closeness of 261 and 42 votes were called "virtual ties". However, now that all reasonable legal paths have been taken, a margin of 129 is a clear-cut win. Put yourselves in the shoes of a Rossi backer. Assume the tables were flipped. Had Gregoire won the first two counts and Rossi won this recount by 129 votes, would it still be reasonable for Gregoire to pursue other paths? Or would it simply be the end?

Posted by: bmvaughn on January 1, 2005 05:10 PM
12. bmvaughn,

The issue IS voting irregularities. It happens that Rossi by virtue of the election is at the other end of the vote process. Had the process been transparent and without irregularities, there would be no issue. There would be no question as to CG's right to the govenor's mansion.

Our blessed Saint Sharkansky, patron saint of honest votes. ( sorry Stefan if you are Jewish or athiest) et.al. are only concerned that the process is clear and unfettered. If it is not researched and/or corrected the errors will only continue.

How do you explain the lame policy that KC has historically had to tabulate all absenett votes wihether or not they had a signatuire on file. They only changed that process this year because they knew they would be more closely monitored.

If indeed this effort dies a slow death, everyone will be on notice that next election will be more intensely monitored. Which I think will still be a positive result.

Posted by: Carl on January 1, 2005 05:44 PM
13. Good question to consider; what if the tables had been turned ? Then what? By the way, that is an improbable scenario, due to the makeup of KC Elections.

Along the lines of incontrovertible evidence - how much of the puzzle does Stefan's new revelation complete ? How much more information is there to be had to complete the political "checkmate" for distributed voter fraud ? WSRC and the Rossi Campaign can hopefully get to that answer next week and then see if that goal is attainable.

How much reliance on missing voter information from King County is there ? (would all of the evidence gathered pass the incontrivertable evidence test ?). Seems like it will be a long grueling effort and January 12th is 10 days away. Good luck, but unfortunately many of us have legitimate day jobs :(

Realistically, perhaps nothing short of a Ukraine style march on Olympia - in the minds of many/long overdue (but it would also take many Republicans, who typically do not form large marches). This would provide the momentum to get the drive for a revote off the ground. The legislature would not buy off on revote unless there was strong public sentiment plus a large demonstration. I'd show up if I knew in advance..
Sorry to throw some cold water on the Contest effort, but there are other options, such as the initiative approach to promote the causes of 1) Recall and/or 2) Election reform.

Posted by: KS on January 1, 2005 05:50 PM
14. Notice how quiet (sh-sh-sh-sh-shhhhhh) it has become in King Sims' County government regarding this election and the evident "problems" associated with it? No daily comments from election chief Logan who was moving his jaws every day in front of TV cameras. Larry "Count-My-Vote-but-Don't-Count-Those-Other-Ones" Phillips has likewise hidden from view. We shouldn't forget accountability for who were in charge and responsible for administering this election in King county: Executive Ron Sims, plus the King County Council, the majority of whom are DemocRATS.

Posted by: balanced but fair on January 1, 2005 06:19 PM
15. Stefan, you stated: The canvassing board certified the vote count three times, with the countywide ballot total increasing every time without explanation. At none of these certifications did the canvassing board seem to care whether or not the number of voters reconciled with the number of ballots.

I think that hits on an apparent problem, namely the absence of a way to recognize during their vote counting process that somethingís amiss. If they didnít reconcile their precinct vote totals with their ballot and voter totals for each precinct, it seems they couldnít know if someone was introducing a few extra votes here and there.

Iím wondering about a slightly different question. How could King County (or anyone else) avoid counting votes on illegally cast ballots, if they didnít keep track of which voters had already been recorded as having voted?

Maybe I just donít understand the process.

For example, if I were looking at a mail-in ballot envelope, wondering whether to open it, remove the ballot and toss it into the pile of ballots to be counted as votes, I would want to know two things Ė (1) Did the ballot come from a registered voter? (2) Has that voter already submitted a ballot in this election? The first question is apparently answered by comparing the signatures. How is the second question answered, if there is no up-to-date list of voters whose ballots have already been submitted?

Once I toss that mail-in ballot into the pile, I canít go back and find it again Ė unless the secrecy of the ballot has somehow been compromised.

Similarly, if I allow a voter at the polls to drop his ballot into the box, I canít go back and find it.

How could this mishmash of ballots be processed without leaving the door open to people who might want to introduce a few extra votes into the election?

I thought that one of the principal tools would be an up-to-date list of voters whose ballots have been received, but King County apparently had no such list back when they were processing ballots in preparation for counting Ė at least, they seem not to have it now, two months after election day.

Have you been able to tell Ė based on what youíve researched so far Ė what method they supposedly used in King County to make fraud a little harder to accomplish?

Posted by: Micajah on January 1, 2005 06:20 PM
16. I am so very impressed by all of the hard work Stefan has been doing. Thank you so much for doing what we all should be taking part in. But, as much as I believe to fight till the bitter end-especially with all of the controversies you have found-I agree with bmvaughn. I'm afraid all of your hard work will be for naught. I hope the lawyers from the republican's side has all of your research and have been taking part in it as well.

I'm afraid that now the 3rd and final count has been done-no matter what descrepencies Stefan finds-everyone in government now-including Mr. Reed-will drag thier feet until January 12th. It will be much harder to prove much after "she" gets sworn in. If KC doesnt give the "final" list out until the end of next week-who's to say they won't drag thier feet longer-and why are they waiting until then. That's awfully close to Jan. 12th-again.

Stefan, have you been feeding info. to the news?? Is this something we all should be doing then??

I've looked at all of the survey's in the newspapers and news programs ie: King 5, Kiro, etc. They are overwhelmingly positive for recount. But, what can be done with that information?? We all have been calling Mr. Reed, our legislative representatives, etc.. Who's to say they are even listening... I'm so afraid that this will all be smoothly swept under the rug until another year, election, etc.

Thank you Stefan again. You have done a marvelous job.

Posted by: darcy on January 1, 2005 06:23 PM
17. C'mon folks...don't worry about that 1/12 Inaugeration Date. This is now a legal issue and the R's have 10 days from that date to put up or shut up. (Richard Pope said previously the drop-dead date is 1/20..he & Shark have been right so many times so far, I'd be a fool to argue with those bad boys!)

Dean Logan now "thinks" the reconciliation problem can be rectified. THINKS????
It should have been rectified before he certified the 1st, 2nd and 3rd times!! And yes Dean, part of the reconciliation would be the Domestic Violence victims (Address Confidentiality Program) and other special rules ballots. Jefferson County reconciled 100% on each vote count...as it MUST be.
I doubt Dean Logan is capable of "rectifying" anything at this point in time.
More likely, he will continue to "rectum-fy" this too.

Posted by: Mr. Cynical on January 1, 2005 07:07 PM
18. REPOST: How did Washington get to this? I am reminded of when I lived in Kalifornia and the republican party had won the legislature by one seat. The republicans were so incompetent, one of their own members decided to vote for Willie Brown, the democrat, as Speaker. Sam Reed reminds me of that scenario. BTW-Sam Reed, don't run for re-election, you will only get trounced in the primary.

Posted by: smegma on January 1, 2005 07:19 PM
19. Our voting systems are so messed up that this kind of things exists in every election in every county. Total scrutiny on one county (e.g. King) brings up a lot of irregularites. Equally intense scrutiny in other counties would do the same.

That's why all recounts should be prohibited...anything within the margin of error should immediately go to a runoff (not a revote).

Posted by: tom on January 1, 2005 07:25 PM
20. bmvaughn:"Forgive me for being cynical, but I see this fight dying a slow death. The local Mainstream Media has not been able to follow the investigations done by Stefan, this race has gotten little to no coverage in national political circles -- the recount in Ohio made far greater news, and with other major world events taking place, I don't see this story and investigation getting the tracking that it needs."

Try going to google, search news articles, put in Rossi and Fraud as your search words.

France, Boston, WA DC, Philly, NC, KS and Bakersfield CA, all came up on my first page as news stories within the last day. It's not the only story out there, but it is definately getting attention.

Posted by: Julie on January 1, 2005 07:34 PM
21. Tom - "reconciliation of the ballots with actual voters" was done in the other counties - BEFORE each so-called CERTIFICATION - otherwise, what the hell are they certifying? This is not your average "discrepancy". But I do agree, a re-vote in a race this close should be made a part of any election reform. One may be required in this race, once this election is thrown out OR perhaps just the last hand-count will be thrown out.

Posted by: CP on January 1, 2005 07:36 PM
22. Pinged to your blog:

http://www.thepoliticalteen.net/archives/2005/01/precinct_1823.html

Posted by: The Political Teen on January 1, 2005 07:57 PM
23. a revote would be best -- throwing out one of the two recounts would be awful, plenty of fodder for continued fights....

about other counties, i've heard that university studies have analyzed elections for the past 60 years and found 2% "error" rate for all errors combined.

so it happens everywhere...there is just incredible scrutinty in king county to highlight the problems...equal scrutiny in other counties would yield similar irregularities....

agree the law needs to be changed....but this is the law we have and gotta go with it as it stands...otherwise our whole system is useless

Posted by: tom on January 1, 2005 08:22 PM
24. I've placed a link to your front page at the top of the Spokane County Republican Party home page.

I assume your traffic has exploded, like when you get a link from Instapundit.

Posted by: ScottM on January 1, 2005 08:27 PM
25. I found this site in a google search...It's not a smoking gun..but I thought it was fascinating...
It gives instructions to the homeless about how to vote in King County...(or Washington State for that matter..) Check out what it says Sam Reed did as far as changing the laws to allow a park street address as valid? How in the heck is anyone able to verify any of these voters information? In addition to those who used the KC Admin building address as a secondary to their residence...how many used the street address of a local park?
I am amazed at how easy it is to cast a vote in King County Washington!
http://www.realchangenews.org/pastissuesupgrade/2004_06_07/issue/current/features/vote.html

“…I’m homeless.”
Line 4, “Address Where You Live,” would seem to omit people with no fixed address from participating. That’s not the case. Last year, the Secretary of State issued a new rule stating that “shelters, parks, or other identifiable locations which the voter deems to be his/her residence” are acceptable answers to Line 4. State officials want a traditional number-plus-name address, however: “Sacred Heart Shelter,” or “Pioneer Square” won’t suffice. If a place you stay (for example a park) has a street address, write it down.
Or, you can simply write “homeless.” If you do, elections officials will assign you to the voting precinct in which City Hall is located. If you request an absentee ballot, it will end up there. That and other voting-related mail will be sent to your local City Hall. If you don’t want it going there (where it may be lost or discarded), make sure to fill out Line 5, “Address Where You Get Your Mail.”
If you don’t have a place in mind, put down the Compass Center. Then, go into their office, show your ID, and pick up your mail.
Lastly, be sure to include your phone number if you’ve got one on Line 7, in case elections officials have questions about your registration.

Posted by: Deborah on January 1, 2005 08:31 PM
26. With all this stuff coming out, it's now easy to see why republicans don't win the statewide races when they are within a few thousand votes (like Slade Gorton). There really are a few thousand trash votes out there that always have to be overcome. Maria Cantwell, when you factor out all the vote fraud in King county, surely is not a legitimate senator. They sure won't be in a hurry to clean this up!

Posted by: Michele on January 1, 2005 08:34 PM
27. Fine, Tom, it is useless. An election does not matter. The voters do not matter. The questions do not need to be answered when it comes to a vote so close. Why the heck have an election when you know the democrat will be the elected party?

Posted by: smegma on January 1, 2005 08:34 PM
28. Deborah - And to think I make it such a big deal to fill out my ballot correctly, fill in the "bubbles", sign my name, place my address carefully on the return envelope, etc., ad nauseum. Makes me feel like a chump!

Posted by: CP on January 1, 2005 08:36 PM
29. I would really like to know how that mealy mouthed worm floated under the radar until now. Talk about a classic spineless beaurocrat! Mr. Williams of the Evergreen Freedom Foundation has been gnashing his teeth about law that changed in July that this Secretary of State never implemented that would have stopped a lot of these shenanigans. I can d* sure guarantee him that I will not vote for him in the next election!!

Posted by: Carl on January 1, 2005 08:56 PM
30. CP, good point - made worse by the fact that if we changed our signature at all, they'd throw out our vote as illegitmate, and heaven forbid we accidentally make a stray mark - they'd have to assume our intent was to vote for cg!

Posted by: Julie on January 1, 2005 08:57 PM
31. Carl - Which meanly mouthed worm? There are so many, I've lost count - and which law was not implemented? I've lost count of those too.

Posted by: CP on January 1, 2005 09:02 PM
32. So, what do you do if the usurper is given power? How can this be made a positive? I do not mean that Rossi will not prevail, but if he does not, what then?

Posted by: smegma on January 1, 2005 09:08 PM
33. CP -- How right you are... The specific worm I reference is one Sam Reed. The law I reference is -- if my recollection is correct-- a federal correction mandated to be reflected in the WAC that Mr. Reed never attended to. I am unfortunately without a specific law to refer to right now since my recollection is radio referenced. I will however find a specific answer to your valid question and rsvp.

Posted by: Carl on January 1, 2005 09:10 PM
34. Thanks Carl - it does seem to me that Federal law trumps State law and that if it was not implemented, Mr. Sam Reed is in deep sh!!

Posted by: CP on January 1, 2005 09:19 PM
35. Ok. I think I found it. Stefan may be interested in the first bulletpoint. I cannot yet connect the July timeline for completion, but I do know that Bob Williams has repeatedly referred to that deadline.
http://www.secstate.wa.gov/office/osos_news.aspx?i=Z%2FNIMg%2BijzhYjBFYup969w%3D%3D
http://www.secstate.wa.gov/elections/reform_federal.aspx
http://www.secstate.wa.gov/elections/reform_federal2.aspx?i=b

By 2004, a computerized statewide voter registration list must be adopted that is a uniform, official, centralized, interactive system administered by the state and which contains the record of every individual legally registered to vote.

By 2004, any voter who casts a ballot after the polls have closed because of a court order will vote a provisional (special) ballot that is separated from all other ballots

By 2004, individuals registering to vote must provide a drivers license number or the last four digits of their social security number if they do not have a drivers license. Individuals who do not have either are assigned a unique identification number. Election officials must check either the drivers license or social security number against numbers in existing databases.

Posted by: Carl on January 1, 2005 10:24 PM
36. And not a word about any of this in the national Mainstream News Media.

Why?

Posted by: James C. Hess on January 2, 2005 06:14 AM
37. To paraphrase - Election fraud never prospers, what's the reason? - for when it prospers, none dare call it election fraud.
People holding office by virtue of voting "irregularities" are unlikely to challenge the vote.

Posted by: Walter E. Wallis on January 2, 2005 02:52 PM
38. I have a possible explanation for some of the large number of people registered at the King County Administration Building. They are State Department personnel. When State Department personnel are overseas (which is most of the time) they are allowed to pick any state as their legal residence. Most pick a state without an income tax. Most would probably not have a residence in Washington. It's all completely legal.

Posted by: Eric on January 3, 2005 02:28 PM
39. Eric,

That's an interesting theory. I don't know all the details on this. But my suspicion is that this situation might make them eligible to vote in federal elections, but not Washington state elections...

Posted by: Stefan Sharkansky on January 3, 2005 02:30 PM