By Stephen Dietrich, Managing Editor
Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump warned supporters to be vigilant in November, suggesting in no uncertain terms that the general election could be rigged.
Trump is right — vote rigging is possible. Experts have warned about this for decades.
The statement caused an immediate media backlash, and liberal journalists in an uproar accused Trump of attacking the very foundation of democracy. And to these media talking heads’ credit, it does sound like a tale from the pages of a John Grisham novel.
A secret conspiracy to rig electronic voter machines and steal elections, put in place by establishment power brokers as a way to keep conservatives in line. It’s uncovered by a plucky mathematics wiz, who faces dangerous opposition at every turn. She races in time to get the word out… but no one would believe her?
It sounds too fantastic for most voters to believe. But it’s not.
The threat is very real. It could be happening in the United States right now.
That’s according to The Wichita Eagle, which recently reported on Wichita State University mathematician Dr. Beth Clarkson and her multi-year struggle to discover the truth behind suspected widespread voter fraud across Kansas — and possibly the entire United States.
And that very thought is unacceptable.
It all traces back to electronic voting machines, and Clarkson is on a mission to uncover the truth.
“Roughly 70 percent of states in the U.S. use some form of electronic voting,” according to CBS News reporter Mireya Villarreal, and hackers say the problems with electronic voting machines have been around for years. “The machines and the software are old and antiquated. But now with millions heading to the polls in three months, security experts are sounding the alarm.”
Clarkson, a certified quality engineer with a doctorate in statistics, has been sounding this same alarm for years. She says her calculations from the November 2014 election showed “inexplicable discrepancies” that suggested “some voting systems were being sabotaged.” After analyzing election returns at a precinct level, Clarkson found that candidate support was connected to the size of the precinct.
In Republican primaries specifically, she claims numbers indicate a bias against Tea Party conservatives in favor of Republican establishment candidates.
The problem isn’t limited to Kansas, either, and Clarkson wasn’t the first to note such U.S. election anomalies. Concerns over the integrity of U.S. elections have been widespread for years.
A 2012 paper found possible evidence that Mitt Romney’s primary win over more hardliner conservatives was aided by the same type of electronic voting patterns.
More recently, opponents of Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton argued that election fraud was repeatedly committed throughout her 2016 primary win against Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders. One Stanford research paper suggested the odds that Clinton did NOT commit widespread fraud in the primary to be 1 in 77 billion.
“For $15 and in-depth knowledge of the card, you could hack the vote,” Brian Varner, the principle researcher at software security company Symantec, told Villarreal during a demonstration.
So what can be done against this?
Authorities must implement a national audit system for electronic voting machines. To get them to comply, voters must demand it.
Clarkson went to court to get access to the paper audit trails from voting machines, but a district court ruled she couldn’t have access to those paper trails.
That is troublesome.
The very foundation of our American democracy is based on the integrity of our elections. The very notion that it is plausible that any of our elections could be rigged is totally and completely unacceptable.
So Trump is right. We need to be vigilant. We need to heed the warnings of experts.
It’s time we demand a national audit of these systems.
Our democracy depends upon it.
— Stephen Dietrich is the Managing Editor of The Horn News