Tag Archives: Impossible numbers certified

Doug Hoffman, NY 23 election, New York Election Statutes, NY Law, Impossible numbers certified, Richard Hayes Phillips PhD, St. Lawrence County Board of Elections, Negative numbers, Phantom voters, Computerized voting

****  Important update below  ****

**** Correction by John Charlton, November 27, 2:30 PM ET ****

From The Gouverneur Times.

“Impossible Numbers Certified in NY-23

Written by Richard Hayes Phillips, Ph.D.   
Wednesday, 25 November 2009 15:32”

“The election results certified by the St. Lawrence County Board of Elections for New York’s 23rd Congressional District contain some numbers that are mathematically impossible.  These numbers were requested in person and transmitted by e-mail just hours before certification on Tuesday, November 24th, 2009.

For six election districts in St. Lawrence County (the 2nd, 4th, 6th, and 7th districts in Canton, the 14th district in Massena, and the 2nd district in Oswegatchie) negative numbers appear in the column for “blank” ballots, known in other states as “undervotes.”

Blank vote counts are ballots in which the voter did not choose any candidate in a given election and are determined by subtracting the total number of votes cast for the candidates from the number of voters who completed ballots.  The remaining number would be those voters who didn’t cast a vote for that election.

In Canton’s 7th district, the certified results show a total of 148 ballots cast. The results of those votes were counted as 88 votes for Owens, 11 votes for Scozzafava, and 80 votes for Hoffman.  The problem is that these numbers add up to 179 votes counted for the candidates, and there were only 148 ballots cast;  St. Lawrence County certified these numbers to the state as accurate with the number of ‘blank’ ballots reported as -31.

The Board of Elections stated repeatedly that their numbers add up, and strictly speaking, they do.  But negative numbers should not be required to make this happen. 

Election analysts refer to this phenomenon as “phantom voters,” because they are apparitions.  They do not actually exist.  There can never be more votes counted for any office than the number of actual voters who cast ballots.  There could be one or two, if on occasion an actual voter forgot to sign the poll book, but never 31.”

“Fundamentally, the fault does not lie with the Board of Elections, although perhaps they should have noticed the negative numbers before certifying them.  The fault lies with computerized vote counting and our willingness to trust it.
It has already been reported that zero votes were incorrectly reported in numerous precincts in Jefferson, Madison, and Oswego Counties for one of the Congressional candidates, and that voting machine failures occurred in dozens of polling places in at least three different counties.
In St. Lawrence County, ballots from eight polling places had to be hand counted due to voting machine failure.  Machines in Louisville, Waddington, Clare, and Rossie “broke” early in the voting process on Election Day.  Republican Commissioner Deborah Pahler said that the machines kept “freezing up… like Windows does all the time”.  Machines in Hermon, Lawrence, Colton’s 2nd district, and Massena’s 1st and 2nd districts failed to print the results. Frank Hoar, an attorney for the Democratic Party, initially ordered the impoundment of malfunctioning machines but released the order on November 5th so that Bill Owens could be sworn in to Congress in time to vote on the House health bill on November 7th.
Electronic vote counting is much too vulnerable to failure and/or manipulation.  If a mechanical (lever-style) machine breaks down, the failure is visible, and only the one machine is affected.  With electronic vote counting, one person can change the outcome of an election and not leave a trace.  This has been shown over and over again in scientific studies, including those commissioned by the Secretaries of State in California and Ohio.
But more than that, how can we have a democracy if we cannot know if the vote count is accurate?  If election officials cannot know, and if the candidates cannot know, and if the voters cannot know that the official results are true and correct, why even have an election?  Why go through the motions?”

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Several days ago, as I am prone to do, I read the New York State Election statutes. Before the election in 2008 I read almost half of the 50 states election laws. Here are some of those statutes regarding voting irregularities. Read them and decide if any of them apply to the chicanery that has taken place.
” §  17-106.  Misconduct  of election officers. Any election officer who
  wilfully refuses to accord to any duly  accredited  watcher  or  to  any
  voter  or candidate any right given him by this chapter, or who wilfully
  violates any provision of the election law relative to the  registration
  of  electors or to the taking, recording, counting, canvassing, tallying
  or certifying of votes, or who wilfully neglects or refuses  to  perform
  any  duty  imposed  on  him  by  law,  or  is guilty of any fraud in the
  execution of the duties of his office,  or  connives  in  any  electoral
  fraud, or knowingly permits any such fraud to be practiced, is guilty of
  a felony.

§  17-108.  False  affidavits;  mutilation,  destruction  or  loss  of
  registry list or affidavits. 1. Any person who wilfully  loses,  alters,
  destroys or mutilates the list of voters or registration poll ledgers in
  any  election  district,  or  a  certified  copy thereof, is guilty of a
    2. An applicant for registration who shall make, incorporate or  cause
  to  be  incorporated  a  material  false statement in an application for
  registration, or in any challenge or other  affidavit  required  for  or
  made  or filed in connection with registration or voting, and any person
  who knowingly takes a  false  oath  before  a  board  of  inspectors  of
  election,  and  any  person  who  makes  a material false statement in a
  medical  certificate  or  an  affidavit  filed  in  connection  with  an
  application for registration, is guilty of a misdemeanor.
    3. A person who shall wilfully suppress, mutilate or alter, or, except
  as  authorized  by  this chapter, shall destroy, any signed challenge or
  other affidavit required  for  or  made  or  filed  in  connection  with
  registration or voting, and any person who, except as authorized by this
  chapter,  shall  remove such an affidavit from the place of registration
  or polling place, is guilty of a felony.
    4. A person other than the applicant who, prior to the filing  of  the
  application,  shall  willfully suppress, mutilate, materially alter, or,
  except as authorized by this chapter, destroy a signed  application  for
  registration by mail, is guilty of a misdemeanor.

§  17-120.  Misconduct  in  relation  to certificate of nomination and
  official ballot. A person who:
    1. Falsely makes or makes oath to, or fraudulently defaces or destroys
  a certificate of nomination or any part thereof; or,
    2. Files or receives for filing a certifiate  of  nomination,  knowing
  that any part thereof was falsely made; or,
    3.  Suppresses  a certificate of nomination which has been duly filed,
  or any part thereof; or,
    4. Forges or falsely makes the official indorsement of any ballot; or,
    5. Having charge of official ballots, destroys, conceals or suppresses
  them, except as provided by the law. is guilty of a felony.

§  17-124.  Failure  to  deliver  official ballots. Any person who has
  undertaken to deliver official ballots to  any  city,  town  or  village
  clerk,  or  inspector  as  authorized  by  this chapter, and neglects or
  refuses to do so, is guilty of a misdemeanor.

§  17-128. Violations of election law by public officer or employee. A
  public officer or employee who knowingly and wilfully omits, refuses  or
  neglects  to  perform  any  act  required  of him by this chapter or who
  knowingly and wilfully refuses to permit the doing of any act authorized
  by this chapter or who knowingly  and  wilfully  hinders  or  delays  or
  attempts  to  hinder  or delay the performance of such an act is, if not
  otherwise provided by law, guilty of a felony.

§ 17-130. Misdemeanor in relation to elections. Any person who:
    1.  Acts  as  an  inspector  of election or as a clerk at an election,
  without being able to read or write the  English  language,  or  without
  being otherwise qualified to hold such office; or,
    2.  Being  an inspector of election, knowingly and wilfully permits or
  suffers any person to vote who is not entitled to vote thereat; or,
    3. Wilfully and unlawfully obstructs, hinders or delays,  or  aids  or
  assists  in  obstructing  or  delaying  any  elector  on  his  way  to a
  registration or polling place, or while he is attempting to register  or
  vote; or,
    4.  Electioneers on election day or on days of registration within one
  hundred feet, as defined herein, from a polling place. Said  prohibition
  shall  not  apply  to  a  building  or room that has been maintained for
  political purposes at  least  six  months  prior  to  said  election  or
  registration  days,  except  that  no  political  displays,  placards or
  posters shall be exhibited therefrom. For the purposes of this  section,
  the  one  hundred feet distance shall be deemed to include a one hundred
  foot radial measured from the entrances, designated by the inspectors of
  elections, to a building where the election  or  registration  is  being
    5. Removes any official ballot from a polling place before the closing
  of the polls; or,
    6.  Unlawfully  goes  within  the  guard-rail  of any polling place or
  unlawfully remains within such guard-rail after having been commanded to
  remove therefrom by any inspector of election; or,
    7. Enters a voting booth with any voter or remains in a  voting  booth
  while  it  is occupied by any voter, or opens the door of a voting booth
  when the same is occupied by a voter, with the intent to  watch  such  a
  voter  while  engaged  in  the  preparation  of  his  ballot,  except as
  authorized by this chapter; or,
    8. Being or claiming to be a voter, permits any other person to be  in
  a  voting booth with him while engaged in the preparation of his ballot,
  except as authorized by this chapter, without openly protesting  against
  and asking that such person be ejected; or,
    9.  Having  lawfully  entered  a  voting booth with a voter, requests,
  persuades or induces such voter to vote any particular ballot or for any
  particular candidate, or makes  or  keeps  any  memorandum  of  anything
  occurring  within  the  booth,  or  directly  or  indirectly, reveals to
  another the name of any candidate voted for by such voter; or,
    10. Shows his ballot after it is prepared for voting, to any person so
  as to reveal the contents, or solicits a voter to show the same; or,
    11. Places any mark  upon  his  ballot,  or  does  any  other  act  in
  connection  with his ballot with the intent that it may be identified as
  the one voted by him; or,
    12. Places any mark upon, or does any other act in connection  with  a
  ballot  or  paster  ballot,  with  the  intent that it may afterwards be
  identified as having been voted by any particular person; or,
    13. Receives an official ballot from any person other than one of  the
  clerks or inspectors having charge of the ballots; or,
    14.  Not being an inspector of election or clerk, delivers an official
  ballot to a voter; or,
    15. Not being an inspector of election,  receives  from  any  voter  a
  ballot prepared for voting; or,
    16.  Fails to return to the inspectors of election, before leaving the
  polling place or going outside the guard-rail, each ballot not voted  by
  him; or,
    17.  Wilfully  defaces,  injures,  mutilates, destroys or secretes any
  voting maching which belongs to any municipality or board  of  elections
  for use at elections, and any person who commits or attempts to commit a
  fraud in the use of any such voting machine during election; or,
    18.  Not  being  lawfully authorized, makes or has in his possession a
  key to a voting maching which has been  adopted  and  will  be  used  in
  elections; or,
    19.  Not  being  an inspector or clerk of election, handles a voted or
  unvoted ballot or stub thereof,  during  the  canvass  of  votes  at  an
  election; or,
    20.  Intentionally  opens an absentee voter’s envelope or examines the
  contents thereof after the receipt of  the  envelope  by  the  board  of
  elections and before the close of the polls at the election; or,
    21.  Wilfully  disobeys any lawful command of the board of inspectors,
  or any member thereof; or
    22. Induces or attempts to induce any poll clerk, election  inspector,
  election  coordinator,  or  officer,  clerk  or employee of the board of
  elections discharging any duty or performing any act  required  or  made
  necessary by the election law, to do any act in violation of his duty or
  in violation of the election law; or,
    23.  Not  having  been appointed or named an inspector of elections or
  clerk and not having taken the  oath  for  such  office  shall  wear  or
  display  any  button,  badge  or  emblem  identifying  or  purporting to
  identify such person as an inspector of election or clerk, is guilty  of
  a misdemeanor.

§   17-136.  False  returns;  unlawful  acts  respecting  returns.  An
  inspector or clerk of an election who intentionally makes,  or  attempts
  to  make,  a  false  canvass  of  the ballots cast thereat, or any false
  statement of the result of a canvass, though not signed by a majority of
  the inspectors, or any person who induces or attempts to induce any such
  inspector or clerk to do so, is guilty of a felony.

§  17-148.  Bribery  or intimidation of elector in military service of
  United States. Any person  who,  directly  or  indirectly,  by  bribery,
  menace  or  any other corrupt means, controls, or attempts to control an
  elector of this state enlisted in the military  service  of  the  United
  States, in the exercise of his rights under the election law, or annoys,
  injures or punishes him for the manner in which he exercises such right,
  is guilty of a misdemeanor.

 §  17-166.  Penalty.  Any person convicted of a misdemeanor under this
  article shall for a first offense be punished by  imprisonment  for  not
  more  than  one  year, or by a fine of not less than one hundred dollars
  nor  more  than  five  hundred  dollars,  or  by  both  such  fine   and
  imprisonment.  Any  person  who,  having been convicted of a misdemeanor
  under this article, shall thereafter be convicted of another misdemeanor
  under this article, shall be guilty of a felony.

 § 17-168. Crimes against the elective franchise not otherwise provided
  for.  Any  person  who  knowingly and wilfully violates any provision of
  this chapter, which violation is not specifically covered by any of  the
  previous sections of this article, is guilty of a misdemeanor.

§  17-170.  Destroying  or  delaying  election  returns.  A  messenger
  appointed by authority of law to receive and carry a report, certificate
  or certified copy of  any  statement  relating  to  the  result  of  any
  election,   who  wilfully  mutilates,  tears,  defaces,  obliterates  or
  destroys the same, or does any other act which prevents the delivery  of
  it  as  required by law; and a person who takes away from such messenger
  any such report, certificate or certified copy, with intent  to  prevent
  its  delivery,  or  who  wilfully  does  any injury or other act in this
  section specified, is guilty of a felony.

 NY State Election Statutes:


****  Update  ****

John Charlton of The Post & Email has provided some important facts.

“15,620 Missing Votes are disturbing

Let’s take a look at each race, considering simply the total votes counted, and comparing this to the total votes in the Congressional race on the same ballot:

For the State Supreme Court race:  39, 969 votes

For the NY-23 Special Election: . . . . 24, 349 votes

For County Coroner: . . . . . . . . . . . . 29, 664 votes

District Attorney: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17, 541 votes

These are the races which all used the same 102 voting machines.  Since the entire county voted for each race you’d expect nearly identical numbers, if there were identical interest in the different races.  And while that nearly never happens, the Owen-Hoffman-Scozzafava race was surely the most followed in the national and local press.

That 15,620 more votes were cast in the State Supreme Court Race than in the Congressional Race, seems simply unbelievable. That means that nearly 40% of the voters who voted, cast no vote in the Congressional Race! Unbelievable!”

Read more:



**** Correction by John Charlton, November 27, 2:30 PM ET ****

“4,200 Votes in the NY-23 race are questionable
Let’s take a look at each county-wide race, in St. Lawrence Country, considering simply the total votes counted, and comparing this to the total votes in the Congressional race on the same ballot:
For the NY-23 Special Election: . . . . . 24, 349 votes
For the State Supreme Court race:  39, 969 votes or potentially 19,986 votes*
District Attorney: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17, 541 votes
For County Coroner: . . . . . . . . . . . 29, 664 votes or potentially 14,832 votes*

These are the races which all used the same 102 voting machines.  Since the entire county voted for each race you’d expect nearly identical numbers, if there were identical interest in the different races.  And while that nearly never happens, the Owen-Hoffman-Scozzafava race was surely the most followed in the national and local press.”

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