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Sat Nov 19, 2016, 09:55 AM

USA Today: Still time for an election audit

Still time for an election audit: Column
Ron Rivest and Philip Stark 11:26 a.m. EST November 18, 2016

This should be standard — and it's easy, too.

A Washington Post–ABC News poll found that 18% of voters — 33% of Clinton supporters and 1% of Trump supporters — think Trump was not the legitimate winner of the election. Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., has called on Congress to investigate the Russian cyberattack on the Democratic National Committee and the election.

There are reasons for concern. According to the director of national intelligence, the leaked emails from the DNC were “intended to interfere with the U.S. election process.” The director of national intelligence, the Department of Homeland Security, and the National Security Agency concluded that the Russian government is behind the DNC email hack and that Russian hackers attacked U.S. voter registration databases.

We know that the national results could be tipped by manipulating the vote count in a relatively small number of jurisdictions — a few dozen spread across a few key states. We know that the vast majority of local elections officials have limited resources to detect or defend against cyberattacks. And while pre-election polls have large uncertainties, they were consistently off. And various aspects of the preliminary results, such as a high rate of undervotes for president, have aroused suspicion.

Computers counted the vast majority of the 130 million votes cast in this year's election. Even without hacking, mistakes are inevitable. Computers can’t divine voter intent perfectly; computers can be misconfigured; and software can have bugs. Did human error, computer glitches, hacking, or other problems change the outcome? While there is, as yet, no compelling evidence, the news about hacking and deliberate interference makes it worth finding out.

***

...an audit that manually examines a random sample of the ballots in a way that has a large chance of detecting and correcting incorrect results. This is called a “risk-limiting” audit. If the reported winner of a contest really won, a risk-limiting audit generally needs to examine only a small fraction of the ballots. But if the reported winner actually lost, a risk-limiting audit has a large chance of indicating that a full hand count is needed to set the record straight.

Risk-limiting audits are a crucial check on election integrity and accuracy even when elections are not controversial and margins are wide. They have been endorsed by the Presidential Commission on Election Administration and many organizations concerned with election integrity. Colorado law requires risk-limiting audits starting in 2017, and California law requires them for deploying some new voting systems.

There is no federal law mandating election audits. A number of states perform some kind of audit, but our research shows those audits have little or no chance of detecting and correcting erroneous results. To audit this election effectively will require immediate legal action.

<snip>

Ron Rivest is Institute Professor at MIT and was a member of the U.S. Election Assistance Commission Technical Guidelines Development Committee. Philip Stark, associate dean of mathematical and physical sciences at the University of California, Berkeley,was appointed to the board of advisers of the U.S. Election Assistance Commission.

More here:
http://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2016/11/18/election-audit-paper-machines-column/93803752/

41 replies, 2676 views

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Reply USA Today: Still time for an election audit (Original post)
AmBlue Nov 2016 OP
spanone Nov 2016 #1
liberalla Nov 2016 #13
dhill926 Nov 2016 #19
Dark n Stormy Knight Nov 2016 #24
Chakab Nov 2016 #32
AmBlue Nov 2016 #26
spanone Nov 2016 #27
AmBlue Nov 2016 #28
ailsagirl Nov 2016 #30
ancianita Nov 2016 #33
ailsagirl Nov 2016 #35
red dog 1 Nov 2016 #36
ailsagirl Nov 2016 #39
alittlelark Nov 2016 #2
turbinetree Nov 2016 #3
ShakeWell Nov 2016 #4
SammyWinstonJack Nov 2016 #5
Botany Nov 2016 #6
INdemo Nov 2016 #11
liberalla Nov 2016 #17
Botany Nov 2016 #18
LineLineLineLineReply 1
2naSalit Nov 2016 #21
red dog 1 Nov 2016 #40
DesertRat Nov 2016 #7
Equinox Moon Nov 2016 #8
lark Nov 2016 #9
2naSalit Nov 2016 #23
gademocrat7 Nov 2016 #10
SunSeeker Nov 2016 #12
yallerdawg Nov 2016 #14
Botany Nov 2016 #16
suston96 Nov 2016 #15
Sunny05 Nov 2016 #20
Cycle2016 Nov 2016 #22
VOX Nov 2016 #25
Spitfire of ATJ Nov 2016 #29
SpankMe Nov 2016 #31
byronius Nov 2016 #34
red dog 1 Nov 2016 #37
librechik Nov 2016 #38
Bobbie Jo Nov 2016 #41

Response to AmBlue (Original post)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 10:19 AM

1. K&R...

if the shoe was on the other foot, trump would have a phalanx of lawyers filing petitions in courts across the land...you better believe it.

crooked trump.

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Response to spanone (Reply #1)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 12:08 PM

13. He sure would and damn fast, too.

AUDIT*THE*VOTE

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Response to spanone (Reply #1)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 12:38 PM

19. yep...

and we won't do a goddamn thing....our so called democracy is a fucking joke...

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Response to spanone (Reply #1)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 01:06 PM

24. Yep. Why are they the only side that really fights with everything they've got?

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Response to Dark n Stormy Knight (Reply #24)

Sun Nov 20, 2016, 12:15 AM

32. Because the people on "our side" are picked by the donors to lose or to roll over and play dead

 

when they actually win.

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Response to spanone (Reply #1)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 04:00 PM

26. SIGN THE PETITION... this is the most important part:

Last edited Sun Nov 20, 2016, 05:37 PM - Edit history (1)

There is still time to audit this election — barely. States only have until Dec. 13 to give their final results to the Electoral College.

Americans should demand this simple step to ensure that the machinery of democracy worked. To add your voice, please sign this petition. https://www.change.org/p/demand-an-audit-of-the-2016-presidential-election

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Response to AmBlue (Reply #26)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 04:02 PM

27. i did.

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Response to spanone (Reply #27)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 04:06 PM

28. Awesome.... spread the word!!

We need to make a groundswell.....

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Response to AmBlue (Reply #26)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 10:32 PM

30. Signed

While I signed, about 50 people also signed

As of this moment, here's where we stand:

56,076 supporters
18,924 needed to reach 75,000


PS Just rechecked and 300 more people signed up in about 15 minutes!!

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Response to AmBlue (Reply #26)

Sun Nov 20, 2016, 01:38 AM

33. Done.

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Response to AmBlue (Reply #26)

Sun Nov 20, 2016, 05:29 PM

35. Nearly reached 75,000!!

Last edited Sun Nov 20, 2016, 06:22 PM - Edit history (1)

74,236 supporters

764 needed to reach 75,000

https://www.change.org/p/demand-an-audit-of-the-2016-presidential-election

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Response to ailsagirl (Reply #35)

Sun Nov 20, 2016, 06:26 PM

36. It's now at 74,220 signatures

780 signatures to reach 75,000

(I just signed)

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Response to red dog 1 (Reply #36)

Sun Nov 20, 2016, 07:24 PM

39. I guess there's no limit at this time

It has surpassed 75,000 (75,618 supporters, and still counting)

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Response to AmBlue (Original post)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 10:32 AM

2. KnR

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Response to AmBlue (Original post)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 10:47 AM

3. While over at "Politico" there is this going on in the race to "normalize" racist white nationalist

http://crooksandliars.com/2016/11/oh-how-precious-politico-thinks-steve

Yes the so called "news organization" that is trying to curry favor with this team, because you know it's about money and no journalist skill to call for an AUDIT for verification, might be to much to ask at Politico



Still pi**ed off

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Response to AmBlue (Original post)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 10:53 AM

4. K&R


#AudittheVote!!!!!

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Response to AmBlue (Original post)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 11:10 AM

5. K & R

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Response to AmBlue (Original post)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 11:15 AM

6. We need to look @ the vote .... the hack of DU should be be clue that something was up

http://www.palmerreport.com/opinion/youre-not-just-imagining-it-the-hillary-clinton-vs-donald-trump-vote-totals-do-look-rigged/104/

In order to believe that the official vote tallies are legitimate, you have to accept that all of the above legitimately happened: African-Americans in the south went from turning out in droves for Hillary Clinton in the primary to not caring if she won the general election. Donald Trump got perhaps seventy percent of the same-day voting in Florida. The polling averages were wrong for the first time in modern history. Trump beat his poll numbers despite having spent the primary season tending to fall below them. Clinton fell below her poll numbers despite having spent the primary season tending to beat them. In every state where Trump pulled off a shocking upset victory, he just happened to do it with one percent of the vote. And in an election that everyone cared particularly deeply about, no one really turned out to vote at all. I can accept any one of the above things happening as an isolated fluke. I cannot accept all the above happening. And so for once in my evidence-driven career, I’m left to believe that the conspiracy theorists are right: the vote tallies are rigged.

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Response to Botany (Reply #6)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 11:57 AM

11. I mentioned this on facebook when DU

 

was down and got shot down//I said something is terribly wrong going on here or something to that effect.
In all probability it was someone outside DU and possibly the former DU member that did nothing bu bitch and claim DU deserved it..
Yes the knowledgeable DU members would have know that something was going down and some would have known who to contact and just maybe the vote tallies in PA,Ohio and or PA could have been checked then.

Remember when Romney had put together his transition team and Karl Rove was totally shocked to learn that Obama won Ohio..

Where was Karl Rove during this whole campaign season..He was the guy that predicted Trump would win 168 Electoral votes...

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Response to INdemo (Reply #11)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 12:19 PM

17. yes, the DU hack was significant, highly suspicious

and carefully timed. I hope the admin has found clues in the security update/overhaul of the system.

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Response to INdemo (Reply #11)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 12:20 PM

18. Trump was right when he said 'this election is rigged.'

The system, called Crosscheck, is detailed in my Rolling Stone report,
“The GOP’s Stealth War on Voters <http://www.gregpalast.com/rolling-stone-expose-gops-secret-plan-steal-vote/>,” 8/24/2016.

Crosscheck in action:
Trump victory margin in Michigan: 13,107
Michigan Crosscheck purge list: 449,922

Trump victory margin in Arizona: 85,257
Arizona Crosscheck purge list: 270,824

Trump victory margin in North Carolina: 177,008
North Carolina Crosscheck purge list: 589,393

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Response to Botany (Reply #18)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 12:59 PM

21. 1

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Response to Botany (Reply #18)

Sun Nov 20, 2016, 07:35 PM

40. That link doesn't work

Last edited Mon Nov 21, 2016, 10:35 PM - Edit history (3)

Try this one:
http://www.gregpalast.com/rolling-stone-expose-gops-secret-plan-steal-vote/


From the OP (USA Today article) "Still Time For an Audit" by Ron Rivest & Philip Stark)
"If the reported winner of a contest really won, a risk-limiting audit generally needs to examine only a small fraction of the ballots..But if the reported winner actually lost, a risk-limiting audit has a large chance of indicating that a full hand count is needed."

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Response to AmBlue (Original post)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 11:15 AM

7. k&r

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Response to AmBlue (Original post)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 11:30 AM

8. I have wondered this from the moment they called it

Secretary Clinton, please call for a recount!!!! America needs your action!

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Response to AmBlue (Original post)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 11:38 AM

9. In my fondest dreams, this would happen.

Last edited Sat Nov 19, 2016, 04:44 PM - Edit history (1)

However in this new criminal fraud, theft and assault world of the upcoming post American nightmare, this will not happen. drumpf stole the election and Dems got suckered, again. The whole "election is rigged" was a set up to trick Dems into not contesting the election that they colluded with a foreign government to steal. I just can't get over this nightmare, we are so fucked and it's not because Dems didn't vote, it's because Russia and drumpf are colluding to bring down this country to their mutual financial benefit and the detriment of every single person who's not part of the oligarchy.

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Response to lark (Reply #9)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 01:00 PM

23. THIS!!!

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Response to AmBlue (Original post)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 11:40 AM

10. K&R

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Response to AmBlue (Original post)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 12:02 PM

12. K & R

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Response to AmBlue (Original post)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 12:09 PM

14. Michigan.

0.3 percent: That was Donald Trump's margin of victory in Michigan, according to tentative results posted on the Michigan Secretary of State website. The website showed Trump with 2,277,914 votes, or 47.6 percent of the total, and Hillary Clinton with 2,264,807, or 47.33 percent.

87,810: Number of voters this election who cast a ballot but did not cast a vote for president. That compares to 49,840 undervotes for president in 2012.

5 percent: Proportion of voters who opted for a third-party candidate in this election, compared to 1 percent in 2012.

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Response to yallerdawg (Reply #14)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 12:19 PM

16. Sure 88,000 people in Michigan went to vote but decided not to vote for President.

Stalin said about voting: "The people who cast the votes don't decide an election, the people who count the votes do."

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Response to AmBlue (Original post)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 12:11 PM

15. There must be audits in all elections.......

As the OP quotes:

There is no federal law mandating election audits. A number of states perform some kind of audit, but our research shows those audits have little or no chance of detecting and correcting erroneous results. To audit this election effectively will require immediate legal action.


Too much power to the states and too easy for local rigging is dangerous if not fatal to this remarkable form of government.

Fix the Constitution. Now!

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Response to AmBlue (Original post)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 12:55 PM

20. K&R! Thank you, AmBlue!

This is the knd of info we need. Awesome!

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Response to AmBlue (Original post)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 01:00 PM

22. We all need to sign the petition and forward to as many people, groups and

and organizations ASAP. All of our lives depend on this. I just signed petition at end of story.

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Response to AmBlue (Original post)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 01:37 PM

25. If the tables were turned, Repugs would already be auditing...

I despise them, but goddamnit, they are headstrong, they stick together, and they never flag or drop any issue. They just keep on coming.

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Response to AmBlue (Original post)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 09:22 PM

29. The voting machine I used prints a paper ballot....

 

Electronic results for the media to announce the winner should be considered the "unofficial result" until the actual paper ballot count is done.

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Response to AmBlue (Original post)

Sat Nov 19, 2016, 11:33 PM

31. Hear, hear!

It ain't gonna happen. But, it would be nice if investigative journalism would get access to the paper ballots (since they are supposed to be available to the public for inspection in most cases - or use states' versions of FOIA, as necessary) and do this analysis during the next few months. Exposure that Trump may not have been the real winner - after it would be too late to do anything about it - would disarm his authority for his term and could mandate real changes in voting processes.

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Response to AmBlue (Original post)

Sun Nov 20, 2016, 08:35 AM

34. Straightforward democracy is such a beautiful thing.

Someday I hope it finally gets fixed. Paper ballots, hand-counted. Everything auditable, and part of the public record.

Paradise. True democracy works.

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Response to AmBlue (Original post)

Sun Nov 20, 2016, 06:32 PM

37. HUGE K&R!

Hillary Clinton needs to come out of her shell and DEMAND a recount!

Americans should hold peaceful protests all over the country,
DEMANDING a recount!

Thousands at a time yelling "RECOUNT, RECOUNT, RECOUNT"

Protests have been happening all over America, but they need to focus on one thing.....WE WANT A RECOUNT!

(I never thought I'd be grateful to USA Today, but I am now .for this story)

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Response to AmBlue (Original post)

Sun Nov 20, 2016, 07:01 PM

38. please please please please please pleAse please please please please please please please please p

sigh not gonna happen because ????

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Response to AmBlue (Original post)

Sun Nov 20, 2016, 07:38 PM

41. K&R

Share this far and wide!

#AuditTheVote

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