Divestiture for Democracy

We are rolling out our PRESS RELEASE for VR's "Divestiture for Democracy" Campaign today! If you have media addresses that you feel we should add to our VR_Media list, please send to Info@VelvetRevolution.us asap !

The release is included here for distribution far and wide!

Please point your folks to //www.VelvetRevolution.us/Campaigns/DV4D and
ask them to use the link there to

Thanks! Hit us with questions any questions about the campaign at

We've got new Affiliates coming on board faster than we can add them to the site, which is great!

Also, by way of heads up, we should be able to announce some Congressional support for the campaign shortly! And we understand that RAWSTORY.com is currently working up a feature on the campaign as well! Keep making noise!

We need your help! Please get on board so we can make as much noise as possible!

(See the Press Release below...and distribute!)

Brad Friedman

February 28, 2005

Media - Brad Friedman, VR Co-Founder, Brad@VelvetRevolution.us
General - DV4D@VelvetRevolution.us

Demanding transparency and accountability from America's Voting Machine Companies

A coalition of over 80 citizen's groups nationally has formed to address the problems created by the secret vote counting that takes place on the newer electronic voting machines. We announce a nationwide effort, under the banner of Velvet Revolution, to reinstitute vote-counting procedures that are non-secret so that all American citizens can verify that democracy is indeed working properly and fairly. Trusting any person or corporation to secretly fill out ballots and then count votes (no matter if that person or corporation is tested and sworn to honesty) is itself wrong because there is never an opportunity to verify whether honesty in fact occurs. This problem has now been tremendously amplified by the thousands of complaints received on Election Day 2004 concerning observed malfunctions of voting machines.

Thus, on February 21 (President's Day), VelvetRevolution.us ("VR") sent letters to the nine major vote and vote tabulation companies -- Diebold, Sequoia Voting Systems, Election Systems and Software, HartInterCivic, MicroVote, Danaher-Guardian, TriadGSI, UniLect, and Advanced Voting Solutions -- urging them, within 60 days, to open themselves up to transparency and accountability or face a massive and sustained divestiture campaign from hundreds of organizations representing millions of Americans.

Our last national election was rife with documented voting irregularities and allegations of outright fraud because of problems with vote counting and tabulation machines, which lacked auditable paper ballots, open software and hardware, and networking safeguards. Moreover, many of the company CEOs professed strong public support for President Bush thereby calling into question the impartiality of the voting process and leading to a collapse in confidence for the electoral system.

VR and all the supporters (more than 80 Affiliate organizations) of our "Divestiture for Democracy" campaign believe that transparency and trustworthiness of elections are imperative to ensuring confidence in our democracy - the world's most important. We do not believe that companies that count our votes should hide their software under the guise that it is "proprietary," and dispense with paper ballots with the assertion that they can be trusted.

VR is demanding verifiable paper ballots for all votes cast, a paper trail of all vote tabulations, open software and hardware that is subject to independent analysis, machines that are not, and cannot be networked, no involvement in elections or politics by company executives, and independent observers of the tabulation process. These are required under existing law because the vote machine companies are merely extensions of the government in that they are performing a purely governmental function - vote counting - and being compensated using taxpayer funds.

We will broadly recognize the companies that publicly state within 60 days that they will meet our patriotic concerns. Those who choose against doing the right thing for our country will have to deal with a sustained campaign of boycott against their companies, affiliates and clients. We will also launch a broad education campaign for the American people explaining precisely the dangers that these companies represent to our beloved democracy.

Though most of VR's demands are mirrored by recent bi-partisan legislation introduced in both the House and Senate, VR believes that companies that do not voluntarily make these changes prior to any future use of their voting and tabulation machines do not deserve to have the support of the American public. VR believes that all Americans, regardless of party affiliation, should sign the Webletter on our website to send a message of support for VR to these companies, so that all of our voices may - finally - be heard loud and clear.

Informant: Hopedance


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März 2005

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