TheNutcracker
 
"If we had any say in our elections, they would not allow us to vote."
Mark Twain
 

MICHIGAN 2020 DEMOCRATIC PARTY PRIMARY

Please share this article:
 

Exit Poll Versus Reported Vote Count

By Theodore de Macedo Soares 
 
Election results from the computerized vote counts of the 2020 Michigan Democratic Party presidential primary differed significantly from the results projected by the exit poll conducted by Edison Research and published by CNN at poll’s closing. The large discrepancies greatly exceeded the margin of error for the exit poll projected differences between candidates. In this election candidate Sanders underperformed his exit poll projected proportions by 15.4%. Sanders consequently received 105,000 less votes than projected while others (mainly Biden and Bloomberg) received 111,000 more than projected by the exit poll. Of concern is Michigan’s destruction of the ballot images, that could have been used to greatly facilitate a recount, that were created by their scanners for their counts. This destruction appears to violate both federal and state laws.
 
This large vote shift is made more remarkable by the fact that Edison Research had almost an hour’s access to Michigan’s rapidly accumulating vote totals from almost the entirety of the state that closed an hour earlier than the small sliver in the central time zone, to alter, as is their normal practice, the exit poll to conform to the vote totals. After this hour’s adjustments the exit poll used herein was published. Undoubtedly candidate’s Sanders exit poll proportion was much larger than the proportion first published and Biden’s much less. Conceivably, given the large discrepancy remaining after alteration, the pre-adjusted original exit poll may have shown a Sanders’ win.
The same can be said for Sanders’ and Biden’s vote-count-adjusted exit polls for Texas, New Hampshire, and next Tuesday, Florida.  Unless Edison or others release the unadjusted exit polls for these and other states with dual time zones, U.S. citizens will never know the original exit poll’s projected proportions of votes for each candidate. This is unfortunate as these same citizens will also never know with any degree of certainty the actual proportion of votes cast for each candidate as they were counted by unobservable computers. 
 
It was to protect the trust in its elections that the Federal Constitutional Court of Germany ruled in 2009 that all important aspects of an election must be observable and its citizens able to witness the counting of their ballots.  Now, due to this ruling all counting is done by hand in the same precincts in which they were cast and in view of the public. With the same concerns most major technologically advanced democracies in the world protect the trust in their elections with hand-counted ballots.
 
In Michigan, the combined discrepancies between the exit poll and the vote count for candidates Sanders and Biden totaled 7.5%, nearly double the 2.9% margin of error for the exit poll difference between the two. Warren’s and Biden’s discrepancies totaled 5.6%, double the 2.5% margin of error. These same discrepancies between Sanders and Bloomberg totaled 10.2% about five time the margin of error at 2.1%.  All margin of errors calculated at 95% confidence interval (CI).  See table note 5.  Values greater than the margin of error are considered statistically significant. The discrepancies in favor of Biden and Bloomberg substantially exceed the margin of error at 99% (CI).
 
The United States remains one of the few major democracies in the world that continue to allow computerized vote counting—not observable by the public—to determine the results of its elections.[i] Countries such as Germany,[ii] NorwayNetherlandsFrance,[iii] Canada,[iv] United KingdomIrelandSpainPortugalItalyDenmarkSwedenFinland and many other countries protect the integrity and trust of their elections with publicly observable hand-counting of paper ballots.[v]
 
The common belief that the mere existence of paper ballots, allowing for a recount, lends reassurance to the voter, is in practice without foundation. If the computer system is suspected as the source of a possible miscount, obviously it would be improper to repeat this method and a hand-count made necessary. Even absent the necessity for litigation, the costs assessed by the state for such a recount would be prohibitive to the petitioner.
Many states, such as Michigan, use scanners to make images of the ballot that are then counted by computers. Approximately 80% of U.S. jurisdictions use such image-creating scanners. These images easily aggregated and disseminated would immensely facilitate recounts. According to trusted sources Michigan’s Secretary of State ordered all precincts to disable the default setting in the machines to save these images.
 
The reason given is that such image retention would pose a delay in the processing of votes and that the paper ballots are a sufficient record. All federal-election materials are required under federal and state laws to be preserved for at least 22 months. As it is the images and not the actual ballots that were counted, their destruction appears to violate federal and state laws.
 
Inquiries may be made to Michigan’s Secretary of State. For the important elections occurring next Tuesday, particularly in Florida, with dual time zones and less reliable exit polls resulting from the incorporation of Florida’s machine counts, inquiries may be made to the Secretary of State of these and other states.
 
Although the retention of such images is invaluable in facilitating recounts, in practice the only count that really matters is the first one. As in all other major democracies this first count, if the U.S. wishes to engender trust in its elections, must be done by hand.
[MI-2020PrimaryTable_03-13-235646-scaled]
[1] Exit poll (EP) downloaded from CNN’s website by TDMS on election night, March 10, 2020 at 9:00 PM ET. Candidates’ exit poll percentage/proportion derived from the gender category. Number of EP respondents: 1,685. Exit poll proportions rounded to nearest integer as appropriate for data derived from whole integers. As this first published exit poll was subsequently adjusted towards conformity with the final computerized vote count, the currently published exit poll differs from the exit poll used here and available through the link below.
 
[2] Candidates’ percentage/proportion of the total computer-generated vote counts derived from reported counts (99% reporting). Published by The New York Times. Total number of voters: 1,585,360.
 
[3] The difference between the exit poll proportion and reported vote proportion for each candidate (subtracting values in column two from the values in column three). A positive value indicates the candidate did better and received a greater share of the total reported count than projected by the exit poll. For example, candidate Sanders, reported percentage/proportion of the total vote decreased by 6.6% compared to his exit poll share.
 
[4] This column shows the percentage increase or decrease from the candidate’s exit poll projection (difference in column four divided by exit poll proportion in column two). This value is used to show how many more or less votes the candidate received than projected by the exit poll. Shown only for candidates with 4% or more share in the exit poll. 
 
[5] This column presents a distinct Margin of Error (MOE) of the exit poll (EP) for the differences between candidate Biden and each of the other candidate’s EP results. The exit poll MOE, for example, between Biden and Sanders is 3.9% and the MOE between Biden and Sanders is 3.9%.  For simplicity MOE not shown for candidates with less than 4% share in the EP.  MOE calculated at 95% CI according to multinomial formula in:  Franklin, C. The ‘Margin of Error’ for Differences in Polls. University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin. October 2002, revised February 2007. Available at:  https://abcnews.go.com/images/PollingUnit/MOEFranklin.pdf 
 
[6] The disparities between the exit poll and the reported computer-generated vote counts comparing Biden and Bloomberg with each of the other candidates (subtracting each candidate’s difference between exit poll and computer count from Biden’s and Bloomberg’s differences of 0.9% and 3.6% respectively. Disparities between Sanders and Biden almost double their MOE. Between Bloomberg and Sanders, they are five times their MOE. These disparities are significant as they cannot be attributed to the MOE.

[i] Fittingly, according to a recent Gallup World Poll, only 40% of Americans say they are confident in the honesty of U.S. elections. Finland and Norway with 89% of their citizens expressing confidence in the honesty of their elections along with the citizens of 25 other countries have greater confidence in their elections than do Americans.
[ii] In 2009 the Federal Constitutional Court of Germany ruled that every important aspect of an election must be observable by the public and thus “meet the constitutional requirements of the principle of the public nature of elections.” No amount of machine testing, security requirements, and licensing procedures can compensate for the constitutional requirement that “the essential steps of the electoral procedure being examined by the citizens.” And “trust in the regularity of the election [can] only [be realized] by the citizens themselves being able to reliably retrace the voting.”
 
The court also noted that while vote fraud with hand-counted ballots would be easy to detect, “programming errors in the software or deliberate electoral fraud committed by manipulating the software of electronic voting machines can be recognized only with difficulty.”
[iii] During the 2007 presidential election, eighty-three municipalities (France has 36,569 municipalities) were allowed to use voting machines. Due to security concerns and the inability of voters to determine if their votes are counted correctly a moratorium, that remains today, prevents additional municipalities from introducing voting machines. In the 2012 elections only 64 municipalities continued their use. The French government desires a total ban on their use.
[iv] In Canada, the results of federal elections are determined exclusively by hand-counted paper ballots.  Some provinces have adopted voting machines for local elections. See herehere and here.
[v] The United States’ long ballots–containing federal, state, and local races–are commonly cited as being unwieldy for hand-counting. The use of Sweden’s method of providing different colored paper ballots for federal, state, and local races that are then sorted prior to hand-counting addresses this objection and allows for at least the hand-counting of federal elections with only three races per ballot.
***
Download Michigan 2020 Democratic Party Primary Exit Poll. Published by CNN at poll’s closing on election night.
Comments made on this or related pages that may be helpful to the reader (comments made on another page will open a new tab):
 
[1] Exit poll (EP) downloaded from CNN’s website by TDMS on election night, March 10, 2020 at 9:00 PM ET. Candidates’ exit poll percentage/proportion derived from the gender category. Number of EP respondents: 1,685. Exit poll proportions rounded to nearest integer as appropriate for data derived from whole integers. As this first published exit poll was subsequently adjusted towards conformity with the final computerized vote count, the currently published exit poll differs from the exit poll used here and available through the link below.
 
[2] Candidates’ percentage/proportion of the total computer-generated vote counts derived from reported counts (99% reporting). Published by The New York Times. Total number of voters: 1,585,360.
 
[3] The difference between the exit poll proportion and reported vote proportion for each candidate (subtracting values in column two from the values in column three). A positive value indicates the candidate did better and received a greater share of the total reported count than projected by the exit poll. For example, candidate Sanders, reported percentage/proportion of the total vote decreased by 6.6% compared to his exit poll share.
 
[4] This column shows the percentage increase or decrease from the candidate’s exit poll projection (difference in column four divided by exit poll proportion in column two).  Shown only for candidates with 4% or more share in the exit poll. 
 
[5] This column presents a distinct Margin of Error (MOE) of the exit poll (EP) for the differences between candidate Biden and each of the other candidate’s EP results. The exit poll MOE, for example, between Biden and Sanders is 3.9% and the MOE between Biden and Sanders is 3.9%.  For simplicity MOE not shown for candidates with less than 4% share in the EP.  MOE calculated at 95% CI according to multinomial formula in:  Franklin, C. The ‘Margin of Error’ for Differences in Polls. University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin. October 2002, revised February 2007. Available at:  https://abcnews.go.com/images/PollingUnit/MOEFranklin.pdf 
 
[6] The disparities between the exit poll and the reported computer-generated vote counts comparing Biden and Bloomberg with each of the other candidates (subtracting each candidate’s difference between exit poll and computer count from Biden’s and Bloomberg’s differences of 0.9% and 3.6% respectively. Disparities between Sanders and Biden almost double their MOE. Between Bloomberg and Sanders, they are five times their MOE. These disparities are significant as they cannot be attributed to the MOE.

[i] Fittingly, according to a recent Gallup World Poll, only 40% of Americans say they are confident in the honesty of U.S. elections. Finland and Norway with 89% of their citizens expressing confidence in the honesty of their elections along with the citizens of 25 other countries have greater confidence in their elections than do Americans.
[ii] In 2009 the Federal Constitutional Court of Germany ruled that every important aspect of an election must be observable by the public and thus “meet the constitutional requirements of the principle of the public nature of elections.” No amount of machine testing, security requirements, and licensing procedures can compensate for the constitutional requirement that “the essential steps of the electoral procedure being examined by the citizens.” And “trust in the regularity of the election [can] only [be realized] by the citizens themselves being able to reliably retrace the voting.”
 
The court also noted that while vote fraud with hand-counted ballots would be easy to detect, “programming errors in the software or deliberate electoral fraud committed by manipulating the software of electronic voting machines can be recognized only with difficulty.”
[iii] During the 2007 presidential election, eighty-three municipalities (France has 36,569 municipalities) were allowed to use voting machines. Due to security concerns and the inability of voters to determine if their votes are counted correctly a moratorium, that remains today, prevents additional municipalities from introducing voting machines. In the 2012 elections only 64 municipalities continued their use. The French government desires a total ban on their use.
[iv] In Canada, the results of federal elections are determined exclusively by hand-counted paper ballots.  Some provinces have adopted voting machines for local elections. See herehere and here.
[v] The United States’ long ballots–containing federal, state, and local races–are commonly cited as being unwieldy for hand-counting. The use of Sweden’s method of providing different colored paper ballots for federal, state, and local races that are then sorted prior to hand-counting addresses this objection and allows for at least the hand-counting of federal elections with only three races per ballot.
***
Download Michigan 2020 Democratic Party Primary Exit Poll. Published by CNN at poll’s closing on election night.
 
Comments made on this or related pages that may be helpful to the reader (comments made on another page will open a new tab):
Please share this article:
Quote 1 0
Fire With Fire
The double whammy is now a fait accompli -- first, the entire establishment of the Democratic Party steals the nomination from Sanders and second, public life is outlawed for the time being for some unknown number of weeks, months or years.  The internet is the only means of political action until further notice.  In my opinion, at least as of now, the stealing of the election was planned in advance with careful precision.  The virus scare with its disjointed shutting down of the economy I do not believe was part of anybody's plans.  But it sure has come in handy for the political gangsters.

Who knows what is real and what is fake at this insane hour for homo sapiens?  There is a very interesting thread at DU Lite this morning with an audio clip of a Canadian radio interview with a renowned public health doctor who was abruptly cut off the air when he began citing statistics about the reach and death rate in China and the means of fighting the virus:



 

Quote:

There is so much important data that is very hard to get to guide the decisions on how serious a threat this is.

One is that the data they are getting is incomplete to really make sense of the size of the threat. We are getting very crude numbers of cases and deaths, very little information about testing rates, contagious analysis, severity rates, who is being hospitalised, who is in intensive care, who is dying, what are the definitions to decide if someone died of the coronavirus or just died with the coronavirus.

There is so much important data that is very hard to get to guide the decisions on how serious a threat this is.

The other part is we actually do not have that much good evidence for the social distancing methods. It was just a couple of review in the CDC emerging infectious disease journal, which showed that although some of them might work, we really don’t know to what degree and the evidence is pretty weak.

The third part is the pressure that is being put on public health doctors and public health leaders. And that pressure is coming from various places. The first place it came from was the Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO) when he said “This is a grave threat and a public enemy number one”, I have never heard a Director-General of WHO use terms like that.



He then went on to consider the practical consequences of the strategy:

 

Quote:

JK: I worry about the consequences of social distancing. I worry about people who are losing their jobs. I worry about interruptions with the healthcare system itself. There are many doctors in Manitoba in quarantine right now, because they have returned from other countries. I worry about the message to the public, about the fear of coming into contact with people, being in the same space as people, shaking their hands, having meetings with people. I worry about many, many consequences related to that.

If you look at the data for what we are actually dealing with, I want to give this example. In Hubei, in the province of Hubei, where there has been the most cases and deaths by far, the actual number of cases reported is 1 per 1000 people and the actual rate of deaths reported is 1 per 20,000. So maybe that would help to put things into perspective, as to the actual rate and risks of this condition, because it is a lot lower in any other part of the world, including Italy, and certainly in Canada and the United States…

[INTERRUPTED BY HOST AGAIN, INTERVIEW OVER]



Note those numbers he asserts -- one tenth of one percent with the disease and one two hundredth percent mortality,  Spread out across 320 million Americans that would equal 320,000 cases and the untimely death of 16,000 individuals.  An interesting philosophy class question about policy.  Social Distancing will put something like 30 million people out of work, and their loss of buying power will put millions more out of work -- which will lead to literally millions more homeless people spreading their own health and social problems to the shrinking cadre of people who still have an income.  Will that lead to more than 16,000 untimely deaths -- uh, who knows?

What is most bothersome about this unprecedented social catastrophe to me is that there is absolutely no transparency about the decisions being made.  The shut downs of public gatherings were initiated by private business entities, most notably the National Basketball Association.  Our government continues to bicker with itself while specific players in their game do manage to get the real point out -- that we are already in a Depression that makes 2008 look like a day at the beach.  Unless massive amounts of "money" are flushed into the system really quickly, we will go past the point of no return.

Just yesterday I was talking with a co-worker (by phone of course) about the conflicting numbers that appear on the various flat screens around me -- 5% of victims die.  3% or victims die.  This guy from Canada says something different.  I have seen one figure as high as 10%.  I told my friend that I have no earthly way of assessing the various numbers and every single "fact" I hear could be a lie.

My skepticism is of course not unique to me.  For the last three and a half years, the Democrats and the Republicans have relentlessly attacked each others' legitimacy -- not their ideas, which they share for the most part.  From the GOP convention chant of, "Lock Her Up," to the preposterous waves of #Resistance from pussy hats to Russiagate to Ukrainegate and a failed impeachment, our "elected" leaders have undermined each other's credibility as a matter of political strategy.  Well, it worked for both sides and we now have polling "data" showing that the same 45% of the country that opposed impeachment also think Trump is doing a good job with The Virus.  Meanwhile, I got that datum from an email from Move On Dot Org, asking me to donate money to counter that alarming level of support for Trump.  Hell, he might get re-elected!

You can see the priorities in action now that the ass has fallen out of the country.


I am ready to believe or disbelieve anything here at The Restaurant at the End of the Universe, but for all it matters, I still don't think anybody or any group of manipulators cranked up the virus.  I think it is legitimately scary, and I think the corporate entities that forced the government to at least pay attention to the problem were acting out of genuine fear and there was no agenda behind it other than to avoid spreading illness in a time of unprecedented uncertainty.

Our political elites destroyed their own credibility as part of the long term NeoLiberal Revolution whose core doctrine is that "markets" deliver what people need and want better than "government."  So for better or worse, we are looking at a market driven Pandemic Defense.  It will be up to the TV Actors we call Political Leaders to crank up the printing press to put money into the pockets of the tens of millions of economic victims of the cure rather than the illness.

When our governing parties militantly refuse to do anything about ballot honesty, when theft of elections is this blatant -- how can we trust them with anything, let alone our lives?   The whores for the ruling class are actually much worse as human beings than the ruling class itself.

Here's to The Reckoning, after this shit finally settles itself out.

 

Quote 0 0