The “Shocking” Truth About Election Rigging in the United States
By Victoria Collier, Truthout
RICK: How can you close me up? On what grounds?
POLICE CAPTAIN RENAULT: I’m shocked! Shocked to find that gambling is going on in here!
CROUPIER (handing Renault a pile of money): Your winnings, sir.
CAPTAIN RENAULT: Oh, thank you, very much… Everybody out, at once!
(Scene from Casablanca.)
If there is anything positive to say about the 2016 elections, it’s that they have finally forced an end to the official denial of computerized election rigging. In the past month, the fact that our voting technology is a hacker’s paradise has been validated by no less than all the major TV news networks: NBC, ABC, CBS, Reuters, The Washington Post,The New York Times, The Boston Globe, The Atlantic, USA Today, The Hill, The Guardian, Mother Jones, Politico, and a dozen other outlets.
Of course, the corporate media and political parties are now professing “shock” at the very prospect that US elections can be manipulated, and yes, even stolen.
Yet it has long been an open secret that game-changing races have been decided not by voters, but by insiders; from the presidential race of 1960, appropriated for John Kennedy by Democratic muscle in Chicago, to the two victories secured for George W. Bush by GOP fixers in Florida and hackers in Ohio. Among other suspect elections in recent years are key Congressional races hijacked by combinations of voter suppression, gerrymandering, dark money and the ugly little secret of American elections: rigged voting machines.
Sadly, it took a perfect storm of events to propel this crisis into the public spotlight, bringing no small amount of chaos. Today, the internet is flooded with election-rigging conspiracy theories and frantic official responses, all under the shadow of a looming contested presidential election.
As the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and the Clinton camp reel from repeated computer hacks, the Obama administration has pointed the finger at Russia, giving rise to a wave of 11th hour fears that foreign agents could hack our voting systems. Yet, Julian Assange came a wink and nod away from outing DNC staffer Seth Rich as his insider source for the email leak, stoking paranoia by heavily suggesting whistleblowing was the cause of his recent murder.
As Bernie Sanders’ stunned supporters continue to sort through the wreckage of the primaries, they are overwhelmed by the mess of partisanship, voter suppression, electronic voting results that deviated widely from the polls and disastrous elections administration nationwide. Evidence suggests a bewildering mix of incompetence, party manipulation and outright fraud. Was it all enough to derail a Sanders victory? And if so, who is responsible? In our current system, these are very difficult questions to answer.