Help MoveOn set the right priorities!!

Move-On online survey to set priorities
Two points to remember:
—-All topics are important, but none of them matter if electronic voting systems are facilitating and concealing tampering.
—-All topics have major organizational support already EXCEPT opposition to evoting altogether because it will never be handled securely, and the demand for voter-verified printouts and use of them for auditing elections. These struggles are taking place in every state, and this is where MoveOn can make a difference.
The order of choices varies. Two suggestions:
—-Mark low priority for all except “Require electronic voting machines to print voter-verified paper records”
—-In the entry area called “Other” enter these suggestions:
. . . . Mandatory independent random vote-count audits
. . . . Immediate public posting of precinct data for absentee, early-voting, and election-day voting including number of voters, number of ballots, and tallies

Joint Chiefs threaten WashPost over Toles cartoon

Pentagon trying to censor top US political cartoonist
by John in DC – 2/01/2006 05:09:00 PM

The Joint Chiefs of Staff just sent a menacing letter to the Washington Post over a cartoon. AMERICAblog received a copy of the letter at 10AM this morning, but as its veracity was not yet confirmed, we waited until E&P was able to confirm that is is for real.

Here’s the letter the Joint Chiefs of Staff wrote to the Post.

And why not have the Pentagon try to stifle a free media while supposedly promoting freedom in Iraq? The US government just arrested one of President Bush’s top political critics for threatening his life with a t-shirt. So why not now threaten a top political cartoonist for drawing a cartoon that the Pentagon doesn’t like? Why not use the power of government to try to censor the media, something that’s a direct violation of that pesky and quaint 1st Amendment to the US Constitution – you remember, that document the Bush administration doesn’t think is relevant.

I have no problem with citizens speaking out about political cartoons they find offensive – hell, we’ve done it recently with the anti-gay cartoon in the Post. But when the government does it, that’s a whole other story that smacks of censorship, especially when that government is the Pentagon threatening you during wartime.

RAVA will help save American democracy!

For Immediate Release press[at] Contact: Overseas Vote Foundation Contact: Morgan Allen Moore Public Affairs Susan Dzieduszycka-Suinat Con Franklin US Tel: +1 202 470 2480
UK Tel: +44 1892 546 779
Cell: +49 89 172 951 0865
Overseas Vote Foundation Launches RAVASM 2006
Registration and Absentee Voter Application
First Online System to Meet Registration Needs of All UOCAVA Voters
Friday, February 3, 2006, Washington, D.C. – Overseas Vote Foundation has announced the launch of RAVA, its new Registration and Absentee Voter Application, accessible through:, and RAVA is the first nonpartisan, secure, Internet-based voter registration solution for both military and overseas citizen voters.

“RAVA is to voter registration what ‘Turbo Tax’ is to filing taxes. It’s the right tool for the job,” said Susan Dzieduszycka-Suinat, OVF Executive Director. “As of today, eligible American civilian and military voters anywhere in the world can use RAVA to complete their voter registration in as little as five minutes. The system provides the voter with a mailing address and state-specific signing instructions,” continued Ms. Dzieduszycka-Suinat.

An estimated seven million overseas citizens and uniformed services members, whose voting program falls under the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA), are eligible to use the system. UOCAVA voters include civilians and US government employees abroad, active duty military both within and outside of the US, and their accompanying dependents.
“We expect OVF RAVA to have a tremendous impact on the number of UOCAVA voters registering for the November 7th 2006 General Election. OVF will lead UOCAVA online voter registration in 2006 and beyond,” stated Ms. Dzieduszycka-Suinat.

UOCAVA voters must comply with the Federal Voter Assistance Program (FVAP) voter registration system. The Federal Voter Assistance Guide (FVAG) comprises 462 pages to accompany the Federal Post Card Application (FPCA) voter registration form. RAVA automates the 55 different sets of state/territory-specific requirements set forth in the FVAG; thereby shielding the voter from the complexity of the UOCAVA voter registration process.
RAVA guides the voter through the registration process asking question which pertain to the voter’s state-specific regulations. Its integrated database includes every address for the 7,838 local election offices, and is continually being updated. OVF uses the Internet to provide the most up-to-date, accurate local election office addresses and regularly updated registration deadlines ö both of which are constantly subject to change.

– ends –
Overseas Vote Foundation Executive Board and Advisor Comments:
“The RAVA system provides the missing online component of UOCAVA implementation.
We fully expect the majority of registrations to go through RAVA ö itâs automated and easier. Government agencies embraced the independent software developers of online tax filing systems. That same successful formula is now here for overseas voter registration,ä asserts Jim Brenner, OVF Chair and Managing Director of Broad Cove Partners.
“We’ve essentially taken a confusing, time-consuming process and applied technology to make it usable by any voter, anywhere. RAVA will breathe new life into the UOCAVA voter registration process for military and overseas citizens who want to participate in our democracy,ä stated Cameron Quinn, OVF Vice Chair and former chief election official for Virginia. Ms. Quinn points out, “By making the voter registration forms more legible and reducing inadvertent errors, it is more likely that every overseas vote will be counted. This is about enfranchisement.”

“We are proud to be the leader in providing a secure, online, and user-friendly system to our men and women in uniform,” said Sam Wright, OVF Advisor and Director of the Military Voting Rights Project, National Defense Committee. “RAVA will lift a tremendous burden off the Military Voting Assistance Officers who can benefit from its built-in error-checking and customized state-by-state requirements,” added Mr. Wright.

Further Information
Overseas Vote Foundation (OVF) was founded in 2005 to assist eligible Americans in registering to vote in federal elections, starting with the November 7th 2006 General Election. The corporation is registered in Delaware. OVF is the first and only nonprofit, nonpartisan 501(c)(3) public charity organization dedicated solely to serving the voter registration needs of UOCAVA voters. RAVA ö Registration and Absentee Voter Application is the first Internet-based system to provide a complete voter registration solution for both civilians and military voters.
Additional OVF programs include an outreach program to youth voters overseas, and an online Voter Help Desk Support Service to voters of all ages.
OVF is a public charity and relies on donations to maintain its operations. Support of our organization is essential to maintaining this system. OVF would like to reach out to the donor community to request that support.

Push back that HAVA deadline!

Call for Simple Action from Coalition for Voting Integrity – Save Our Vote!

Citizens Heed the Call to Act Now!!!

In the winter of 1776, Thomas Paine wrote the first installment of his American Crisis series. The pamphlet started with the ringing words, “These are the times that try men’s souls: The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of his country but he that stands it NOW, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman.” That call to action so inspired General George Washington that he ordered the essay to be read to Colonial troops to boost morale. It worked.

Two hundred years later, America is facing another crisis. As insecure and unverifiable voting machines are purchased and installed across our country, we are facing a crisis in our systems of elections. Simply put, we are losing our vote. Now we are calling on all fellow patriots to rise in service of their country.

At our behest, Rep. Michael Fitzpatrick (PA-08) recently introduced legislation (H.R. 4666) that will protect municipalities from HAVA-related penalties if they have not been able to become HAVA-compliant by the 2006 primary season. We believe this legislation will alleviate the immediate pressure on counties and states seeking to be HAVA-compliant yet faced with issues relating to machine choice/availability/delivery etc…

No one should be penalized or lose HAVA funds if they are acting in good faith to comply.
No one should be forced to accept second, third or forth choice machines because first choice is unavailable.

No one should be forced to lose HAVA funds because delivery is not made in time.

No one should be forced to make decision before proper certification is completed…..nor should manufacturers risk quality defects by rushing machines out the door to meet a deadline.

No one should be forced to vote on machines hastily installed with not enough time to test, each poll workers and educate voters.

We should not be rushed and make a mistake… the integrity of our vote is more important than an arbitrary deadline.

H.R. 4266 is truly a Citizen-Representative Initiative and it will benefit municipalities all across the nation as they get the time they need to do the right thing to preserve the integrity of our vote. And, just as it took citizens to bring the issue to the attention of Congressman Fitzpatrick, it will take citizens to make this bill law.

Here are the important ways you can help:

1. Please call your members of Congress today and every day until this bill is law. Please tell your Congressperson to co-sponsor H.R. 4666. Please ask your Senator to introduce companion legislation to H.R. 4666 in the Senate.
U.S. House of Representatives contact information here.
U.S. Senate contact information here. 2. Please call the following members of the House Administration Committee and ask them to move H.R. 4666 through as quickly as possible since primary season is upon us: (click on name for contact info)
Vernon J. Ehlers, MI, Acting Chairman
Robert W. Ney, OH
John L. Mica, FL
John T. Doolittle, CA
Thomas M. Reynolds, NY
Candice S. Miller, MI
Juanita Millender-McDonald, CA
Robert A. Brady, PA
Zoe Lofgren, CA
You can thank Congressman Fitzpatrick, sponsor of H.R. 4666, here. 3. Please sign our petition, which demands passage of H.R. 4666. You can find it here. Remember to add a short, personal comment so the Congress members know that you are familiar with the issue. 4. Lastly, please donate to our legal fund so that we may proceed with a groundbreaking lawsuit of national significance. It has the chance to open certificati

on processes all over the country to review. This is the lawsuit that voting rights activists have been waiting for. Please help it happen. A donation of any amount will be appreciated.
You can contribute online here or by mail at Coalition for Voting Integrity, P.O. Box 536, Doylestown, PA 18901.

Thank you for your attention to this vital issue facing our country. Thank you for being willing to help save our vote. Forward this email to your friends and family. The time is now for everyone to stand up in the service of their country.

Coalition for Voting Integrity



Katrina summit


Strategy Meeting to Launch a GULF COAST RENEWAL CAMPAIGN

When: February 7th, 2006 from 9:00 am to Noon

Where: Room 2237 Rayburn House Office Building, Washington, DC (on Independence Ave, south of the Capitol; nearest Metro Stop: Capitol South).

What: Founding meeting, Steering Committee formation, and press conference

“Struggle is a never ending process. Freedom is never really won. You earn it and win it in every generation.”– Coretta Scott King

January 31, 2006


First and foremost, we extend our condolences to the King family. Continuing in the spirit of Coretta Scott King and Martin Luther King, Jr., those who struggle for justice and human dignity in 2006, face a new challenge – laid bare not by a vicious storm, but by an indifferent federal government. Administration policy in the aftermath of Katrina has evinced a horrific callousness toward black suffering. While opening the floodgates of opportunity to out-of region profiteers, current policy shuts out the poor, primarily African-American, Katrina survivors from returning home and from participating in the future of their own communities.

Five months after Katrina struck, the people of the Gulf Coast who were left behind once, are still being left behind to drown in the circumstances of their involuntary displacement. The right to return is a hollow promise by officials as survivors are still being denied access to viable short and long-term housing, jobs with living wages, public schools, healthcare, and government contracts. Access is further denied to the displaced by virtue of their inability to participate in critical decision-making as to allocation of federal resources and plans for rebuilding the Gulf Coast. On February 13, 2006 and March 1, 2006, FEMA plans to evict tens of thousands of victims from hotels without any provision for alternative housing. As despair settles in, rates of suicide and death from “Katrina Stress” escalate among the victims.

Sadly, progressive members of Congress, while sympathetic, have been unable to move comprehensive legislative solutions to this crisis. Forming a Katrina Working Group, we have been meeting regularly with Congressional staffers and grassroots activists, to overcome this legislative stalemate and build a broad-based Gulf Coast Renewal Campaign to restore all survivors. It is clear that the trigger for change is a ministry of presence. We need unified advocacy, we need YOU! It is imperative that African-American leaders from around the country “show up” on Capitol Hill – to demand accountability and justice for Katrina survivors. Your presence will make visible the imperative that an effective and just response to their plight remains at the top of the Congressional agenda.

I implore you to come stand with us before Congress, before the American people – as a united front of black leadership. We will gather – not to march or to yell, but to devise strategy with progressive lawmakers. As a young voice of conscience, the leader of the Hip Hop Caucus, I am appealing to all African-American leaders – to my elders who inspired me, to my brothers and sisters whose energy feeds my resolve, to please join me on February 7, to have all our voices rise up on the Hill in a call for unified and unflagging advocacy for a comprehensive plan for Gulf Coast renewal.

We are calling for:

  • A right of return, not a plan that gentrifies and white-washes
  • A sane rebuild that invests in those displaced; not a boon for developers
  • Temporary and long-term housing assistance
  • Protection for voting rights for the displaced
  • Community control over CDBG’s
  • Mortgage forgiveness
  • Funding for quality public education
  • Victim Restoration Fund
  • Environmental Cleanup
  • Rebuilding of Medical Facilities
  • Small Businesses Assistance
  • Tax Credits and Bankruptcy Exemptions for Victims

These programs will enable victims to safely return to their cities, to hold jobs, to restore the local tax base and the local economy.

The magazine, Black Commentator, has laid down the gauntlet:

“Although there are literally thousands of large and small Katrina-related projects operating throughout the nation, many of the New Orleans organizers are handicapped by the fact of their own displacement. A great moral and political challenge presents itself to Black and progressive America: Will they rise to the occasion in the face of a real, imminent, well-defined crisisÅ February 7th will be a test of Black political resolve and cohesion.”

I look forward to meeting with you on February 7 to fulfill this imperative for our people! Below is the current list of invitees for this historic and critical Katrina Emergency Summit. If your name is misspelled, or you have received this invitation, but your name is not on the list, please contact Ms. Tonia Rice at 202 359-6718 or email at Tonia[at] to be added to the list. If you need more information, are giving regrets or are a gulf coast survivor and need travel assistance please contact Ms. Diane Shamis at 845-661-3754 or email at Diane[at]

For future generations,

Rev. Lennox Yearwood Jr.
President and CEO
Hip Hop Caucus

“Now is the time to make real the promise of democracy.”– Martin Luther King, Jr.

6856 Eastern Avenue, NW, Suite 308 ** Washington, DC 20012
(202) 545-0113 – Office ** info[at] **

List of Invitees for Katrina Emergency Summit (Not in any particular order)


Women of the Storm

National Association of Katrina Evacuees (NAKE)

Urban Heart, People’s Hurricane Relief & Oversight Coalition

Community Labor United, People’s Hurricane Relief & Oversight Coaltion

Common Cause Relief Collective

African-American Leadership Project

The Advancement Project (MS), Grassroots Legal Network

Critical Resistance, XOCHITL BIVERA
Families & Friends of Louisiana’s Incarcerated Children

Councilwoman, Lower Ninth Ward, New Orleans

People’s Hurricane Relief Fund & Oversight Coalition, Women’s Caucus

President, New Orleans Finance Authority

Publisher/Editor, New Orleans Tribune

New Orleans Agenda

ACLU of Lousiana

Rebuilding Louisiana Coalition

Journalist, Left Turn Magazine

S.O.S. (Saving Our Selves)

S.O.S. (Saving Our Selves)

Chief, United Houma Nation of Louisiana


Mississippi Immigrant Rights Alliance

Southern Echo, People’s Hurricane Relief Fund & Oversight Coalition

People’s Institute for Survival & Beyond

People’s Institute for Survival & Beyond

Louisiana Environmental Justice Network
Members of Congress, Leaders of Organizations and Activist

RON DANIELS (Co-Facilitator for Summit)
Institute for the Black World 21st Century

U.S. Representative
1st District, N

U.S. Representative
1st District, Mo.

U.S. Representative
14th District, Mich.

U.S. Representative
2nd District, Pa.

U.S. Representative
7th District, Ind.

U.S. Representative
5th District, Mo.

U.S. Representative
7th District, Md.

U.S. Representative
9th District, Tenn.

Poet and Lecturer

President, General Board
AME Church

U.S. Representative
6th District, S.C.

U.S. Representative
7th District, Ala.


U.S. Representative
2nd District, Ga.

Chairman & CEO
American Express Corp.

U.S. Representative
7th District, Ill.


U.S. Representative
3rd District, Fla.

Congressional Delegate
Virgin Islands

Music Entrepreneur and Clothing Designer

National Representative of the Hen. Elijah Muhammad Nation of Islam

Young & Rubicam, Inc.

Black Enterprise Magazine


U.S. Representative
2nd District, Ill.

U.S. Representative
30th District, Texas

Minister and Education

Congressional Delegate
District of Columbia

U.S. Representative
18th District, Texas

Attorney and Founder
MTBC TV Network

Voting in New York

From Teresa Hommel:

Voting Machines – what will New York City get?

July 2005 —
New York passes new election law
Bans lever voting machines as of September 2007
Requires each county and the City of New York to choose new machines

Jan. 2006 —
State Board of Elections may “certify” two types of equipment–

PBOS — consists of Paper Ballots to be marked by hand (or by ballot-marking devices for voters with disabilities or minority languages), and Optical Scanner machines in each polling place to check each ballot for correctness before it is cast and to print a tally at the end of the election day.

DREs — consist of “Direct Recording Electronic” voting machines (computers) with a touchscreen or pushbuttons, and a tiny printer to print a receipt-like list of each voter’s choices for the voter to verify before pressing “Cast My Ballot.” The printout stays in a secure storage box in the machine.

Individuals and organizations —
Please contact our Election Commissioners and County Leaders with a simple message — Choose PBOS!

—-Optical Scanners are reliable, time-tested, and inexpensive. Low-tech is more manageable for election staff, poll workers, and voters!

—-DREs have failed in many elections and cost three times as much. High-tech is not ready for “prime time.” Let’s learn from other states’ experience!

—-I want Paper Ballots and Optical Scanners, with accessible ballot-marking devices for voters with special needs. I don’t want electronic voting!”


Election Commissioners & Executive Director, NYC Board of Elections
(2 commissioners per borough, 1 Democrat & 1 Republican. Send all mail to the Executive Office. Send a separate letter to each person.)

Address for all Commissioners and the Executive Director

Board of Elections in the City of New York
Executive Office
32 Broadway
New York NY 10004

Commissioner Joseph J. Savino (R, Bronx, same person as County Leader)
Commissioner Nero Graham, Jr. (D, Bronx)
Commissioner Frederic M. Umane (R, Manh)
Commissioner Gregory C. Soumas (D, Manh)
Commissioner Nancy Mottola Schacher (R, Bklyn)
Commissioner Jeannette Gadson (D, Bklyn)
Commissioner Anthony Como (R, Queens)
Commissioner Terrence C. O’Connor (D, Queens)
Commissioner Mary Ann Yennella (R, SI)
Commissioner James Joseph Sampel (D, SI)
John Ravitz, Executive Director

2 County Leaders per borough, 1 Democrat & 1 Republican

Jose Rivera
Chair, Bronx Democratic Party
135 Westchester Square
Bronx, NY 10461
Phone: 718-931-5200 Fax: 718-792-3882
email: bronxcountydem[at]

Hon. Jay (Joseph) Savino
Chairman, Bronx Republican Party ( He is also the Republican Election Commissioner)
2113 Williamsbridge Road
Bronx, NY 10461-1606
Phone: 718-792-5800 Fax: 718-863-2301

Hon. Hy Singer
Chairman, Brooklyn Republican Party
26 Court St, #2305
Brooklyn, NY 11242
Phone: 718-582-9454 or 718-646-5655

Vito Lopez
Chair, Brooklyn Democratic Party
Kings County Democratic County Committee
16 Court Street
Brooklyn, NY 11241
Phone: 718-875-5870, Fax: 718-596-4013

Herman D. Farrell, Jr.
Chair, New York County Democratic Committee
60 Madison Ave #1201
NY NY 10010
Phone: 212-725-8825 Fax: 212-725-8867

Honorable James Ortenzio
Chairman, New York County Republican Party
122 E. 83 St
NY NY 10028
Phone: 212-517-8444 Fax: 212-517-3142

Tom Manton, Chairman, Queens Democratic Party
95-25 Queens Blvd.
Flushing, NY 11375
Phone: 718-268-5100 Fax: 718-268-7363

Hon. Serphin Maltese
Chairman, Queens Republican Party
71-20 Myrtle Ave.
Glendale, NY 11385
Phone: 718-628-9522 or 718-628-9519, Fax: 718-381-4807

Staten Island
John W. Lavelle
Chairman, Staten Island Democratic Party
County Headquarters
274 Watchogue Rd.
Staten Island, NY 10314
Phone: (718) 983-5009 Fax: (718) 983-5541

Honorable Robert Helbock
Chairman, Staten Island Republican Party
58 New Dorp Plaza
Staten Island NY 10306
Phone: 718-667-4600 Fax:718-816-0718

More Info
League of Women Voters of New York State —

New Yorkers for Verified Voting — —

Stay Informed — subscribe
Daily Voting News (1 page) — Send an email to DVN[at]
Weekly Election Integrity News (1 page) — Send an email to contact[at]
New Yorkers for Verified Voting alerts (1 page) — Send an email to contact[at]

The Trademark Dilution Revision Act

More “freedom” under Bush.

Important New Legislation Proposal
Written by Edward Greenberg
Wednesday, 25 January 20

A few weeks ago I referenced a proposed new Trademark law formally entitled “HR 683 – the Trademark Dilution Revision Act”. It passed in the House of Representatives and is under consideration by the Judiciary Committee.

Now stay with me, don’t get bored. This is important.

The Act contains certain anti-speech aspects which will directly affect illustrators, photographers and others.

It will serve to eliminate the current protection for non-commercial speech currently contained in the Lanham Act. It will prevent businesses (artists)and consumers from invoking famous trademarks to explain or illustrate their discussion of public issues.

For example, using the phrase “Where’s the Beef” could be actionable. Although you might use it in a non-commercial way, the (very) famous Wendy’s slogan when used to comment might not be protected by the fair use exception.

Read more.

The end of the Internet?

The End of the Internet?
[posted online on February 1, 2006]

The nation’s largest telephone and cable companies are crafting an alarming set of strategies that would transform the free, open and nondiscriminatory Internet of today to a privately run and branded service that would charge a fee for virtually everything we do online.

Verizon, Comcast, Bell South and other communications giants are developing strategies that would track and store information on our every move in cyberspace in a vast data-collection and marketing system, the scope of which could rival the National Security Agency. According to white papers now being circulated in the cable, telephone and telecommunications industries, those with the deepest pockets–corporations, special-interest groups and major advertisers–would get preferred treatment. Content from these providers would have first priority on our computer and television screens, while information seen as undesirable, such as peer-to-peer communications, could be relegated to a slow lane or simply shut out.

Under the plans they are considering, all of us–from content providers to individual users–would pay more to surf online, stream videos or even send e-mail. Industry planners are mulling new subscription plans that would further limit the online experience, establishing “platinum,” “gold” and “silver” levels of Internet access that would set limits on the number of downloads, media streams or even e-mail messages that could be sent or received.

Read more.