Thursday, July 10, 2008

Clip of the week from "Uncounted"

It's a scene right out of a Hollywood thriller: a typist on the night shift at a big California law firm transcribes a tape that contains "smoking gun" evidence that a major electronic voting machine manufacturer was knowingly using illegal uncertified software. After a sleepless night, he does what he knows is right: prints out the evidence and with the help of activists and the press, makes it public.

Except this is real life: Steve Heller was working at the law firm Jones Day when he uncovered Diebold Election System's use of uncertified software. Diebold was already under state investigation when Heller passed the documentation on to Bev Harris of, who in turn got them to the Oakland Tribune, where they were published.

End of story? No. Thanks to his whistle-blowing, Steve woke up one morning to find ten LAPD officers on his doorstep with a search warrant, and was subsequently charged with three felonies by the LA County DA.

Here's Heller's story, in an excerpt from Uncounted: The New Math of American Elections. You can learn more about the movie, buy a dvd, or host a screening, at the film's website.

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