Wisconsin Vote – Wave or Dry Well?

Wisconsin WAVE takes over and drops the ball

Did Walker really win the recall election? We will never know.

The video is from Thom Hartman posted June 12; wave4shortly after the June 5, 2012 recall election. It is cued up to a point of interest in that Wisconsin Wave is identified:

The grassroots organization which includes The Wisconsin Wave has formed to verify the accuracy and integrity of the election results.

Thom goes on to discuss the citizen observers who were in place in Racine. The obvious implication is that WAVE had a major hand in the observation – not true. In fact, WAVE came onto the scene in the final moments of the election integrity game saying, “Coach, give me the ball!”. The promise was to organize and finance an investigation of the recall election ballots statewide and score a touch down. Wave fumbled and lost the game. We will never know if Scott Walker was the real winner of the recall election.

WAVE splashed in like a Tsunami to commandeer the election integrity movement and then proceeded to collect money with the promise of auditing the Barrett/Walker recall election – after 14 months, WAVE has yet to report on any of the vote recounts administered. WAVE has never accounted for the money raised from citizens “to help with the recall audit” through the ever present DONATE

This is the message that accompanied every post, article, and picture in the weeks following the June 5 recall election:

Click here to stay in touch with us about upcoming events and volunteer opportunities, and please consider helping us cover the costs associated with this grassroots effort by making a tax-deductable donation here.
…Wave partnered with groups like the Election Defense Alliance to organize election monitoring activities before, during, and after the recall elections this August. In total we mobilized several hundred volunteers and monitored polls in over 25 wards throughout the eight senate districts where recall elections took place.
WAVE – No More Stolen Elections

Meanwhile activists NOT working under WAVE produced results

Many election integrity activists had been communicating since the Prosser/Kloppenberg Supreme Court election (April 5, 2011). When they discovered that WAVE was requiring volunteers to sign a confidentiality agreement to participate in the recount, they struck out on their own.

The ISTHMUS covers Hand Count Votes Now!
July 19, 2012

Mary Magnuson, an electoral reform activist, submitted an open records request to the Madison city clerk on June 14 asking to inspect “any and all ballots,” including optical scanned ballots and absentee ballots, that were cast in Wards 16, 19, 39, 40 and 100 in the recall election against Gov. Scott Walker. She also asked to inspect the tapes used in the scanners and any inspectors’ reports prepared by poll workers.

Read Recall Hand Count Suggest Flip

Read: Barb With was volunteering as an observer at the Surpeme Court election Waukesha recount when she made a glaring discovery. The poll tape that was being counted and matched for votes cast in the April 5 election for Supreme Court Justice was dated March 30, 2011.

Dennis Kern, Marianne Moonhouse, and John Washburn discovered that the cartridges, holding the digital ballot count, were not held and secured in many County Clerk offices. By Wisconsin statute, all election materials are to be kept secure for public viewing for 10 days, but many counties sent them back, out of the State, to the Minnesota vendor Command Central. The team set up an email network to monitor messages of County Clerks, and Marrianne logged the info received into spreadsheets. (John Washburn is also the author of “the Fraud it” page above: “A description of the programing levels of your vote from any machine to certification”.)

Command Central Penalizes Crawford County $12,400 July 14, 2012
In Crawford County, when the cartridges were returned it was discovered it would cost $12,400 to view the information. According to Command Central, once the digital information on the cartridges was read they would need to be destroyed. Replacement costs would be $12,000 for which Crawford County tax payers would be liable.

Email from Crawford County Clerk Giesler:

I am sorry that you feel that your open records request has been denied. I do disagree with this statement in that I have tried very diligently to satisfy your request. Because you feel that you have been denied, the voting machine cartridges cannot be returned and will remain in my vault. The taxpayers of Crawford County must now incur costs of $12,400 so that all new cartridges can be burned for the August primary election. I will be providing the Crawford County Independent with the costs for the cartridges as they have requested this information.

The FOIA asking review of election materials was rescinded.

Wisconsin WAVE has yet to report

The only report of any recall findings from Wisconsin Wave recounts (they refer to the counts as “an investigation”) were summarized in a email to members and volunteers some weeks after the election. No official report to the public or press has ever been released by Wisconsin Wave.

What we have found so far includes:
Inconsistent and tamper-prone methods of securing ballot bags
Widespread use of unverifiable touch screen machines in a state where these devices are officially designated as handicap accessible equipment only
And most disturbingly, a number of counties where our hand-counts of paper optiscan ballots often differed from election night totals.

To complete this vital campaign we need your support right now!


Adam Porton
National Director
[The “Donate” button above has been disabled for good reason]

The email goes on to say:

“Finishing up counts in other high priority counties where discrepancies have been found. The bigger our data set, the more complete our picture of these problems will be.
Compiling what percentage of Wisconsin voters used unverifiable touch-screen voting machines. Unbelievably, this information is not compiled by the state election authority, and so normally is not available to the public (or anyone for that matter).

Whatever happened to the money?

Wisconsin Wave is not listed on the Wisconsin Department of Revenue list as a non-profit organization under its own name. Wave is publicly associated with “The Liberty Tree Foundation” which appears to serve as an umbrella for Wave collections. “Liberty Tree Foundation for the Democratic Revolution, Inc.” is listed and the form 990 of income and expenditures for “Liberty Tree” is public record and can be found at by inputting the “Liberty Tree” in a search engine at: Guidestar.org

The form 990 shows the contributions, gifts, grants, and similar amounts received as $138,791 from July 1, 2011 thru June 30, 2012. The recall election was on June 5, so contributions to that effort would be reflected in the period from before the election thru June 30.

The total revenue (line 9) is reported at $150,369.

In Part III

The only entry describing the organization’s program accomplishments is “Civil rights, social advocacy and action programs, provide support to pro democracy campaigns in the form of policy research, publications, legal assistance, consultive services, and the convening of pro-democracy organizers. Total expenditure: $166,792 (No further breakdown describes any reference to election integrity of election investigation)

In part IV, one salary is reported to Benjamin Manski of $25,205 plus $5,593 in benefits.

Further on at Schedule “0” the larger expenditures are for “travel” $10,639 and “web” at $17,390.

Ben Manski and Adam Porton did not return calls placed to clarify the form 990 information.

Two basic questions must be answered by WAVE/Liberty Tree Foundation

How much money was collected by WAVE/Liberty Tree to investigate the June 5, 2012 recall election and, since no public report of any findings discovered through the audit/investigation was produced, how were the collected funds used?

A new election season is approaching and election integrity activists are in disarray due to the lack of transparency, incompetence, and irresponsibility in public reporting left in wake of the WAVE’s recall investigation. Grass roots organizations, hoping to develop new strategies to insure integrity in the 2014 election cycle, remain disoriented and confused by the past promises and actions taken on by WAVE. Experienced people and groups, who have been working to expose the real problems with machine voting since 2011 with a documented history of progress, are left struggling in the wake of the WAVE’s problematic entrance on the scene. WAVE needs to come forward to account for its funding and findings, or the suffer the consequences when the 2014 election cycle passes without organized strategies to protect the vote.

Please visit my “other blog” for news of my new play “House of Monkeys” – a musical romp through the love, life, and work of Moliere!

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