Video the Vote catches election problems, but gets allegations of bias from election officials
Video the Vote, a group that organizes citizen journalists has run afoul of election officials in West Virginia. Officials are threatening to file a civil rights complaint after the group posted an edited video of a West Virginian election clerk voting on an uncalibrated touch-screen voting machine, made by Election Systems & Software.
In the video, which was edited down from its original 36 minutes (see the video below) to about 2 minutes (see video at end of post), Jackson County Election Clerk Jeff Waybright shows how a machine can flip votes from one candidate to another if it's not calibrated. But when Waybright calibrates the machine, it appears to still register a vote incorrectly.
In the video, after Waybright calibrates the machine, he marks a vote for Independent candidate Ralph Nader, then pushes a button to vote a straight-party Republican ticket. When the screen displays his straight-party ticket, it shows the vote for Nader still on the screen, instead of one for Republican presidential candidate John McCain. Waybright points at the screen and says, "Ah, it's out of calibration. . . . Ralph Nader came up."
Secretary of State Responds
The office of West Virginia Secretary of State Betty Ireland says Video the Vote, the group that posted the video, intentionally edited it to misrepresent what Waybright demonstrated and called the video false and defamatory, threatening to file a complaint with the Department of Justice.
“Because we feel like they’re trying to scare voters with this video, we believe it may amount to voter suppression, and may warrant a report to the civil rights division at the Department of Justice,” Deputy Secretary Sarah Bailey told a West Virginia Public Broadcasting reporter.