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Monday, 28 January 2008 09:01

In Too Many Elections, Voters Remain 'Uncounted,' Miscounted or Denied the Right to Vote, As Filmmaker David Earnhardt Shows Us

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A BUZZFLASH INTERVIEW

For me, it's quite simple. I was appalled at what I'd seen in the 2004 election ...

-- David Earnhardt, Director of Uncounted

* * *

First of all, BuzzFlash wants to commend all those Americans who are working to ensure that every citizen can vote -- and that every vote is properly counted.

Since the debacle of the Florida vote in 2000, there has been a growing movement to ensure voting rights. It involves the unacceptable role of proprietary electronic voting machines (owned in large part by Republican affiliated corporations); the suppression of voting rights (think "Jim Crow" voter "identification cards"); and equal access to voting precincts, among other issues.

It's a complicated and long-term challenge to ensure that the legal right of "one person/one vote" is enforced -- and that a vote count accurately reflects the votes cast. Given the large number of issues involved, the voter advocacy community has, at times, disagreed about some of the potential solutions, particularly when it comes to electronic voting machines.

As for BuzzFlash, we believe that if there is not a count of paper ballots to audit any electronic total, then there is no possibility of ensuring an accurate vote count. We also believe that no private corporations should own any proprietary software that is not completely transparent. Unless one can count paper ballot "trails" (which can be thought of as "receipts,") there is always room for monkey business. (In fact, having publicly owned electronic voting machines that produce printed ballots that can be reviewed and checked for accuracy by the voter allows for cross-matching totals to ensure a correct count. Remember that paper ballots alone can also be abused. That's how the term "stuffing the ballot box" came into being.)

All of this leads us into recommending Uncounted, an excellent, informative documentary about the broad range of election integrity issues that confront us as a nation. Uncounted distills the most important problems confronting advocates for allowing every eligible voter to cast a ballot -- and then making sure that the ballots are accurately counted.

We were delighted to interview David Earnhardt, who produced, directed and wrote Uncounted.

* * *


BuzzFlash: We've seen your film, Uncounted, The New Math of American Elections. Your film is exceptional in how it presents a narrative about what is really quite a complex issue to follow. What motivated you to undertake a film like this on the voting issue, let alone distribute it on your own, show it around the country on your own?

David Earnhardt: For me, it's quite simple. I was appalled at what I'd seen in the 2004 election, and then, coupled that with, after the election was over and after Kerry conceded, watching the media just go away. From a mainstream media standpoint, there was no looking into many of the problems that had been observed on Election Day.

There was lots of great work going on on the Internet. There was great investigating going on in Ohio and New Mexico, from the legal standpoint, from the alternative journalistic standpoint. But in terms of the mainstream media, it did not exist. I was just naïve enough to be shocked. I just could not believe it. I thought we'd sort of fallen into a parallel universe.

And for me, like a lot of people, the 2004 election felt like a very important election. It felt like the stakes were very high. We closed down our office that day. Many of us wanted to go out and get involved, door to door, to encourage people to vote. My wife and I did that kind of thing for the first time. And I was struck by several interactions I had in a neighborhood that we were in.

It was a fairly low economic neighborhood. When I knocked on the door -- and this happened on three or four different occasions -- I would encourage people to get out and vote. The sentiment was something to the effect -- different forms of this - look, I'm not going to vote. This is not for me. This is not anything that has to do with me. They've already decided who's going to win. It's that kind of language. I'm saying, no, no, no, that's what they want you to do -- not go out and vote. You've got to get out there. You've got to. It was that kind of interaction.

I realized later that I was the naïve one. There was a certain truth in there that I was missing, and it upset me. I thought: my gosh, we really don't take this right very seriously. So I went to work. I went to work immediately and started studying everything I could. I decided, I'm going to find everything I can, and at least consider doing a documentary. Eventually I had enough material to where we could pull the trigger and say let's keep going. Let's do something on this. Let's try to get this issue out there.

BuzzFlash: Yours is the second film we've seen in the last year that is of a tremendous quality and very compelling that was made as a first-time feature effort. I assume this was a first-time feature effort for you?

David Earnhardt: Yes, it is.

BuzzFlash: This is your profession on a commercial basis. No End in Sight was also an extremely compelling film done by a gentleman we've interviewed who was the producer, director and script writer -- I don't know if you've seen it.

David Earnhardt: I have not.

BuzzFlash: It's an incredible film very focused on the mismanagement of the oversight of Iraq, post-invasion, and how the Bush administration completely bungled the administrative responsibilities of trying to reconstruct a country. In your case, you talk about the various ways in which people were denied the right to vote, or when the votes were inaccurately counted.

David Earnhardt: Yes.

BuzzFlash: Why did it hit you in 2004, not in 2000?

David Earnhardt: It did hit me in 2000. I just think I understood it on a deeper level in 2004, because it seemed more blatant. In 2000. I was especially affected by the heavy emphasis on the hanging chads and all that was one thing, when so little attention was given to the suppression of tens of thousands of votes, primarily African Americans, supposedly because they were ex-felons. But they really had similar names as ex-felons and so were stripped from the rolls. And that story was just kind of buried.

That was kind of a foundation for me in going into 2004. My eyes were wide open. And I thought that the media's eyes would be wide open. That's what surprised me. I think people so much did not want to go back to that trauma in 2000 -- people were ready to move on. And I mean everybody. People just kind of perceived that it was a comfortable margin, that Bush had the three million vote margin in the popular vote and thought, that's good enough for me. It's not really so close like 537 votes was in 2000. People forget that it really was one state where all kinds of shenanigans were going on. And Ohio would determine this election. If it had gone the other way in Ohio, Kerry would be our president.

BuzzFlash: Ohio wasn't the only issue in 2004. It just happened to become a pivotal state that decided the election.

But one of the things that we really liked about Uncounted was you covered the full array of voter suppression. We've seen a variety of articles and press releases focusing on different aspects of voter suppression. The biggest attention-getter is the electronic voting machines. But if you look at Ohio and at other states where Republicans have been in power, they've attempted to pass laws that suppress votes and keep people from voting even before they get to the electronic voting machines.

David Earnhardt: I agree totally. The electronic voting is scary, and it is the single most scary thing going on. But some much more insidious things that directly prevent people from voting don't get the same kind of play. All these ID laws that the Supreme Court is weighing in on in Indiana, or the ID law passed in Georgia, are supposedly to prevent vote fraud, where supposedly people are illegally voting. Well, it's a fake issue. Even with so much emphasis on trying to find voting fraud, they're not finding it. They're not able to prosecute cases on that.

And yet we're enacting this whole set of laws that make it more difficult to vote, more expensive to vote -- kind of a modern-day poll tax. This is having the effect of making it more difficult for large groups of people to vote. And that's a new form of voter suppression. That's probably the number-one thing going into the 2008 election. I just worry that state after state is going to enact these laws. And it tends to be Republican-dominated state legislatures that are enacting these laws that mostly affect the Democratic vote. It really affects how we look at things going into the 2008 election.

BuzzFlash: On BuzzFlash we first became educated about this issue shortly after the 2000 Florida theft of the election, when Greg Palast highlighted the caging list that had been assembled by then-Secretary of State in Florida, Katherine Harris, using the Republican-related firm, Choice Point. As Palast pointed out, even before they counted the votes -- putting aside hanging chads and whatever for the moment -- 80 to 90 thousand primarily African Americans were disenfranchised because they were put on this "felons' list." Many of them were not felons. Katherine Harris' office instructed them to come up with the widest possible list, so if you had two Andrew Johnsons, for instance, and only one was a felon, they were both not allowed to vote.

David Earnhardt: Well, I remember one of the stats that still floors me to this day is that 97% of the people on that list did not belong on that list. It was literally 3% of them that were correctly identified.

BuzzFlash: One point Greg Palast makes is that while it's extremely important to focus on the electronic voting, there's no doubt, as you point out so persuasively in Uncounted, that we must be careful what are we doing with proprietary companies that assert proprietary control over software to count a public vote. It's mind-boggling. But beyond that, Ken Blackwell in Ohio, as an example, basically tried to remove as many people as possible from the polls by defining the rules for counting provisional ballots.

David Earnhardt: Yes.

BuzzFlash: With the provisional ballots, you wouldn't get counted, or your vote was shoved to the side and didn't really play a role in the outcome.

David Earnhardt: That's right.

BuzzFlash: But it also sets a tone. A lot of people fear if, maybe they've had a run-in with the law or something, or they're just part of a minority that's used to the authorities kind of coming down on them, they just don't go to polls because they don't want trouble.

David Earnhardt: That's right. It sets up an intimidating atmosphere, instead of setting up an atmosphere that encourages voting. There tends to be an intimidating atmosphere for this.

I'm glad you brought up the provisional balloting, because that's, again, an example of something that seemed like a good thing when it came into being. It was addressing the fact that people would go in, and they weren't listed on rolls, and they were told you can't vote. There was no option for it. So they added this provisional balloting initiative. At least there's a way to vote.

The problem is that they started challenging more and more people. The U.S. Election Assistance Commission's own figures said that two million people had provisional ballots in the 2004 election. Greg Palast added a count for the states that didn't report, and estimated it more at three million. And a third of those didn't get counted at all.

In essence, they don't get counted on election day. You don't hear those news reporters saying: okay, these are our vote totals. It doesn't include the provisional ballots. They're reporting it and saying so-and-so has won. And then these ballots may get counted many days later. So that's another tactic, that gets more and more people to provisional balloting, and, in essence, those ballots don't get counted. Just to put it in graphic form, what that really shows us in the 2004 election is that two to three million people went to the trouble to go to polls to do their civic duty, feeling that they were registered. And they were told they were not eligible. It just kind of boggles the imagination to think that somebody would go to that trouble. We just need to make it easy. We need to make it where it's encouraging people to vote, instead of discouraging.

BuzzFlash: Well, Kenneth Blackwell, who was Ohio's Secretary of State in 2004, Republican again, was suppressing African American votes in a lot of different ways. One of them that you detail was that in minority districts as well as student college areas, a disproportionate number of districts had insufficient voting machines and the lines stretched for hours.

David Earnhardt: That's right. And even the Columbus Dispatch, which is a fairly conservative newspaper traditionally, did a report. They showed a pattern that between 2000 and 2004, the Democratic precincts tended to have less machines, and the precincts that went Republican in 2000 tended to have more machines in 2004. That misallocation basically created the long lines.

And then you had the situation where there were a number of machines sitting in the warehouse that were available. So it was not a machine shortage. It begs the question of how that happened.

But the main thing is that all across the State of Ohio, you saw lines, particularly in inner-city, African American precincts, that were two, three, five hours, seven hours long. And at Kenyon College the lines were up to fifteen hours. They had two machines there, one of which was broken in the first couple of hours of the day. And that was happening all across the State of Ohio.

At the same time, when you went into the suburban precincts that tended to be more for Bush, the lines were very short. It was just so brazen, to see that going on.

When you look at the exit polls, on top of everything else, in Ohio, there was a difference of 6.7% between the exit poll and the final tabulated votes in Ohio. And that's the votes that actually got counted.

Starting with Blackwell being the Chair of the Reelect George Bush campaign, much like a repeat of Katherine Harris in 2000 in Florida, it seems like there was a great deal of effort put into Ohio. That's the point. Ohio gets a lot of attention, but really it was going on all across the country. I think, correctly seen, Ohio was the pivotal state, and a lot of resources were put into that to make sure that state fell the right way.

BuzzFlash: Let's move again through this very complex topic of electronic voting. And I would recommend to anyone, as I think you would, Brad Friedman's blog at bradblog.com, which does a very good job of focusing on the entire issue of voter disenfranchisement. You have very lucidly in this film explained the electronic voting issue. Two things really struck me in your film. First of all, you have a woman who shows very simply, exactly how a vote can be changed on a laptop. Can you just explain that scene? It's about exactly what can happen if someone is controlling the software and no one else knows how to control the software.

David Earnhardt: Yes, that's Teresa Hommel out of New York. The beauty of her demonstration is that it's not just about the technology to flip the vote. I think that's what throws people, is that they say: well, it can be programmed to do that. And of course, that's what she did do for the demonstration. She programmed the vote to flip.

Her larger point is that if you're an election official and the vote gets flipped, and you can't get inside the machine itself, and the private company doesn't allow you to look at it, when the vote gets flipped, it still shows there was a vote. The election official only sees that a voter voted. You see they voted for somebody. You see no problems. It looks like a clean election.

That's because you can't know. So if private companies run these machines, if they have proprietary software, if they count the votes without any kind of observation by public citizens, even by the election officials themselves, which is inherent in the technology itself, then you can't see anything that's going on.

BuzzFlash: And she just shows you how it flips. But then you can just change the outcome.

David Earnhardt: That's right.

BuzzFlash: A software adjustment.

David Earnhardt: All of these things can be changed. Audit trails can be changed. You can have a paper record that's been put in your hand. It can say that you voted for this. But if what gets counted is what's in the machine, that's what's counted, not what's on the piece of paper that supposedly confirms who you voted for. That's not a ballot -- that's the bottom line.

How I try to explain this to people is that it really is a paper-ballot mentality. If a machine gives off a piece of paper, the only reason that matters at all is if that paper supercedes what's in the machine itself. Does that piece of paper that says who you voted for -- and you look at, and you verify -- does that become the ballot of record? Then we're starting to get in the right direction.

Now there are still plenty of problems with that. But if that's what gets counted -- that piece of paper -- it's a start. The problem is, a lot of times with the legislation for so-called paper trails or paper records, that's not necessarily what becomes counted in full. Sometimes it's a partial recount of them. Still, the bottom line is usually what's in that machine. And that's the real problem because you can just program the machines easily too many different ways to not say what the intent of the voter is.

BuzzFlash: I think one of the strengths of Uncounted is that you have a compelling narrative that brings you from beginning to end and threads this together, which is very challenging, given the complexity of this topic and the many different ways the Republicans are willing to disenfranchise people. But getting back to some solutions, you had focused somewhat on an inventor who has since died in an automobile accident who developed something called TruVote.

David Earnhardt: That's correct. Athan Gibbs.

BuzzFlash: He was an African American entrepreneur. When watching it, I thought: my God, this is ingenious. A solution to our electronic voting problem. Can you explain what it is?

David Earnhardt: He basically had the concept of developing software for a computer which would, in essence, be an electronic voting machine, so that the machine produced a paper ballot that showed you who you voted for. You could examine it. You could make sure it's correct. And then it would go into the ballot box. And that would be what would get counted.

Now in his concept, at that time, the machine would still do the counting. But the bottom line was that what had gone into that ballot box was the vote of record. his concept was still that the machine would count for convenience, and get a quick total out there. But you still developed a paper ballot that was the vote of record.

Now keep a context here. This was right after the 2000 election. This was a man that saw millions of votes go untallied in the 2000 election, and he said: I've got to do something. I'm an ordinary citizen. I'm an accountant. This should not be a complicated procedure. I'm going to work on it. I'm going to do what I can to develop something.

Now this was at a time where you had other manufacturers developing machines that had no backup -- none at all. Diebold, an ATM machine maker, clearly had the ability to do the technology with paper backup. But these were the machines that were going out on the marketplace.

Gibbs was making some real inroads. He had formed a good alliance with Rep. Cynthia McKinney, and she had worked with him to meet with the right people in the State of Georgia. They ended up going with all the Diebold machines. He was about to meet with the State of California at the time of this law. Things were starting to happen. He had gotten a great infusion of capital from Microsoft, who had been very interested in what he was doing. So the momentum was really building for what he was doing, and that's when he died in an accident.

BuzzFlash: Would his software have been open to the public?

David Earnhardt: I really don't know that because I did not meet the man. But I'll tell you my instinct about it, which is yes. I think he wanted everything to be transparent. With him, the whole process was something that needed to be open.

BuzzFlash: As you said, they don't want to wait until the next morning to count all the paper ballots. The TV stations want to know, and so forth. If we go back to Miami-Dade County in 2000, if they had had the TruVote machines, and everyone had a look at their ballot and said, yes, I voted for Al Gore, and they put it in a box, then all we would have had to do was for Al Gore to say, I want a recount of the paper ballots. And the paper ballots are the final ultimate determination of what the vote is.

David Earnhardt: Yes. The person examines it -- has seen it, and puts it in. Now you and I both know the whole history of voting in this country -- shenanigans from Tammany Hall, to Lyndon Johnson in the late forties, to Nixon-Kennedy in Chicago. These ballot boxes themselves can be stuffed, manipulated, and so on. But electronic voting does make it possible for someone to massively shift vote totals with the electronic touch-screen technology, or electronic technology in general. You really do have to have the potential of a hand count.

BuzzFlash: At the end of the evening, the machine counts the vote, and there's a preliminary vote count. But you're saying that would be pending the actual counting of the paper.

David Earnhardt: Absolutely. And again, I would have to emphasize that the bottom line is that the paper ballot be the official record. Personally, I'm a paper ballot guy. I think it's just as easy to mark a paper ballot. It works in many countries that have done this -- sophisticated countries like Germany. Computer scientists themselves will tell you that computers are just not a good thing for voting. It's just not a good mechanism. There's too many security issues. It's too difficult. The code is too complicated. It's just not needed because it's actually a very simple accounting act. And marking a ballot is a very simple thing to do. However, you know, if we are going to have electronics, and if we are going to have something where it does need to be there for the speed society and the attention-deficit society, if we need instant results, then that's fine as long as that is a provisional ballot. That is simply a provisional count. The bottom line is that the final results are in when those paper ballots are counted.

BuzzFlash: I have to admit there's something to be said for the Iowa caucuses, where your body is your vote. That's utter transparency. You put your name and body out there, and everyone knows you're for a given candidate because your body is there as the vote.

David Earnhardt: That's true.

BuzzFlash: But that aside, it's been an American tradition in general, outside of the caucuses, to have privacy in voting.

David Earnhardt: It's private.

BuzzFlash: And that seems reasonable. How about this idea? I go and vote a machine. The machine prints out a paper ballot. But it holds my vote for a moment. The paper ballot comes out and says please confirm that the ballot in your hand matches this number -- 1,042. And you then circle 1,042. Then if there's any question, the paper ballot can be matched against the computer to see if that's the same or if there's been some monkey business going on. Because 1,042 printed ballot should match the 1,042 electronic ballot.

David Earnhardt: Yes. And, again, you could confirm that your ballot is accurate. You could say I've looked at my ballot. I confirm it. I signed here. But it doesn't attach to the ballot itself.

BuzzFlash: That's another way of doing it. Normally, where I vote, they give you a sleeve for your punchcard ballot, an opti-scan. They give you a sleeve to put it in so no one sees the punchcard ballot. Privacy is preserved as it's fed into the machine. You could do the same thing with this sort of ballot.

David Earnhardt: Right. But honestly, Mark, telling Athan Gibbs' story for me was more about showing the spirit of the man who really wanted to do something, and do something that could make a difference and make everybody's vote count more properly.

BuzzFlash: It's an idea that works.

David Earnhardt: It is. It's a beautiful thing. And he's a beautiful man -- and a beautiful thing that the company was trying to do. I love what he was trying to do. But in my heart of hearts, where I think we need to transform as a country is to the beauty and simplicity of paper ballots. It's very simple. You mark a ballot. You put it in a box. It's private. Then precinct by precinct, votes are counted. Observers from all parties are observing the process, it's counted in public. You do it as a volunteer citizen's action. It's a very beautiful, democratic image. And it's very public. And then you report it.

It's the ultimate demonstration of democracy.

BuzzFlash: We're based in Chicago, and there's a history here of, when the polling booths close, people stuff the ballot box.

David Earnhardt: Sure.

BuzzFlash: So in some ways, electronic voting may have an advantage. If you take away the proprietary software and privatization of the voting machines -- make them completely transparent as TruVote wanted them to be -- you actually could have potentially the electronic voting machine as a balance to the paper ballot, so that someone couldn't stuff the paper ballot box.

David Earnhardt: That's very true. I don't disagree with that at all. I think the key, as we said there, that it's open sourced and it's very clear that the totals that are in the machine are really what the intent of the voters were. The big slippery slope on anything is just making sure that if computers are involved, they're completely open-sourced, completely observable. And that's a challenge.

BuzzFlash: Well, with a paper ballot, you don't run into a problem that you do with a hanging chad. You get a printout.

David Earnhardt: That's right. And, there is an element of this which has to do with how certain segments of the Republican Party may have been doing things to manipulate elections. But ultimately this is a non-partisan issue. Everybody's got a stake in this being run correctly. I'm going to say the high, high majority of people want a system in which their vote gets counted. In this day and age, because the Republicans are in power throughout most of the country, even with the shift over in 2006, they're in the best position to manipulate the system. There are, of course, certain pockets where there's still old-line Democratic Party's control, where the Democratic Party is more in a position to manipulate. So it is more of a question of power and control, in terms of being able to manipulate the voting process.

But what I found, at the screenings we've done -- with moderates, progressives, a smattering of Republicans -- when you get them in a room, and they observe the film, and they see how there's so many different ways that our election system is basically corrupt -- people do not want that, as public citizens. That's not how we were raised to believe it's supposed to work.

It's quite hard with the film to try to emphasize the non-partisan aspects of that. It's very difficult to do that because so much of the corruption in the last ten years has mostly gone in one way. And we can't run away from that. So often our film will get tagged by critics as a partisan film. And that's very frustrating to me, because I don't see this as partisan at all. I think you have to tell the truth of things that are going on. Ultimately, this is an issue that affects us all, and everybody's got a stake in it -- Republican, Democrat, Green Party -- everybody.

BuzzFlash: Let me again urge our BuzzFlash readers to buy your film and to look at it because it's a very, very lucid primer to this issue, and explains it in a very accessible way.

David Earnhardt: Thank you.

BuzzFlash: Also very professionally edited, but that's your business.

David Earnhardt: Thank you. This issue is important. People respond to something that's put together in a very professional manner because it gives it a sense that we're not just kidding around. This isn't a fringe issue. This is something for all of us.

BuzzFlash: My last question to you is about disenfranchisement. Right now, it's the Republicans that have tried to disenfranchise Democrats, basically, and the easiest way to do that is to go after minorities. They've had a multi-faceted approach to that, which we saw in Prosecutorgate. Some of the U.S. Attorneys who were appointed were asked to drum up even one case of Democratic voter fraud, even if it hardly existed, to create a case so that the Republican legislatures would then say: you see, there's voter fraud. We have to implement voter ID legislation or something of this nature.

David Earnhardt: Yes, they had all that pressure. People lost their jobs who didn't play ball.

BuzzFlash: An integral factor in Prosecutorgate was whether the prosecutors would indeed pursue trumped-up charges or the most minor of charges to create a context for Republican legislatures to demand the basically contemporary version of Jim Crow laws.

David Earnhardt: That's right. Modern poll taxes.

BuzzFlash: We know that fooling around with ballots has not been the territory of one particular party if you look back over the history of the United States. But right now, it's the Republicans who clearly are in a very strategic way, nationally, trying to disenfranchise a large group of people. Our country was founded behind the motivation of representation, and as the Supreme Court decided back in the Sixties, one person, one vote.

David Earnhardt: That's right.

BuzzFlash: The Republican Party seems to be under the assumption that if you're wealthy and white, yes, there's one person, one vote. But if you're poor, you don't have the resources, you're a minority, your vote isn't necessarily as valid, and we can take it away, or we'll try to take it away. It undermines the most basic concept of democracy, that regardless of one's income, regardless of one's race, regardless of one's gender, you are entitled to vote. my vote is as equal to Bill Gates' vote or Warren Buffett's. Someone who is a poor Latino worker in a hotel in Nashville -- her vote is equal to George Bush's.

David Earnhardt: That's right.

BuzzFlash: And the assumption that we've seen from the Republicans in 2000, 2004 and 2006 is that that is not the case.

David Earnhardt: That's what gets me fired up. I think that's what gets a lot of people fired up. And I'd like to see even more people honoring the history of those who fought and died for the right to vote. Women died for the right to vote, for women's suffrage. African Americans died for the right to vote. And for it to really not matter, for the vote to be disregarded, disrespected, and not given the proper weight of one person, one vote, it invalidates all that history of where people fought and died for this right.

That's what we need to remember at this moment. That's how important it is. It's kind of the core of everything about who we are as a country. When people finally get the issue, that's what they realize is being messed with, and that's what makes people mad.

I hope that part of what we do with our film is that we share this very difficult information. And when people watch it, you always hear murmurs, groans. You hear -- it's painful. It's hard. I've seen this thing fifty, sixty times in screenings, and it still bothers me to hear it.

What we're trying to do is juxtapose that with people like Steve Heller, and Bruce Funk and Clint Curtis -- individual people who have taken a stand -- saying no, you can't do this. This is wrong. I am a single public figure that's going to stop and say you can't do that. I hope that's what our movie does as much as anything, is to balance this difficult information with people that we can be inspired by who are actually taking action. That's really the core of democracy -- taking action to say you can't do that with my vote. You can't do that with my country. You can't mess with this democracy in that way.

That's what I hope. And I hope we find the right balance, because I hate for people just to walk away from a film and just say: damn, there's nothing I can do. You don't want people to feel like, no, I'm not going to bother to vote. You want people to walk away and feel like they want to do something. And that's how people are leaving the film. They want to do something. They want to share it with others, and they want to do their part. That makes me feel good.

BuzzFlash: Thank you very much. A fine film, and we recommend it. Thanks again for doing this. You didn't have to do, and you produced a great, informative, educational tool about enfranchising Americans.

David Earnhardt: Thanks for sticking with it. A lot of people have walked away. You stayed with it, and that means a lot. That keeps the word going.

BuzzFlash Interview conducted by Mark Karlin.

* * *

Resources

Uncounted, The New Math of American Elections, directed by David Earnhardt, a BuzzFlash premium.

David Earnhardt, articles at OpEdNews.com

David Earnhardt bio, at 'Uncounted' website

The Bradblog

Black Box Voting

The Free Press

Robert Koehler

John Conyers -- What Went Wrong In Ohio

Read 589 times Last modified on Thursday, 31 January 2008 12:48