USA: Secret Group Manipulates Vote Machines


Richard Moore

From: "Tim Murphy" <•••@••.•••>
To: <•••@••.•••>
Subject: USA: Secret Group Manipulates Electronic Voting Machines
Date: Fri, 25 Apr 2003 17:44:33 +0100

Secret Group Manipulates Vote Machines

The widespread use of electronic voting machines has
severely undermined the integrity of elections in the
United States. Behind the companies that make the
voting machines is a small and secretive group of men,
including a well-known U.S. senator.

Exclusive to American Free Press

By Christopher Bollyn

The mid-term elections have been described as
"revolutionary" due to the unusual success of
Republican candidates while a president from the same
party occupied the White House.

However, the upset election results that heralded the
Republican revolution have been accompanied by a
credibility gap because of the historic devolution in
how Americans cast their votes.

As a result of the 2000 election fiasco in Florida,
expensive electronic voting machines have replaced
paper ballot voting systems in a growing number of
jurisdictions across the United States.

However, the electronic touch-screen voting and
ballot-counting machines lack the transparency and
credibility of hand-counted paper ballots.

Furthermore, troubling revelations about the people who
are invested in the companies that make these voting
machines raise a host of serious questions about the
condition of the democratic franchise in the United

The companies that design, build, and operate most of
the voting machines currently being used are privately
held and secretive. Before the 2000 elections, when
this reporter tried to learn who owned Omaha-based
Electronic Systems and Software (ES&S), the largest
voting machine company in the United States, the
information was simply not available.

ES&S, whose motto is "Better elections every day,"
claims to have counted 100 million ballots in the 2000
election and 56 percent of the vote in the last four
presidential elections. However, company officials have
repeatedly refused to discuss the security of their
voting machines or divulge who owns and directs the

Two independent writers, Bev Harris of and
journalist Lynn Landes of, have
investigated the voting machine companies operating in
the United States and have discovered a number of
political connections to the Republican Party and a
well-known senator from Nebraska.


According to Nebraska's Elections Office, ES&S is the
only voting machine company certified to count votes in
the state. A small percentage of the vote in Nebraska
is still hand-counted.

ES&S was formed in 1997 by a merger of Omaha-based
American Information Systems (AIS) and Dallas-based
Business Records Corp. (BRC). BRC was partially owned
by Cronus Industries, a company with connections to the
Hunt brothers from Texas, as well as other individuals
and entities, including Rothschild, Inc.

In 1997, American Information Systems was an
unincorporated, wholly-owned subsidiary of the Omaha
World-Herald Company according to a Department of
Justice press release about the merger of AIS with BRC.
American Information Systems' 1996 sales in all of its
product lines were about $14.3 million.

Nebraska-born Charles T. "Chuck" Hagel moved to Omaha
in 1992 to become chairman of AIS and the McCarthy
Group, a private investment bank, Harris told AFP.

AIS was the voting machine company that counted the
votes by which Hagel was elected to the Senate in 1996.
Hagel had only resigned as CEO of AIS in 1995.

Josh Denney, spokesman for Sen. Hagel's Washington
office, told AFP that Hagel had been chairman of the
board at AIS "for about a year." Denney said that Hagel
had resigned from the AIS board on March 15, 1995, but
had continued to serve as president of McCarthy and
Co., until 1996.

Today, Hagel has investments in the renamed Mc Carthy
Group worth between $1 million and $5 million,
according to documents published by Harris on her web

Because the McCarthy Group reportedly owns some 35
percent of ES&S, Harris has raised the matter of
Hagel's investment in a company that counts the votes
in Nebraska. Omaha World-Herald reportedly owns about
45 percent of ES&S.

Lawyers representing ES&S have recently asked Harris to
remove the documents and information from her web site.
Harris, however, has not removed the material, saying
that voters need to know who owns the companies that
make voting machines to avoid any possible
conflict-of-interest issues.

Two brothers, Bob and Todd Urosevich, founded AIS in
the 1980s. Today Bob is president of Diebold Election
Systems, while Todd is a vice president at ES&S.

Diebold Election Systems, Inc., a wholly owned
operating subsidiary of Diebold, Inc., recently won a
$54 million contract to overhaul Georgia's election
system technology.

Georgia became the first state in the country to
implement a uniform statewide computerized touch-screen
voting system.

The Diebold system was sold to voters in Georgia as a
"state-of-the-art system" that is "more accurate,
convenient and accessible to voters."

The electronic touch-screen system does not provide a
verifiable paper trail, which degrades the credibility
of the results.


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