As many as 22,000 voters, mostly black democrats, were "accidentally" stricken from Florida voter registration lists, keeping them from being able to vote in the 2000 election. This was done in what was supposed to be an attempt to clean up the voter registration lists by removing dead persons and convicted felons from the lists of applicable voters. This was done through the use of a private company named DBT, under the supervision of Jeb Bush and Katherine Harris, who was paid over 4 million dollars to review and "correct" the voter registration lists. It turns out that up to 95% of the people that they struck from the list as felons were incorrectly struck.
Ninety five percent! That is unacceptable, and in fact, if correct, smells of intentional misconduct.
This issue was not even covered in the American media - at all. No major news agency ran this story, or has run it since, yet the fact remains that the company DBT failed to comply with the terms of its contract, was paid over 4 million dollars to do what it did, and it prevented as many as 22,000 legitimate voters from being able to vote in Florida.
Florida is the only state in the union to implement such "voter scrubbing" policies and employ private companies to do the work.
DBT was given the following instructions by the Florida Division of Elections:
"Obviously, we want to capture more names that possibly aren't matches and let [county election] supervisors make a final determination rather than exclude certain matches altogether."
This conveniently put an undo burden on the local agencies, and the result was the predictable exclusion of many legitimate voters from the voting process.
DBT and other "voter scrubbing" institutions around the country are heavily linked to conservative Republicans including Helen Blackwell, who's husband was a member of the Reagan administration, and Bernard Marcus, a major Republican contributor and chairman of Home Depot.
The issue is this, the decision to use private company DBT was in the control of Jeb Bush and Katherine Harris. It was recognized prior to the 2000 presidential election that there were serious flaws in the system that resulted in a large number of minorities and lower income people being wrongly purged from voter lists. The decision was made to continue with the program despite evidence that the program was wildly unreliable and disproportionately wrongly identified people likely to vote Democrat as people to be purged from voter lists.
I am confident that had the analysis of the data revealed that over 50% of the people set to be purged from voter lists were wealthy white corporate citizens that the program would have either been suspended or altered. It was allowed to go forward under the claim that its objectives, keeping a handful of convicted felons from voting, were more important then the protections of the rights of thousands of innocent people.
In the end thousands of people were denied the right to vote that should never have been denied that right, over 50% of them black in a state where only 11% of the population is black and 93% of blacks voted for Gore.
A special update on this issue shows that ChoicePoint, the company that bought DBT, is now enjoying increased access to data and is in fact getting more government contracts. This company cost America a legitimate election, period! Now that Bush is in office due to the "errors" of DBT/ChoicePoint laws have been passed enabling this company, and more like it, greater access to data on private citizens and its contracts are being increased. They were never punished in any way at all; in fact they have been rewarded.
Not only that, but their actions are inflaming the entire international community due to illegal acquisition of data from foreign counties.
For more on this updated story see:
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