American Democracy? - Money, Super-Delegates, & Hacked Voting Machines

Tyler Durden's picture

Authored by Cynthia McKinney, Op-Ed via,

Jesus once remarked to a wealthy man that “it is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than it is for a rich man to go to heaven.”

Today, we could amend the words of that Biblical reference with the US presidential race underway:

“It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a voter in the US to know and understand the rules regulating the administration of all elections, including elections for President of the United States.”

Let’s start with the phenomenon of what is called a “minority president.” No, that is not a president who identifies as an ethnic or racial minority in the US. A minority president is one who has failed to win a plurality of the votes cast in the race for president, and yet is still able to become President of the United States. This is the exact opposite of what a true democracy would require; perhaps not even a pure democracy would entertain such a position such as the 'Office of the Presidency'. But that is an entirely different matter.

The United States has actually had several minority presidents in its history, while the 21st century began ominously enough with yet another minority President: George W. Bush, the Republican who failed to secure the most votes cast by the people [in the 2000 election, the Supreme Court, in a 5-4 ruling, decided the victor of the race after moving to halt the recount process in the state of Florida].

Both the US House and the US Senate are charged with counting the Electoral College votes, and this is a process in which I have participated. The constitutionally mandated process was circumvented by the precedent-setting Bush v. Gore Supreme Court ruling that instructed future Courts not to use the decision as a precedent!

As this case aptly proved, it’s not the people who have the last word in US elections. It’s a non-democratic construct called the Electoral College that does, except in those rare instances when it doesn’t.

The Electoral College was created by the framers of the US Constitution to ensure that the votes of the plebes did not supersede the interests of the landed gentry. That’s not just my opinion. For example, according to FairVote, an organization with which I have worked in the 2000 Presidential election, a whopping 78 percent of the votes cast were rendered unimportant due to the arcane rules of the Electoral College. They estimate that in 2008, the figure still topped 70 percent.

In order to be declared the winner of the presidency, 270 Electoral College votes are required. But the process is not what could be called transparent. For example, veteran Pro Se litigator Asa Gordon has demonstrated how the Black vote in the US is rendered less relevant by the arcane apportionment rules of the Electoral College. And when the Electoral College is deadlocked, which has happened before, then the matter falls to the United States House of Representatives to decide who will be allowed to serve in the White House.

Hacking Democracy

Add to the above debacles, the US Congress and the election authorities in the 50 states have authorized and encouraged the use of hackable electronic voting machines that are used for vote casting and vote tabulation. Bev Harris and her company, Black Box Voting, has accumulated horror stories surrounding the non-transparency of US elections. I have worked closely with Harris because the danger of these machines is self-evident to everyone except the officials who continue to purchase them for millions of dollars, putting millions of voters’ most precious political asset at risk.



Such a scenario is what led former President Jimmy Carter to comment he “absolutely” could not be elected today under such conditions, going so far as to characterize the United States as an oligarchy, not a democracy.

‘Hacking Democracy’ is only one of the many documentaries to expose the fallibility of the actual voting process in the US. Other documentaries focus on how private money has corrupted its election process.

In addition to the insecure hardware, I am sorry to write that the voter list is kept on an electronic device and if the voter’s name fails to appear on the list, the voter has little recourse.

In the US, votes and vote tabulation processes are done without any traceable back-up procedures. In other words, there is no paper trail - no receipt of a vote, as it were - whatsoever. In one of my Congressional elections in which the electronic voting machines “failed,” not only was I unable to obtain the election data despite a lawsuit having been filed, an expert witness for the state of Georgia testified that voters have to simply “trust” that the announced winner is the actual winner. Meanwhile, candidates have no access to the raw election data because that information is “owned” by Diebold—the company that produced the electronic voting machines and the software used by them (The documentary ‘American Blackout’ tells my own personal story with US elections). It is difficult to place trust in the US election system when we learn about the number of votes cast that go uncounted. In the 2000 Presidential election between Bush and Gore, between two million and five million Americans went to the polls and voted, yet their votes were thrown out, disqualified for any number of reasons. Half of those uncounted votes were cast by Black Americans.

Money, money, money

Add to these procedural vagaries, the influence of private money in US elections and even the pretense of holding transparent, free, and fair elections is stood completely on its head. As I wrote in a previous post, the rules have given rise to super-wealthy individuals who lurk in the shadows while becoming the power behind the public faces of candidates: Marco Rubio has Norman Braman as his closest and most important backer. Hillary Clinton has Haim Saban as one of her top donors; Sheldon Adelson is a “player” at the Presidential level in US politics. Billionaire Donald Trump self-finances his Presidential bid and former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg is rumored to be willing to spend one billion dollars in his still-to-be-announced independent presidential run.

The situation is so dire that one wealthy individual could legally bankroll an entire Congressional campaign and a roundtable of them could do the same with the US Presidency. So-called campaign finance reform blew the existing loopholes wide open instead of closing them. The Citizens United Supreme Court ruling stood the revered Freedom of Speech First Amendment to the US Constitution on its head by allowing a few wealthy donors to have more 'free speech' than 300 million other Americans.

The sad truth is that much of what takes place resembles a horse race, or some kind of political theater designed specifically for public consumption. Each step of the process, whether it’s the hunt for delegates in the political party primary or the hunt for Electoral College votes after nominations have taken place, the real action takes place in the darkest recesses of the system, out of view. One could go so far as to say that the real action of US “democracy” takes place in the shadows.

So, what we are witnessing for public consumption is the hunt for delegates among the presidential contenders in the Republican Party and between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders in the Democratic Party. Until February 1, everything was basically kabuki theatre, advertising in order to lure an ample audience to enhance the profits of the major television, radio broadcasters and newspaper publishers. Donald Trump made this point repeatedly just before he decided to not participate any longer in the pre-February Republican Party Primary debates. He challenged CNN to donate some of its profits from debate ad sales to veterans’ charities—which, of course, CNN refused to do.

On February 1, the first popular voting actually took place. The Iowa Caucuses kicked off the delegate hunt. The Democratic candidates are trying to garner 2,382 delegates to win the nomination; Republican candidates need 1,144. Across the state of Iowa, registered voters gathered to cast their vote for their preferred party primary candidate. Yet the rules for the caucuses are far from straightforward, as are the rules for counting of votes and assignment of delegates.

Thus, several results in the Iowa Democratic caucuses were actually decided by a coin toss; one Clinton precinct captain didn’t even live in the precinct to whose caucus he had been assigned to manage. As a result of the massive confusion as to who actually won the Iowa Caucuses, the Sanders campaign has launched a quest to get the raw vote totals—as yet unavailable from the Iowa or national Democratic Party that declared Clinton the winner.

The next vote took place in the New Hampshire primary, which is different than a caucus. And there, too, the rules change by state for which primary voters are eligible to vote.

The next round of voting will take place on what is called ‘Super Tuesday’ when a number of states allow their voters to express their presidential preferences in primaries. But, that’s only if your preferred presidential candidate has been able to secure ballot access. Not all of the candidates are able to run in all states because each state has its own requirements for gaining ballot access. This is not a problem for either the Democratic or Republican parties, but is a huge issue for other parties. Therefore, most American voters don’t even get to see the full range of candidates and political parties on their ballots!

All of this popular voting is to assign delegates to each candidate. Those delegates will represent their candidate at the political party’s nominating convention. Or at least that’s the way it’s supposed to work. And so, the candidate with the most delegates will win the party’s nomination, right? Well, not necessarily, due to something called “super delegates” who are not bound by the popular vote. So, theoretically, unless Bernie Sanders wins the popular vote by a commanding margin in the Democratic Party primary, Hillary Clinton could actually walk away with the party’s nomination, due to the power of superdelegates whose role is similar to that of the Electoral College—to make sure that the plebes don’t ever really think they are in control. However, if something like that were to occur, the credibility of the Party might take a beating.

So, there you have it. When there is no challenge to the shadow players, everything rolls just fine and the flaws in the system are not clearly evident. But, for candidates who do not have shadow blessing, the election process can become a nightmare. Imagine then, America's increasingly alienated voters trying to overcome all of the information and process hurdles.

And, by the way, not all adult citizens in the US are eligible to vote. In some states, people in the criminal justice system with felonies may forfeit their right to vote altogether. At the same time, some states require state-issued identification cards in order to vote. Even voting machines are positioned by precinct history, not by need. Thus, Blacks voting in Ohio and other places around the country waited for hours to vote while White majority precincts had no wait at all to vote.

It is little wonder, then, that so few citizens of voting age actually participate in the process. According to one study, only approximately 55 percent of the voting age population actually voted in 2012. For citizens tying to unravel all of the rules and regulations, how a candidate moves through the process to become a nominee and then incumbent is “a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma.”

So the next time the victor of a US presidential race system says that he or she will destabilize a foreign government or wage a war against a foreign country in order to 'fight for democracy', the entire world, led most of all by the voters of the United States, should greet the news with a hearty laugh.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
Jtrillian's picture

Don't forget the electoral college.

Full Nelson's picture

I believe thats the Electrical College.

TeamDepends's picture

Shockingly, Americans don't realize that they are a Constitutional Republic, not a lowly democracy. Wake up, sleepy dreamer!

Goliath Slayer's picture

What about those who bribe politicians and own Congress

0b1knob's picture

The superdelegates were added to keep an unelectable nut like Sanders from getting the nomination.   So they are doing exactly what they were designed to do.

JamesBond's picture

You cast your vote in the very last presidential election to be held in the united states. Something to tell your grandchildren.  




cheka's picture

you can never beat one of them that is sitting on a choke point - heads of party, key committees, etc

choke points untouchables include pelosi, schumer, reid, mcconnell, barney frank (retired), mccain, paul ryan, etc..

the satanists maintain absolute control with the choke points

cheka's picture

a good article until i got to this:


And, by the way, not all adult citizens in the US are eligible to vote. In some states, people in the criminal justice system with felonies may forfeit their right to vote altogether. At the same time, some states require state-issued identification cards in order to vote. Even voting machines are positioned by precinct history, not by need. Thus, Blacks voting in Ohio and other places around the country waited for hours to vote while White majority precincts had no wait at all to vote.


we need LESS voters, not more.  fsa (and others) should be stripped.  free-sh-t voters should not have a say about stealing money from the productive

wee-weed up's picture



Yep, ol' disgraced "W" is now campaigning for his pitiful brother Jeb.

Poor Jeb, now everyone KNOWS he has no fukin' clue!

VinceFostersGhost's picture



Got a friend.....he'll take care of those pesky SCOTUS judges for you.


Surprisingly cheap.

The Alarmist's picture

"The superdelegates were added to keep an unelectable nut like Sanders from getting the nomination.   So they are doing exactly what they were designed to do."

And in the process they lead to another unelectable nut getting the nod. Blind squirrel gonna occasionally find da nuts.

newdoobie's picture

If you recieve a .gov handout you shouldn't be allowed to vote.

drendebe10's picture

If u don't pay taxes, u don't get to vote. 

Amendment X's picture

Assuming that Cynthia McKinney is the former black congresswoman from GA, you can trust very little if anything that comes from her peanut brain ie, your above reference. She was the one who cried racisim for being stopped at a security checkpoint on Capital Hill. She is yet another black politician who consistently voted down individual liberty in favor of the oppresive regime growing larger. Just compile your own list (black caucus) of politicians who have NO concept of a constitutional republic. Theirs is a banana republic, much like their native lands. In all fairness to her, she's right about AIPAC

exomike's picture

No, you compile the list and supporting evidence.

JLee2027's picture

Paper ballots, counted in public. That's what true Democracy is, right comrade?

WOAR's picture

Who's counting?

Better put a camera on that shit show...and hope it's not pre-recorded.

One World Mafia's picture

The idea got around several years ago to record yourself voting and post it online to validate election results. Either all of the states, or maybe 49 of them, passed laws against recording your vote by camera, so they do have something in their pocket to crack down on an audit by the people, not that their crazy laws would work but just goes to show what lengths the shadow gov has gone.  


We need a landslide against establishment candidates Jeb, ineligible Marco, and ineligible Ted to beat the system. Trump looks better and better.

OldPhart's picture

WRITE IN YOUR VOTE... (Excellent Idea!!)

FOR TRUMP OR WHOEVER...(Fuck that, write in "None of the fucking above!")


caconhma's picture

I wish B. Sanders wins a popular vote and Hitlery wins a nomination.

Then US believers in honest elections will realized that they are stupid clowns and nobody gives a shit about their votes.

Well, GW Bush election by a Supreme Court taught them nothing.

newdoobie's picture

Those votes were counted by several major news outlets and GW won the stat of florida

newdoobie's picture

What pissed me off was Gore having all the absentee military votes thrown out.

GW won without them

JamaicaJim's picture

...and install Cuntlary Clinton, The Bitch CuntQueen of Cankledom.....


yes....exactly like they're supposed to....

Lumberjack's picture

Like Erdogan?

Erdogan Gang Heist - Election Fraud in Turkey Nov 1


The ErdoÄ?an gang, also known as the AK Party (AKP), stole the snap elections held in Turkey on Sunday, November 1. (Image: thierry ehrmann)

This was a make-or-break election for Turkish President Recep ErdoÄ?an. Any outcome other than single party rule by the AKP threatened ErdoÄ?an with prosecution for well-documented financial crimes and support for terrorists in Syria. Against the record of recent elections and against public opinion polling results, AKP increased it vote share over the June elections just enough to assure an absolute majority in parliament. The would-be Sultan was saved, at least for now.

The implications for Turkey are profound. The lessons learned about the decline of the rulers and elites in Europe and the United States are of great interest as well.

To believe that ErdoÄ?an's AKP won the election, you need to believe the following.

  • AKP party support increased 16% above the public opinion poll predictions and 20% over the June general election total.

From June 7 through the last polls before the November elections, AKP public polling showed the AKP at a around 42% of the electorate. Nothing material happened in the last two weeks of the campaign to cause a rallying to AKP, yet the party support increased 16% above the poll predictions and 20% over the June general election total.

The two-week period to the election when public polling is legally banned should have held the AKP at its high point of 42% or degraded its support somewhat. A clear majority of Turkish citizens oppose Turkey's support for Syrian rebels, including ISIS. Two public events were bombed killing nearly 200 HDP (Kurdish party) demonstrators. Both of these bombings were linked to ISIS, the worst of the Syrian rebel factions supported by the ErdoÄ?an gang. How can a party gain 20% in two weeks when its policies, support for Syrian rebels, came home in the form of terrorist bombings?

TeamDepends's picture

Democracy is three rats, a Black Mamba, seven Honey Badgers, five Staffordshire Bull Terriers, three Great White Sharks, and seventeen Free Shit Army Privates deciding what's for dinner.

bonderøven-farm ass's picture

True that, TD.

No bother wasting time trying to explain to the poorly edumuhkatid welfare slaves that we're a FUCKING CONSTITUTIONAL REPUBLIC, and NOT a goddamned DUH-MOKERSEE either. 

There is no hope.....

shovelhead's picture

Jesus Jumping Christ.

Do we have to suffer through this everytime we see the D word printed?

Fuck yeah, you're a genius because you know what everybody else does.

Now quit making a fool of yourself.

Implied Violins's picture

You forgot the Vampire Squid. And calamari is never served at the table.

silverliberty's picture

Ob1knob, how do you explain the unelectable Killary nutjob?


Farqued Up's picture

Super nut is defined by whom? Kissinger, Rockefeller and George Soros? You? Certainly not me, it's why I'm no longer voting.

JRobby's picture

"What about those who bribe politicians and own Congress"

They appear to be winning. "Citizens U nited"

greenskeeper carl's picture

Must not be many georgia natives around ZH. Fuck cynthia mckinney. You would not believe the corruption and incompetence of the black democrats who run everything in Altanta. Its insane.

JamaicaJim's picture

Exactly Carl...

Jeeeeeeeesus H. Corruption Christ ...McKinney herself is a Uncle Sugar pot licker from waaay back.


Used to be a nice town......circa 1954....

silverliberty's picture

Carl, you're being Detroitized.  Yes, I can believe the corruption and incompetence of any person in government. 

Larry Dallas's picture

I do laugh. Each time I see a vet with a slew of stickers on their modded minivans to accommodate their wheelchairs.

Sorry, but I don't feel any more free over the past 8 years or so, asshat.

You got maimed for nothing.

Democracy is almost dead. H gets in, it's over.

OldPhart's picture

"Americans don't realize that they are a Constitutional Republic"

Exactly what I was going to say.  The entire article goes on as if we're a fucking democracy and the author is outraged that democracy is undermined by our Constitution.

WE'RE NOT A DEMOCRACY!!  Fuckin' morons!.

A Democracy is mob rule.  A republic is where represetatives of groups of people are elected who then, (theoretically) debate and craft sound solutions to national events. and promptly return to their own lives.  A Republic puts up a firewall to stop mob rule.

Idiot articles like this are calling for mobs to change rules, laws and society based on emotion and numbers.


silverliberty's picture

The Foundation to a Republic is the importance of the individual and private property codified in law.  And Democracy is simply mob rule or whatever is popular at the moment(chaos)

Memedada's picture

Definition of a republic:

“…a state in which the supreme power rests in the body of citizens entitled to vote and is exercised by representatives chosen directly or indirectly by them”.

A republic is (should be) a democracy. Otherwise it’s a dictatorship (monarchy, totalitarian state, theocracy, fascist state etc.). US is not a republic but a fascist state. To become a republic US needs to democratize – and I know (the controlled opposition of) many on ZH are (unknowingly) fascists and think a republic is not/should not be a democracy. They clorify their capitalist/fascists masters (like Thrump) and kick downwards (FSA - and no, they don't think the FIRE-sector is the FSA but the un-/underemployed masses) - like a true fascist. 

OldPhart's picture

You're on the wrong fucking site, princess. 

Here's a map back home.


Moustache Rides's picture

Thank you for posting this TD.  I have been trying to find this video for years.  Saw it around 2009 or so, and haven't been able to find it since.  My hat's off to you sir.

  This time the vid is getting the treatment.

sam i am's picture
A curious case of Moty Cristal, Chabad, and Israeli militants in Odessa, by Scott

omniversling's picture
"ACUVOTE"?? Princeton University Exposes Diebold Flaws
Newsboy's picture

Yeah, Congresswoman McKinney!

You got my vote in 2008.

Investigate 9/11.


drendebe10's picture

In the 2012 election, 16 or so voting districts Mitt da nitwit got zero votes vs the illegal Indonesian kenyan alien muslim fudgepacker imbecile. Getting zero votes seems like a statistical impossibility. Can you say rigged election? 

Still Losing Money's picture

we have the electroal college because we live in a REPUBLIC not a Democracy, when you morons fianally figure that out, you may learn how and why the electroal college actually works ( i.e keep the BIG states from having toomuch piower and influence and shutting out th litttle states)