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State Claims Diebold Data is Proprietary


January 24, 2006
Tuesday AM

The Alaska State Division of Elections has denied access to public records that are needed to verify the accuracy of the 2004 General Election vote results, the Alaska Democratic Party (ADP) said Monday.
The Division of Elections claims that its electronic computer file that contains all the final vote tallies for the 2004 General Election is proprietary information belonging to its contractor, Diebold Election Systems.
"It is wrong that the State of Alaska is letting Diebold take possession of our votes and our public data by claiming that these are their proprietary information. This is not acceptable or legally supportable," said state Democratic Party chair Jake Metcalfe.
Although Diebold claims that their data structure is proprietary, it is publicly available on the Internet today and has been for several years according to Alaska Democrats.
The Alaska Democratic Party asserts numerous discrepancies are apparent in the 2004 General Election votes tallied by the state's Diebold computer system and posted on the Division of Election's web site, the Alaska Democratic Party said Monday. According to the posted "Statement of Votes Cast" by district and precinct, a far larger number of votes were cast than the official totals reported in the statewide summary. In many of the House Districts, more votes are shown in the totals than there are voters in the district. In the case of President George Bush's votes, the district-by-district totals add up to 292,267, but his official total was only 190,889, a difference of 101,378 votes. In the U.S. Senate race, Lisa Murkowski received 226,992 votes in the district-by-district totals, but her official total was only 149,446, a difference of 77,546 votes.
The Division of Election's web site says "the STATEMENT OF VOTES CAST provides results for all candidates by district and precinct." However the Alaska Democratic Party points out the district-by-district posted results do not show how many votes were cast for each candidate in the 40 House districts, and those results do not match the Official Results Statewide Summary showing who won the elections.
The Alaska Democratic Party filed a public records request Dec. 19, 2005 seeking a copy of the "central tabulator data file" used to run the "GEMS" (Global Election Management Software) application, as well as other public records, related to the 2004 election results. None of the records requested would reveal how any individual voted.

The Alaska Division of Elections responded in a Jan.19th letter to the Alaska Democratic Party that it would not provide the central tabulator data file because "the structure of the database file from GEMS is proprietary information" belonging to Diebold.

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Ketchikan, Alaska