How to overturn the 2004 Presidential election
The Constitution does not mandate popular elections
by Salvador Astucia, Nov. 11, 2004
For those Americans who are upset with the re-election of George W. Bush as President of the United States, there may be a legal way to overturn his second term. It may be possible, and completely legal, for a small group of Democratic Governors to overturn the popular vote in states where Bush was chosen to have a second term. Contrary to common belief, the United States Constitution does not mandate popular elections for the President and Vice-President. The Constitution clearly specifies that each state shall choose a small number of "electors" to cast votes for the President and Vice-President on behalf of the citizens who live in that state. In addition, Federal law specifies--for this year--that the election is not officially over until December 13, 2004 when the electoral votes are officially cast by the electors of each state, per the Constitution. I will explain the legal details shortly, but first, let’s review the outcome of the 2004 election.
There were 538 electoral votes total. To win the Presidential election, one of the candidates only needs 270 (more than 50 percent). Bush got 286; Kerry got 252.
For Kerry to unseat Bush, he (Kerry) only needs 18 electoral votes, which would bring him to 270.
My research shows that 94 electoral votes could potentially be taken from Bush and given to Kerry by Democratic Governors of eleven states that chose Bush through popular vote on November 2, 2004. The Democratic governors and states in question are as follows:
If you live in one of the eleven states listed above, and you are unhappy with the re-election of George W. Bush, you are hereby requested and urged to email a pre-written message (see proposed text of message below) to your Governor as soon as possible. By doing so, you will be requesting that your Governor set aside the popular vote which Bush received in your state, and select electors for Democratic candidate John Kerry, something the Constitution authorizes states to do.
For contact information for the eleven cited Governors, click here.
The message you send/email to your Governor should contain the following verbiage, or something comparable, written in a formal and respectful style:
Again, if you live in one of the eleven states previously listed, and if you wish to unseat George Bush's election and replace him with John Kerry, simply copy and paste the above message in an email and send it to your state governor as soon as possible.
For contact information for the eleven cited Governors, click here.
Legal basis for unseating Bush by State Decree
In modern times, Americans select their President by having a popular vote to decide who will get the electoral votes assigned to their respective states. Actually, what we are voting for is what the Constitution calls "electors;" however, most Americans today do not use the term "elector," as the Constitution specifies. Instead, we use the term "electoral vote," which in reality is a vote cast by one of the electors. In fact, the term "electoral vote" is not in the Constitution at all. In present times, we minimize the importance of electors as real people, but in actuality, electors are living, breathing human beings whose purpose is to vote for leaders on behalf of the citizens who live in a particular state. This is the essence of what the Framers called a "Republic." The process of electors casting votes on behalf of the people in a given state is a formality now-a-days because the emphasis is placed on the popular vote.
Regardless of where the emphasis is placed ("elector" vs. "electoral vote"), the fact of the matter is the Constitution gives a very specific procedure for how electors are supposed to be appointed, or chosen, and how they shall cast their votes to determine who will be President and Vice-President of the United States.
Article 2, Section 1 of the Constitution describes the appointment of electors in one, long sentence. Here it is:
That one sentence conveys an enormous amount of information. Let's break it down. First, the number of electors chosen by a given state must match the number of Senators and Representatives that the state has in the Congress. Here is the verbiage used by the Framers: "Each State shall appoint...a Number of Electors, equal to the whole Number of Senators and Representatives to which the State may be entitled in the Congress..." Presently there are 538 Senators and Representatives (100 Senators, 438 Representatives) for all fifty states in the Union, plus the District of Columbia. Consequently, there are 538 electors. To win a presidential election, a candidate must get greater than 50 percent of the votes cast by the 538 electors. In reality, this means the winner must get half the votes, plus one deciding vote. Since 50 percent of 538 is 269 votes, the winner must get 270 or more votes cast by the electors (aka, electoral votes).
A second point made by Article 2, Section 1 of the Constitution is to clearly define several constraints and restrictions for those chosen to be electors. The constraints were designed to avoid conflicts of interest with the Federal government. The Framers stated that an elector could not be a US Senator, a US Representative, or an officer or employee of the Federal Government, or even a businessman who receives money from the Federal Government. Here is the verbiage used by the Framers: "Each State shall appoint...a number of electors...but no Senator or Representative, or person holding an office of trust or profit under the United States, shall be appointed an elector."
Third and most important to this discussion, each state's electors are appointed by the state legislature, or under the legislature's direction. Here is the verbiage used by the Framers: "Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors..." This is a critical phrase because it gives each state legislature Constitutional authority to choose the electors. Practically speaking, this means a state legislature may choose the electors itself, or the state legislature may empower the Governor to choose the electors, or the state legislature may require a popular election where the citizenry of that state votes for the electors. In modern times, the latter is the means by which all states of the Union choose their respective electors.
The Framers were wary of giving the citizenry power to directly elect the President - some felt the citizenry too beholden to local interests, too easily duped by promises or shenanigans, or simply because a national election, in the time of oil lamps and quill pens, was just impractical. Some proposals gave the power to the Congress, but this did not sit well with those who wanted to see true separation of the branches of the new government. Still others felt the state legislatures should decide, but this was thought to make the President too beholden to state interests. The Electoral College, proposed by James Wilson, was the compromise that the Constitutional Convention reached.
Though the term "Electoral College" is not used in the Constitution itself, the electors that choose the President at each election are traditionally called a College. In the context of the Constitution, the meaning of college is not that of a school, but of a group of people organized toward a common goal.
The Electoral College insulates the election of the President from the people by having the people elect not the person of the President, but the person of an Elector who is pledged to vote for a specific person for President. Though the ballot may read "George Bush" or "John Kerry" or "Ralph Nader, you're really voting for "John Smith" who is a Bush supporter or "Jack Jones" who is a Kerry supporter or "Jim Clark" who is a Nader supporter.
But it doesn't have to work this way. Many Americans think voting for the President is a Constitutional right, but it is not. If a state legislature decides to choose its electors without holding a popular election among the citizens of that state, this would be perfectly legal and Constitutional, so long as the state legislature does not violate any state law in the process. The Electoral College is merely a mechanism for making the election process fair and reasonable, but its incorporation of popular vote as the means of selecting the electors is not written into the Constitution, and was probably done so intentionally. Therefore, under extraordinary circumstances, it is theoretically possible--and completely legal--for a state legislature to empower the Governor to set aside the outcome of a popular election and select the electors himself/herself. Therein lies the core of my argument. To overturn Bush's election, a handful of Democratic governors would have to set aside the Republican electors chosen by the citizenry, and appoint electors loyal to the Democratic Party instead.
Many of you are probably asking: How can a Governor overturn the election? Isn't the election over? Yes, the "election" is over, but the Constitutional process is not. It will not be over until December 13, 2004. The Constitution specifies two events must occur regarding the electors who choose presidents. First, the electors must be chosen by the state legislature, or under its direction. Second, the electors must cast their votes. Under the Electoral College system, the first part was done on Election Day (November 2nd, this year), and the second part is merely a formality, but it still needs to be done nevertheless.
The dates for these two events are not specified in the Constitution, but they are defined in the US Code, at 3 USC 7. Today, the day for choosing the electors is set at the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November, and the day the electors meet to cast their votes is set at the first Monday following the second Wednesday in December. In 2004, these dates are November 2 and December 13.
What this means is Bush's re-election is not complete, per the Constitution, until December 13 of this year. This gives us a month to overturn the election by getting a handful of Democratic Governors to set aside the Republican electors, chosen by the people of their respective states, and appoint Democratic electors.
Again, my research indicates that Bush carried eleven states with Democratic Governors. Some of those eleven states also have Democratic majorities in their Legislatures. In order to unseat Bush and elect Kerry, we must appeal to the Governors of those eleven states. All Kerry needs is 18 electoral votes, but the aggregate number of the eleven states is 94. So the chances of success are quite good. But it must happen before December 13, 2004. That is a critical date.
For contact information for the eleven cited Governors, click here.
Why would eleven Democratic Governors unseat Bush?
Okay, I've explained HOW a state legislature or Governor can overturn an election, but a bigger question is WHY(?). Although everything I have described so far is completely legal and Constitutional, I have to admit that if any Governor would circumvent the will of the people of his/her state, it would be viewed by many as a bold, even revolutionary act. But we are living in extraordinary times. Bush is waging an unpopular war in Iraq; unpopular across the globe and in America as well. Voter turnout was higher than it's been in decades, but many Americans are angry with the outcome. A few days ago, a young man actually shot himself at Ground Zero in New York City to protest Bush's re-election. Many Americans are seriously considering moving to Canada, Ireland and other nations.
But many of you are probably asking, Is frustration with Bush really enough to get a Governor to overturn the will of the people? To be completely honest: Probably not. We would have to convince the targeted eleven state legislatures and their Governors that a bigger problem occurred with the elections. It would have to be extraordinary, but if we could convince state legislatures and their Governors that votes were counted improperly, or at least raise doubt in their minds about the manner in which the voting process is done, it could very well convince them to overturn the elections in their respective states.
The American public got its first taste of vote-counting corruption in Florida during the 2000 presidential election between George Bush and Al Gore, but that was merely the tip of the iceberg.
In 1992 two brothers, James and Kenneth Collier, published a shocking book entitled "Votescam: The Stealing Of America" which revealed an alarming amount of corruption in the manner that votes are counted in US elections.
Christopher Bollyn, with American Free Press, recently wrote an exposé on Election Systems & Software (ES&S), an Omaha-based hi-tech firm which reportedly supplied voting equipment used by 42 percent of all registered voters in the United States on Election Day. Bollyn 's article--"Private Company Still ‘Controls’ Election Outcome"--revealed obvious corruption in electronic vote counting in Cook County, Illinois, which used ES&S equipment.
Scott Burnham, spokesman for the Cook County Clerk, had reportedly informed Bollyn and other reporters that the electronic vote counting process was open to the public and that press credentials would not be required to observe the counting process. Burnham and two Associated Press (AP) reporters were the only people to accept the invitation. Bollyn observed that the two AP reporters had connected their laptop to the ES&S computer in the backroom, which provided them with a direct feed of the voting results from the various precincts in Cook County. Surprisingly, Bollyn was reportedly asked to leave, by Burnham, for asking the AP reporters too many questions about the "direct feed" from the ES&S computer. Bollyn reportedly confirmed later, through a local reporter with Fox, that ES&S provides Fox with a similar direct feed.
Bollyn reported that the only so-called vote count the press or public was able to observe in Chicago was what was projected on screens. The methodology was completely secret, controlled and known by only a few.
Even worse, the Cook County ballot was reportedly quite long and complex, which ultimately makes fraudulent counting practices more difficult to find. In Cook County, voters were forced to vote not only for the president and vice president, a senator and a congressman, but for some 80 local officials from the sanitation board to the state’s general assembly, plus they voted for nearly 80 judges. Other countries have separate elections to avoid such confusion, but officials who support electronic voting systems cite the complexity of the ballot as the main reason why voting machines are necessary, because it would take too much time to count the votes manually.
According to Bollyn, the present ownership of ES&S is a closely guarded secret, but it was founded by two brothers, Bob and Todd Urosevich. The brothers started ES&S in the early 1980s as a company called Data Mark. Today, Bob Urosevich heads Ohio-based Diebold Election Systems, a competitor of ES&S and the second largest U.S. manufacturer of electronic voting machines. Together, the computerized ballot scanners and touch-screen voting machines systems made by ES&S and Diebold recorded some 80 percent of all votes cast in the recent U.S. presidential election, according to Bollyn.
For the record, I found ES&S's website (essvote.com) and noted Aldo Tesi is the company's President & Chief Executive Officer, and has held that position since November 2000.
Why should we care?
Many readers are certainly aware that I have accused John Kerry of being just another version of George W. Bush, that Kerry suggests he is a peacemaker, but he talks openly of continuing the Iraq War, of finding better ways to pay for it rather than withdrawing military forces from the region completely. I still believe Kerry is no different from Bush, but I also realize that genuine anti-war candidates tend to get shot in the head by peculiar lone assassins (i.e. Robert Kennedy, Martin Luther King) or they die in mysterious plane crashes (i.e., Paul Wellstone). And I have also stated that the United States Government is as oppressive as the former Soviet Union and that many of our freedoms are illusionary. I still believe that. But many of my fellow Americans believe Kerry is a better man than Bush. Who knows? He didn't provide a realistic exit plan for Iraq, and he voted to give Bush authorization to use military force against Iraq, plus he voted for the Patriot Act. Some folks see a difference between Kerry and Bush, but for the life of me, I have a tough time seeing it myself (notwithstanding about 20 IQ points difference).
So again, why should we care if Bush beat Kerry unfairly? Was it predetermined by greater powers that Kerry would lose? Is that why he gave such convoluted answers to questions about the Iraq War? I really do not know. Some have suggested Kerry was engaging in false opposition, that he and Bush are both within the grips of a small group of Jews who want to build a world government based on the Communist philosophy of the late Leon Trotsky, a leader in Russia's October Revolution in 1917 and later commissar of foreign affairs and of war in the Soviet Union (1917–24).
I have stated many times my belief that Jewish political forces loyal to Israel are controlling the United States Government, something that is quite obvious to anyone not blinded by the constant refrain from the Holocaust industry, which tells us constantly that Jewish people are eternal victims and do nothing but spread joy and good will wherever they go, a notion that most Jews would secretly find amusing, I'm sure.
As to whether Bush and Kerry are pawns in a larger power struggle controlled by the Trotsky-ite breed of Jewish Communism; frankly, this is an area that I do not fully understand, but things nevertheless seemed awfully suspicious regarding the recent election. To me, Kerry genuinely looked and acted like he wanted to be the next President. There appeared to be a genuine power struggle and Bush won. Still, Kerry's strategy was incredibly bad. Perhaps he made a sincere effort to unseat Bush, but his more cynical advisors intentionally gave him bad advice. If there was a genuine power struggle, then someone loyal to Bush may have gotten to the folks who control the ES&S and Diebold computers in time to slant the counting mechanism in Bush's favor. This is quite possible. I find it difficult to believe that no one within either the Bush or Kerry camps was aware of possible fraudulent activities by ES&S and Diebold.
Regardless of hidden agendas, the end result is an appearance of vote fraud via electronic voting machines and electronic counters. Consequently, Americans are stuck with a president truly detested by a significant part of the citizenry, not to mention the rest of the world.
Why are we targeting eleven states?
To recap my methodology, I looked for all states that Bush carried which had Democratic Governors. As it turns out, there were eleven. Hence, the magic number of eleven states. The Democratic Governors of those eleven states would certainly choose electors for Democratic candidate John Kerry should they choose to set aside the popular vote for Bush as I am suggesting. In some of the eleven states, the Legislatures have a Democratic majority as well, West Virginia being a prime example. Also, it is important to remember that John Kerry only needs to take away 18 electoral votes from Bush in order to achieve a majority. The total electoral votes for all eleven states is 94, well over the amount needed. Consequently, the chances of success are quite good. All we need is grass roots support. If enough people in the eleven targeted states will send emails to their respective Governors, there is a very good chance that the Governors will consider their requests, particularly in those states with Democratic Legislatures as well as Democratic Governors.
For contact information for the eleven cited Governors, click here.
I have presented my fellow Americans with a plan, a way to unseat Bush, but it is up to the people to make it happen.
May God bless America and all nations of the world. Give peace a chance.
UPDATE: Nov. 17, 2004 - Usenet discussions about Salvador's proposal to overturn the 2004 presidential election can be viewed by clicking on the following URL:
Follow-up Article: Nov. 21, 2004
"US Constitution & Popular Elections" by Salvador Astucia
Primary sources were the author's personal copy of the U.S. Constitution and from explanations provided by Steve Mount at http://www.usconstitution.net/ . Portions of Mr. Mount's precise explanations of the U.S. Constitution were taken verbatim. The author obtained additional information from various State legislature websites.