Welcome aboard Postal Vote Investigation, Paul War – I have gone to your twitter feed, I think they call it a “feed,” not sure as I am not in the loop on such matters. I have cut and pasted the info you have posted in wee sound-bites on twitter; they are assembled in one on my files on this concern. I can read through them looking for important points that prompt further questions. A lot to examine, but very reassuring to know someone else is working so hard on this. The following piece of information caught my interest:
“You can challenge an election vote within 21 days (2nd of January) if after finding someone registered for a postal vote, that didn’t vote, the electoral officer confirmed a vote was made for them . Contact your local labour party for help with this.”
Is this 21 working days? There have been three national holidays in addition to weekends. 21 days including weekends but excluding the three national holidays does indeed take us to the 2nd of January.
However, this does seem incredibly restrictive considering many offices will close with staff away for longer than just the official bank holiday days off. Despite an aggressive Tory effort to engineer this rigged election in such a way that it avoided any scrutiny this tight deadline might represent more bluff than rigid deadline. In any of my dealings on similar government issues, where a submission deadline is given it is expressed in working days excluded weekends as well as national holidays: this would push the complaint deadline out to the 15th of January.
Do not put government agencies beyond “accidentally” giving you the wrong deadline in the hope you will drop the case. I would not be at all surprised if staff were instructed to give the wrong deadline … oops! Sorry about the mistake from headquarters… too much wine at the Christmas party! Let’s move on… My first contact at the Electoral Commission will be away until the 6th of January. Call them on it as I doubt they can justify how a review of something as important as concerns over you right to vote can be sidelined while offices are closed to the public.
Another thing that peaked my attention was a couple of articles posted with links I have embedded here. The first was: TruePublica @TruePublica• 27 Dec 2019 – A 2016 article warning about #IDOX and why #postalvotegate was going to happen – #IDOXFraud. The second was one I had read before regarding Argyll and Bute in the Scotish Independence Referendum; it is worth linking to it again here. “The Postal Ballot at the Scottish Independence Referendum – Fraud?”
This also interested me more than other twittering as it identified a certain BBC presenter who appears to be functioning as an impartial investigative journalist with considerable integrity… Shock horror! Since “BBC journalistic Integrity” has become such a total oxymoron nowadays, I thought it might be worth contacting this poor chap, who may now have been relegated to making tea and organizing the summer picnic! Hell hath no wrath like “Auntie” throwing a hissy fit”
In an interview Nolan recorded for the BBC on the 19th of December he captured a credible complaint from an experienced election official dealing with an unprecedented situation. The official stated that: “It was such a shambles. It was an embarrassment. We shouldn’t have been put in that position.” He was described by Nolan as “a whistle blower with 32 years experience at polling station” when telling Nolan what he witnessed on the General Election 2019 polling day 4:36 / 4:36 A clip was taken from The Nolan Show, BBC
Later input from Nolan identifies a letter, sent in hast to those who were belatedly informed they were not registered to vote due to an error of some kind. He writes: “What message does this send out in terms of confidence in the electoral system? He highlights: “Look at the date on the letter – 16th Dec – FOUR days AFTER the election . If you have information about voting registration problems – send it to [email protected] Electoral Office confirm right to vote 4 days after the election is over.” This would be an award winning story for any reporter to break so can we enlist Nolan’s help as an investigative journalist?
If you are thinking that our efforts will be totally stymied by lack of evidence take heart and think again. All we need is to get our foot in the door with a warrant to seize ballots for testing. We need access to a random batch of votes in a heavily suspect marginal constituency. When I say “access” I mean a level of suspicion that affords more than a quick glance under supervision. The ballot papers will need to be tested my the forensic department of the local police department concerned. These ballot papers will include a number of postal ballots mixed in with ballots cast in polling stations.
As I have stated in earlier posts it is still possible to differentiate between postal ballots and polling station ballots after the fact despite the mixing in with postal ballots. The postal ballots are more likely to be marked in pen after filling in confirmation data in pen, while in the polling station only a pencil is available. In an automated process the marked ballot would need to match similar postal votes prior to the mixing in process. A statistically significant number of the ballot papers, would need to be subjected to forensic testing primarily to identify fingerprints.
While this might all sound rather labor intensive it is actually incredibly simple; the principal is so simple it was probably overlooked in arrogance and haste. It would be normal to find a group of common sets of fingerprints within the same batch of ballot papers. Idox staff are not pictured wearing gloves in the promotional video, but the count staff will also have left their mark. However it is not the fingerprints present you are testing the ballots for, it is the fingerprints that are missing. Replacement ballots would have required a fully automated printing process with a limited number of people involved to maintain secrecy.
There is no way that Idox or any other Vote Management service could possibly explain why a significant number of the tested ballots of any type did not bear a unique set of fingerprints from the person actually casting the ballot; this is simply not humanly possible. Yes on some occasions a person has very dry hands and does not leave an easily identifiable print, but there are also more sophisticated ways of testing for fingerprints on paper now. There is no possible credible explanation for a large number of ballots to be totally devoid of any unique sets of fingerprints. Got ya!
I will add the deadline question to my inquiries when I chase down the chap at the Electoral Commission on Monday. He did not yet reply to my email sent earlier today; it was an in depth grilling. I will continue to go through your posts to see what other questions you might be able to answer. You appear to have accumulated a lot of data and I am glad you have joined our forum. We need someone to keep this issue alive on twitter and I am not that person: keep up the good work.