The Right Opinion

Scytl: Voter Fraud Facts and Fiction

By Michelle Malkin · May 9, 2012

With six months until Election Day, conspiracy theories are percolating on the Internet like bubbling mud pots at Yellowstone: Left-wing billionaire George Soros is going to rig the election for Barack Obama. Foreigners will oversee the nation’s entire vote-counting system. The fix is in, and all is lost.

Before conservatives go all Michael Moore-moonbatty, let’s calm down and separate voter fraud facts from fiction. There’s no time to waste worrying about manufactured scares. And there are plenty of legitimate threats to electoral integrity without having to inflate or concoct them.

FACT: Scytl is a Spain-based business that specializes in “electoral security technology” and electronic voting applications. Its cryptographic research initially was funded by the Spanish government’s Ministry of Science and Technology and later was spun off as a private-sector e-voting venture.

FACT: In January 2012, Scytl acquired U.S.-based SOE Software. SOE writes “election management” programs that assist officials with everything from “Internet voting to election night reporting and online poll worker training.”

FICTION: According to alarmists, Scytl’s acquisition of SOE amounts to a complete takeover of America’s election system. No, not really. While SOE boasts of a presence “with 900 jurisdictions as customers in 26 states,” there is no single contract that the federal government has entered into, or could, with Scytl to count the 2012 presidential election votes. Much of the work Scytl/SOE analysts do is number-crunching and graphics software work after local and state officials have done the vote-counting.

Scytl does have a contract with the feds to use its technology to help overseas and military voters participate in elections. In 2009, the Military and Overseas Voter Empowerment Act mandated that U.S. jurisdictions allow uniformed and overseas citizens to receive and track their ballots electronically. Scytl’s online ballot program was used in 14 states during the 2010 midterms.

FACT: The security risks of e-voting are still a legitimate concern. University of California at Berkeley computer science professor David Wagner wrote a critical report for the Pentagon about the privacy and accuracy shortcomings of Scytl’s military voting program in 2004 – which prompted the feds to cancel the initial program, according to PBS.

In October 2010, the D.C. Board of Elections and Ethics encouraged outside parties to try to find security holes in their online balloting infrastructure operated by Scytl. A group of University of Michigan students successfully hacked into the system, commandeered passwords, doctored ballots and programmed audio of the school’s fight song to play whenever an e-ballot was submitted.

Hackers from Iran and China also came close to breaking in. “After the hack,” according to, “(D.C.) administrators decided to relaunch under a download-only format, allowing users to access ballots but forcing them to fax or mail them rather than cast a vote online.” The D.C. official who oversaw the system, Paul Stenbjorn, now works for Scytl.

FICTION: Chain e-mails about Scytl claim that George Soros owns, operates or controls Scytl. In reality, the company’s investors are Nauta Capital, Balderton Capital and Spinnaker SCR. Soros doesn’t “own” any of these international venture capital firms – and as far as my research shows, he has no involvement whatsoever with any of them. Moreover, Scytl’s board of directors doesn’t include anyone with Soros financial or management ties. Pressed for evidence, one Internet conspiracy nut cited an “invitation only event” in Moldova that listed both the “Soros Foundation Moldova” and Scytl as attendees.

Soros has enough explicit ties to President Obama’s administration and campaign without having to embellish them. Just this week, The New York Times reported that he will donate $1 million each to a Democratic super-PAC and a leading progressive get-out-the-vote (GOTV) operation. Soros previously funded Project Vote, the notorious voter-mobilization arm of fraud-perpetrating ACORN for whom Obama canvassed in Illinois.

And that brings us to the less exotic, but far more routine, kind of election insecurity that plagues the country. Hardware and software will never be completely fail-safe, no matter where it originates. But it’s the people, personnel and voter registration and verification rules in place right here at home that matter most.

FACT: Over the past five months, investigative journalist James O'Keefe and his Project Veritas team have exposed systemic lapses at precincts in New Hampshire, Minnesota, Vermont and Washington, D.C. The ballots of famous public figures have been forked over to complete strangers; disenfranchisement of legitimate voters is routine. While Minnesota and New Hampshire legislators have passed new voter integrity/identification laws, O'Keefe now has been targeted for investigation and possible prosecution for blowing the whistle. And Attorney General Eric Holder is striking his usual see-no-evil, shoot-the-messenger, play-the-race-card pose.

The solution isn’t to sit back and bemoan a fantastical global conspiracy. The solution is to get off the couch, support election integrity activists like O'Keefe, and turn out in force on Election Day to eject Obama’s voter fraud coddlers. Like the old saying goes: If it ain’t close, they can’t cheat.



Oathkeeper Scott in Texas said:

Michelle clarifies a vital issue for us. We cannot waste our valuable breath on diversions. We must focus on actual fraud vulnerabilities."You know, comrades," says Stalin, "that I think in regard to this: I consider it completely unimportant who in the party will vote, or how; but what is extraordinarily important is this — who will count the votes, and how."

Wednesday, May 9, 2012 at 11:39 AM

Sean Harms said:

Yeah, because liberals are the ones who ballot tamper in this country...I hate Obama, and unfortunately I voted for him. Nevertheless, you ignorant swines are forgetting how Bush Jr. was cheated into office over Gore by his family ties, and are obviously ignorant as to how Ron Paul was just cheated out of his nomination by our war mongering government as a whole. Don't get me wrong, as Obama is probably delving inot ballot tampering as well. Bottom line, our government needs dismantled, rebuilt, and one law added. A law that only allows someone born of meager means to be judges, members of congress, as well as president. How can we call ourselves "One nation, under God", when we are controlled, and ruled by the elites, and God favors the meek, and poor. You want a solution to our debt? An executive branch, legislative branch, and judicial branch that knows how to survive off of next to nothing would have that accomplished in only one term, guarenteed.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012 at 6:11 PM

MichaelSSEC said:

"Nevertheless, you ignorant swines are forgetting how Bush Jr. was cheated into office over Gore "Sorry, but that tired old myth has been destroyed so many times, I can almost type it in my sleep.FACT: Bush clearly won the election, by the rules, hands-down.FACT: Al Gore conceded defeat because he CLEARLY lost the election. Later, when his advisers could not accept reality and groped around for anything they could use, did Gore take the unheard-of step of withdrawing his concession.FACT: The ballots in FLA were designed by Democrats.FACT: The FLA election rules do not allow unlimited recounts, "do-overs" or any other form of election-rigging.FACT: If anyone was disenfranchised in 2000, it was military servicemen, whose APO ballots were specifically rejected by Democrats on frivolous grounds. Couldn't have anything to do with the fact veterans vote GOP roughly 60% of the time.FACT: Rather than showing the FLA race closer with each recount, the tallies actually showed Bush farther ahead as time went on, prompting Gore campaign officials to redefine the standards for vote-counting to such an absurd degree that we started hearing preposterous debates on such matters as "pregnant chads, hanging chads, dimpled chads" and whatnot. At one point, Gore campaign officials even insisted election workers could interpret the will of a voter based on chads in the Bush heading -- in other words, if a ballot had a dimple under Bush, it meant the voter had erroneously voted for Bush and then changed his mind, which should be counted as a vote for Gore. Interestingly, they put for a slightly different argument for dimples under Gore, asserting that such ballots indicated not indecision but a sort of coitus interruptus. So Gore officials wanted election workers to use one standard for Bush ballots and a completely different standard for Gore ballots. If that's not trying to steal an election, what is?FACT: FLA election law requires that election results be certified by a certain date. The law makes no allowances for controversies, questions, or Democrat dissatisfaction with the outcome. Thus, continuing to challenge the results after the required certification date was itself a violation of FLA election law.FACT: Due to the above, the FLA Supreme Court flat out ignored FLA election law in issuing its bizarro ruling to continue recounting the ballots. They even acknowledged that fact in their opinion. But, they argued, even though the law EXPLICITLY requires certification by a certain date, the SCOFL concocted the preposterous opinion that the authors of the law could not have foreseen the contentious nature of the 2000 election. No, actually it was precisely because they DID foresee a tumultuous election that they inserted the "certify-by date" clause in the FLA Election laws.FACT: Thus, SCOFL completely disregarded its own state's laws in reaching the impossible-to-defend ruling, forcing the Bush campaign to appeal to the SCOTUS. When a Left-leaning high court willfully sets aside election law to overturn an election result it doesn't like, what is that if not an attempt at stealing an election?FACT: The SCOTUS overturned the egregiously, transparently biased ruling by the SCOFL. But while Democrats have been painting the SCOTUS ruling as partisanship, the FACT was all the SCOTUS decision did was reassert that FLA election workers had to follow FLA election law. Period. The SCOTUS ruling simply corrected the prior court's partisanship, an undeniable fact Democrats never bring up because it's completely indefensible.So when Liberals run around TWELVE YEARS LATER still insisting "Bush stole the election," it's sad and pathetic because it was actually their guy -- Al "I invented the Internet" Gore -- who tried and failed to steal that election.

Thursday, May 10, 2012 at 7:01 PM