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Times fails to mention banned voting machine tester Ciber, Inc. is Republican contributor

How very odd. Or not. Times stenographer Christopher Drew:

A laboratory that has tested most of the nation’s electronic voting systems has been temporarily barred from approving new machines after federal officials found that it was not following its quality-control procedures and could not document that it was conducting all the required tests.

Experts on voting systems say the Ciber problems underscore longstanding worries about lax inspections in the secretive world of voting-machine testing. The action by the federal Election Assistance Commission seems certain to fan growing concerns about the reliability and security of the devices.

No shit, Sherlock. Go read the whole story, before it disappears behind the pay wall. You will look in vain for any mention of Ciber's affiliations with the Republican Party.

How odd.

Or not.

Of course, we were covering this back in 2004:

Via Rocky Mountain News (August 22, 2004):

At Greenwood Village-based CIBER, employees and some spouses have donated more than $72,000 to GOP candidates and groups during the 2001-2002 and 2003-2004 election cycles, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, a nonpartisan watchdog group.

Via AP (August 22, 2004):

Despite concerns over whether the so-called touchscreen machines can be trusted, the testing companies won't say publicly if they have encountered shoddy workmanship.

They say they are committed to secrecy in their contracts with the voting machines' makers - even though tax money ultimately buys or leases the machines.

In Huntsville, the window blinds were closed when a reporter visited the office suite where CIBER Inc. employees test voting machine software. A woman who unlocked the door said no one inside could answer questions about testing.

Now gosh, I know I'm just pathetically oversensitive about this, but when we've got that famous quote from the Diebold President who was "helping Ohio deliver its electoral votes to the president next year" and then the testers who certify his machines are doing their part for the Republicans as well...

And then we put that together with Florida 2000...

Which the Times also failed to cover in a timely fashion...

Let's just say this story doesn't increase my confidence in our voting system, or the Times's ability or interest to cover the story.

NOTE Seems that Ciber's chairman unloaded stock on December 26. Insider trading, anyone?

UPDATE Kossack Joan has good detail on this story from 2005.

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