Democracy, Elections & Accountability: Blog Posts

"If virtue is to pervade the society, as many public decisions as possible must be made by the broadest range of citizens possible, and they must be made at a level as close as possible to citizens' daily experience."
    -John McClaughry, The Vermont Papers

"The effect of [a representative democracy is] to refine and enlarge the public views, by passing them through the medium of a chosen body of citizens, whose wisdom may best discern the true interest of the nation...."
    -James Madison


All Blog Posts

This Is What Vote Fraud in VT Really Looks Like

            The Brattleboro Reformer is reporting a story of potential voter fraud in regard to a vote on the closing of Windham Elementary School. The article states,

A complaint filed by two parents at Windham Elementary School claims three non-residents participated in a controversial vote resulting in the school staying open rather than closing.

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A Socialist Faces Reality

Here’s an intriguing quote from last Wednesday’s Weekly Dispatch: “Freddie deBoer considers himself a democratic socialist, but he’s come to a conclusion that very few of his fellow leftists have. “It’s time for young socialists and progressive Democrats to recognize that our beliefs just might not be popular enough to win elections consistently. It does us no favors to pretend otherwise,” he writes for The New York Times.

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Another Phantom Committee

I was looking for something on the Vermont legislature’s web page the other day when it crossed my mind to check into the Joint Carbon Emissions Reduction Committee. Last year the legislature created, over Gov. Scott’s veto, a pseudo government called the Climate Council to devise a plan to beat down the carbon dioxide emission s of everybody and everything in the state of Vermont by eighty percent by 2050, to stamp out the menace of global warming.

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Why Exactly is the Rent Too D*** High?

A headline in VT Digger declares “Vermont wages well behind cost of rent, national study details.” First question: did we really need a study to tell us that? When politicians run on the issue of “affordability” at the top of the list of unaffordable items is housing. When companies say they have a hard time recruiting workers to come to Vermont, the obstacle usually at the top of the list is a lack of affordable housing for the potential employee.

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Biden’s Dark Money Letter

The Washington Post reported last week that  “nearly 40 Senate Democrats are pushing President Biden to overturn a Trump-era policy that helps some nonprofits that pour money into elections conceal their donors’ names.

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All-Mail Voting Doesn’t Increase Participation

Bill Gardner, New Hampshire’s Democrat secretary of state has been in his office since 1976, so he has seen and overseen quite a few elections. He testified before congress in vehement opposition to H.R. 1, the proposed legislation that would, among other things, expand vote-by-mail in throughout the nation. Proponents nationally, and here in Vermont as we debate our own proposal to absentee ballots to all voters regardless of request, say this will increase turnout. 

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Voter fraud in three easy steps

By Matthew Strong

In this third and final installment of an investigative series into Vermont election security and the impacts of S.15, we look to Town Clerk feedback, and what simple measures could be included in S.15 to make it work, and another option to mass mailing ballots every election.

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Vermont on Path to Having Least Secure Mail-In Voting Process In the Country

By Matthew Strong

Following Secretary of State Jim Condos’ appearance on the WVMT radio show, Morning Drive, where he was confronted by a caller claiming to be a Middlebury landlord who witnessed students “scooping up” and fraudulently submitting unclaimed or unwanted mailed ballots in the last election, we have been asking the Secretary’s office for specific details regarding security measures, or lack thereof, in Vermont’s proposed vote-by-mail bill, S.15. So far, Eric Covey, spokesperson for the office, has been adamant that there is no fraud in Vermont, but evasive regarding specific questions about specific vulnerabilities in the system.

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With Woke Friends Like These….

With the “Woke” seeping with their poisonous politics into every aspect of American culture like a bad smell, it’s sad but not shocking to see Major League Baseball caving to calls to move the All Star Game out of Atlanta, Georgia, to Denver, Colorado. Here, in a nutshell, is why this is so colossally stupid, and why this episode should serve as a cautionary tale for Black Americans who think it might be a good idea to get into political bed with these dishonest, selfish, manipulative people….

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Explosive voter fraud allegations come to light amidst legislative push to make Vote-by-Mail permanent.

By Matthew Strong

Last week Secretary of State Jim Condos was on the radio program “The Morning Drive with Marcus & Kurt” on WVMT to discuss voting access bill S.15, and a caller revealed potentially explosive allegations of voter fraud.

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A Brief History of the Left

By Tom Licata

Why do leftists continually call - through their actions - for open borders... effectively meaning the eraser of borders. And why do the leftists continually call - through their actions - for open voting... effectively meaning the eraser of even voter registration?

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A Tale of Two Cities, and Non-Citizen Voting

This year, the Vermont legislature is contemplating charter changes in two Vermont cities, Montpelier and Winooski, that would allow non-citizens to vote in local elections. The Montpelier charter change passed the House with little difficulty, 103-39. One expected Winooski, with this precedent set, to sail through as well. But it didn’t. There’s a catch – one that should also inspire some second thoughts about Montpelier as that bill goes to the Senate.

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Activists Can’t Identify Systemic Problems in Systemically Racist System

The House Commerce and Economic Development Committee took up H.366., An act relating to promoting economic opportunity for BIPOC-owned businesses. The bill is short; the meat of which reads:

“The Department of Economic Development shall design and implement the Black, Indigenous, and Persons of Color (BIPOC) Business Development Program, the purposes of which are: (1) to provide BIPOC-owned businesses with technical assistance, including financial literacy, digital literacy, and marketing; (2) to promote State and federal contract bid opportunities to BIPOC owned businesses; and (3) to provide training to business technical assistance providers to reduce bias in service delivery.

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EAI Town Meeting Week Poll Results

During the Town Meeting Week break for the legislature, the Ethan Allen Institute commissioned a scientific poll (450 respondents) to gage where Vermonters are on some of the key issues under consideration.

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A Rebuttal to Rep. Colston’s ‘Structural Racism’ Devotional/Diatribe

On February 16, Rep. Hal Colston, (D-Winooski) gave the daily devotional on the virtual floor of the Vermont House. Afterward, Rep. Scott Beck (R-St. Johnsbury) took the unusual action of requesting that it be put in the House journal. The devotional is a diatribe of all things Colston considers racist.

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VT Director of Elections Testifies to How Easy Mail in Ballot Fraud Is

At the January 14 meeting of the Senate Government Operations Committee, Senator Brian Collamore (R-Rutland) asked Vermont Director of Elections, Will Senning, about a woman arrested for election fraud in Texas. The story in question involved on Raquel Rodriquez who was caught engaging in "election fraud, illegal voting, unlawfully assisting people voting by mail and unlawfully possessing an official ballot.” Collamore wanted to know if similar actions, if they occurred in Vermont, could be detected and prosecuted.

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40 Years of Left Wing Policy Failure

The Public Assets Institute (PAI) recently released a report, “The State of Working Vermont 2020.” It provides a good overall picture of the economic stagnation Vermont has experienced over the past several decades.

For 40 years, Vermont created an average of 4,700 new jobs a year. The best year, 1978, saw an increase of more than 12,000 new jobs. But after the turn of the century, job growth flattened. Vermont employers averaged fewer than 1,000 new jobs a year between 2000 and 2019. The high point was 2012, when 3,800 jobs were added.

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Vermont gets 3rd Worst Financial Transparency Score in Country

Truth in Accounting ranked Vermont 48th out of 50 states in terms of a Financial Transparency Score.  While EAI often discusses what programs should or shouldn't be in state budgets, the results of those budgets are found in a government’s comprehensive annual financial report (CAFR). A CAFR is produced annually by governments and is audited by certified public accountants. The ranking is a composite score based on 8 criteria of different weights.

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Vermonters respond: “Should mass mail balloting become permanent?”

Perhaps it was something in the air, but a day after the election, I started to think, I wonder what the chances are of Vermont extending the mail-balloting initiative for 2020 indefinitely?

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True North’s “Ballot Integrity” Reporting Page Exposes Fraudsters (In more ways than one!)

Kudos to True North Reports for doing what the Secretary of State’s office and/or the Attorney General’s office refuse to do in Jim Condos’ unprecedented, Wild West, mail-everybody-a-ballot election, and that is create an online portal to report suspicious election activity.

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Constitution Day

Today, September 17, marks the 233rd anniversary of the signing of the Constitution of the United States.

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Official who oversaw Colorado’s transition to vote-by-mail says VT not prepared

Scott Gessler was the Secretary of State of Colorado over the period when that state transitioned to mail-in-voting system. He’s done an analysis of the plans and procedures our own Secretary of State Jim Condos has put in place for Vermont’s 2020 general election and finds it, to be charitable, lacking.

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Vermont leads US in protests per capita

Vermont has had the highest number of protests per capita in America since late May. Most of those were affiliated with Black Lives Matter, according to the Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project.

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How Jim Condos’ Vote-By-Mail Scheme Could Make You a Felon

If you changed residences at any point in the past, and there is a possibility that you remain on the voter checklist somewhere where you no longer reside, here’s a potential “mail-in-voting” scenario you should be aware of.

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VT Left Wing Media Bias Unmasks Itself

Dave Gram was a long time reporter for the Associated Press, is currently the host of what’s billed on WDEV as a “news talk” radio show (not an editorial or opinion show), and is an affiliated reporter with VT Digger. Today he was allowed to publish on that last platform a personal attack on another journalist, Guy Page, writer/publisher of Vermont Daily and news editor with VTWatercooler.com.

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