The Election Center is a private firm largely responsible for overseeing the elections industry. According to its website, the Center is "a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting, preserving, and improving democracy. Its members are government employees whose profession is to serve in voter registration and elections administration." Part of the Election Center's role is to advocate for the industry and serve as a coordinator between the FEC, state and local officials, and private companies within the industry. It also has the role of training election officials and helping to approve voting machine test labs. Known also as the National Association of Election Officials, the Election Center works closely with a partner organization, the National Association of State Election Directors (NASED).
Despite billing itself as an advocate for election officials, the Election Center is mainly involved with organizing the privatization of the elections industry. The Center fulfills a PR role for the vendors and testing authorities (ITAs), helping to lobby for their interests, while also controlling the quality assurance of those companies' products and services. It even, through the training process, provides a mechanism for influencing election officials in favor of the vendors. Such an arrangement is described by some as "voluntary regulation" of the industry. Arguably, the Election Center plays the key role in holding privatized elections together. This makes its shadowy background and conflicts of interest troubling. Its funding and sponsorship is proven to come from voting system vendors like ES&S, Diebold (probably), and Sequoia. The origin of the Election Center, as well as the background of its most visible director R. Doug Lewis, is currently unknown.
Training election officials
Approving test labs
- R. Doug Lewis (1994-2015)
Election vendor collusion
- Bev Harris, "Inside A U.S. Election Vote Counting Program", 2003/07/08 - identifies the Election Center as responsible for training election officials
- The Nation, "Diebold Wines and Dines Officials", 2004/08/26 - mentions Bob Ney at a national conference being "applauded when he dismissed demands for auditable paper trails for electronic voting"; describes how voting machine vendors funded events attended by election officials; includes "the executive secretary-director of North Carolina’s board of elections, the secretary of state of Colorado, and the Pennington County (South Dakota) auditor" on the Election Center board of directors
- Sourcewatch article on the Election Center
- Early history in the 1980s and 1990s
- BBV thread on Election Center early history with link to corporate docs (linked PDF is corrupted)
- "Contested elections and recounts, authors: Marie Garber, election management consultant, Silver Spring, Maryland; Abe Frank, Deputy Director and Research Attorney, The Election Center, Washington, DC ; performing organization: Office Technology Corporation ; managed and edited by William C. Kimberling, Deputy Director, National Clearinghouse on Election Administration", autumn 1990
- 1988/02/18 letter from INS to Abe L. Frank of the Election Center
- Georgetown University biography for Abe L. Frank - mentions his role as Vice President of State Government Relations and Counsel at Citigroup, before becoming Managing Director of Government Relations for the NCAA in December 2001; also discusses how he worked with the Council of State Governments from 1990 to 1998
- Maryland ethics documents confirm Frank's role in Citigroup lobbying from at least 1999/11/01 to 2000/10/31
- Bev Harris's investigation into the election privatization industry
- Scoop article by Bev Harris seems to be a precursor to what's in her book
- Proof of being paid by the vendors
- Collection of election official job solicitations
- Brook Thompson, the TN State Election Coordinator, forced his county election officials to attend an Election Center training process for their certification
- Michael Vu connection? (unsure how substantial, but if he was trained there, it could be a damning indictment of the Center)
- Bev Harris asks whether Kidron Lewis and George Munro of NASS are related to R. Doug Lewis and Ralph Munro
- Email on 2018/07/09 from Bev Harris to Tim Canova: "Corrupt officials are protecting each other.
Tim, I was asked in 2004 to meet with the California secretary of state to expose proof that I had obtained of the deliberate insertion of a double set of books into the Gems central tabulator. I was able to prove that it was inserted under the supervision of a convicted embezzler. I brought with me an election official who was an eye witness.
What a learning experience. We were met with a member of the Calif attorney general's staff who was hostile to US! We were forbidden from capturing any record of the meeting. Though the sec state [Kevin Shelley] was friendly (he was later run out if office) the rest of the room full of officials were in full coverup hostile mode. Nothing was done about it.
It was then I realized that we have a bigger corruption problem than we think.
In new Hampshire, 2008 pres primary, the recount which sought to check on how an implausible 18 point swing shifted the win from Obama to Hillary, I was an eye witness to ballot tampering. The secretary of state and several state officials were present. My hotel room was broken into the night I captured some of this on video. The secretary of state confided to me that "in Maine they got caught tampering the ballots because the guy in the ballot vault was smoking and set off the alarm." Turns out that was true. it was the speaker of the house. There were no consequences.
In Memphis we caught them in the act of running out of the building with computers after a judge ordered them to be handed over. We recovered one but it had been wiped clean at 4 am the morning of the court ordered inspection. There were no consequences.
There are no consequences for the Awan brothers. No consequences for anything the system doesn't want exposed or talked about. This is how we know this country is not what it pretends to be.
People wonder where I have been. I have turned my attention solely to quantifying and proving corruption, American style. We all see so many cases where they do nothing. There are, in addition, at least 12,000 cases a year where people actually get prosecuted.
The cold, hard truth is that corruption is how things are done in America. It is part of the culture. But people are waking up."