VRTF History


  • June 29, we testified before the Assembly Elections Committee concerning SB 450, recommending several amendments listed here: https://countedascast.org/sb-450-2016/sb-450-amendments/

  • June, members observed the election counts in several counties, as well as provided guidance.

  • June 7, Richard Tamm and others assisted in organizing exit polls for the primary. That evening, others recorded the results as they were being announced by selected counties on election night.

  • In May, we learned that AB 2824 stalled the Assembly Appropriations Committee. It was not voted down, but we ran out of time to amend it.

  • March 6, Jim learns that his website, CountedAsCast.org, has been getting visits since mid-December from: US, Canada (E2E-VIV), Brazil (IV), Slovakia, Bulgaria, Russia, UK, Germany, France, Spain, Nigeria, Ecuador, Algeria, Italy, Indonesia, Peru, Barbados, Macedonia, Latvia, Mexico & Costa Rica.

  • March, Jim testified at a meeting about the dangers of internet voting before the San Francisco Elections Commission.

  • March 7, VRTF sends a letter of support for the SF open source voting system initiative.

  • February 27, the VRTF fires the opening salvo in the campaign against the 3 Internet voting initiatives. We prepare and distribute 1,000 fliers at the state democratic convention in San Jose.

  • February 22, new member Adrian notes that he belongs to several groups, and is astounded at how much we actually do.

  • February 19, we learned that Asm. Thurmond has submitted a bill AB 2824 (Thurmond/VRTF)! If passed, counties that are able to do so, must post detailed precinct reports on election night. This is groundbreaking legislation following the lead of AB 813 (Melendez/Courbat) in 2013.

  • Chandra, Richard, Adrian and Jim had several meetings to work on a proposal containing a series of amendments to VbM bills. March will be busy for this.

  • Jim prepared a Resolution on Internet Voting, and submitted it to the San Francisco Elections Commission, February 17.

  • We made several trips in January and February to Sacramento to urge legislators to submit two of our proposals as election bills.

  • January 13, 2016, three VRTF members were the only members of the public to testify in person against AB 887 (Ting), before the Assembly Elections Committee. The bill would have introduced Internet voting into California. We were joined by James Schwab from Secretary Padilla’s office. We won! With help from Mimi in LA. The bill died in committee – 3 yes, 3 no, 1 abstained. The VRTF’s record against IV bills is now 4 wins, no losses.

  • That afternoon, Jim was interviewed by Brad Friedman about the deceptive IV initiatives working thru the AG’s office. We started to prepare a major campaign to stop them.

  • Jim Soper assembled a 75 minute long presentation on Elections Systems 2016, and presented it to two democratic clubs in January and February. He is looking forward to talking with more groups.

  • The VRTF launches a campaign against three Internet voting initiatives. In the opening salvo, Richard and Jim write and distribute over 1000 fliers at the democratic convention in San Jose. (Winter, 2016)

  • The VRTF’s proposal for posting detailed precinct reports on election night is introduced as AB 2824 (Thurmond) This is the result of 7 years of lobbying, including nearly 100 office visits in the Capitol. (2/16)

  • Jim Soper prepares and gives hour-long presentations on Election Systems 2016 in the SF Bay Area (2016)

  • VRTF joined with SoS Alex Padilla and democracy advocates across the state to block AB 887 (Ting), which would have introduced Internet and email voting. (1/16)


  • We testified in favor of AB (Mullin) that will finally require automatic recounts in very tight statewide races. It also requires the Secretary of State to develop guidelines for how much a county can charge for recounts. (Spring, 2015)



  • Interviewed all three democratic candidates for Secretary of State. We endorsed Derek Cressman, and campaigned for him. Alex Padilla won the primary election, and has been performing well as Secretary of State. (2013-14)

  • Supported and testified on behalf of AB 813 (Melendez/Courbat), which requires counties that are able to post detailed precinct reports on their websites, 30 days after the election. It passed the legislature unanimously and was signed into law! (8/2013)

  • Worked with Debra Bowen, and scores of democracy advocates to block AB 19 (Ting), a bill to introduce Internet voting pilots. (2013)


  • Created the Watch The Count(ies) project to track the reporting of votes in almost all of Ohio’s counties during the election of November, 2012.


  • Helped Debra Bowen to block passage of SB 1929, a bill to introduce cloud-based ballot marking. (2012)



  • Jackie Riskin sent thousands of emails to media outlets about election integrity issues (2007-10)


  • Michelle Gabriel publishes “Monitoring Electronic Voting Systems in California”, a groundbreaking document that describes what to look for when monitoring electronic voting machines and processes involved in the counting of the voting. (9/2006 – 10/2008)

  • Jim Soper was instrumental in convincing the German Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs to cancel an official Internet voting pilot project (summer, 2008). This lead to a subsidiary of Deutsche Telekom to drop out of the Internet voting software business (Fall/08). Note : the German Constitutional Court would later rule that elections systems that cannot be retraced were unconstitutional (3/2009)

  • VRTF spearheaded a campaign to defend Debra Bowen’s new election regulations from attack during the primary elections (2/08). On Election Day, media editors received over 500 letters and emails supporting her regulations (2/2008)



  • VRTF made major contributions to the election of Debra Bowen as Secretary of State (2006)

  • VRTF lead the public protest against the purchase of new Diebold systems in Alameda County (2005-06)

    * Diebold was thrown out of Alameda County
    * for the first time ever in California, all votes cast on a DRE using VVPATs were hand checked; this later would become standard procedure in all of California, leading to the use of paper ballots instead of voting machines by over 90% of Californians. (11/2006)
    * The county conducted a security assessment that was a whitewash.(2006)


  • VRTF members co-found the California Election Protection Network (spring, 2005)

  • VRTF hosted the first national symposium on election integrity (2/2005)

  • VRTF sparked the campaign to have Senator Boxer support Ohio representatives in demanding a review of the results of the 2004 presidential election, which she did (1/2005)


  • VRTF created (11/2004)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: