The net is abuzz about what John Kerry may or may not be saying now about the stolen election of 2004.

But we can definitively report what he has said about New Mexico and electronic voting machines soon after his abrupt "abandon ship" with 250,000 Ohio votes still uncounted.

And we must also report that what he's not saying is having a catastrophic effect on what's left of American democracy, including what has just happened (again) in Ohio 2005.

In recent days Mark Crispin Miller has reported that he heard from Kerry personally that Kerry believes the election was stolen. The dialog has been widely reported on the internet. Kerry has since seemed to deny it.

We have every reason to believe Miller. His recent book FOOLED AGAIN, has been making headlines along with our own HOW THE GOP STOLE AMERICA'S 2004 ELECTION & IS RIGGING 2008.

As in his campaign for president, Kerry has been ambivalent and inconsistent about Ohio's stolen vote count. Soon after the presidential election, Kerry was involved in a conference call with Rev. Jesse Jackson and a number of attorneys, including co-author Bob Fitrakis. In the course of the conversation, Kerry said "You know, wherever they used those [e-voting] machines, I lost, regardless if the precinct was Democratic or Republican."

Kerry was referring to New Mexico. But he might just as well have been talking about Ohio, where the election was decided, as well as about Iowa and Nevada. All four of those "purple" states switched from Democratic "blue" in the exit polls as late as 12:20am to Republican "red" a few hours later, giving Bush the White House.

A scant few hours after that, Kerry left tens of thousands of volunteers and millions of voters hanging. With Bush apparently leading by some 130,000 votes in Ohio, but with a quarter-million votes still uncounted here, Kerry abruptly conceded. He was then heard from primarily through attorneys from Republican law firms attacking grassroots election protection activists who dared question the Ohio outcome.

In the year since that abrupt surrender, Theresa Heinz Kerry has made insinuations that she thought the election might have been stolen. But there has been no follow-up.

Now we have this report from M. C. Miller that Kerry said he knew the election was stolen, and then denied saying it. Coming from Kerry, the inconsistency would be entirely consistent.

But those committed to democracy and horrified by the on-going carnage of the Bush catastrophe still have no credible explanation as to why Kerry abandoned ship so abruptly. He had raised many millions specifically dedicated to "counting every vote," which clearly never happened in Ohio. More than a year after the election, more than 100,000 votes are STILL uncounted in the Buckeye state.

And now, tragically, we have had another set of stolen elections. Four statewide referenda aimed at reforming Ohio's electoral process have been defeated in a manner that is (again) totally inconsistent with polling data, One statewide referendum, aimed at handing the corrupt Taft Administration a $2 billion windfall, has allegedly passed, again in a manner totally inconsistent with polling data, or even a rudimentary assessment of Ohio politics.

We will write more about this tomorrow. But suffice it to say these latest "official" vote counts make sense only in the context of a powerful recent report issued by the Government Accounting Office confirming that electronic voting machines like those used in Ohio can be easily hacked by a very few players to deliver a vote count totally at odds with the will of the electorate.

We have seen it in the presidential elections of 2000 and 2004, in at least three Senatorial races in 2002, and now in the referenda in Ohio 2005, and possibly elsewhere.

How could this have happened?

By and large, the nation is in denial, including much of the left.

Miller recently debated Mark Hertsgaard over a Mother Jones review of both our books. The idea that the 2004 election could have been stolen has also been attacked by others on the left.

Some reporters have briefly visited here or made calls from the coasts and then taken as gospel anything that mainstream Democratic regulars utter, even if it’s totally implausible and counter-factual.

For example, they would have you believe that, in direct contradiction to how elections have gone in Ohio for decades, it’s now routine for boards of elections to record that 100% of the precincts are reporting, and then suddenly add 18,615 more votes at 1:43 a.m. after the polls have been closed since 7:30 p.m. and 100% of the precincts had been reporting since approximately 9 p.m.

Or that 18,615 Miami County votes could come in late with an impossibly consistent 33.92% for Kerry, as if somebody had pushed a button on a computer with a pre-set percentage---just as the GAO says it can be done.

Or that it's ok for a Democratic county election official, with a lucrative contract from the Republican-controlled Board of Elections (BOE), to admit he doesn't really know whether the vote count had been doctored.

Or it's fine for BOE officials take election data home to report on from their personal PCs. Or for central tabulators to run on corporate-owned proprietary software with no public access. Or for BOE officials to hold up vote counts late into the night that time and again miraculously provide sufficient margins for GOP victories, as with Paul Hackett's recent failed Congressional race in southwestern Ohio.

Or for one precinct to claim a 97.55% turnout when a Free Press/Pacifica canvass quickly found far too many people who didn't vote to make that possible.

There is clearly no end to this story, and there is no indication the dialog on the net will diminish, even though the mainstream media---like the mainstream Democratic Party---absolutely refuses to touch this issue.

But ultimately, whatever John Kerry or the bloviators or even the left press say about these stolen elections, America is very close to crossing the line that permanently defines the loss of our democracy.

As we will show tomorrow, this week's theft of five referendum issues in Ohio is yet another tragic by-product of the unwillingness of John Kerry and so many others to stand up for a fair and reliable electoral process in this country.

Bob Fitrakis and Harvey Wasserman are co-authors of HOW THE GOP STOLE AMERICA'S 2004 ELECTION & IS RIGGING 2008, available at, and, with Steve Rosenfeld, of WHAT HAPPENED IN OHIO, to be published this spring by The New Press.