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Unity08 Fails To Count Every Vote in its First Vote

Unity08 just released the “results from its first vote on the American Agenda.” Yes, as you can see from Unity08’s pdf report that’s exactly what Unity08 calls it:

Unity08 American Agenda First Vote Slide

So how well did they carry off their first vote? This is a vitally important question, because no organization, corporate or otherwise, should be trusted to elect the president of the world’s most powerful nation without a transparently trustworthy democratic process.

The answer: Unity08 failed to count every vote. Instead, they counted only a sample of all the votes that were cast — which is truly odd, considering that any internet vote mechanism worth its salt should be able to tabulate all results. Why not count every vote? What was the sampling method Unity08 used? Unity08 says it was “random,” but that can mean a wide range of things. Was it a simple random sample? Stratified sample? Cluster sample? Were there weights used? Before the “random” sampling, were the results filtered to exclude responses in any way? How? Unity08 isn’t talking. All we know is that Unity08 didn’t count every vote.

34 thoughts on “Unity08 Fails To Count Every Vote in its First Vote”

  1. Joseph says:

    That’s annoying. Stupid political move on their part not to lie and to say that all votes would be counted. Well, at least they get points for honesty. Hopefully they’ll count every vote in the second vote. I liked how the issues turned out (assuming the sampling was at all accurate)

  2. Jim says:

    Do your research, Joseph. Unity08 specifically pledged at the beginning of the voting process that “it is an actual vote of all Unity08 members.”

    Then, in the middle of the vote, Unity08 changed the vote process, so that now:

    We have released both secure and non-secure versions of the study during the distribution process. A random sampling of studies completed in secure mode will be used to formulate the published results.

    That’s a change of procedure in the middle of the process. Is that honesty? I suppose it depends on your definition of the word, doesn’t it?

  3. Joseph says:

    …yeah, i’ve done the research. They stated that they changed the procedure in the middle of the process. They should have done the smart thing, which would have been to not say that they were going to formulate the published results with a random sampling. They should have just maintained that the results were from “all Unity08 members”. It would have sounded and looked much better.

    As I said, hopefully they’ll publish everyone’s vote next time. Or at least if they don’t, maybe they’ll be smart enough to hide it next time.

  4. Jim says:

    Oh, you were serious when you said Unity08 should just lie about it. Oh. Oh.

    Well, I’m very rarely left speechless, but there you are.

  5. Brother Nicholas says:

    As a registered member of Unity08 I entered their voting process thinking it would be legitimate. Yeh…right! The first “question” (a scale) resulted in my obvious progressive rating. From that point I could go no further. Thereafter, I had shut down my pc and gone back more than once. I tried to vote a number of times but they had tagged my pc id number to prevent any input from me. Now it’s clear that many others who ‘failed’ to pass their ideological ‘scale’ at the outset in their voting scheme would have no access and so have no input into their entire process. I now CLEARLY see through Unity08. They’ll weight their participants in favor of holy rollers, idiots, CEOs, and the wealthy. They want only ‘certain’ people to name their nominees and participants who will fall for their phony proposals so as to screw up the next election too. The Neocons know they’re despised for their lies, war profiteering, and greed in general, so they came up with this scheme to split the vote. Rove and his ilk did so in the past with lies. Nader’s ego helped the NeoCons as well and he’ll likely do it again. Unity08 will freeze out those whom they fear. Unity08 was founded by Bush’s former campaign manager (which says it all) so as to split voting and draw votes from ANY Democrat candidate. Again, we’ll end up with another minority Republican president handed the office by five Republicans on the Supreme Court. Will Americans actually see through Unity08 as just another NeoCon scheme to hang onto control? I have no faith in the intelligence of average Americans because over 70% have had no higher education and too many with degrees have had no exposure to MULTIPLE disciplines and thus have tunnel vision. So, since most Americans are so poorly educated and so easily manipulated, I doubt it!

  6. Joseph says:

    By the way, if you want to talk about “failing to count every vote”, why not check out:

    I mean, really. Unity08 currently has 100,000 people who may vote in their online primary. The Democratic party in Florida and Michigan have how many voters for their primaries?

    Talk about disregarding what voters want.

  7. Jim says:

    Actually, what you mean to link to is:

  8. Anonymous says:

    Brother Nic, I entered the voting process thinking it was illegitimate and merely an attempt to get some marketing information. After all, these are the same guys who did the Alpo commercial. So when I answered that first question I thought about their demographic–they want to pull the centrist votes away, right?–and placed a mark as close to the center as I could make it, as if to say, see? I’m in your demographic. Then I proceeded to the rest of the questions. No problems, no lockout. You would think they would at least give everyone a phony test even if they’re only going to count the votes in the center.

    Yeah, yeah, they say they have 100,000 delegates. Has anyone checked the count on the delegate number assignments lately?

  9. Jim says:

    Actually, they say they have 100,000 members. The number of delegates is at least 20,000 smaller — and the member number system is quite out of whack now on their system, with so many profiles for member numbers that should be taken returning “not found” that I cannot profile the size of Unity08 with any confidence.

  10. Joseph says:

    But no, really, if you want to do a comparison of “Not counting every vote”, i’d be much more worried about the Democratic party (It may also apply to the republicans, although I don’t think they are avoiding states) than Unity08. Unity08, if it’s even legitimate, is fighting a very uphill battle and most people would probably say it’s going to fail miserable. The Democratic party has millions of people in it, and apparently anyone in a state that disagrees with what the party says, well, your vote doesn’t count in picking our candidate for President?


    Actually, it just pisses me off. At least I don’t live there.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Yes, they will count the votes, and they will count ALL the votes. The question is whether the national party can pressure the state party organization by threatening to ignore the results of the vote. They are being totally public and upfront about it. They are not claiming they will count every vote then changing the rules in midstream and secretly throwing out an unknown number of votes for secret reasons.

  12. Joseph says:

    Yes, they are being public and upfront about how the Democratic voters in Florida and the Democratic voters in Michigan will have NO INFLUENCE over who is the DEMOCRATIC NOMINEE for President in 2008 because the state legislatures moved the primary votes earlier.

    And everyone is okay with this? Millions of voters don’t matter because the party’s national committee said so?

    I mean, really, if that doesn’t bother anyone here who writes the blog posts, then we should start talking about who is getting support from the DNC…

  13. Jim says:

    Oh, lookit you! Lookee lookee! You think you’re a big tough blackmailer, don’t you, hiding behind your Anonymouse?

    Trot out your “proof” that we’re “getting support from the DNC.” Now. Because we aren’t. Why would a tool of the DNC write this? Why would a tool of the DNC offer items in its shop like this:

    Vote Third Party

    Third Party 2008 Organic T-Shirt

    Come on, Joseph. Stop your little routine and show us your evidence.

  14. Timm says:

    Joseph, Unity08 PR Hack, also seems to be quite supportive of right wing political causes.

    Has anyone else noticed how Unity08 is tilting over towards the right and Republican ideology?

  15. Jim says:

    Careful, Timm, we don’t know for sure that he is a Unity08 P.R. hack. We just know he’s acting like one.

    Come on, Joseph. Let’s have your evidence, or let’s have a retraction.

    Now, please.

  16. Joseph says:

    I already did show you the evidence. You are rallying about how Unity08’s (apparently non-binding) online vote/survey of 100,000 people did not have every entry counted, while the Democratic primary (which is directly choosing the Democratic candidate for President) in Michigan and Florida, in which millions of people are able to vote, will not allow ANY votes to count.

    I’d say that to most people, the disenfranchizement of millions is much more important than some survey results being compiled poorly. I think both are important, but your vocal nature about Unity08 with silence about the DNC seems to be showing something.

    And of all people, you certainly know that silence can be used as evidence. Having shirts that say “Vote Third Party” doesn’t really mean much unless you’re saying there’s actually a chance of a third party winning.

    P.S. Please stop referring to me as a PR person. While it is rather flattering that you think I’m so good at communicating a message, it’s not me. The only “PR” experience I ever had was one introduction to communications class at University. If I was a “PR Hack” i’d be making a lot more money than I am now. I’ve studied politics. I’m a progressive. I’m pro-military. I hope Unity08 works and changes politics. I do not work for Unity08. I simply dislike logical flaws and tunnel-visioned argumentation. I.E. If someone’s criticizing one political group for not counting votes, they should at least recognize and criticize another LARGER and more important group for not counting votes, even if they happen to personally like that group more, especially if they are claiming to try and provide information to others.

  17. Jim says:

    Well, that’s no evidence at all that we are supported by the DNC. Meanwhile, I’ve shown you that we actually criticize the DNC.

    So retract the claim, please. You’re only embarrassing yourself.

  18. Iroquois says:

    Joseph has also gone on and on about how wonderful lying is. He thinks Unity08 should have lied about their vote results, he says married men should cheat on their wives, and he thinks the troops in Iraq should be lied to about the progress of the war. Now he says he doesn’t work for Unity08.

    How do we know he’s not lying?

  19. Joseph says:

    Okay, so you criticize the DNC. That means you aren’t supported by them to the same level that Unity08 criticizing lobbyists and special interests means they aren’t supported by them.

    And if we are going to weigh circumstancial and indefinite evidence (which is often done toward Unity08 because of their failure to respond to/answer questions and criticism), the fact that you make posts criticizing Unity08’s failure to count everyone in a vote that seems ultimately irrelevent (with less than 150,000 people), while not making posts criticizing the fact that the DEMOCRATIC PARTY is not going to count MILLIONS OF VOTES during the primary is highly inconsistent, and seems to be extremely biased in support of the DNC at the expense of millions of Americans.

    Then again, knowing your attention to detail, I wouldn’t be surprised if you’ve already written a post on the DNC primary and haven’t posted it yet for the simple pleasure of provoking me.

    I regard to lying and Iroquois’s post:
    1. I never said lying is wonderful.
    2. I never advocated married men cheating on their wives.
    3. I never advocated lying to troops. (I advocated ignorant people in America not saying to the media that the troops will be unable to win the war, as it is demoralizing to troops and is a self fufilling prophecy)

    The only thing I did advocate was that Unity08 should have lied and said that they counted all votes. Because, by being honest, they invited criticism for not counting every vote.

    And of course, there’s no feasible way to know if I am lying. But I’m not, and in the end, it doesn’t really matter. All I asked was not to be refered to as someone who works in PR or works for Unity08, and I think that’s reasonable. I simply refer to you by the name that you comment as, and that could easily be reciprocal.

  20. Jim says:


    Unity08 has lobbyists in its leadership.

    Irregular Times does not have DNC in its leadership.

    What’s more, I’ve never in my life even been registered as a Democrat.


  21. Iroquois says:

    We already know Joseph doesn’t have any problem with lying. Joseph thinks being honest invites criticism. If Joseph is a Unity08 shill, that might invite criticism. So that would give Joseph a reason to lie about who is paying him.

    Also, he hides his IP with special software.

  22. Iroquois says:

    Joseph also mischaracterized the news item about the DNC that he linked to. The article specifically said the votes (at the convention, not the primary) WOULD be counted. The article was actually about moving the dates of the primaries.

    If I recall, one of the IT writers did something about the primary date changes a while back. I also seem to recall there wasn’t a whole lot of interest in the subject at the time. If Joseph really wants to discuss all the inside DNC stuff, maybe he could look in the archives and see who wrote that article and post a comment to it, or just depend on the mainstream press for that type of coverage if he really has a burning desire to know that much about the internal workings of the DNC. It seems like IT is more for stuff you can’t read elsewhere.

    Why is Joseph so interested in a minor DNC story anyhow? If he isn’t with Unity08, maybe he’s a GOP party hack.

  23. Ralph says:

    Now Iroquois, let’s be fair.

    Joseph never said lying is a good thing. A PR hack (which I suspect he is and know he is talking like) would never come out and say something like that.

    “Lying” gets the thumbs down in market research, so a PR hack would never support it. What would he do? He would just change the definition of the word so that, say, signing your name to a letter someone else wrote is “not ‘lying.'”

    PR hacks like Joseph (if you don’t want me to call you a duck, stop waddling around and quacking) read Orwell as a how-to manual.

    So let’s review, shall we?
    Joseph does not support lying.
    Joseph supports “not ‘lying,'” by which he means lying.

    Get it?

  24. Joseph says:

    1. I never said that, as a rule “being honest invites criticism”. Being honest DID invite criticism in THIS case. The criticism is right here, read the main post. If Unity08 lied about the survey results and said they counted all results, it would have been virtually impossible for anyone to find out about it.
    2. Mischaracterization? Read these excerpts from the first article:

    “Florida Democrats would forfeit their votes in selecting a presidential nominee unless they delay their state election by at least a week”-The date, if you read the rest of the article, was set by the state legislature and now the Democratic party has no intention of changing the date. So yeah, the votes aren’t going to count. Sorry.

    Oh wait, you’re referring to this quote:
    “There is general agreement that the eventual nominee will seat Florida’s delegates rather than allow a fight at a convention intended to show party unity.”-Okay, that’s nice, so after the NOMINEE is chosen, they’ll allow the symbolic seating of the delegates? Think about this a second: “The eventual nominee” (who is going to be chosen WITHOUT Florida and Michigan’s citizens having their votes counted) “will seat Florida’s delegates” (count their votes) “rather than allow a fight at a convention” (after they are chosen, so that there won’t be a big PR mess).

    Oh, and from the CNN article:
    “In August, a Democratic National Committee panel voted almost unanimously to strip the state of Florida of its say in the nomination process unless it delays its primary, currently scheduled for January 29. The DNC is likely to impose similar penalties on Michigan.”

    Wow…yep, I’ve mischaracterized allright. “voted unanimously to strip the state of Florida of it’s say…” Damn, I love how ambiguous that is.

    And, if people other than Jim would actually use critical thinking instead of just spouting off irrelevent and boderline ad-hominem drivel other such as “Why is Joseph so interested in a minor DNC story anyhow? If he isn’t with Unity08, maybe he’s a GOP party hack.” they would realize that I’m pointing out a HUGE inconsistency. There an article about a MINOR PARTY that has less than 150,000 members, pointing out how in a NON BINDING SURVEY not “every vote was counted”. A MAJOR party, the DNC, is going to not let millions of people have a say in their nominee for president. That’s over 1,000,000 people. Somehow though, to people here, that’s a “minor” story? Other people should report on it? Unity08 is somehow “bigger” than 1,000,000 people?!

    Why is Iroquois so opposed to a story on the DNC ignoring votes anyhow? If he has such a jilted version of “major” versus “minor” stories, maybe he’s a DNC party hack.

  25. Iroquois says:

    Oh, my, Joseph is posting on a Saturday. The Unity08 office must be doing a little OT.

    Can anyone really be as naive about elections as Joseph seems to be? All of the articles say stuff like “would” and “unless”..about stuff that hasn’t even happened yet. Sounds to me like someone’s still going back and forth over what the rules will be.

    Reminds me a lot of the yearly negotiations with the teachers’ unions here. Every fall they say school “might” not open “unless” whatever, and nobody really gets too upset or stops buying their kids pencils for the fall term. Then sure enough, the teachers’ union signs a contract and school opens right on schedule.

    So when Joseph is running around here like a chicken with its head cut off, posting that the sky has fallen, he’s just a bit premature.

    But what’s this? Over a month ago Jim wrote a post about Unity08 going on and on about the primaries. At that time Jim asked the musical question:

    The disenfranchisement schtick won’t work anymore for Unity08. So what is its marketing team going to come up with next?

    Looks like the answer is “nothing”.

    Maybe next time “Joseph” can come up with something a little more entertaining.

  26. Joseph says:

    Wow, Iroquois is posting on a Saturday. The DNC must be kicking it into high gear.

    Okay, I know that I’m pretty damn stubborn, but sticking to “It hasn’t been decided yet” is a load of crap. Look on Wikipedia

    Yes, it says on Wikipedia “The DNC rules committee met on August 25, 2007 and ruled that Florida would have 30 days to move its primary date at least 7 days later than the current date of January 29, or else lose all of its delegates in the Democratic primary. Florida officials said they may challenge the ruling on legal grounds and protest the 2008 convention; additionally, the actual implementation of such a decision might prove to be difficult.[3]” Yes, the word there is “would” but if you read the actual news articles linked above, you’d realize that the STATE LEGISLATURE changed the primary date. The state party can’t just adjust the date by Sep. 25th, nor does it seem like from all of the articles that they want to. Not to mention that they key part is the DNC *already voted* to strip them of their say. This isn’t a “maybe they will” situation, they *did*. And even if I concede that “they haven’t decided yet”, which I don’t, you’re still perfectly fine with the DNC considering stripping away the voice of MILLIONS of Americans? Somehow that’s *less important* than Unity08’s unbinding poll/vote/survey not having every vote counted? Oh but wait, we shouldn’t worry about the stripping away of votes, because you’re positive it’ll all turn out fine in the end (“Every fall they say school “might” not open “unless” whatever, and nobody really gets too upset or stops buying their kids pencils for the fall term. Then sure enough, the teachers’ union signs a contract and school opens right on schedule.”). I’m sure that the DNC will tell Florida and Michigan voters it’ll “all turn out fine in the end” when they don’t count their votes. And i’m sure with that mindset, isn’t even needed. After all, the teacher union analogy could be applied to a good number of the news stories on here. It all ends up okay, so lets not care about it.

    Give me a break. 100,000>1,000,000? And I need more PROOF that there’s a huge DNC bias?

  27. Ralph says:

    The Democrats and Republicans have skewed primary systems in which not all votes are counted equally.

    So what does Unity 08 do? Set up a third skewed system in which not all votes are counted.


    Because it wants to make a change?

    Because it wants to offer an alternative?


  28. Joseph says:

    I think it’s wrong Unity08 didn’t count all the responses, and if a good system isn’t put it place by the next one where everyone is counted they are going to be seen as just like the other parties and fail.

    Doesn’t really change the fact that Unity08’s numbers are miniscule compared to the DNC and RNC, and they should at least be counting all votes, even if from Fla. or Michigan.

  29. Iroquois says:

    When you get right down to it, political parties are under no obligation to do anything, fair or otherwise. If they want to choose their candidates in political caucuses or in the back of smoke-filled rooms they can do any of that. At least with the major parties, they have rules, they follow their rules and you can debate whether the rules are fair or not. With Unity 08 it looks like they say they are going to do one thing, then they just go ahead and do whatever they feel like at the moment.

  30. Joseph says:

    “they follow their rules and you can debate whether the rules are fair or not”

    Exactly. I’m just saying that that debate, over the DNC ignoring millions of voters, is at LEAST as, if not more, significant than Unity08 not counting every survey. Sure, Unity08 can do whatever they currently want with their 100,000 supporters. But the DNC, with all of their rules (which probably less than 1% of the population knows what they are), if planning to ignore millions of voters. I mean, really, why is Unity08 getting attention about not counting the surveys (which it deserves), while the DNC isn’t getting any attention about ignoring Fla. and probably Mich.?

  31. Iroquois says:

    There aren’t any 100,000 Unity08 supporters.
    And Unity 08 isn’t a political party, it’s a consulting firm.

  32. Joseph says:

    My mistake, 104,735 MEMBERS. That link you posted is totally irrelevent. I don’t really get their stupid delegate/member distinction, and I never used the word “delegate” anyway. I got my number from the counter on

    Okay, and the fact they are a political party/consulting firm/corporation is relevent to the discussion about how the DNC is disregarding a lot more votes is relevent how, exactly?

    (And how the hell are they a consulting firm? They are a either a registered corporation or a political party that’s trying to get ballot access. How many consulting firms get ballot access?!?)

  33. Iroquois says:

    So Joseph, you trust Unity08 when they tell you how many delegates/members/supporters they have? Just like you trust them when they say every vote will be counted?

    There is a whole series of posts on the subject of the number of Unity08 delegates–you should be able to google for the rest of them if you’re interested. In fact, given your apparent continuing fascination with Unity08, you might want to read ALL the Unity08 pieces.

    How are they a consulting firm? Try this one:

  34. Joseph says:

    Okay, this is getting ridiculous, my posts aren’t being read and then neither are the pages that the links go to.

    First, there’s apparently some DIFFERENCE between delgates/members/supporters, as Jim’s post pointed out. He said the DELEGATE number was 20,000 less than the member number. That’s what his post was getting at, to the best of my knowledge. Therefore I used the word SUPPORTER to begin with, because there’s obviously some difference. And, ultimately, even if you’re right about there being even less Unity08 supporters, you’re PROVING MY POINT that Unity08 disregarding votes is NOTHING compared to the DNC ignoring millions of voters in Florida and Michigan. But that’s fine, keep focusing on Unity08’s measly 1-100,000 possibly disregarded votes and ignore the DNC. Because Unity08, as of now, will really effect the election compared to the DNC (sarcasm)

    And if you’ve read most of my comments, i’ve pointed out that I’m unhappy Unity08 didn’t count every vote, and that they should do so next time.

    And as for the last link, it says NOTHING about Unity08 BEING a consulting firm. That’s like saying that because a political party may have an office in a building full of businesses, they are therefore a business. That post was drawin attention to the fact Peak Creative Media was supporting Unity08. It never claimed that Unity08 was a consulting firm.

    Hell, if they are, who are they consulting? Why are they wasting money with ballot access if all they care about is consulting? What are they consulting about?

    To make it easy, i’d say that most evidence points to, in order of the questions:

    1. No one
    2. They aren’t consulting.
    3. And they have nothing to consult about.

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