Miami-Dade vote recount demonstration was staged
On November 22nd a violent demonstration occurred in Miami in protest to a recount of the Miami-Dade ballots. This demonstration was initially reported as a spontaneous outburst by local Miami citizens, due to Republican insistence that is was such, and shown on local and national television. This demonstration lead to the ceasing of recounts of Miami ballots.
It turns out that the demonstration was an organized Republican demonstration of party loyalists who were called to Miami (with all expenses paid) and organized to incite violence and disrupt the recounts in Miami, a heavily Democratic county.
The New York Times reported the event as follows:
"Further details are emerging about the riot Wednesday that preceded the Miami-Dade County election commission's decision to give up recounting the votes in the presidential election. As election workers sat counting votes, a mob screamed outside, pounded on furniture, tried to force its way into the building, surrounded a Democratic Party official, knocked two television cameramen to the ground, and kicked and punched several people, including a Democratic spokesman as he attempted to hold a news conference."
In fact the violence was actually incited by New York Representative John Sweeney, who was involved in the protest.
The following picture was published in the Washington Post:
This picture is a frame from the television broadcast of the event. The people in the picture have all been identified as Republican Party loyalists from outside of Miami.
1. Tom Pyle, policy analyst, office of House Majority Whip Tom DeLay
2. Garry Malphrus, majority chief counsel and staff director, House Judiciary subcommittee on criminal justice.
3. Rory Cooper, political division staff member at the National Republican Congressional Committee.
4. Kevin Smith, former House Republican conference analyst and more recently of Voter.com.
5. Steven Brophy, former aide to Sen. Fred D. Thompson (R-Tenn.), now working at the consulting firm KPMG.
6. Matt Schlapp, former chief of staff for Rep. Todd Tiahrt (R-Kan.), now on the Bush campaign staff in Austin.
7. Roger Morse, aide to Rep. Van Hilleary (R-Tenn.).
8. Duane Gibson, aide to Chairman Don Young (R-Alaska) of the House Resources Committee.
9. Chuck Royal, legislative assistant to Rep. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.).
10. Layna McConkey, former legislative assistant to former Rep. Jim Ross Lightfoot (R-Iowa), now at Steelman Health Strategies.
Texans Eye Replanting Lawn
In short, strings were pulled, and people were put on jets and flown to Miami in order to stage a fake local riot that used violence and intimidation to undermine the voting process with the intention of benefiting candidate George Bush.
For more on this see:
Update January 30, 2005:
Miami Riot Squad: Where Are They Now?