Protest United Technologies' Diebold Buyout: Divest

For Immediate Release March 19, 2008

Wall Street Buys Ohio Voters:

Ohio Election Justice Campaign (OEJC) Announces Pension Divestment Plan from United Technologies Corporation (UTX)

Members of pension funds in ten states and in Canada, including five teacher pension plans, urged to immediately contact plan to divest from military-industrial conglomerate UTX and all derivative holdings in UTX (mutual funds and hedge funds) due to likely takeover of Diebold (DBD), maker of voting machines.  Columbus, Ohio (PRWEB)

March 19, 2008 -- The Ohio Election Justice Campaign (OEJC) announces its pension divestment plan from United Technologies
Corporation (UTX), a military-industrial conglomerate.

 In a report published Monday, March 17, Financial Trader forecast that the proposed UTX takeover of Diebold (DBD), one of the largest makers of voting machines, is likely to be successful, especially as "UTX derives roughly 15% of its revenue from Civilian Security Systems."  UTX also includes engine manufacturer Pratt & Whitney, which has 11,000 military engines in service with 27 armed forces worldwide, and Sikorsky, manufacturer of the Black Hawk Helicopter.

  According to Paddy Shaffer, Director, OEJC, "It is time that Americans took control of their future. UTX + DBD = Gestapo Elections with YOUR money."  Diebold (DBD), based in Canton, Ohio, produces the GEMS tabulator system, used across the nation to count votes, including in Ohio, Texas, California, Florida, Pennsylvania, Colorado, Wisconsin, Kentucky, and Virginia. All of these states have pension fund investment in UTX.

 Diebold's GEMS tabulator system was a center of controversy during the 2004 Ohio election in Lucas County because of alleged discrepancies between the computer vote count and the exit poll as well as irregularities during the recount, including reprogramming of the tabulators.  It was used under chair of Lucas County Board of Elections and Lucas County Republican Party, Bernadette Noe, since replaced, wife of Tom Noe, since convicted of corrupt activity and money laundering, among other charges, and sentenced to prison.

 Ohio clinched the presidential election for George W. Bush, leading to one of the longest-running wars in U.S. history. Its 2004
presidential election was so flawed that for the first time in U.S. history, an entire state's Electoral College votes were challenged.  

The Diebold Accuvote TSX voting machines were used for the November 2006 election in Montgomery County, Ohio. According to reports and affidavits filed with the Montgomery County Board of Elections from this election, voters would press the machine button to vote for the Democratic candidate, but the vote would then "hop" over to the Republican candidate.

 One of the Republican candidates up for election, Mike Turner, represents the 3rd Congressional district, which includes most of Montgomery County and half of Warren County, which experienced a fake level-ten homeland security alert during the 2004 Ohio elections.

 The UTX Political Action Committee (PAC) reported donations of $4000 to Mike Turner. Rep. Turner, a member of the House since 2002, sits on the United States House Armed Services Subcommittee on Air and Land forces.  UTX was awarded four contract modifications in 2006 totaling $255.28 million from the United State's Air Force Aeronautical Systems Center, at Wright Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio. The largest air force base in the world, Wright Patterson is located in Montgomery and Greene Counties, Ohio.

 Greene County also experienced homeland security exercises in February 2008, including a SWAT team drill with student hostages staged in the stacks of the Antioch College library against the will of the librarians.

 Under apartheid, Blacks were stripped of their citizenship and disenfranchised. A divestment campaign from South Africa helped restore their human right to democracy.

 Pension funds are important shareholders, holding over US$20 trillion worldwide in assets, the largest category of any investor.
 The OEJC believes it is time for all Americans to be aware of these facts and take action.  If you are a member in one of the
following pension plans, contact your plan and demand immediate divestment from UTX and all derivative holdings in UTX (mutual funds and hedge funds):

 New York State Common Retirement Fund ($278,115,000);

 Teacher Retirement System of Texas ($240,123,000);

 California Public Employees Retirement System ($232,125,000);

 New York State Teachers Retirement System ($173,569,000);

 State Board of Administration of Florida Retirement System ($152,664,000);

 Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio ($131,640,000);

 California State Teachers Retirement System ($98,527,000);

 STRS (State Teachers Retirement System) Ohio ($87,304,000);

 Teachers Retirement System of the State of Kentucky ($65,263,000);

Canada Pension Plan Investment Board ($62,682,000);

 Employees Retirement System of Texas ($57,857,000);
(877) 275-4377

 Public Employees Retirement Association of Colorado ($53,514,000);

 Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Public School Retirement System ($45,837,000);

 State of Wisconsin Investment Board ($44,096,000);

 Virginia Retirement Systems ($40,159,000);

 Defend democracy. Donate to the OEJC:

 Background Information:

"Ohio Holds Funeral on Anniversary of 2004 Elections,";

"Lobbyists Hack Your Elections: The OEJC Calls for Voting Systems Recall, Return, and Refund,";

"Thugs Gag Your Vote: OEJC Calls for Day of Silence on Sunday, January 6th, 2008,"


"Ohio Voter Mugging 2008: OEJC Announces Quarantine That Machine Initiative,"