On December 12, 2004, a hundred Tennessee citizens met on the State Capitol steps in Nashville as part of the nationwide 51 Capitols March, which brought voters concerned about the 2004 election together in 41 state capitals. A week later, only the Tennessee group returned to their State Capitol, and they have continued to meet ever since to discuss election reform and issues related to election justice. This Tennessee-wide grassroots organization is named Gathering To Save Our Democracy
The Gathering members recognize the real and potential election fraud that causes many election results to be questionable and honors the spirit of the Ukranian people who fought their questionable election last fall by going to the streets (and staying there) draped in orange as a show of solidarity. So, the Gathering's motto is "Tennessee: we're not a red state or a blue state. We're an Orange State."
The group is working on many different fronts to learn about and address issues of election implementation, acceptable voting system options, security, expense, and the integrity and trustworthiness of Tennessee's voting systems. They have become active on the local, state, and national levels to promote needed election reforms.
Gathering members are strong advocates for voter-verified paper ballots and mandatory random manual recounts for all contests and all elections. They are working toward implementing these minimum requirements in Tennessee in order to return Tennessee's voting system toward a more fair, reliable, and verifiable election process.
The group supports bringing the serious constitutional issues that Mr. Mills' lawsuit enumerates into an expedited judicial review. They believe it is a crucial step in the effort to fully inform voters, as well as all of Tennessee's 95 county election commissions and administrators who will be making decisions on purchasing voting systems soon, on the parameters of constitutionally acceptable voting systems in Tennessee. The members are adamant that Tennessee must have voter-verified paper ballots before 2006.
David Mills' lawsuit, filed in Memphis on August 24, 2005, charges that paperless electronic voting is unconstitutional in Tennessee.
Gathering members view this lawsuit as one means whereby the constitutionally protected rights of Tennessee voters to accountable elections will challenge the appropriateness of voting systems in which votes are recorded only in electronic fashion on secret software in expensive, malfunctioning, and insecure voting machines manufactured, sold, and maintained by openly partisan corporations.
Lawsuit Summary (43 KB pdf)
August 24, 2005. Text of the Lawsuit (536 KB pdf)