Computer programmer Clinton Curtis testified at the December 13th, 2004 Congressional hearing in Columbus, Ohio naming Republican Congressman Tom Feeney as the person who hired him to prepare vote-rigging software.
The programmer claims that he designed and built a "vote rigging" software program at the behest of then Florida Congressman, now U.S. Congressman, Republican Tom Feeney of Florida's 24th Congressional District.
Clint Curtis, 46, claims that he built the software for Feeney in 2000 while working at a sofware design and engineering company in Oviedo, Florida (Feeney's home district).
Curtis, in his affidavit, says that as technical advisor and programmer at Yang Enterprises, Inc. (YEI) he was present at company meetings where Feeney was present "on at least a dozen occasions".
Feeney, who had run in 1994 as Jeb Bush's running-mate in his initial unsuccessful bid for Florida Governor, was serving as both corporate counsel and registered lobbyist for YEI during the period that Curtis worked at the company.
Feeney was also concurrently serving as a Florida state congressman while performing those services for YEI. Feeney would eventually become Speaker of the Florida House before being elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2002. He is now a member of the U.S. House Judiciary Committee.
At an October 2000 meeting with Feeney, according to the affidavit and BRAD BLOG interviews with Curtis over the past three days, Feeney inquired whether the company could build a "vote fraud software prototype".
At least three YEI employees are said to have been present at that meeting; Curtis, company owner, Mrs. Li Woan Yang, and her executive secretary, Mike Cohen. Two other YEI employees may have come in and out at different points of the meeting according to Curtis.
Curtis says that Feeney "was very specific in the design and specifications required for this program."
"He detailed, in his own words, that; (a) the program needed to be touch-screen capable (b) the user should be able to trigger the program without any additional equipment (c) the programming to accomplish this needed to stay hidden even if the source code was inspected."
Though there was no problem with the first two requirements, Curtis explained to the Congressman that it would be "virtually impossible to hide such code written to change the voting results if anyone is able to review the uncompiled source code"
Nonetheless, he was asked at the meeting by Mrs. Yang to build the prototype anyway.
Curtis, "a life-long Republican" at the time, claims that it was his initial belief that Feeney's interest was in trying to stop Democrats from using "such a program to steal an election". Curtis had assumed that Feeney, "wanted to be able to detect and prevent that if it occurred."
Upon delivery of the software design and documentation on CD to Mrs. Yang, Curtis again explained to her that it would be impossible to hide routines created to manipulate the vote if anybody would be able to inspect the precompiled source code.
Mrs. Yang then told him, "You don’t understand, in order to get the contract we have to hide the manipulation in the source code. This program is needed to control the vote in South Florida."
Mrs. Yang then took the CD containing the software from Curtis, reportedly for later delivery to Feeney.
In other meetings with Feeny prior to the 2000 elections, it became clear to Curtis that Feeney had plans to suppress the vote in strong Democratic precincts. In the affidavit, Curtis claims that in those meetings Feeney had "bragged that he had already implemented 'exclusion lists' to reduce the 'black vote'." Feeney also mentioned that "proper placement of police patrols could further reduce the black vote by as much as 25%."
Curtis says that he submitted his resignation to YEI effective December 2000, but stayed on until they had found someone to replace him in February of 2001. He eventually became employed by the Florida Dept. of Transportation (FDOT) after leaving YEI.