Dwelling on the possibility that a company tangentially related to the Romney family may tamper with their own product distracts from the very real and far more insidious ways that conservatives are trying to manipulate the election. For starters, the Republican National Committee and state-level Republican parties hired a voter registration firm that is openly fabricating and even destroying voter registration forms. Though the Republican Party has attempted to cut ties with this firm, its operatives are still hard at work on its behalf. Besides these operations, Tea Party group True the Vote plans to dispatch hundreds of volunteer poll watchers whose only role is to try to discredit voters before they cast their ballots. Some local classes have been caught instructing these volunteers to challenge legal voters. If they could simply flip a switch on a machine to negate a voter’s choice, there would be no reason to push voter ID laws, purge voter rolls, disseminate misleading information, or threaten to fire employees if they don’t vote for Romney.
The rigged machines myth is not only distracting, but harms the effort to get out the vote.
Look: I'm not saying that voting machine fraud is fiction. It's very real. But people are already getting Truther-y about this, and predicting a conspiracy is not the best use of your time. The Romneys owning huge chunks of Hart Intercivic is a known issue. Journalists and, presumably, Democratic lawyers will keep a very close eye on the counties that use Hart Intercivic's machines. This kind of fear mongering on progressive blogs just makes voters feel powerless and encourages them to not bother "throwing away" their vote.
Rather than trying to predict ways that the election can go wrong, why not spend your energy trying to make sure the election goes right? Why not help battle the very real Republican efforts to discredit and marginalize the votes of Democrats by joining the team that is prepared to fight these efforts? Sure, volunteering your time to a Get Out the Vote organization is harder than forwarding blog posts around and predicting what would be the most obvious conspiracy in the history of the United States, but it's a hell of a lot more useful.