R. Doug Lewis
R. Doug Lewis is the former executive director (1994-2015) of the Election Center, an organization responsible for coordinating the privatization of the elections industry. He also helped establish sister organizations to the Center, such as the National Association of State Election Directors (NASED), where Lewis managed the approval of voting system test labs. During his tenure, Lewis had the central role of a liaison between regulatory agencies, election officials, voting system vendors, and testing authorities (ITAs), and could be characterized as responsible for making the industry what it is today. Lewis represents the vendors, but to some extent, he even holds sway over those vendors, as shown by his ability to call them into a meeting and get them to sign onto a PR campaign by ITAA (rather than the other way around).
Lewis's background is incredibly obscure and still largely unknown. His official biography from the Election Center is more like a cover story, as several parts are misleading or entirely false. For instance, while Lewis claimed to be the executive director of the Democratic Party in Kansas and Texas, he was actually an executive of the Republican Party in those two states. For an unknown reason, Lewis crafted a false background that hid his elite Republican history and made himself appear to be a Democratic political leader instead. News articles from before he ran the Election Center are sparse, but a picture of his Republican political work emerges. Following his time in politics during the 1970s, Lewis reemerged in 1986 running a used-computer business in Houston TX, the Micro Trade Mart. This was where he worked until getting chosen to run the Election Center.
- 1 Biography
- 1.1 Family and early life
- 1.2 GOP political work
- 1.3 After politics
- 1.4 Used-computer business
- 1.5 Joining the Election Center
- 1.6 Role in HAVA
- 1.7 ITAA alliance
- 1.8 Holt bill opposition
- 1.9 Retirement
- 2 Occupations
- 3 Controversies
- 4 Political connections
- 5 References
- 6 External links
Family and early life
GOP political work
Kansas GOP (1973-74)
National party (1974-75)
Texas GOP (1975-77)
John Connally campaign (1977-??)
Joining the Election Center
Role in HAVA
Holt bill opposition
- Department of Health, Education and Welfare: Consultant in the Office of Education (????-1973)
- Kansas Republican Party: Executive director (1973-1974), executive secretary (1973-1974)
- Republican National Committee: Field director for Texas, Kansas, Arkansas, and Oklahoma (1974-1975)
- Texas Republican Party: Executive director (1975-post 1976), finance director (????-1977)
Campaigns and PACs
- 1976 Gerald Ford presidential campaign: Texas campaign director
- John Connally Citizens Forum: Executive director (1977-post 1978)
- Micro Trade Mart: Owner and director (1986-1993)
- Election Center: Executive director (1994-2015)
[In literature for the Election Center, Lewis falsely presents himself with a history of Democratic political leadership, likely to hide his Republican elite past. The most galling deception is that he claims to have been an executive director of the Texas and Kansas Democratic Party, when in reality, he was finance director and executive director of the Kansas and Texas Republican Party, respectively.]
Election vendor collusion
[The claimed purpose of the Election Center is to represent election officials across the country, but in reality, Lewis has run it as a privatization advocate for the vendors. This is somewhat akin to ALEC, which presents itself as a council of state legislators despite actually being a corporate lobbying organization. And just as ALEC's true purpose is to influence state legislators in favor of corporate interests, the Election Center under Lewis most likely trains election officials to become subservient and docile towards the vendors. The officials are probably taught to become dependent on the vendor, accept their election results without question, and even cover up any irregularities. By transforming election officials into willing acceptants of whatever the vendor does, Lewis has played a key role in allowing nationwide election fraud by this small group of vendors to go unchecked.]
- Emporia State University, "Spotlight Vol. 35 No. 1", spring 2005 - Lewis was born in New Orleans, and attending Emporia studying speech and business
- PDTWiki, "The Founding of Beta Sigma Tau at Kansas State Teachers College and Its Affiliation with Phi Delta Theta Fraternity" - at Emporia State University in 1965-66, Lewis helped found a fraternity
- Documents about the Wichita State University football players plane crash, including Lewis's words
- Jefferson City Post-Tribune, "Kansas GOP building", 1973/05/17 - in 1973, Lewis was offered the post of executive director of the Kansas GOP
- Manhattan Mercury, "Even those who have it waiting for hamburger", 1973/07/27 - Kansas legislative committee hears from Lewis, then-state GOP executive secretary
- Iola Register, "Political sparks fly over probe", 1973/08/03 - Lewis, Kansas GOP executive secretary, speaks about a grand jury probe
- Salina Journal, "Ranson raps Miller for "disdain" of finance law", 1974/08/09 - Commission on ethics instructed Lewis, Kansas GOP executive secretary, about campaign finance
- Emporia Gazette, "Lewis Resigning Kansas GOP Post", 1974/11/24 - Lewis resigns as executive director of Kansas GOP to take RNC job
- Iola Register, "Kansas GOP official takes national post", 1974/11/24 - resigning to become RNC field director for southwest states
- Waco Herald-Tribune, "Veteran GOP Official Named State Republican Exec. Director", 1975/08/09 - Lewis appointed executive director of Texas GOP
- Met and photographed with Gerald Ford on 1975/09/13
- Ford's diary for 1975/09/13, mentioning the Texas GOP luncheon that Lewis attended
- The Courier-News, "Ford on defensive, strategy to change", 1976/05/06 - as Texas GOP executive director, Lewis speaks to Ford's economic record
- Pampa Daily News, title unknown, 1976/09/15 - Lewis, Texas GOP executive director, named Ford 76 campaign chairman in Texas
- Brownwood Bulletin, "Aide gives Ford chance in Texas", 1976/10/21 - Lewis, the Texas campaign director for Ford, holds a press conference
- San Antonio Express, "Committee could provide Connally with springboard", 1977/10/01 - Lewis expected to resign as Texas GOP finance director in 1977 to fundraise for John Connally
- New York Times, "At Least 12 Potential Candidates Weighing ‘80 Presidential Race", 1978/03/28 - Lewis, executive director of John Connally Citizens Forum, announces $300,000 raised
- Washington Post, "Republicans Are Feasting on Super K", 1978/08/27 - as an aide to Connally, Lewis comments on the state of GOP fundraising
- Washington Post, "Connally: The Not-Yet Candidate on the Trail", 1978/10/19 - Lewis was executive director of the Citizens Forum
- Phi Delta Theta fraternity, "The Scroll", winter 1979 - mentions Lewis as executive director of John Connally Citizens Forum
- Jewell County Recorder, "568 GRADUATE AT EMPORIA STATE SPRING COMMENCEMENT", 1981/05/28 - in 1981, Lewis was an executive search consultant in Houston TX who led the Emporia commencement speech
- Micro Trade Mart corporation info
- PC-Computing, "Secondhand PCs: such a deal!" by Deborah Asbrand, 1989/05. Excerpt from the article: "There's something that nags at them about buying used, and they just don't know what it is," says R. Doug Lewis, president of Micro Trade Mart, a Houston-based seller of used PC equipment... [T]he Micro Trade Mart also offers a 30-day warranty on parts and labor and provides regular service for the used IBMs, Compaqs, Commodores, Ataris, and Apples that fill its 3,000-square-foot store.
- May 2001 testimony before the Senate Governmental Affairs committee
- Election Academy, "Doug Lewis To Retire From Election Center", 2014/11/25 - Lewis announces retirement from the Election Center in 2014
- Associated Press, "AP FACT CHECK: Trump won presidency but lost popular vote", 2016/11/29 - claim in 2016 that US elections aren't rigged anywhere
- DU thread by Bev Harris: "Who is this mystery man? What is he hiding?"
- DU thread by Bev Harris discussing Lewis's strange background: "(R. Doug Lewis) -- got a touchy question, and his web site shut down"
- Sourcewatch article on R. Doug Lewis
- Lewis was a speaker at the Conference of Governmental Excellence and Best Practices at Auburn University in 2003
- Video of Lewis addressing the Florida State Association of Supervisors of Elections
- 2007 testimony to Congress on the Holt bill
- Previous theories about his identity
- More likely: Robert Doug Lewis (with wife Vicki V. Lewis) living in Houston TX
- John Connally background
- Wikipedia page on John Connally
- "In 1971, Republican President Nixon appointed the then Democrat Connally as Treasury Secretary. Before agreeing to take the appointment, however, Connally told Nixon that the president must find a position in the administration for George H. W. Bush, the Republican who had been defeated in November 1970 in a hard-fought U.S. Senate race against Democrat Lloyd M. Bentsen. Connally told Nixon that his taking the Treasury post would embarrass Bush, who had "labored in the vineyards" for Nixon's election as president, while Connally had supported Humphrey. Ben Barnes, then the lieutenant governor and originally a Connally ally, claims in his autobiography that Connally's insistence saved Bush's political career because the then former U.S. representative and twice-defeated Senate candidate relied on appointed offices to build a resume by which to seek the presidency in 1980 and again in 1988. Nixon hence named Bush as ambassador to the United Nations in order to secure Connally's services at Treasury. Barnes also said that he doubted George W. Bush could have become president in 2001 had Bush's father not first been given the string of federal appointments during the 1970s to strengthen the family's political viability."
- "Connally announced in January 1979 that he would seek the Republican nomination for President in 1980. He was considered a great orator and strong leader and was featured on the cover of Time with the heading "Hot on the Trail". His wheeler-dealer image remained a liability. Connally raised more money than any other candidate, but he was never able to overtake the popular conservative front runner Ronald Reagan of California. Connally spent his money nationally, while George H. W. Bush, who was from Houston like Connally, targeted his time and money in early states and won the Iowa caucus. The Houston political activist Clymer Wright rejected both Connally and Bush and served as Reagan's finance chairman in Texas. Bush's status as a challenger to Reagan was at first heightened by his victory in Iowa. Connally drew the backing of Republican State Representative Fred Agnich of Dallas, former president of Texas Instruments."
- "Connally quickly endorsed Reagan, appeared with the former governor at the Dallas-Fort Worth Airport, fundraisers, and other campaign events. He helped Reagan to win a narrow primary victory over Bush in Texas. During a press conference, Connally was asked if he thought Reagan was the best man to be president. Connally naughtily replied: "I think he's the second best man I can think of." 
Connally said that he and Bush despised each other. The statement seemed to contradict Connally's earlier insistence that President Nixon name Bush to a post in the administration as a pre-condition for Connally's agreeing to become treasury secretary. Rumors also abounded in 1964 that Connally personally voted for Bush for senator because of his greater dislike for Bush's then-opponent, Senator Ralph Yarborough. Bad feeling between Yarborough and both Connally and Vice-President Johnson was evident in the early stages of President Kennedy's tour of Texas in November 1963. Among other things, it was widely reported at the time that Yarborough had refused to travel in Johnson's car, although, after Kennedy's intervention and Connally's agreement to give Yarborough a more prominent role in functions planned for Austin, he did so during the fatal motorcade in Dallas. Charles Keating once contributed to Connally's campaign for President."
- Jim DiEugenio, review of Survivor's Guilt by Vincent M. Palamara, 2014/04/09
- "Chapter 4 is devoted to the setting of the motorcade route. This is a key point. Because as anyone who has been to the Dealey Plaza, triple underpass site will know, the two turns made by the motorcade into the plaza, onto Houston and then Elm, created an almost ideal situation for what military assassins call an L shaped ambush. That is a slow moving target, vulnerable to snipers from concealed places at three points surrounding the target. In addition, the location allowed for easy exits since there were parking lots adjoining at least two sniper locations: the Depository and the grassy knoll. Palamara does some good and interesting work in regard to the mystery of how this bizarre, indefensible route was chosen. He states that considering the fact that agent Gerald Behn, White House assistant Ken O'Donnell and Kennedy advance man Jerry Bruno were all opposed to the Trade Mart as the dinner destination, its seems odd that it was ultimately chosen. (pgs. 98-101) As late as November 14th, there was no dogleg on the motorcade route. The route came straight down Main Street. (ibid, p. 102)"
- "James Rowley wrote to the Commission that he had no knowledge of who actually released the motorcade route to the press. This seems another deception by Rowley. Palamara says it was Betty Forsling Harris a Dallas socialite on the local committee, who did so. She was working closely with representatives of John Connally, the Secret Service, and LBJ aide Bill Moyers. Palamara concludes that this false information was given out for purposes of plausible deniability. That is, the Secret Service could later say that the route was purposely advertised in more than one configuration to show that there was more than one option in hand. When, in reality, the Secret Service knew between November 18th and 20th what the actual route was, including the dogleg."
- New York Times, "Elizabeth F. Harris, 77, the First Publisher of Ms.", 1999/08/07: "Elizabeth Forsling Harris, who was briefly the first publisher of Ms. magazine, died on July 14 in Manhattan, where she lived. She was 77. [...] Ms. Harris helped start Ms. magazine in late 1971, but she left after the first issue, citing disagreement on a wide range of issues. In 1975, she filed a suit for $1.7 million against the first editor of Ms., Gloria Steinem, and Pat Carbine, the publisher, contending that they had fraudulently misrepresented the value of the magazine's stock. The suit was dismissed. After Ms. magazine, Ms. Harris worked in the early days of cable television, developing a shopping service called Cable Catalog with Neiman Marcus. In 1976, she became the publisher of Working Woman. In the early 1980's, she was a deputy commissioner at the New York State Department of Commerce. [...] In 1941, she took a job at Newsweek in New York as a researcher. She later became a radio and television editor. In 1951, she joined ABC, where she produced a program featuring Walter Winchell, and was one of the network's first programming executives. Two years later, she left to start her own public relations company in Dallas, where she remained through the late 1950's, until she became a special consultant for Arthur Godfrey Productions in New York. In 1961, she was the deputy associate director of the Peace Corps. She returned to Dallas in July 1963 and was the local White House liaison for President John F. Kennedy's visit on Nov. 22, 1963."
- TIME, "A Mysterious Mover of Money and Planes" by Jonathan Beaty, 2001/06/24: "The Harken Energy folks are not the only Texas-based colleagues of George W. Bush with fortuitous, if not extraordinary, Arab connections. Another is the mysterious Houston businessman James R. Bath, a deal broker whose alleged associations run from the CIA to a major shareholder and director of the Bank of Credit & Commerce International. [...] Bath's penchant for secrecy has been frustrated by a feud with a former business partner, Bill White, who claims that Bath was a front man for CIA business operations. White contends that Bath has used his connections to the Bush family and Texas Senator Lloyd Bentsen to cloak the development of a lucrative array of offshore companies designed to move money and airplanes between the Middle East and Texas. [...] But Bath vehemently denies White's accusations. "I am not a member of the CIA or any other intelligence agency," he says, describing White's portrayal as a "fantasy." Even so, Bath, while insisting he is nothing more than a "small, obscure businessman," is associated with some of the most powerful figures in the U.S. and Middle East. [...] Bath opened his own aircraft brokerage firm in 1976, but his Middle East connections first surfaced two years later, when he became a shareholder and director of Houston's Main Bank. His fellow investors were former U.S. Treasury Secretary John Connally; Saudi financier Ghaith Pharaon, an alleged B.C.C.I. front man; and Saudi banker Khaled bin Mahfouz, who subsequently became a major B.C.C.I. shareholder. [...] The firm that incorporated Bath's companies in the Cayman Islands is the same one that set up a money-collecting front company for Oliver North in the Iran-contra affair."
- Wikipedia page on John Connally
- John Stanley Pottinger - was at the Department of Health, Education and Welfare (in the Office of Civil Rights) from 1970-73, overlapping the time that Lewis was himself at HEW; subsequently headed the Civil Rights Division at the Department of Justice from 1973-77; then had a Wall Street career
- New York Times, "Study of Dr. King's Death Finds No Links to F.B.I.", 1976/01/01: "Within days, the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division opened an examination—the first ever —of the 96‐volume archive the F.B.I. had compiled on Dr. King in the decade preceding his death. [...] The Justice Department's reexamination of the case continues. But J. Stanley Pottinger, head of the Civil Rights Division, said in an interview that so far his inquiry had turned up no evidence whatever of F.B.I. involvement in the killing."
- He dated Gloria Steinem at one point and defended her against charges of working for the CIA