After a very close vote on Thomas Merton vs. Charles Wesley, the Supreme Executive Committee carefully reviewed all the votes. We are sorry to say that we found two instances of voter cheating, both attempting to support Merton. A voter in Springfield, Missouri, voted 21 times for Merton, while a voter in Colorado Springs, Colorado, voted 34 times for Merton. Those two users have been banned, and we have removed 55 votes from Merton. This means Charles Wesley received more legitimate votes than Thomas Merton, so Wesley is hereby declared the winner. People who cheat are hereby declared losers.
Please note, in Lent Madness, we encourage you to do whatever you can to get out the vote. Send mass emails to everyone in your diocese, rent a blimp, buy television ads, canvass your neighbors, or do something more conventional like tell your Facebook friends to vote for your candidate. But we frown on persons who vote more than once. Don't do it.
Also, please note, we are carefully watching some voters from Seattle, WA; Stow, OH; and Oregon, OH. You've been warned. Don't risk being cast into the outer darkness of Lent Madness where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
So, rest assured that Big Fathers are watching. Lent Madness will be decided in free and fair elections.
For now, we encourage you to vote (once only) in today's match-up between Lydia and Basil the Great.
Glad you found the cheaters. It's appalling. I think the Loser arrow should point down instead of right. Thanks for not sending it the way of us "lefties."
Thank you, o great and might SEC! I saw a spurt last night, which looked suspicious, after slow movements in the lead all day. We appreciate your diligence in the pursuit of justice.
Obviously repeat voting was just a fitting homage to their patron, who sacrilegiously attempted to repeat his baptism!
Banned? What happened to Grace? 🙂
It sounds like it was pretty mindful--not just a glitch with refreshing the page and thinking your vote didn't go in. I'm sure even in Outer Darkness, the blogs and comments can still be read as the parties responsible live out the consequences of this clearly inappropriate action. Fun is fun. Cheating is sad. We're all sinners, and all saints, and God continues to love us even when we make him wince.
Oh. Good. Grief. Really?
They are undoubtedly part of the wealthy one per cent who feel entitled to get more votes here, just as they do everywhere else. Fair is fair, after all.
Perhaps the SEC should consider calling in a team of international election observers?
Is Jimmy Carter available?
Guys, they are NOT kidding. I accidentally voted more than once and it took a great deal of apologizing, groveling, scraping, bowing, kowtowing, stepin-fetching, and all around kissing of posterior to keep from being cast into the pit.
Trust me (old fat fingers here),
It ain't worth it.
So...what were the final scores?????
Did someone give up honesty for Lent? Not the best Lenten discipline I've heard of, but it's different, I'll 'em that!
I was going to give up being Catholic for lent, but my priest said it may not be the best idea. I'm as competitive as anyone, but I can't imagine why anyone would cheat on Lent Madness. It's madness, I tell you, madness!
Tough choice but I go with Merton.
Really? Why? I so don't understand the cheaters. And, i'm sad Merton lost!
What was the actual vote count?
Why in the world would anyone want Merton THAT much!
It is disheartening. On the other hand, it is kind of lovely that people care so much. My cousin and I were emailing even to Italy in a vain effort to support our patron saint Catherine of Sienna.
Please do not repeat this today -- last time I checked it was really close... I am disappointed in folks who vote more than once - it really spoils the fun and learning that Lent Madness provides -- glad there were no "spoilers" from Cook County Illinois 🙂
The results have been adjusted and appear on the Merton-Wesley link. Here they are:
Charles Wesley (50%, 3,236 Votes)
Thomas Merton (50%, 3,185 Votes)
Total Voters: 6,421
Why doesn't the software prevent voting more than once on all computers? My computer does.
Computers 'recognize' people via ip address, but there are ways to reset your ip (or vote from multiple locations or even just multiple computers/devices). Computers aren't really /that/ smart.
I am forced to comply with the omnipotent members of the SEC in their ruling. No one likes folks who attempt to "fix" and election.,what do they think this is Florida? I am a proud support of Thomas Merton however one must yield to the results of an honest count. ( unlike Florida is past elections)
Extra votes, especially from the dead, would be a Chicago tactic. There is also the Boston strategy, but the tardiness of execution in this case rules it out.
Wow, good to know the SEC is on top of things. You might find your services needed for some upcoming elections, here and abroad.
Seems to me that those who voted more than once took the phrase "vote early, vote often" a little bit too literally.
*I'll GIVE 'em that.
Really? Voter fraud!? Sheeesh!
I thought repeat voting was a tradition only in Chicago?
Maybe you need Jimmy Carter. I'm glad you caught them. It is baffling that people who like Merton, could do such a thing. Hey, you in Stow. Cut it out. Tom VB. Stow graduate 1962.
Chuck Wesley against Thomas Merton
All day the winner uncertain
With cookies reset
Two tilted the bet
Being caught, fans of Merton are hurtin'
I am really sorry if those two 'cheaters' were actually bible study groups who all voted on the same computer, though. Although 34 is an awfully large study group.
I agree. Also, for many social media votes out there you are encouraged to vote many times in a row for "your" candidate - could be confusing for some people esp if new and esp if they didn't look closely at the rules. I'd like to believe the multiple votes were misunderstanding rather than malice. But the main rule is SEC (not God) is our Judge when it comes to voter fraud in LM context, so I guess we trust their judgement!
Not that I support cheaters, but I'm bummed because I had technical difficulties yesterday with my internet connection and couldn't vote for Merton...sigh. I was saying to myself "it's not like your vote would have made a difference." Maybe it would have!
OMG, this scandal is hilarious. What a time to lose internet in a storm! I am forced to borrow my wife's farm iPad to vote. I've had to switch away from Lydia for this round - tough! By the way, if two votes come in from this iPad, it's no scandal. Discount mine. It's her device, and God's will prevail. But, I don't think she's as hooked as I am. Thank you for doing this; it is the sense of humor that has made saintly studies enjoyable! We love you in Maine. God's speed.
Colorado Springs and Springfield, MO...Does this mean we're still counting the cemetery vote , oops, the Church Triumphant vote from Chicago?
Cheating in the votes for the Golden Halo???? Sports, maybe but Saints?? What has the world come to?
Rumor has it that the NOLA Saints have their own issues...oh, the irony!
Next thing you know, there will be odds in Vegas for betting on the Golden Halo.
On behalf of all supporters of J.S. Bach, I demand a recount in light of the cheating which has been going on!
Very disappointed that Lenten Madness was tainted by voter fraud. How contrary to the spirit of the matches! But please stop bashing Chicago and Cook County.
Yes, the voter fraud associated with Cook County happened in the 1960 Presidential election, which is clearly 54 years ago. The mayor who organized it, the first Mayor Daley, has been dead for 38 years. LJG, it is a Lenten penance to put up with all of those old farts who continue to live in the past. As a native Chicagoan, I feel your irritation, but they can't live too much longer.
1960 was not a unique date in Chicago history. I too am a native Chicagoan , although I now live in the east. I have a good friend who worked for the "young" Richard Daley. When working an election, she called one of the collar counties for a vote total . The person she talked to said "how many do you need?". However, as those of us Chocagoans who ventured outside of Cook county learned, the voting discrepancies in DuPage and Lake Counties certainly offset any difficulties in Cook County.
I was a poll watcher in Chicago in 1972. In one precinct the precinct captains somehow got a hold of the paper ballots and were running a "chain" ballot. I had to have an escort from the Feds to get out of there. The I was in another precinct where all the machines had a few hundred votes on the counters BEFORE any votes were even registered! But there was definitely an effort to do something about voter fraud which I was a part of. That's more than I can say about a lot of other places where that kind of cheating is winked at!
Ok, 1972, let's see that's a mere 42 years ago. Can we all move into the 21st century now? Can we leave the 60's and 70's behind. Really, boomers, enough.
How about December 2010? If you've got 23 minutes to spare, here's a good story on Chicago corruption from the BBC: http://www.wbez.org/blog/best-game-town/bgit-19-bbc-examines-chicagos-culture-corruption