Majority of Americans predict voter fraud in U.S. election - poll

A majority of Americans think that the U.S. presidential election next month will be marred by fraud. A survey released by Opinion Dynamics suggests over 60 % believe there will be widespread voter fraud, with 35 % keeping faith in the electoral process.

In a telephone poll of 1100 voters registered nationwide, 47% believed that fraud is more likely to favour the Democrats, with 35 % saying the Republicans would benefit.

Just under half of those surveyed, 43 %, said they were Democrats, with 37 % Republicans and 16 % independent.

The current election campaign has been the most expensive race ever for the White House.  

Since the campaign started in January 2007, candidates have raised $US 1.5 billion – more than twice the figure raised in the last election four years ago, and three times more than the amount of money raised for the race in 2000.

The total cost of the campaign to elect a new President and a new U.S. Congress has now topped $US 5.3 billion.

Obama or McCain? Some voters trust neither

Meanwhile, Florida is considered to be one of the key swing states which could determine who wins the White House.

The latest poll there suggests a 5% lead for Democratic candidate Barack Obama. His rival, Republican John McCain took a bus tour around Florida on Thursday in an effort to woo swing voters.

However, some people in Florida believe it makes no difference who wins the election. About 30,000 people live in Liberty City in north-west Miami. Many residents there say they will not be voting in the upcoming election, since no U.S. government is ever on their side.

Max, a community activist, is trying to make a difference. Along with other activists, he took a strip of public land and built houses on it from scratch.

He said: “Liberty City has been absolutely devastated by the housing crisis and now the foreclosure crisis. A lot of these homes in this very low income community are completely vacant, while there are individuals and families living on the street, homeless, nowhere to stay. And, of course, the Government is not helping”.

Max says that the new village gave hope to dozens of families who had long ago lost any belief in the American Dream. But Max says public officials didn’t want the land where the houses stood to be used without profit, so they burnt the place down.

A vote in Florida goes a long way for the candidates, because the outcome of the election could hinge on what happens at the polls here. But this key swing state currently ranks third in the U.S. for the number of foreclosed homes taken from their owners who cannot met their mortgage repayments to banks. .

Tens of thousands of people are out on the streets and many of them seem to have reached breaking point. They seem to have little interest in helping politicians, who they believe don’t help them.