Posts Tagged 'ohio 2012'

State Rep. Tracy Maxwell Heard Urges Voting Assistance for Ohio’s Emergency Responders to Superstorm Sandy

State Representative Tracy Maxwell Heard (D-Columbus) has been in contact with staffers of Ohio Governor John R. Kasich and Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted’s offices, after discovering that emergency responders from Ohio may not be able to vote in this year’s general election as a result of their participation in emergency response and clean-up activities related to Hurricane Sandy’s devastation of the eastern seaboard.

“After scrambling to figure out if we could do anything for these first responders, I read that New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is allowing displaced residents to vote electronically via e-mail or fax. A New Jersey elections official promised to conduct his county’s election come hell or high water – well, hell and high water are here, and the brave men and women of Ohio have stepped forward to bail out the East Coast,” said Rep. Heard. “We, back home in Ohio, have to ensure that their sacrifice does not cost them their vote.”

Many of the first responders have not voted early, anticipating that they would be able to participate in early voting or traditional Election Day voting this year. When Hurricane Sandy hit on October 29, these men and women headed to the impacted areas. The nature of the clean up will most likely keep first responders out of the state until after November 6.

Rep. Heard is hopeful that Gov. Kasich and Secretary Husted will be able to work with her to accommodate the precarious situation that some voting Ohioans face due to this natural disaster.

State Rep. Alicia Reece Applauds Decision of Federal Court to Count Provisional Ballots

State Representative Alicia Reece (D-Cincinnati) of the 33rd House District, applauded the decision issued yesterday by United States District Court Judge Algenon L. Marbley ordering that provisional ballots cast in the wrong polling location must be counted. Earlier this month, the decision to count provisional ballots cast in the right polling location, but wrong precinct, known as “right church, wrong pew” ballots, was upheld. This newest ruling takes voter protection a step further by also counting “wrong church, wrong pew” ballots.

State Rep. Alicia Reece (D- Cincinnati), who introduced H.B. 76 (“Count the Votes” Bill) in February of 2011, released the following statement:

“While I am saddened that the Ohio General Assembly did not pass legislation to count provisional ballots where poll-worker error occurred, I am pleased the federal court has ruled to ensure the votes of Ohioans are fairly counted. This decision is a victory for voter’s rights and for the voters of Ohio. I would urge the State of Ohio not to appeal this decision and to restore the integrity of our voting process.”

State Rep. Alicia Reece Outraged Over Voter Intimidation Billboards

State Representative Alicia Reece (D-Cincinnati), David Singleton, Executive Director of the Ohio Justice and Policy Center, President of the Cincinnati Baptist Ministers Conference, Rev. Doc Foster, Rev. Nelson Pierce with the AMOS project, along with other Hamilton County clergy held a press conference today asking for voter intimidation billboards in Hamilton County and throughout Ohio to be taken down. The billboards warn, “VOTER FRAUD IS A FELONY!,” when there is little to no evidence that voter fraud is a widespread problem in Ohio. The ads have been allowed to run anonymously throughout the state, claimed only by a private family foundation.

“We are asking the Outdoor Advertising Association of Ohio to work with the anonymous sponsors of the billboards to have them removed immediately. It’s obvious that the billboards are designed to intimidate voters and leave some wondering if merely voting is now a crime.”

The billboards have been strategically placed in African American and low-income neighborhoods.

“It’s sad that we have to fight against voter intimidation billboards when voters are already struggling to understand the ever changing election law directives from our Secretary of State. Maybe it would be more productive to have billboards announcing early voting hours,” added Rep. Reece.

Rep. Clyde Urges Attorney General Not to Appeal Vote-Counting Order

The Sixth Circuit U.S Court of Appeals today upheld a decision in the consolidated cases NEOCH v. Husted and SEIU v. Husted requiring the counting of provisional ballots cast in the right polling place but the wrong precinct due to poll worker error. 

State Rep. Kathleen Clyde released the following statement about the decision:

“Today is yet another victory for voting rights.  In August, the district court shut down Secretary Husted’s effort to throw out provisional ballots that might be cast due to poll worker error.  Today, the Sixth Circuit agreed that disqualifying such ballots would be unreasonable and fundamentally unfair and would violate the U.S. Constitution’s guarantees of due process and equal protection of the laws.  I strongly urge Attorney General DeWine not to waste taxpayer dollars by appealing this common sense decision.”

The matter was remanded to the lower court for further proceedings.  The Sixth Circuit left open the possibility that all wrong precinct ballots cast due to poll worker error could ultimately counted, and not just those cast in the right polling location.  Over 14,000 provisional ballots were rejected in 2008 because they were cast in the wrong precinct.  That year, 34% of Cuyahoga County’s wrong precinct ballots were cast in the right polling place while 32% were cast in the right polling place in Hamilton County.  Source: Final Report 2008 – 2009 Ohio Election Summit and Conference, Brennan Center. 

State Rep. Alicia Reece Applauds Decision of Federal Court to Count Provisional Ballots

Today, the 6th District U.S. Court of Appeals ruled that the State of Ohio must count provisional ballots cast in the right polling place but wrong precinct as a result of poll-worker error. This decision upholds a ruling issued in August by the lower court and brings a much needed layer of protection for Ohio voters. Over 14,000 provisional ballots were cast in the wrong precinct due to poll worker error; a large portion of such votes must now be counted.

State Rep. Alicia Reece (D- Cincinnati), who introduced H.B. 76 (“Count the Votes” Bill) in February of 2011, released the following statement:

“While I am saddened that the Ohio General Assembly did not pass legislation to count provisional ballots where poll-worker error occurred, I am pleased the federal court has ruled to ensure the votes of Ohioans are fairly counted. I would urge the State of Ohio not to appeal this decision and to restore the integrity of our voting process.”


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