How badly is Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted trying to throw the election for Romney? Badly enough that on Saturday, in violation of a judge’s order, he plans to throw out potentially tens of thousands of provisional ballots.
Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted, whose decision to try to restrict early voting was thrown out first by an Ohio judge, then a federal appeals court and denied a hearing by the U.S. Supreme Court, will be back in court again this month after he issued a last-minute directive on provisional ballots that not only contradicts Ohio law but is also in violation of a recent court decision and the opposite of what Husted’s own lawyers said he would do.
As reported by Judd Legum at ThinkProgress, Husted ordered election officials not to fill out a section of the provisional ballot that verifies what form of identification that the voter produced and that, if it is incorrectly filled out, the ballot will automatically not be counted. However, under the law establishing the provisional balloting procedures, according to the lawsuit filed against Husted on Friday, it is election officials that are supposed to record the type of ID provided, not the voter — and that election officials are supposed to attempt to resolve any questions on the spot.
Husted has until Monday to respond to the suit, and the court has said that it plans to resolve the issue before provisional ballots are counted on November 17, 2012.
So yes, if Ohio is close, and close enough to decide the election overall, then this is the story right here that will determine the Presidency. It amazes me that this guy is repeatedly allowed to violate federal court judges and Ohio state law, and do whatever the hell he feels like doing.
I personally hope President Obama’s electoral tour de force rolls Romney so hard that Ohio is just another icing state on the 350 electoral vote cake. But no matter what, Husted’s actions here are odious, repugnant, and oh yeah, illegal. It’s voter suppression to help the GOP, period. Let’s call it what it is, folks.
The good news is at this point the extraordinarily desperate GOP is resorting to patently obvious nonsense like this, and it’s being discovered before Tuesday’s vote. People are at least aware of it, especially here in Ohio (I hope).
We’ll see. The obvious remedy to this is VOTE.