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Intro: "Thousands of Ohio voters have been falsely notified that they are not registered to vote due to a database error in Ohio's voter rolls."

A bin of Ohio provisional ballots to be counted. (photo: ThinkProgress)
A bin of Ohio provisional ballots to be counted. (photo: ThinkProgress)

The Serious Flaw With Ohio's Plan to Count Provisional Ballots

By Aviva Shen, ThinkProgress

06 November 12


housands of Ohio voters have been falsely notified that they are not registered to vote due to a database error in Ohio's voter rolls. An Ohio voter advocacy group alerted Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted (R) to this major system problem on October 30. But instead of fixing it, Husted issued a directive instructing local boards to use the same flawed search method to count provisional ballots after Election Day.

Ohio's computer search of the voter registration database will only find exact matches, meaning that voters could come up as unregistered due to typos, abbreviations, or partial entries. This flawed search mechanism missed huge numbers of registered voters in Franklin and Cuyahoga Counties, incorrectly rejecting 33,000 requests for absentee ballots. These two counties corrected the error, but thousands of others may have slipped through the cracks in the rest of the state. These voters were told they are not registered to vote and may be forced to use provisional ballots at the polls.

But if they do decide to file provisional ballots, along with a growing number of other legal voters in the state, the very same search method could disenfranchise their vote entirely. Husted has ignored warnings that the system is missing large numbers of registered voters. As the Northeast Ohio Voter Advocates, who first discovered the problem, explain:

Worse yet, Sec. Husted last night released a Directive with a proposed search method for Boards of Elections to verify registration status on provisional ballots. Yet Sec. Husted's latest recommendations for search are entirely inadequate, likely to miss thousands of voters because of mis-spelling of names, variation in form of ID, failure to use all available tools for a reasonable search and other reasons. Once again, our warnings and suggestions, sent this morning, have gone unanswered. Unless this inadequacy is corrected, several thousand provisional ballots could be wrongfully rejected as "not registered." If the election is close, this could be a source of endless legal battles.

NOVA has outlined an alternative, more accurate search method that will result in far fewer mistakes. Husted's office has not yet responded.

Husted's directive also jeopardizes legal ballots by shifting the burden of proof on the contested voter, even though Ohio law requires the poll worker to fill out the form. A federal judge will hear the case the morning after Election Day. your social media marketing partner


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It is also clear that we still have elements of the same activity in our article discussion forums at this time.

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+36 # Mamazon 2012-11-06 11:55
You're doing a heckuva job Husted... May you be fired for the cheater you are. You are not fit to serve as dog catcher. But I hear Walmart needs greeters...
+19 # BradFromSalem 2012-11-06 12:39
I don't think WalMart hires criminals.
+26 # Regina 2012-11-06 12:39
Took lessons from Ken Blackwell??? Ohio seems to have a communicable disease infecting its election gurus.
+20 # Bill Clements 2012-11-06 13:09
Your Walmart suggestion: they'd never hire the guy; bad for business.

A far better place for him: a sewage treatment plant, cleaning out the traps.
0 # Margolicious 2013-04-04 21:03
Husted is just another criminal in high places like Ohio Governor Kasich that spend $9 million dollars on JobOH that went to the program and enormous salaries for his friends.
+35 # BradFromSalem 2012-11-06 12:00
Win or lose, President Obama, whether he has 4 years or 11 weeks should make sure that this man serves time. That he serves time with hardened criminals. People that will teach this bastard what happens to f-g a-holes.

What a low life. He has implemented every possible weapon to dis enfranchise any likely Democratic voters. Illegal instructions to poll workers. Purging registered voters from the list of eligible voters.

Jail is the next stop for Husted's career. He is a just a poor sap of a pawn in the oligarchies attempt to take over.

Can you tell that I am outraged?
+3 # X Dane 2012-11-06 17:11

YES, and with GOOD REASON, I am furious too.

It is also a HUGE embarrassment for the country. MANY people around the world are watching this election closely. They must be loosing respect for us.

We can NEVER send monitors to other countries, to make sure their elections are fair, for we have lost ALL credibility
+19 # LeeBlack 2012-11-06 12:17
I hope the lawyers are geared up ready to challenge the results.
+17 # MainStreetMentor 2012-11-06 12:43
The issue is not the person/persons who caused this - but rather, (if found guilty and in violation of the election laws), the entire election in Ohio should be caused to be re-run. This example is EXACTLY how the conservatives lie, cheat and manipulate - they are NOT of a democratically run governance. Once a re-election is conducted SUPERVISED BY THE COURT SYSTEM, then individual responsibile for this outrage need to be investigated and, if justified, tried for their criminal activities.
+20 # AMLLLLL 2012-11-06 12:50
Hey Ohio, here's theCure: Vote Kasich and Husted out of office !!!!! Along with all the partisan election officials who think it's ok to add a piece of software, unproven, just prior to an election.
+13 # Susan1989 2012-11-06 13:40
I have come to hating Republicans.
+10 # brenda 2012-11-06 14:11
I think the whole bunch of Republicans at the top are conspirators and should be tried for treason woth a mandatory prison sentance of 5-10 years in federal prison because of trying to rig the United States voting process. This also includes the Coch Brothers.
+8 # lourdmar 2012-11-06 14:23
GOP works hard at inspiring revulsion ...So is anything being done about it? Lamenting won't help...someone out there must deal with this crime and huge violation of civil rights. NOW - NOT later ..we need ACTION PLEASE!! MItt in office is a dangerous prospect for America.
+2 # cafetomo 2012-11-06 15:49
Why are all the bureaucratic boo-boos invariably favoring the RNC? There is a resounding cacophony concerning democratic thievery, but for all the yelling first and louder, there remains a singular lack of evidence to support it. Perversely, any assertion contrary to conservative interests need only their refutation to become invalid.

When did our invitation to the submarine races become such an unpleasant game of hide the pickle?
+2 # Vardoz 2012-11-06 18:09
Husted should be arrested for violating the Voting Rights Act!
+1 # jeniheifer 2012-11-06 21:58
Husted should be Busted! What a creepy cheater! I'd like to wipe off his ****eating grin..and I am an senior citizen!

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