On Election Day 2008, there will probably be more voters than there were in 2004, and many of them will be first-time voters. "I believe as many as 100,000 votes for president could be lost this time around," Norden told OffTheBus.
More of what we already know...
Earlier this month, the U.S. Supreme Court sided with Brunner. Ruling on procedural grounds, it found that the state GOP likely didn’t have the right under federal law to challenge the Ohio law’s application. So Ohio Republicans are taking their fight elsewhere. Last week, they sent a letter to U.S. Atty. Gen. Michael Mukasey asking him to force Ohio to require matching under federal law.
And on Friday, President George W. Bush himself got involved, asking Mukasey to investigate the status of the 200,000 non-matching Ohio voters.
The Republican attorney general in Wisconsin brought a similar challenge against his state’s elections board, but it failed last week. (The attorney general plans to appeal the decision.) A Dane County judge ruled that, “Nothing in state or federal law requires that there be a data match as a condition on the right to vote.” A matching requirement, the elections board had found, could have disenfranchised more than 20 percent of Wisconsin’s registered voters.
Republicans have lost most of their legal challenges claiming states aren’t adequately protecting against voter fraud. But legal experts worry that the steady barrage of legal attacks in battleground states is part of a broader effort to lay the groundwork for undermining the legitimacy of the outcome of the presidential election. That could further fuel the anger of the Republican base against the Democratic candidate — and possibly the next president.
Bad stuff in Virginia...
The flier said incorrectly that Republicans and Republican-leaning independent voters should vote November 4 and that Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents should vote November 5. The flyer claims that the separate dates for voting by party were enacted by the Virginia legislature to ease the strain on the polls during high turnout that is expected.
The crucial swing state of Colorado is the latest state in which some voters might not be able to cast a ballot because of a technical mistake they made when registering to vote. Colorado's Secretary of State Mike Coffman, the state's top election official and a Republican, has deemed over 6,000 voter registration forms incomplete. Steve Fenburg of New Era Colorado estimates that there may be as many as 10,000.
Adrian Herrera is a 25-year-old art major who was excited to vote in the upcoming presidential election.
"Basically I registered to vote when I started to work for the SEIU and I was told to put the last four digits of my Social Security Number inside the identification box ...I thought everything was good until I was told my registration was not valid," said Herrera.
Georgia must allow thousands of people whose citizenship was questioned by the state's new voter verification system to vote in the upcoming election, a panel of federal judges ruled Monday.
The court ruling will affect about 4,500 people in Georgia who had been "flagged" by the new voter verification system and faced being denied a chance to vote Nov. 4 because their citizenship was questioned.
It could also affect more than 50,000 other registered Georgia voters also flagged by the new system because of mismatches in their personal identification information, such as discrepancies in addresses.
“I guarantee you that two weeks from now, you will see this has been a very close race, and I believe that I'm going to win it,” McCain added later. “We're going to do well in this campaign, my friend. We're going to win it, and it's going to be tight, and we're going to be up late.”
McCain also says...
“Those polls have consistently shown me much further behind then we actually are. It all depends on the voter turnout model..."
Which model is he talking about? The "purged voter rolls" model?
It's not over in Ohio...
The White House has asked the Department of Justice to look into whether 200,000 new Ohio voters must reconfirm their registration information before Nov. 4, taking up an issue that Republicans and Democrats in the battleground state have been fighting over in court for weeks.
In some states, what you wear to the voting booth could determine whether you are allowed to vote or be sent home to change.
Virginia's State Board of Elections has banned campaign clothing and other paraphernalia from inside all polling places on Election Day.
Full story here.
I'm less worried about this these days. Here is what I'd like to see:
1 - Obama wins in a landslide despite these efforts.
2 - We expose, prosecute, and jail the jerks who attempt this stuff.
Let's do both.
Poll workers from opposing sides in the presidential race apparently clashed in a physical altercation Friday at a Cuyahoga Falls nursing home when one accused the other of improperly marking a ballot.
George Manos, the 75-year-old Republican, told police that Edith Walker, the 73-year-old Democrat, jumped on his back and struck him in the head three to four times with her fists. Manos said two other elections workers had to pull Walker off his back, according to a report filed with Cuyahoga Falls police.
Manos said it happened after he accused Walker of ballot tampering, and he wants to prosecute.
Now that's what I call fighting back!
Brunner's office says it has been inundated with death threats in e-mails and telephone calls, and received a package last week containing an unidentified powder.
Brunner has been the subject of criticism. Ohio Republicans have sued her over voter registration rules.
There is also a great interview with Obama which is online. So what does he have to say about all this?
In the last two elections, the Republicans worked to suppress the vote, especially in Democratic precincts. Reporting by Bobby Kennedy in Rolling Stone has raised questions about whether the Republicans stole the 2004 election in Ohio. Are you worried about those kinds of tactics this time? And what are you doing in advance to keep that from happening?
Without leveling any accusations about past misdeeds, I can tell you that we're paying a lot of attention to how the election a month from now is going to take place. We've got an extraordinary team of lawyers in every battleground state — hundreds of them — fanning out across these states. A lot of the work is actually being done now: We have organized such a surge in voter registration that there were clerks having difficulty processing the registration, and there was some question as to legal requirements for them to hire more clerks. So there's already been a lot of work done, and I feel pretty confident that if there are any shenanigans out there that we'll be on top of them.
But John Kerry said the same thing in 2004. Lawyers are mainly useful after the fact, when it's too late. Is there anything you can do before the fact to keep the vote from being tampered with?
Well, in Ohio the thing we did was make sure there was a Democratic secretary of state.
Replacing Kenneth Blackwell, the Republican who was in charge in 2004.
That replacement is Democrat Jennifer Brunner. There have been 666,000 newly registered voters in Ohio, mostly Democrat, the legitimacy of which has been challenged in court by the Republicans.
They had a big win yesterday.
A federal appeals court on Tuesday ordered Ohio's top elections official to set up a system by Friday to verify the eligibility of new voters and make the information available to the state's 88 county election boards.
Brunner argued that it would take two to three days to create the necessary computer programs, and said nothing in the federal Help America Vote Act required her to do what the district court ordered.
Ohio Republican Chairman Bob Bennett accused Brunner of pursuing a partisan agenda and said "her delay in providing this matching system leaves little time for election officials to act on questionable registrations."
Bennett said Brunner was destroying the public's trust in Ohio's elections system.
"Her shameful actions to disenfranchise Republican absentee voters, block the transparency of early voting and refuse the proper verification of newly registered voters have rightfully damaged her credibility as a nonpartisan election administrator," he said.”
Get that – The Democrats are blocking fair elections! Those bastards.
Most people I talk to think Obama will win in a land slide that simply cannot be blocked by Repugs regardless of their efforts. Given the state of the McCain campaign, this is likely true. I can't help but be a bit paranoid though.
On the other hand it's incredible that Obama and his Campaign are calling this out: "They are going to try to raise questions. You know, cry out and raise questions about fraud and try and create a smokescreen out there to confuse voters and perhaps to give cover to some of the activities they're going to be undertaking over the next three weeks." They have clearly learned from the weak handed performance of the Kerry campaign. We'll have to see what happens.