Who Really Won?

Sunday, November 14, 2004

LA Times Looks at Ohio

LA Times has a fairly balanced article on Ohio, which make this point which Republicans and media-types tend to forget:

On election day, a lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court in Cincinnati asserting that the state lacked uniform standards for making decisions on the validity of provisional ballots.

A hearing in the case has not yet been held.

The lawsuit said that if the state did not have uniform standards, it would run afoul of the 2000 Supreme Court decision that halted a recount in Florida and handed the election to Bush. That ruling said that the same criteria for a recount needed to be applied throughout a state.

Ohio State University law professor Edward B. Foley, an election law specialist, said late this week that he had heard troubling reports indicating that disparate standards were being used in different Ohio counties.

"A provisional ballot, as Congress envisioned when enacting the Help America Vote Act [in 2002], was supposed to function as a kind of voter's insurance policy," Foley said.

If consistent standards are not used, provisional ballots may not be the insurance policy they were intended to be, he said.