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Chaos Campaign: Will OH GOP Block Voters at Polls?

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Chaos Campaign: Will Ohio GOP Block Voters at Polls in 2008?

Ohio's GOP says there will be no challenges of voters this year. But Democrats point to actions suggesting otherwise.

By Steven Rosenfeld, Alternet
Posted October 15

For full story see…
Chaos Campaign: Will Ohio GOP Block Voters at Polls in 2008?

Ohio's Republican Party will not challenge the voter registrations of thousands of Ohioans before the 2008 election or on Election Day, a party spokesman said Wednesday in a surprising statement on the eve of this year's deadline for notifying Ohio's 88 county election boards of large-scale voter credential challenges.

"If you are asking if we are planning to do any challenges, the answer is no," said John McClelland, Ohio Republican Party spokesman. "We are not planning to challenge."

McClelland's surprising comment was met with raised eyebrows by Democrats in Ohio, including by the Secretary of State's office -- which has been sued by Ohio Republicans over numerous aspects of its management of the 2008 election.

"We don't have any official comment on that one," said Kevin Kidder, a spokesman for Ohio Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner, a Democrat.

Another staffer in Brunner's office pointed to an Associated Press report this week where the Ohio GOP asked election officials in Licking County for a list of the people who registered and voted during a five-day early window this month, suggesting that request was intended to challenge those voters' credentials. Only last week, a county prosecutor and sheriff in southwest Ohio dropped a similar inquiry after civil rights lawyers told them they would be violating federal laws designed to stop voter intimidation.

"This is the real story," Brunner spokesman Bryan Clark said.

The Columbus Dispatch also reported on Thursday that the Ohio Republican Party was seeking the names of all voters who registered since September first, and all individuals who registered to vote and then cast ballots during a week-long window earlier this month.

Brunner told the Dispatch that Republicans were trying to inject "chaos" into the election process as a strategy to undermine voter turnout.

For full story see…
Chaos Campaign: Will Ohio GOP Block Voters at Polls in 2008?

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