In the second ruling against her in as many weeks, Ohio State Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner has been found in violation of federal election laws by a federal judge. Sec. Brunner neglected to “take adequate steps to validate the identity [sic] of newly registered voters.” The ruling stems from complaints about the Secretary’s program allowing people to register and vote at the same time, without waiting for the registration to be verified.
The nut of the complaints, of course, was that the lack of oversight in the registration/voting program left the door wide open for voter fraud. At the front of the complainants’ minds was ACORN, the community organizing umbrella group with a long, documented history of unethical or criminal voter registration practices continuing into the present day, which is known to have deployed an enormous number of its troops to Ohio. (As noted earlier, Ohio is one of the states of interest to the FBI in their probe of ACORN’s activities.)
Details below the break.
The ruling came with a temporary restraining order blocking the early voting program immediately; the Secretary’s office is appealing the ruling.
The Ohio Supreme Court dealt a previous blow to Sec. Brunner a week and a half ago, after the Secretary issued an order to reject a number of absentee ballot applications on a technicality (viz. a number of applicants had neglected to check a pro forma box). The applications had been supplied by the McCain campaign, and therefore were, presumably, predominantly from Republicans. A federal judge ordered Brunner to instruct county boards of elections not to reject the applications on those grounds.
Brunner has not had a good couple of weeks; since the current ruling, she appeared on Greta van Susteren’s program on Fox News for an interview:
She dismissed the complaints as “conjecture,” casting herself and her office as the victim of baseless charges of partisanship. The most precious part of the interview: Greta told the Secretary that a student journalism group Fox News deals with on occasion went down to one of the registration centers to report on voter registration irregularities, and they received a complaint from the SecState’s communications office accusing them of “shoddy journalism and being a mouthpiece for the Republican Party.” Brunner denied that the complaint came from her office, saying she stays in constant touch with her comm office and she knew of no such complaint. After the interview, van Susteren reported that she received a letter of complaint about the interview from the SecState’s office.
Anybody know how to email a sense of irony over to Columbus?