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Old 11-14-2004, 07:29 AM   #1
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more voter complaints from Ohio.

This is in today's Columbus Dispatch...not a surprise that most are Kerry voters.

Quote:
Angry voters air complaints

Hundreds at hearing question process, suspect fraud
Sunday, November 14, 2004
Suzanne Hoholik and Jeb Phillips
THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH

An elderly man who was refused an absentee ballot left his hospital bed and showed up at a polling site with an IV still in his arm.

Another man had to convince four elections workers that he still lives in his Bexley house.

Broken voting machines, cars being towed from a Driving Park polling site, threeto five-hour waits and too few machines — these were some of the stories shared by voters, poll workers and elections observers yesterday at a Near East Side church. Robert Fitrakis, a lawyer and political-science professor at Columbus State Community College, organized the hearing so attendees could air their election grievances — then send the information to state officials.

It drew more than 200 people and ran hours longer than planned.

Most of the crowd favored Sen. John Kerry, with many wearing campaign stickers and buttons.

They cheered when one man called for Kerry to "unconcede" the presidential election and booed at the mention of Ohio Secretary of State J. Kenneth Blackwell.

A sign leaning on the New Faith Baptist Church of Christ read Voting fraud = death to democracy and many cars had Kerry-Edwards bumper stickers.

Stories were collected by a court reporter, and the hearing was videotaped and broadcast on a local radio station.

Fitrakis said he’d give transcripts and tapes to Blackwell as well as county boards of elections, and if any glaring issues arise, he’s ready to file criminal or civil lawsuits.

"I believe there is enough evidence for systematic voter suppression," he said. "To pretend that it went well on Election Day is wrong."

Matthew Damschroder, Franklin County Board of Elections director, said later in an interview that the election was a success.

"Nothing happened in this election that doesn’t happen in any other election," he said. "The difference in this election was there was far more attention being paid by everyone."

Harvey Wasserman has been a voter since 1976 and has lived in Bexley since 1986. He knew he’d be out of town Nov. 2 and applied for an absentee ballot.

"A few days later, I received a rejection," he said. "It said I filled out the wrong address even though (the letter) came to me."

After four phone calls, he received a ballot.

"How many other absentee ballots were rejected?" Wasserman asked.

Carol Shelton was the presiding judge at the Linden library precinct, with three machines for 1,500 registered voters. At her home precinct in Clintonville, she said there were three machines for 730 voters.

"I called to get more machines and got connected to Matt Damschroder, and after lots of hassle he sent a fourth machine," she said. "It did not put a dent in the long lines. This was a clear case of voter suppression."

Damschroder agreed in the interview that adding one machine per precinct wouldn’t have made a difference with 102,000 more people voting than in 2000.

"We need to have a public discourse about what is the appropriate level of resources and funding for county boards of elections," he said.

Although there were enough machines at Derek Winsor’s Victorian Village precinct, three broke down while he was in line for three hours. He asked how poll workers knew the votes cast on those machines would be counted and said he was told, "They just are."

"How do we as voters and poll workers receive assurances that the votes are stored?" he asked.

Floyd Mitchell Hall, a volunteer for the nonpartisan Election Protection group, worked at a Driving Park precinct where the man showed up with an IV in his arm.

"He was told he could not vote absentee, that he had applied too late," Hall said.

Before the hearing, about 15 people who planned to attend stood on the Broad Street sidewalk outside the Statehouse holding signs reading Count Every Vote.

Roxanne Ziegler, 41, of New York City, applied for the demonstration permit after she heard stories of voting and counting problems in Ohio.

"I started getting angry — one, because my candidate didn’t get elected, and because our votes weren’t getting counted," she said.

She decided the best way to draw attention to that was to fly to Columbus and demonstrate. Via the Internet, she found Jeff Nolish, 23, a Bowling Green State University senior, who organized a rally in Columbus the day after the election. She got the permit Friday, and most of the 15 demonstrators yesterday were Bowling Green students.

Another hearing will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. Monday at the Franklin County Courthouse auditorium, 373 S. High St.
First, my problem is this: Nothing happened in this election that doesn’t happen in any other election," he said. "The difference in this election was there was far more attention being paid by everyone But, what happened is not right!
Second, people need to understand that in many other countries, voting takes upwards of 14 hours.
Third, how long is this going to go on? Are we going to be airing complaints till January?
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Old 11-14-2004, 08:00 AM   #2
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Quite frankly, the sheer emotional volume of this election guaranteed that complaints and such were sure to happen. It doesn't surprise me. We liberals need to put this behind us, think hard, work hard, support our ideals and dreams, and somehow keep our agenda alive. Of course this won't be easy. Most worthwhile things in life are hard, they take work, fortitude, and not least, determination.
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Old 11-14-2004, 08:54 AM   #3
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Re: more voter complaints from Ohio.

Quote:
Originally posted by pianorocker
Second, people need to understand that in many other countries, voting takes upwards of 14 hours.
Or 20 minutes (although that is a high estimation).

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Old 11-14-2004, 09:54 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally posted by verte76
Quite frankly, the sheer emotional volume of this election guaranteed that complaints and such were sure to happen. It doesn't surprise me. We liberals need to put this behind us, think hard, work hard, support our ideals and dreams, and somehow keep our agenda alive. Of course this won't be easy. Most worthwhile things in life are hard, they take work, fortitude, and not least, determination.
i like verte's level headedness here.

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Old 11-14-2004, 10:03 AM   #5
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I disagree with verte. The past two presidential elections have been a mess and not just in a "some dead people voted in Ohio" mess. Votes lost with no way to get them back because there is no paper back-up. Straight-ticket Democratic votes going for Libertarian candidates. Absentee ballots not being sent out. The fact remains that we NEED to look at this election and figure out what went wrong so it doesn't happen AGAIN in four years.

First thing to do is email your senator and congressman and tell them to support a bill presently on the floor in the Senate to make sure there is a paper back-up for EVERY vote cast. There is no reason why Diebolt, a company that makes ATMs, cannot outfit their voting machines with printers. If you can get a receipt for every ATM transaction you make, you can surely get a paper print-out of your vote to drop in a box on the way out of a polling site as a back-up in case there are problems.
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Old 11-14-2004, 10:55 AM   #6
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Re: Re: more voter complaints from Ohio.

Quote:
Originally posted by Popmartijn


Or 20 minutes (although that is a high estimation).

LOL! Sorry, I didn't mean to generalize, but I do know that there are numerous countries where it does take a long time to vote. My spanish professor is from Venezuela and she says it's not uncommon to wait 14 hours to vote. Perhaps I'm comparing apples to pears in this situation. I'll be quiet now.
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Old 11-14-2004, 11:16 AM   #7
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i like fruits
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Old 11-14-2004, 11:22 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by diamond
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Old 11-14-2004, 11:31 AM   #9
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Re: Re: Re: more voter complaints from Ohio.

Quote:
Originally posted by pianorocker
LOL! Sorry, I didn't mean to generalize, but I do know that there are numerous countries where it does take a long time to vote. My spanish professor is from Venezuela and she says it's not uncommon to wait 14 hours to vote. Perhaps I'm comparing apples to pears in this situation. I'll be quiet now.
Oh, there sure are many countries where it takes a lot of time to vote. You mention Venezuela, but it's also the case in Indonesia, African countries and probably Russia too. Oh, and I guess in the biggest democracy in the world too, India. However, in many European countries it is organised in such a way that voting won't require to stand in line for hours and hours.

C ya!

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Old 11-14-2004, 11:45 AM   #10
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in a world context however,
standing a few hours in line to preserve democracy is small potatos all things considered

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Old 11-14-2004, 12:17 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by diamond
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Quote:
Originally posted by PopmartijnOh, there sure are many countries where it takes a lot of time to vote. You mention Venezuela, but it's also the case in Indonesia, African countries and probably Russia too. Oh, and I guess in the biggest democracy in the world too, India. However, in many European countries it is organised in such a way that voting won't require to stand in line for hours and hours.
That's it! That's exactly what I meant. =) Thanks.
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Old 11-14-2004, 12:29 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally posted by diamond
in a world context however,
standing a few hours in line to preserve democracy is small potatos all things considered

db9
Good one, db.
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