Thursday, November 11, 2004

Kucinich Still In It!

I got a response from the NYC Friends of Kucinich to an e-mail I wrote asking what's going on in Ohio: "FYI, Dennis is on it! (Vote fraud investigation) He is very busy with it."

Fantastic. Especially since on November 5th, after Andrew Card's rushed claim of victory and before Kerry's concession, Rep. Dennis Kucinich had this to say on Amy Goodman's Democracy Now (ILCAonline): "Secretary Blackwell has really capitalized the integrity of his office with his early conduct of this election. I don't think that we can give him the benefit of the doubt on this. It's going to be absolutely essential that all those who have been involved in this campaign become involved in the process of making sure that the count is validated, that the provisional ballots are fully reviewed, that any absentee ballots that are out there are checked, and that a canvass of the election itself and the election returns county by county is carefully reviewed. I mean this is, and you know what, this is actually a routine matter at this point. Because even though the results are not routine, it is as a matter of simple protection of the right to vote of the people of Ohio and of the roll that Ohio will play in the Electoral College, we have an absolute obligation to check all this out carefully and not take any comfort from the secretary of state of Ohio who has conducted his office in a manner of almost of a partisan at a time when people really needed someone in that office who actually shows true impartiality. We haven't seen that come out of the secretary of state's office."

But then there's this worrisome news: OpEd News : "Are the provisional ballots in Ohio being thrown out? A new rule for counting provisional ballots in Cuyahoga County, Ohio was implemented on Tuesday, November 9 at approximately 2:30 in the afternoon, according to election observer Victoria Lovegren.The new ruling in Cuyahoga County mandates that provisional ballots in yellow packets must be 'Rejected' if there is no 'date of birth' on the packet. The Free Press obtained copies of the original 'Provisional Verification Procedure' from Cuyahoga County which stated 'Date of birth is not mandatory and should not reject a provisional ballot.' The original procedure required the voter's name, address and a signature that matched the signature in the county's database.Lovegren described the clerks as 'kind of disturbed' after the new ruling came down. She said that one of the clerks told her, 'This is new. This just came down. They just changed it in the last thirty minutes.' According to Lovegren, 80 yellow-jacketed provisional ballots piled up in the hour and 45 minutes she observed. By Lovegren's tally, three provisional ballots were rejected because the registered voters' registration had been 'cancelled.' The rest, she said, were being discarded because of no date of birth.In 2000, an estimated 9% of Ohio's provisional ballots were rejected and not counted, according to Secretary of State Kenneth Blackwell. Many election observers are predicting the number will be much higher this year due to directives from Blackwell's office."


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