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Meteor Blades reports:

[L]ast week, the Republican-run Ottawa County Board of Elections sent a mailer to 2,300 voters in three northwestern Ohio precincts informing them that Election Day was November 8. It is, of course, November 6.

Further, voters were told in the mailer their voting location had been moved to a building on the east side of Danbury High School. Unfortunately, the actual voting location is on the west side of the high school.

According to Huff Post:
Election board director JoAnn Friar, a Republican, blamed the mistake on a computer glitch...

The Associated Press reported that Carol Ann Hill, deputy director of the county's Board of Elections, said 7 percent of the 30,000 registered voters in the county were mailed incorrect postcards. Hill added that the relatively small percentage 'doesn't make it any better.'

So true, dear, and thanks for that. Now: HOW CAN THAT BE A COMPUTER ERROR? Computers don't make those kinds of errors all by themselves. Someone sits at a keyboard and enters information ...

November 8th is the last possible date an election for Federal office can be held under Federal law. According to the Election Archives of the League of Women Voters, November 8 has been an election date only twice in this century - in 2005 and 2011. They were both off-year elections (typically used to fill only Federal office vacancies). In neither year, did Ohio have an election on November 8.

The Ottowa County Board of Elections cannot be heard to say it was just a couple silly little mistakes, troublesome ... and Yes, they'll just undo it by sending out a corrective mailing.

THIS is overt election fraud. When perpetrated by election officials, the parties responsible ought to be removed from office and replaced immediately. "Computer errors" like that don't just happen.

No wonder the international community wants to send election monitors to America!

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Berkeley Fred

    Obama and strong Democratic majorities in 2012!

    by TRPChicago on Wed Oct 24, 2012 at 02:30:13 PM PDT

  •  Reality has outpaced satire (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TRPChicago
    The Onion: Republicans Urge Minorities To Get Out And Vote On Nov. 3 [2004 Election was on Nov. 2]
    It was funny in The Onion, not so much now.
  •  Ohio most certainly did have an election last 11/8 (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Sylv
    Ohioans voted Tuesday night to repeal a Republican-backed law that restricted collective bargaining for public workers, a victory for Democrats and labor organizers both nationally and in the state.

    AP has declared Issue 2 (as the law was called on the ballot) dead. As of this writing, with about 75 percent of precincts in, repeal led by a whopping 62 to 38 percent margin.

    Gov. John Kasich (R) took office in January vowing  to curb unions’ power. But he appears to have overstepped his hand in curtailing the rights of 350,000 public workers — including firefighters and police officers — to negotiate over benefits, equipment and other issues.

    link

    There were two other state issues (and various local elections), but Issue 2 was most widely followed.

    Election protection: there's an app for that! -- and a toll-free hotline: 866-OUR-VOTE
    Better Know Your Voting System with the Verifier!

    by HudsonValleyMark on Wed Oct 24, 2012 at 02:41:05 PM PDT

    •  So, why attribute to malice (0+ / 0-)

      what can be explained by stupidity?

      I'm part of the "bedwetting bunch of website Democrat base people (DKos)." - Rush Limbaugh, 10/16/2012 Torture is Wrong! We live near W so you don't have to. Send love.

      by tom 47 on Wed Oct 24, 2012 at 03:04:45 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  in this case, I don't know of a good reason (0+ / 0-)

        The kicker is that someone pointed out yesterday(?) that these precincts were almost evenly divided between Obama and McCain voters -- slightly more McCain voters, I think.

        I think it's fine to consider malice as a possible explanation for something that might be explained by stupidity. One may not know whether stupidity is an adequate explanation until one has canvassed the alternatives. But, especially when I look at the mailer, this seems like a dumb little mistake, that frankly isn't likely to confuse anyone about when the election is, nor irretrievably strand them on the wrong side of the high school.

        Election protection: there's an app for that! -- and a toll-free hotline: 866-OUR-VOTE
        Better Know Your Voting System with the Verifier!

        by HudsonValleyMark on Wed Oct 24, 2012 at 04:02:30 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  True, HVM, but ... (0+ / 0-)

      1. I was careful to specify elections for Federal office and Federal law, and
      2. It wasn't a computer who pushed the key or button that said "print." It was a human being, an election official or someone acting under their direction, control and supervision.

      If all that button-pusher person did, in effect, was just to say OK, it is election fraud for election officials and the employees they pick and train for the job.

      Why? Because the County Election Board, appointed on a partisan basis or not, owes a duty of scrupulous integrity. When it fails to supervise employees who push computer buttons - and when it fails to verify offical election information it sends to voters - the buck stops with those County Election Officials.

      And when that silly little problem occurs in a district that reportedly went 52% for Obama in 2008, it sounds like fraud, it looks like fraud ... and it sure smells like fraud.

      Don't let these folks off the hook they got themselves on.

      Obama and strong Democratic majorities in 2012!

      by TRPChicago on Thu Oct 25, 2012 at 07:32:50 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  you weren't so careful (0+ / 0-)
        In neither year, did Ohio have an election on November 8.
        Status: false. It's immaterial whether it was a federal election. Look at this from the standpoint of an election official for a moment. Chances are, last year, some polling places changed, so they either created or modified a template with appropriate information, including the date of the general election -- which is the "general election" whether or not it is federal.

        So, this year, it would be expedient to reuse the template -- and actually pretty easy to forget to change "8" to "6." If you have actually looked at the card, I think you can see how this could have happened. The point of the card is not to tell people when to vote.

        If you want to take civil or criminal action against someone, who am I to say thee nay? But I think you would lose.

        And when that silly little problem occurs in a district that reportedly went 52% for Obama in 2008
        The precincts in question actually went narrowly for McCain, not Obama. But even on your version of the facts, whut? Do you suppose maybe they were optimistically hoping to confuse 25 voters about election day, of whom 13 would be Obama supporters and only 12 would be Romney supporters?

        I'm trying to imagine the voters who are so selectively attentive that they notice that the postcard says "November 8," but don't notice all the other materials and news that the election is on a Tuesday. If it were one of those letters that says "Republicans vote on Tuesday, Democrats on Wednesday," that would be a very different scenario.

        Election protection: there's an app for that! -- and a toll-free hotline: 866-OUR-VOTE
        Better Know Your Voting System with the Verifier!

        by HudsonValleyMark on Thu Oct 25, 2012 at 08:51:57 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  You're flying a lot of cover for a stupid mistake! (0+ / 0-)

          The Election Board's computer did not "reuse the template." A person did. And a person either didn't check the proof, or checked the proof and didn't catch the obvious mistake, or saw it and didn't care.

          That. Was. Not. a Computer Error.
          I live too far away to know which precincts were involved and - at the precinct level - to know how people voted. The report was that some 2300 notices went out. I don't understand your 12/13 numbers, but I'd be surprised if the area covered by those notices had precincts with only 25 voters.

          As for taking civil or criminal action, I didn't propose it. I think there's a more appropriate remedy. I did, however, suggest the action was inexcusable and I used the word "felonious" because - in my book - when public officials who are supposed to be neutral mislead the public, their actions are as felonious as fraudulent voters are alleged to be. As for a remedy, I'd just bounce 'em from office for incompetence (with or without needing to prove what they intended) and try to appoint even-handed balanced replacements ... people intelligent and honest enough not to accuse a computer of their own human screwup.

          As for your quote from me about elections, I give you that. I preceded my paragraph with "an election for Federal office can be held under Federal law" and assumed I didn't have to repeat that in each sentence that followed. Still, I was sloppy about that. Mea culpa.

          It was a lot less egregious than the action of the Ottowa County Election Board. Whose spokespeople don't even seem ashamed.

          Obama and strong Democratic majorities in 2012!

          by TRPChicago on Thu Oct 25, 2012 at 10:01:12 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  stupid mistakes normally aren't "election fraud" (0+ / 0-)

            There's a decent chance that you're going after a Democratic election official here. I'm not saying that there should be a double standard -- there shouldn't be -- but maybe it clarifies the implications of your words. If you want to describe conduct as "felonious," why wouldn't you advocate criminal prosecution?

            Again, my point was that given all the sources of information that election day is on a Tuesday, this card wasn't likely to influence many voters (especially because it was bound to be noticed well before election day).

            I live too far away to know which precincts were involved and - at the precinct level - to know how people voted.
            What, you think I know because I live closer to Ohio than you do?

            You could go to the Ohio secretary of state's website, download the results by precinct, and look for yourself. That might be a reasonable thing to do before accusing people of felonious behavior. I guess one can say just about anything about a public official, but that doesn't mean I have to like it.

            Election protection: there's an app for that! -- and a toll-free hotline: 866-OUR-VOTE
            Better Know Your Voting System with the Verifier!

            by HudsonValleyMark on Thu Oct 25, 2012 at 11:03:29 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  Ah, so you'd penalize the computer? (0+ / 0-)

    No, I don't need precinct-by-precinct results to see how they've tried to make their computer the fall guy. Have the election officials of Ottowa County convinced you yet?

    "Stupid mistakes?" By election officials? On key facts about the upcoming election? Proving intention would be difficult. If it was intentional, Yes, it should be indictable. I don't know whether their conduct was intentional. But it does seem that the remedy is to not trust the people who concocted the erroneous information, failed to proof read their advice to voters and let it go without knowing what it said. I'd remove them from office on two grounds: (1) the original screwup(s), incompetence which was serious enough by itself, and (2) the judgment that we'd be dumb enough to accept their explanation that it was the computer who did it.

    May you have more voter protection in the right polling place on the right date than these folks would likely grant you.

    Obama and strong Democratic majorities in 2012!

    by TRPChicago on Thu Oct 25, 2012 at 02:27:14 PM PDT

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