This guy is literally the worse Secretary of State I can possibly imagine. First, in the comments from earlier today, a Plunderbund reader mentions that the Seneca County Board of Elections does not have ballots for the ongoing election, and does not expect to have them in hand for several weeks.

Was Blackwell so busy debating that he forgot to get the absentee ballots to my Board of Elections? I tried to vote this morning and was denied. Blackwell hasn?t sent my BOE the ballots yet, and they think it may be a couple weeks until we get them! Blackwell sucks, and he?s again trying to screw the system.

Seneca County

The BOE staff here treats it as typical Blackwell. Even the Republican staffers here consider him to be a joke.

We can get by in Seneca County with the waiting game, but it had better not be happening in Cuyahoga, Franklin, Stark, and Montgomery Counties!

Anybody else seeing this problem? If so, document it in the comments to this post!

But wait, there’s more. Apparently, forms in libraries to request absentee ballots are from prior elections, not the current one.

It seems that Absentee Ballot Applications with an election date of November 7, 2000 are showing up all over various public libraries in Ohio. A typo? Apparently not. The forms are old ones, but for some reason are being made available, along with old Voter Registration forms ? from 2004 ? in all sorts of locations!

Here’s a sample from one of the photos they sent in over the weekend:
Washington County Absentee Ballot Request Form

While all of this could simply be an innocent mistake, we’ll remind you that this is Ohio, Election Snakepit and Dirty Tricks Capitol of the World since dethroning the previous world champ, Florida, but just by a hair, as of 2004.

The “innocent mistake” theory seems more unlikely since it seems to have been found in so many locations, as described by Shafer and Eaton (see a full letter from Eaton below), who told us she never saw even a single such occurrence while serving as an election official during the entire 2004 Bloodbath in the Buckeye State.

“Innocent mistake” or not, remember: Ohio Sec. of State J. Kenneth Blackwell rejected thousands of Voter Registration forms in 2004 because they weren’t on heavy enough paper stock. So would he flinch for a second at tossing out “old” Voter Registration forms received today? Or refuse to send an Absentee Ballot because it failed to specify the correct election date? Especially, when he points out on his official SoS website, that such applications require “A statement identifying the election for which you are requesting an absentee voter’s ballot?”

As well, the rules for such applications have changed as the Ohio legislature has imposed new, draconian laws in their never ending attempt to keep people from being able to vote. The last four digits of the voter’s Social Security number is now required on Voter Registration forms, but was only optional on the 2004 forms. Just another reason that Blackwell may be able to use to reject an application at his whim.

The official SoS site tells voters that they may pick up Voter Registration forms at “public libraries” on the page answering the question “How can I obtain an Ohio voter registration application?” So does the SoS have the responsibility to make sure that such applications are properly made available in such places?

Boy, wouldn’t it be great if we could safely assume that this is an honest mistake? I don’t think that’s possible, given Blackwell’s clear partisan history as Secretary of State, and the GOP culture of corruption.

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  • Hey,

    There is an easy way to get an absentee ballot this year and vote on your own time. Jennifer Brunner, Democratic Candidate for Ohio Secretary of State created http://www.avoidtheline.org
    On the site, any registered voter in Ohio can complete a current application for an absentee ballot, register to vote if needed and easily find the location of their local Board of elections.

    Brunner is already helping Ohio voters to simplify their voting experience. Learn more about Jennifer and all of her ideas to better the election process in ohio http://www.jenniferbrunner.com

    Vote Brunner – Ohio Secretary of State November 7.

  • Just because you apply for an absentee ballot does not mean they will mail you one in a timely manner. Once you apply for the absentee, you’re shut out from the possibility of voting on Election Day. Blackwell’s unconscionable delay in getting ballots to us for early voting is going to disenfranchise people. How many ballots will get “lost” or “delayed” in the mail? Your vote won’t count that way. The only way to be sure is to: a. go to your local Board of Elections and vote there (assuming Ken Jerkwell has sent the ballots), or b. just brave the long lines and vote on Election Day.

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