Ohioans are fortunate to have a multiple-choice secretary of state who , like so many other Republican officials these days, can lead you down conflicting paths in defining his choice for the next U.S.  president.  On one path, Jon Husted was widely  featured on the national media as a leading critic of Donald Trump’s unhinged  warnings that the election will be “rigged”.

Husted, who is already running for governor in 2018 , accused Trump of “irresponsible” sky-is-falling  campaign rhetoric who ought to shut up because the voting system is secure. He feels safe in assuring you of a clean election because he is the state’s top election officer.

But wait.  The secretary then  swerved  his comment  by declaring that he is voting for…Trump. Pure cognitive dissonance.

Does that mean  he will forgive Trump of the many reckless screeds to the voters that now have school kids mocking their classmates for, say, being Latinos? Or having their parents believe that Hillary Clinton is on drugs and ought to be tested before the last debate?  Or that Hillary ought to be locked up?

Ohio’s voting laws have been teetering one way or the other under Republican control for years and Husted has been a key figure boasting that any changes he has sought are aimed solely at  voter fraud, which, of course, is an unproven non-starter.  I’ve followed the epic story line to shrink minority votes, and can recount instances when GOP officials actually conceded that the goal is exactly that.  The state’s media, however, usually rescue Husted from having to defend what is indefensible as a Republican exercise.

Throughout the land there have been wicked reports of red states that have taken extraordinary efforts, winning some and losing some, to shrink the minority vote. In September, the 4-4 Supreme Court took no action on an appeal  to revive a highly-restrictive voting law in North Carolina.  A lower  court had ruled that the law “disproportionately affected  African Americans”.

So on election day, will you be heeding Husted’s map and voting  for his promise of clean unrigged elections?  Or for Husted’s “irresponsible” other candidate?