COLUMBUS - State Reps. Kathleen Clyde (D- Kent) and Debbie Phillips (D- Albany) laid out five most troubling aspects of Ohio's broken provisional ballot process during a press conference today. Attached is a fact sheet outlining these provisional ballot problems.
"Ohio is the heart of it all politically. We are the most important swing state in the country. More than anyone else, we really need to lead, because the spotlight is on us," said Rep. Clyde. "Instead we're leading in all the wrong things, and thousands of Ohioan's votes are being illegally and needlessly rejected."
Ohio's national importance highlights the severe problems with our elections system and the need for long-term solutions that ensure ALL votes are counted. The balance of the Ohio House comes down to provisional ballots.
"We urge Secretary Husted to work with us and take immediate action to avoid costly litigation and to rightfully count the votes of all Ohioans," said Rep. Clyde. "The stakes are very high with this provisional ballot crisis, and Ohioans rights are in the balance. Let's work together, fix these problems, and count the votes."
Nationally Ohio ranked third in the number of provisional ballots cast in 2008, with over 200,000 provisional ballots, and roughly the same number in 2012. This means hundreds of thousands of Ohioans' votes hang in limbo and face extra scrutiny before they can be counted. Tens of thousands of them are eventually rejected.
"We are analyzing the situation and weighing our legal options with regard to rejected provisional ballots in the two impacted House races. We will fight to ensure that voters are not disenfranchised through poll worker error," said Rep. Phillips. "House Democratic candidates received over 56,000 more votes than House Republican candidates, and we will fight to ensure that voters' voices are heard."