Ohio’s Republican Secretary of State, Jon Husted, is instructing county officials in the battleground state to ignore a federal court ruling allowing for in-person early voting in the final days before election day. Last week a federal judge granted a request from President Obama’s campaign as part of a lawsuit targeting a state law cutting off early voting on the Friday before any Tuesday election, except for military personnel and Ohioans living abroad.
In a memo, Secretary Husted said:
“Announcing new hours before the court case reaches final resolution will only serve to confuse voters and conflict with the standard of uniformity sought in (state law). Therefore, there is no valid reason for my office or the county boards of elections to set hours for in-person absentee voting the last three days before the election at this time. If… the appellate courts uphold the trial court’s decision, I will be required to issue a consistent uniform schedule for statewide in-person voting hours for the last three days before the election. I am confident there will be sufficient time after the conclusion of the appeal process to set uniform hours across the state.”
This all comes on the same day Secretary Husted is being sued by a conservative watchdog group alleging that Husted has failed to maintain accurate voter registration lists for his state as required by federal law. Husted’s office told the Associated Press that Ohio’s voter rolls are in their best shape in years.