Ruling: Ohio can reject some ballots

Associated Press


Provisional ballots that lack the proper recording of voters’ identification can be rejected when post-election vote counting begins today, a federal court ruled.

Friday’s decision by the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati affects fewer than 2,000 of the more than 200,000 provisional votes cast Nov. 6.

It puts on hold a lower court’s order that Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted issue a new directive from his office regarding the ballots.

At issue is whether voters or poll workers should record the form of ID used on provisional ballots, such as military ID or a utility bill, when voters don’t bring proper ID. An order by Husted the Friday before the election put the burden on voters, and the appeals court ruling upheld that.

Husted complained that a ruling by federal judge Algenon Marbley this week created new rules after the election but before ballots were counted.

The appeals court dismissed claims by voter advocates that Husted’s pre-election order would cause permanent harm to voters lacking proper ID or was a dramatic policy shift.

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