At last! The People of Ohio are heading for the polls this morning to cast their votes. Here in Toledo, the polling center is not in a convenient location thanks to the Republicans on the Lucas County Board of Elections. They don’t want it too easy for ‘those people’ to vote. The Early Vote Center is at Summit Plaza, 1500 North Superior St. at Bush St., which is also the Greater Toledo YMCA, near the old Riverside Hospital.
The article on early voting in the Toledo Blade featured a photo of a family who parked their camper at the site last night to be first in line to vote this morning.
The Toledo Blade also cited a very interesting number: the state of Ohio has received requests for 922,199 absentee ballots. That’s an amazing number and is more than half of all of the absentee votes cast in 2008.
Ohio’s Republican Sec. of State, Jon Husted, who led the GOP fight against open elections in Ohio, was forced to spent about $1 million on the first round of mailings covering everyone who’d registered as of Aug. 9, and it expects to spend about $200,000 more for a second round to new voters who register by the Oct. 9 deadline.
That’s $1.2 million in tax dollars wasted because of an earlier effort to suppress the vote in the Buckeye state. There is still a pending lawsuit by the Obama’s re-election campaign which demands that Husted follow the decision by a Federal judge to open the early vote center for the last 3 days before the election. Husted permitted only members of the military to vote during those 3 days and has yet to agree with the Federal judge’s decision. Republicans surely do like to limit access to the ballot.
It will be interesting to see just how many voters will have taken advantage of the early vote today. The Obama Campaign in Ohio has been making phone calls and knocking on doors to urge voters to vote early, either by absentee ballot or at the Early Vote Center. I’m discovering through my Saturday door-knocking stint that most voters like their neighborhood polling site; many say that it is a tradition to walk to the polls on Election Day. Well, that’s fine and dandy unless there is an ‘unexpected’ computer glitch on Election Day or a ‘shortage’ of ballots or long lines or…