To the Editor: Ruling is victory for Ohio’s citizens


All Ohio voters will win in future elections! A lawsuit was filed in July 2005 against the offices of the
governor and the secretary of state, although the current office holders are named as the defendants.
Brought by the League of Women Voters of Ohio and the LWV of Toledo-Lucas County as lead plaintiffs, the
suit cited 30 years of a pattern of election dysfunction. It claimed that Ohio had failed citizens’
rights to vote and have their votes counted, as required by the Equal Protection and Due Process Clauses
of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Also cited were violations to the Help America
Vote Act (HAVA).
The suit did not allege fraud, nor was it filed against individuals holding those offices. It did not
name the county boards of election as the problem. The goal, in fact, was to increase the resources
devoted to supporting the local boards.
The suit listed deficiencies in Ohio election administration including widespread problems with
pre-election planning, voter registration, the absentee and provisional ballot processes, the training
of poll workers, the organization of polling places and precincts, the allocation of voting equipment
and resources, disability access, and voting technology and security. The complaint also alleged wide
disparities among Ohio counties in their ability to protect and administer the right to vote.
On June 15 the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio ruled for the plaintiffs, mandating
a number of requirements to rectify the problems cited. We hope you will go to the Web site of our LWVBG
at and click on the "Fact Sheet on Settlement Agreement", as well as the
full text of the agreement. This is a great victory for Ohio’s citizens.
Judy Knox, Voter Service Committee, LWVBG
Roger Anderson, President, LWVBG
Bowling Green

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