Voting Rights Press Release

11.03.15

Technical Issues at Polling Locations Risk Disenfranchising Voters

Counties Need to Make Proper Accommodations for Voters Experiencing Problems at Their Polling Place
Voting Rights

COLUMBUS— The ACLU of Ohio is calling on the Hamilton County Board of Elections to immediately address issues at polling places reported to be experiencing problems with electronic poll books, as well as not having provisional ballots available.

“No voter should ever be disenfranchised because of a technical error,” said senior policy director Mike Brickner. “At the very least, voters should calmly insist upon their right to cast a provisional ballot, and not leave until they have done so.”

Read our letter to the Hamilton County Board of Elections

“If a person is properly registered and is not appearing in the electronic poll books, election officials should have paper versions of the poll books to cross reference,” Brickner said. “It is also simply unacceptable for polling places to not be prepared with provisional ballots. These must be available at every polling location and poll workers should be familiar with all procedures for using them.”

The ACLU of Ohio also recommends extending voting hours in locations where long waits forced voters to leave this morning.

“Every vote is important. Delays caused by these issues should not prevent voters for exercising their fundamental rights. We urge the Hamilton County Board of Elections to consider extending voting hours to provide an opportunity to working voters who attempted to cast their ballot earlier today.”

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