Besides Cuyahoga County, boards of election in four other counties have had a policy of mailing absentee ballot applications to all their registered voters.
On August 22, Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted banned county boards of election from mailing absentee ballot applications to all registered voters, stating that policies from one county to the other in the state should be the same to ensure fairness.
Cuyahoga County Executive Ed FitzGerald was absolutely on point when he challenged Husted about this edit which to this newspaper smacks of voter suppression.
In taking on Husted, FitzGerald has now put the ball squarely in Husted’s court and at the same time shining a glaring spotlight on the Republican office holder.
Last week, the two men met in Columbus to discuss the issue.
This is a good beginning and one that we approve of.
However, FitzGerald has said that if a resolution isn’t reached, the issue will probably go to court. But time is of the essence.
Besides Cuyahoga County, boards of election in four other counties have had a policy of mailing absentee ballot applications to all their registered voters. These five counties represent about one-third of the state’s voters.
We suspect that this statistical fact is not lost on Husted with the upcoming November General Election and a contentious ballot issue at stake.
Furthermore, with the 2012 presidential election just months away, we also opine that Husted’s move to ban absentee ballot applications may have to do with the re-election of President Barack Obama.
The Secretary of State would be wise to come to some resolution on this matter; a resolution that cannot be even remotely considered to be an attempt to water down Black votes.
We will be keeping a watchful eye as events unfold.
We commend County Executive FitzGerald for taking up this fight.