Wednesday, December 15, 2004
Ohio's Secretary of State plans run for governor — Ohioans need help
Blackwell released the poll one year after a Montgomery survey showed 32 percent of GOP voters favored [Auditor Betty Montgomery's] candidacy. Blackwell placed second with 23 percent; Petro finished last with 17 percent.
Since then, Blackwell has courted his party's conservative wing by leading efforts to add a gay-marriage ban to the Ohio Constitution and arguing for lower taxes.
His message resonated well, especially among voters in his home of Cincinnati and those in the upper-income brackets, according to the survey.
Pollster Fred Steeper said voters' growing concern over moral values puts Blackwell in a position to continue to gain support.
This explains his risk-taking to throw the election. He's collecting "chits" for his gubernatorial aspirations. As Keith Olbermann wrote Monday—
My MSNBC colleague and Newsweek chief political correspondent Howard Fineman shares my amazement at the Inspector Clouseaus of the Ohio Secretary of State’s office. If there’s nothing wrong in Ohio, it sure won’t be because Secretary Blackwell didn’t try to make it look like there was.
Blackwell's flagrant partisanship, his very visible shenanigans are quite calculated—calculated to show the "big boys" what he can do. The hope at Simply Appalling is that his calculations are off just enough to land him in some real legal difficulties, such as a charge of fraud and perjury1—which assumes there are some honest prosecutors left in Ohio or in the Justice Dept.
Meanwhile, those who are fighting the good fight in the Ohio vote investigations are getting discouraged, according to a post and comments at Daily Kos. Gary Polvinale writes—
[W]e here in Ohio need more than a "You can do it" pat on the back. We ARE doing it. But nobody knows. Ohio is screaming the truth at the top of its lungs, literally, and no one hears us because of all the noise of the media silence.If you want to do something, here's what you can do to help. I am asking the rest of the country to please get out there and find well-known people who's voices are loud enought to be heard by the press who will stand up for us. Get a Senator or a media personality or anyone of very high profile to come out about this. The media blackout is killing us. Very few members of Congress, and no one in the Democratic Party has even seriously acknowledged the recount.
We've kinda got our hands full here, or we'd be doing that ourselves too. Give us a voice and we will deliver Ohio. Otherwise SOS Blackwell and the BOE will continue to slap us around like we don't matter a lick, at every turn. We are being squelched by a state government that is willing to violate our rights and even break the law as often as necessary to stand in our way and prevent us from exposing what they've done. I watched 100 of the greatest people I've ever met freeze their butts off for three hours Sunday, and 1500 the week before. And today people are out there at the Conyers hearing at the Columbus Statehouse again freezing, supporting the hearing, the investigation and the recount. And the Ohio recount has begun this morning.
If you want to help, please turn over every rock to find someone big who can get the media's attention who is willing to speak up for us. [emphasis added]
I have an idea! How about John Kerry!2 Or even John Edwards!
At least one activist is being stalked. Katrina Sumner sent an email that has been posted at Newsclip Autopsy—
Last night I was returning from Columbus and was scared out of my mind. First I’ve been getting calls from a man that has been able to tell me each and every place I’ve been or roads I’ve been traveling on (a group of 3 other women heard this while driving me to meet Jesse Jackson and Cliff Arnebeck last night, having the call on speaker). Then while driving back I was ran off the road by two dark blue Suburbans(?), bigger than 4 runners anyway, with dark tinted windows. They came up behind me with their brights on and then one came to the side of me and ran me into the ditch off I-70. I saw as they sped away that one had a Maryland license plate, but in the heat of it all I couldn’t get the plate number or even see the plate of the other one. It’s becoming apparent to me that someone is not liking what I’m doing.
According to Ray Beckman, a lawyer who is deeply involved in fighting election fraud, the Ohio recount team assigned to Greene County were in process of recording voting information from minority precincts, when they were stopped in mid-count by a surprise order from Secretary of State Blackwell’s office that made all voter records for the state of Ohio, private and no longer considered “public records.” According to Beckman, “the Ohio Revised Code Title XXXV, Elections, Sec. 3503.26, requires all election records to be made available for public inspection and copying.” Beckman said, “ORC Sec. 3599.161 makes it a crime for any employee of the Board of Elections to knowingly prevent or prohibit any person from inspecting the public records filed in the office of the Board of Elections.” Perhaps even more significantly, Beckman said, “ORC Sec. 3599.42 clearly states: ‘A violation of any provision of Title XXXV (35) of the Revised Code constitutes a prima facie case of election fraud within the purview of such Title.’”[back]
2 Olbermann is almost as scathing in his comments about Kerry as about Ken Blackwell—
Here is Kerry, insisting he is not invested in the outcome of an Ohio recount, asking through his lawyers to inspect the 92,000 ballots that contain no vote for president. And, through his interactions with Jesse Jackson and John Conyers, connecting into the Alliance for Democracy lawsuit to overturn or freeze the Ohio Electoral count, and into the assessment that Blackwell’s behavior “appears to violate Ohio law.”
In my part of the country that is known as "pussyfooting," which is why Kerry didn't get resoundingly elected in the first place. [back]