Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Ich Bin Ein Ohioan

Everyone's an Ohioan these days...

O'Brien has spoken to attorneys for both campaigns and asked election officials to review the residency status of John McCain's and Barack Obama's staff members, as well as those of other get-out-the-vote groups, who have few Ohio ties but registered and requested absentee ballots.

"One thing that is crystal-clear is the law -- if you are a temporary resident or a visitor, you are not entitled to register to vote and you're not entitled to vote," O'Brien, a Republican, told The Dispatch yesterday.

He recommended that anyone with a questionable registration from those groups destroy their absentee ballots and steer clear of the polls. "There is no debate. Ohio law says it in black and white."

The warning went out to both campaigns and the campaign spokesmen from both campaigns are registered in Ohio.

This all started when 12 students from a liberal group registered to vote from the same address.

O'Brien already was investigating 12 people involved with the group Vote From Home who registered and have cast or requested absentee ballots. All list their address as the same Brownlee Avenue house on the East Side.

The Vote from Home members, who came to Columbus to register new voters, are from out of state and have no apparent intention of remaining here after the election -- raising questions about whether they meet legal residency requirements to vote.

I'm glad to see officials taking this seriously. Maybe if people see the consequences of this, they'd think twice before trying.