This is good news, so I’m just going to give you Mr. Benen:
After losing in the lower courts, Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted announced last week that he would take his early-voting restrictions to the U.S. Supreme Court, hoping for a more favorable outcome. In a victory for voting-rights advocates and Democrats, Husted lost at the high court, too.
“The U.S. Supreme Court sealed a legal victory for President Barack Obama’s campaign in the pivotal state of Ohio, leaving intact a ruling that restored early voting rights for the weekend before the Nov. 6 election.
Ohio Republicans had sought to cancel early voting that weekend for everyone except members of the military. A U.S. appeals court blocked the plan last week, saying it probably violated the constitutional rights of non-military voters. In a one-sentence order, the Supreme Court today rejected a challenge to that ruling, filed by Ohio’s Republican secretary of state and attorney general.”
Second Update: My colleague Laura Conaway, who’s covered this story closely, reminds me that Husted said last week that, in the event a defeat at the Supreme Court, he would set up uniform voting hours for each of Ohio’s 88 counties. Whether he’ll follow through remains to be seen.
I can add to this and tell you that Husted has already, just now, issued uniform early voting hours for those last three days. We didn’t get long hours the last three days, but we got most of what we wanted.
Congratulation, Kay! Your efforts both in advocacy and keeping us jackals apprised of what’s going on is much appreciated.
The Ohio cabal is so blatant about its vote suppression that even the SCOTUS backhanded them.
Husted is left to hang out and dry. He looks like a fool.
It only takes 4 justices to grant cert.
I guess this was a bridge too far even for the right wing of the SCOTUS.
SOULS TO THE POLLS, BABY!!
SOULS TO THE POLLS
Or they had no desire to get in the middle of another shit-storm.
I wonder how this squares with El Jefe and his minions.
@Maude: He was well down that road already.
Lesson: You only win if you fight back.
How long until we start hearing talk about “2nd Amendment solutions” from the UpRighties?
Uniform voting hours actually sounds like a win on top of a win. They could have gone with more of the “longer hours in Republican counties” shenanigans that we’ve seen in the past.
The voter fraud thing has been amazing to watch. They started this to fire up their base (who all believe it). But I don’t think it had “spread” to actual state officials until the rise of the Tea Party.
Now it has. Now they have people like the secretary of state and attorney general signing on to this lunacy. It’s freaky. Like mass hypnosis or crowd hysteria. I’m afraid of an attorney general who signs onto this, because he or she is either a completely political actor OR is a weak-minded, easily swayed conspiracy theorist. Neither of those are good traits in a prosecutor.
Waiting for the statement from the Willard campaign on how the POTUS hates the troops.
For you guys who have been involved in the fight, can you explain what was Husted’s possible justification to Ohio voters for the ridiculous lengths he was going to, to restrict early voting. What reasons did he give? Or did he just not bother.
Can I assume it was a 5-4 vote with the usual whackaloons on the wrong side once a-goddamn-gain?
Well done, Kay!
The justification was that it is too difficult for Bds of Election to prepare for election day while holding early voting hours.
Chaos, litigation and constant changes to voting laws are what is difficult. They seem to have forgotten the point of this exercise, which is voters. They never made an argument that focused on voters.
It’s appalling that it’s true, but since it is, I’m glad the effort to secure voting rights is being widely reported as “a victory for Democrats.”
Fuckin-A positive news in the single-most-important swing state Obama must win!
I’m taking vacation and traveling from AZ back to the ancestral homeland (Cleveland) for the last couple weeks prior to the election, volunteering for the campaign full-time (flying back Wed morning, Nov 7; hoping for a “happy” hangover).
Stoked about being able to help GOTV for Obama in a place that matters, unlike my current home-state AZ (though I have donated some dollars and time to Dem House and Senate candidates Kirsten Sinema and Richard Carmona – both of whom appear to be in a dead heat with their fascist opponents).
Sorry, but Joe Arpaio will win once again (he’s gonna be Maricopa County Sheriff till he dies, which can’t happen too soon – not apologizing for that last sentiment; he’s Bull Connor to Mexican-Americans).
Probably shouldn’t have just read that article about vote-stealing via machine in the latest Harper’s, though (with special focus on Ohio).
the voter fraud thing is only surprising if you don’t believe that the present GOP isn’t the descendants of the mofos that made my ancestors give a count of the number of bubbles in a bar of soap.
same mofos, different tactic.
no shock in the least.
Considering that at every turn, Husted’s response was “I’m going to keep things uncertain and chaotic until all appeals are exhausted,” I think we can be pretty certain they didn’t forget that. Their purpose was to make it difficult, not to focus on voters.
@DFH no.6: You do realize that AZ is now being considered lean Romney trending towards toss-up, don’t you?
@MTiffany: As soon as someone who is afraid of their own shadow starts talking about it.
@Kay: You obviously know way more about Ohio than I do, but I would hazard a guess that vote suppression was on the move behind the scenes prior to the Tea Party; the TP simply offered a conduit. (In fact, I’d be willing to bet that the TP was astroturfed into existence to serve this very purpose, among others.) And I would imagine that Ohio 2004, along with Florida 2000, served as a prototype. The Ohio Secretary of State’s office didn’t exactly come out of the 2004 election smelling fresh as a daisy. Just my general impressions, though.
O H I O
Awesome, awesome news! Thank you!
Supreme Court 0
At least that’s how I see it.
Culture of Truth
I’m somewhat surprised Husted didn’t appeal to the UN Security Council
I think it was behind the scenes and fring-ey, though. The Bush Administration went to great lengths to make the US Attorney scandal about something other than voter suppression, for example.
Now it’s just so blatant, and it’s great swathes of the (conservative government) legal community. It’s mainstream, in conservatism. They barely bother denying it. That’s wild. I think about how scary it is that A LOT of conservative prosecutors are operating under this entire elaborate, completely unsubstantiated theory of rampant criminality among brown people-voting. They’re enormously powerful, and they’re either completely captured and compromised or NUTS. It’s chilling. Facts don’t sway them. They don’t even make a dent.
@Culture of Truth:
He was afraid that if/when he lost, they’d Agenda 21 him and make him ride a bike to and from the statehouse for the rest of his term.
Culture of Truth
In other news, the DC Circuit threw out the terrorism conviction of bin Laden’s driver, in an opinion authored by Judge Brett Kavanaugh. In fact, all three judges on the case were appointed by Republicans.
Right, but I think they would have had more success had they even nodded to voters. Mentioned them.
The opinions that didn’t go their way are all about voters, which is what they should be about.
One can’t help but think: “the state’s interest isn’t about voters, clearly, they’re never mentioned, so what is this about?”
We’re not talking about “coddling” criminal defendants here. This is a state recording process, ultimately. It’s voluntary, and encouraged!
No one in the fascist leadership (including secretaries of states and states attorneys general) believe in this voter fraud “conspirancy” bullshit.
It’s 100% political “games” (deadly serious games) intended to disenfranchise as many potential Democratic voters as possible. Pure and simple.
And you’re right, these are un-good traits to have in a prosecutor (or a secretary of state who is the chief state elections official).
And sorry to Godwin shit and all, but they do it because they are fascists.
Our modern American fascists have found ways (including voter suppression, and real vote fraud) to increasingly impose their inhuman worldview without beer-hall putsches or armies of brownshirts storming around (though their rallies can be — ahem — “reminiscent”, albeit in a more-sloppily-dressed American style). Clever and supremely well-funded motherfuckers, they are.
The Civil War never really ended, nor has the war against fascism. We’re just doing it without bullets (for now). If nothing else, global warming should change that in a couple generation or so (I’m guessing 50-75 years out, at most).
Not sanguine about the good guys prevailing in that scenario.
OK, enough buzzkill – hooray for Ohio early voting!
IANAL, but I seem to recall from the initial slap that Husted got that Bush v. Gore was cited in the “reasons why Husted needs to shut the fuck up and make uniform hours for everyone”.
Given that, I can see why a few of the Justices on the Court might not want to sit down with this and turn themselves into pretzels to explain why in this case they want the exact opposite of what they wanted in Bush v. Gore.
I mean they’d do it if they have to. But in this case it isn’t clear the Husted’s stunt is something that would give Romney the election or not. And if it isn’t guaranteed, why go through the hassle of turning yourself into a human pretzel?
Culture of Truth
Exactly. This isn’t rocket surgery.
That’s a pretty thin reed, considering they managed to do so in the past. Maybe it’s more like a skimpy fig leaf than a slender reed.
Thanks for the update Kay. You Ohio Democrats rock!! Hopefully on Election Day, Ohio will go for President Obama like it did in 2008.
@Culture of Truth: The judges were a very conservative group. Interesting.
@Culture of Truth:
He could still file a motion for reconsideration. Which Justice Kagan, who is the Circuit Justice for the Sixth Circuit, would (one hopes) shove up his ass with a big smile on her face.
@Culture of Truth:
ETA: Link to the opinion here.
Culture of Truth
@Omnes Omnibus: The Car Was Not a Honda Fit, So They Must Acquit
@rikyrah: The Rethug voter suppression tactics are not surprising given that demographics are changing and White conservatives are dwindling in size and power. I expect to see more as their population goes down.
Drudge has been pushing for it for days now. It’s dressed up as “Beware! Black riots all across America if Obama loses!” stuff, but we all know that’s just his way of calling to his mates.
That man is going to get someone killed one of these days. I just hope it’s one of his minions and not some innocent.
Ah, it would be pretty to think so, wouldn’t it?
Not happening though. No way.
Whatever poll might say otherwise, Romney’s got AZ. If Romney lost AZ, Obama would win the national vote (and electoral college) in a major landslide.
This is a much tighter race nationally than last time, though — Obama will do very well to get a 2% national vote margin and 300 electoral college votes this time. I think it will be even tighter than that.
Someday, if the AZ Hispanic electorate (almost entirely Mexican-descent) ever voted at something much better than half the rate of the Anglo electorate, then AZ could become far friendlier for Democratic candidates (it’s unfriendliest of all at the state legislator level).
In the meantime, white voters in AZ are even more conservative today than they were a decade or two ago.
@burnspbesq: He already issued a memo setting uniform weekend hours. He accepted the inevitable.
Steve Vladeck’s instant analysis of Hamdan is a must-read.
This decision, if it survives (and it’ll be interesting to see whether the SG’s office petitions for cert), puts Congress’ balls squarely in a vise, and starts turning the crank. If you can’t try Guantanamo detainees for material support or conspiracy if the conduct took place before the enactment of the Military Commissions Act in 2006 (the Hamdan court didn’t reach the issue about conspiracy, but the conclusion logically follows from what the court said about material support), then you pretty much have to try them in an Article III civilian court. Or let them go. Or tell the American people that the waah on terrah is going to go on forever.
Ohio is the cake. Arizona is the cherry.
@burnspbesq: Doesn’t sound like that hard a problem: “Or tell the American people that the waah on terrah is going to go on forever.”
Like ole lew Rockwell always says: War is the mother’s milk of the State (and the expansion thereof).
They’ll pick door number 3.
I’m not 100% sure of that. The Republicans won AZ big last time, but a big chunk of that was the McCain home state effect, so the state probably doesn’t lean as Republican as you’d think from the last election. Also, too, SB1070 may have had a bigger effect on Latinos than you appreciate. I know that Prop 187 here in California had a huge effect in both motivating Latinos to vote and convincing them to vote Democratic. I wouldn’t be surprised if SB1070 has a similar effect in Arizona, and that could be enough to make the election close there even if Obama isn’t running away with the national vote.
I’m not 100% sure about anything (I mean, we could be in the Matrix – without the red pill, how would we know?).
But I am as certain as I am about anything in politics that Romney will win AZ, and win it handily.
I’ve lived and worked here for over 3 decades now, and I am fairly involved politically (donate, canvass, and phone bank on Dem campaigns). And I stay as informed as an ordinary citizen can on politics in the state.
For one thing, AZ is the 3rd-most Mormon population state (after Utah and Idaho). And Mormons play an outsized role in AZ politics (all Republican anymore). Mormon electoral participation in the state is always large, but in this election it will be huge. And almost entirely for Romney.
And the angry, white, teabagging crew in Maricopa County (over half the state population) is motivated, especially since the first debate, to oust the Kenyan Usurper (and put Joe Arpaio back in while they’re at it).
Maybe the Hispanic vote will markedly improve over last time (over every time before, to be brutally honest). But I don’t see it, SB1070 and “mini Dream Act” notwithstanding.
I would love to be pleasantly surprised, believe me, but I don’t think so. We’re not the deep Confederacy, but AZ does more than just lean Republican.
@MTiffany: Precisely one Planck time unit after Obama is called the winner of the election by the major networks.
@DFH no.6: He has to keep winning. The next sheriff, just as a result of getting the paperwork in order, will likely find enough prosecute-able corruption to put America’s Biggest Law Enforcement Blowhard behind bars (or preferably into Tent City) for the rest of his life.
SCOTUSblog says it’s a BFD: “The ruling was a significant victory for President Obama and for Democrats, especially since they claimed that the shuttering of voting offices on the Saturday, Sunday and Monday before election day would be likely to affect low income and minority voters — many of whom may be expected to vote Democratic.”
Not if the next sheriff is a Republican (very good chance of that, Republican county and all).
And Arpaio’s likely to be sheriff till he dies, anyway.
Motherfucker’s 80 years old, and will keep getting elected here as long as he wants.
It’s Arpaio’s underlings who may (I say may) eventually be in trouble with the law once Arpaio’s gone.
But not Arpaio. The US DoJ tried, and failed.
@DFH no.6: Yeah, a Republican sheriff in Maricopa is fairly unlikely to stir the pot. One would hope that at one point, Arpaio will be so visibly feeble that even his staunchest supporters would at least want to keep him away from sharp objects. In that case, I don’t think he’d last long after, a la Bear Bryant and Joe Paterno.
Didn’t Hendershott and another one already have to leave in disgrace? Plus, I would think a new sheriff would at least want his own cronies in, not someone else’s, so maybe some of the underlings might go that way.
I was disappointed that DoJ wasn’t able to do more. I wonder how much of it was lack of resources and/or a desire not to look too political.
OK this says a lot about Robert’s- so Robert’s court has spoken and sided with Obama’s side on this critical voting issue weeks before the election for the most critical swing state of them all that totally favors the democrats … it takes a majority of Justices to refuse to hear a case (thus allowing the lower court’s ruling to stand!) and the Chief Judge decides who writes the refusal – note who he chose and who did write it …hint, female and liberal. So Roberts, who will make a number of rulings we will not like in the near future has show a bias of late – for Obama (the sitting President – interesting. He has a bias for those in power and puts on blinders to which party the person is (or color.) Can’t easily see how Roberts did not vote to turn this appeal down. So, I think I can live with Roberts … scalia the skin head asswipe is pissing his pants (for got his depends) – LOVE IT! Thank you Roberts! (Did I just say that?!) This is really great news for
McCain… I mean Mitt… no, the President …no, really Ohio voters.