Thursday, September 01, 2005

2 Ohio elections officials indicted for presidential recount

Two Cuyahoga County elections officials were indicted Tuesday on charges of not handling ballots correctly during the recount of the 2004 presidential election.
Kathleen Dreamer, manager of the board's ballot department, and the assistant manager, Rosie Grier, were each charged with six counts of failing to follow Ohio laws that spell out how ballots are selected and reviewed during a recount.
The most serious charges carry a maximum of 18 months in prison.
... The charges stem from a complaint first raised last December by Toledo lawyer Richard Kerger, who watched over the recount on behalf of two third-party candidates.
Kerger charged that elections officials failed to randomly select precincts that were supposed to be counted by hand and compared against ballots tabulated by a machine; conduct test-runs before witnesses; and investigate discrepancies between vote totals.
... Cuyahoga County's four elections board members issued a statement defending their employees and the voting process.
"These allegations are based on interpretation of procedures, not on any suggestion of fraud," they said.

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