CINCINNATI - Two federal judges Monday barred Republican Party representatives from challenging the eligibility of voters at Ohio polling places on Election Day.
U.S. District Judge Susan Dlott said that a black couple suing over such challengeswould probably be able to prove them unconstitutional. In a similar case in Akron, U.S. District Judge John Adams said it is up to regular poll workers to determine if voters are eligible.
"In light of these extraordinary circumstances, and the contentious nature of the imminent election, the court cannot and must not turn a blind eye to the substantial likelihood that significant harm will result not only to voters, but also to the voting process itself, if appointed challengers are permitted at the polls," Adams said.
Dlott ruled on a lawsuit by a black couple who said Republican plans to deploy challengers in largely black precincts in the Cincinnati area were meant to intimidate black voters.
Adams' ruling came in a lawsuit from the Akron-area Democratic Party, which claimed that the law allowing registration challenges is unconstitutional because it does not give a disqualified voter a chance to appeal in time to cast a ballot.
Monday, November 01, 2004
AP - 2 Judges Bar Party Challengers at Polls