Dr. Fitrakis, told OpEdNews, "Essentially, by purging these rolls, the Republicans, by shrinking the electorate, have already won in Ohio. If they can't win, which is what the polls show among registered voters, the way to win is to use their nuclear option-- to target black voters, young voters and the working poor-- by purging them so they can't vote.
Reports indicate that starting as early as shortly after the 2004 presidential elections, but particularly recently, hundreds of thousands of voters-- mostly urban apartment dwellers (likely black) and students-- who are primarily Democratic-- were sent notifications that they would be purged from the eligible voter lists if they did not respond the letter. But, reportedly, the letter was designed to be easily overlooked, perhaps treated as junk mail. Failure to send in a response caused the voter to be removed from the voting roll.
Fitrakis observes, "They aren't challenging voter eligibility in Republican areas. This is coming from the republican party. They're not targeting their own base.
According to Fitrakis, HAVA, the Help America Vote Act, requires centrally maintained voter records, which would probably have been kept by secretary of state Ken Blackwell. Fitrack theorizes, that the voter records were "probably purged from the secretary of state's office, because HAVA mandates a centrally located database. But the letters would have gone out from the separate county boards of election."
This is part of the challenge. It may be necessary to actually deal with each of the 88 counties.
OpEdNews asked Bob Fitrakis, "What can be done?" "What can voting integrity activists do?" What can the Democratic party do?
Fitrakis replied, "We're going to try desperately to get to the bottom of this and try on Friday to get an injuction-- Monday, at the latest.
We asked, "Is there any chance that this can be turned around."
"Yes, A federal judge can issue an order to reinstate all the purged voters." says Fitrakis.
What can readers and activists do to help? They can tell the DNC, tell the Ohio state democratic party to either file a suit separately or in cooperation with Fitrakis and the ongoing suit he's had filed since the 2004 election.
Fitrakis says, ""Put pressure on the democrats to bring suit.
"I would urge the DNC-- the party can't let this stand. They could proceed to Federal court and argue that this is a civil rights case-- against blacks and young people. They could file their own suit. They could join our suit. There are a lot of ways they could do it procedurally. They could intervene as an independent party. They could join our lawsuit I would welcome any action by them.
"They have to realize the election might have been decided by these purges. My book, that I wrote with Harvey Wasserman, reported that in 2004, the only reason the race was even close was because of the purging done in 2004 in the Democratic counties.
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