Ohio Democratic Party Sues Over Impending Removal Of Voters From Rolls

Aug 30, 2019

Before the ink is barely dry on a new settlement between the ACLU of Ohio and the Secretary of State's office, Ohio's Democratic Party is filing its own lawsuit over the process of removing voters from the rolls. 

Party Chair David Pepper says the settlement recently reached that allows certain voters who have been removed after being deemed inactive to vote provisionally isn't good enough. So his party's suit seeks to stop more than 200,000 voters from being removed from the rolls on September 6th.

“You won’t get the campaign mailers, the party mailers. You are not on the list of people that engage by the politics. Because of the way campaigns work, people basically target you. I mean you basically become a second class citizen so you are far less likely to get the interaction from the political universe that the average registered voter gets," Pepper says.

Maggie Sheehan, a spokeswoman for Secretary of State Frank LaRose, issued a written statement critical of the party's lawsuit.  "We're proud of providing unprecedented levels of transparency into this process, but we won't ignore the law. When we partnered with the NACCP, the Ohio Republican Party, the Urban League, church organizations, and labor unions to get voters activated, the Ohio Democratic Party stood on the sidelines. Of course a lawsuit is the next step in their tired playbook," Sheehan says. 

LaRose says he is following the law that requires maintenance of the voter rolls. Many of the voters on the list have died, moved or are otherwise ineligible to vote. But Democrats and voter rights activists think thousands of eligible voters are on that list and slated for removal. LaRose says he's using the process that was in place prior to him taking office this year.