Keep Elections Fair, Orderly

Sometimes it seems as if politics is becoming a matter not of how well candidates can make their cases to voters, but how persuasive attorneys supporting them can be in court. And it often appears the idea is to inject chaos into the election process.

Two examples of that have occurred in Ohio, where liberals eager to re-elect President Barack Obama don’t appear to want any rules enforced on Election Day. Consider the two lawsuits they filed recently:

In one case, the Service Employees International Union filed a lawsuit demanding that voters be allowed to cast ballots anywhere in their home counties, not just at precincts where they are supposed to vote.

Obviously, the SEIU system could create confusion at some polling places, increasing the chances of errors and outright fraud.

Incredibly, a federal judge in Columbus agreed with the union. But, with just days to go before the election, a three-judge federal appeals court panel overruled him. If you want your ballot to count in Ohio, you’ll have to show up at the right polling place.

An even more outrageous lawsuit was filed by the Ohio Justice and Policy Center of Cincinnati. Officials at the center insist something needs to be done about the voting rights of Ohioans arrested this weekend and held in jail through Tuesday.

Because the deadline for requesting absentee ballots will have passed already, that handful of people won’t be able to vote at all, protests the center.

Well, that’s just too bad. Finding a way to accommodate that infintesimally small number of voters affected by the situation would be difficult at any time. Ordering the state and county election officials to address it now would be ridiculous.

Federal Judge Susan Dlott in Columbus feels that way. She has refused to take action in the lawsuit without obtaining more information.

Indeed, safeguarding voting rights is important. But so is having a few rules to keep the election process orderly and manageable – and to avoid fraud. Judges who reject lawsuits aimed more at creating chaos than protecting voters’ rights are doing the vast majority of Ohioans a service.