27 April 2014

My, my. The coverup starts in the Metro section lead which begins, “[Franklin] County election officials say they think a clerical error is to blame for 19 Columbus police officers having their voting addresses listed as the Downtown police headquarters.”


Now, if a lower-class black male had used his work address as a voting address, and tried to vote in the inner-city Driving Park area, the headline would have read: “Massive voter fraud uncovered in urban inner-city precinct: ACORN is suspected.”


It is a fifth-degree felony to intentionally register to vote at your work address instead of your residence. The police might enforce the laws, but it doesn’t mean they obey them.


As the Dispatch pointed out, Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted, who supervises the vote in Ohio, “…isn’t particularly concerned about police officers registering their work address.”


Say what? The top election official in the state of Ohio doesn’t care if the law is obeyed? I never thought I’d say it, but apologies are in order to the infamous former Secretary of State J. Kenneth Blackwell, who stole the 2004 election for George W. Bush in Ohio. At least with Blackwell, he found obscure old laws and re-interpreted existing law.


Husted is either ignoring the law or refusing to obey it.


By the time the article jumps to page five, the Dispatch reports the obvious: “Registering an address other than the residential address where you live is voting fraud and a felony punished by a year in prison.”


Not to worry about the blatant felonies being committed, Ben Piscatelli, spokesperson for the Franklin County Board of Elections -- whose Executive Director is former county Democratic Chair Bill Anthony -- chimes in to echo Husted. Piscatelli assured the Dispatch that “Columbus police officers don’t have to worry that their names will be forwarded to the county prosecutor’s office for possible investigation.”


Now, had this been an elderly retired black woman in Columbus' Mt. Vernon area, a SWAT team would have descended on her house and arrested her for voter fraud. Husted, with Republican Attorney General Mike DeWine and County Prosecutor Ron O’Brien at his side would have gleefully announced her prosecution for voting while black at the wrong address.


Piscatelli told the Dispatch that “It’s just a clerical problem. We’re working through it.” Of course there’s been no criminal investigation and Piscatelli offers no proof that it is a clerical error. But he gets paid well for being a mouthpiece for the Board of Elections, and all public officials love to get the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) endorsement.


In a predictable twist, seven of the police officers don’t even reside in Franklin County where they were illegally registered to vote. Study after study has indicated that the overwhelmingly white police force is seen as an army of occupation in Columbus’ black neighborhoods.


We’re also told by the Board of Elections that one of the officers registered at work lived in the city and it was the exact same ballot for the illegal police headquarters precinct as where he lived. Again, the Board of Elections doesn’t offer proof in the form of an actual ballot.


Implausibly, this would mean that every single race from county to state representative and senator would all be exactly the same for the officer.


Piscatelli goes on to say that “The Board thinks the registrations were honest mistakes,” according to the Dispatch. That makes sense. Columbus’ finest are required to have at least a GED to be on the force, and perhaps they forgot they didn’t live at police headquarters.


On one hand, Piscatelli’s comments may be reasonable, since the Columbus police have no concept of the meaning of the First, Fourth, Fifth, and Eighth Amendments. Why should they be expected, as foot soldiers of the Constitution, sworn to defend it against all enemies foreign and domestic, be expected to understand something as simple as a voting law.