Supreme Court refuses to block early voting in Ohio


A woman casts her ballot during early voting in Toledo, Ohio in 2008. The Supreme Court sided with Democrats on October 16, 2012, and refused to block early voting in Ohio.


J.D. Pooley

The Supreme Court sided with Democrats Tuesday, handing President Obama a victory, when it said it would not block early voting in Ohio.

The court refused a Republican request to rule on the dispute over early voting in the state, allowing Ohioans to vote three days before the election, the Associated Press reported.

In a one-sentence order, the Supreme Court today refused to accept a challenge to the ruling issued by an appeals court.

A panel of the US Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit had ruled last week that if Ohio allowed members of the military to vote in the three days leading up the election, it should open the polling stations to all voters, according to The Washington Post.

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"While there is a compelling reason to provide more opportunities for military voters to cast their ballots, there is no corresponding satisfactory reason to prevent nonmilitary voters from casting their ballots as well," the appeals court said.

The Obama presidential campaign and Democratic supporters in Ohio challenged the law that would have allowed only military members to vote early.

CNN reported that in late August, a federal District Court found that the state law "likely" violated the Equal Protection clause of the Constitution. It agreed with the argument that "low-income and minority voters are disproportionately affected by elimination" of early voting opportunities.

Democrats said nearly 100,000 people had voted in the three days leading up to the election in 2008, according to the AP.

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