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Tue Aug 28, 2012, 07:57 AM

Ohio SOS Husted given OK to fire Democratic BOE members


Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted could decide as early as today to remove two Democratic Montgomery County election officials.

Husted suspended Democrats Dennis Lieberman and Tom Ritchie, Sr., on Aug. 17 after they refused to withdraw their votes for weekend voting hours at the Montgomery County Board of Elections.

Husted, a Republican, said the votes violated his directive setting statewide early voting hours and Ohio law requiring board members to enforce directives from the secretary of state. Ritchie and Lieberman testified they adopted the weekday hours outlined in Hustedís directive but also voted to add weekend hours the board approved in December 2011.

Attorney Jon Allison, who was chief of staff for former Republican Gov. Bob Taft, heard both sides of the case and recommended Monday that Husted remove the two board members. In his report, Allison said the background portion of Hustedís directive and a proceeding letter from the state elections director rule out any ambiguity of the listed hours.

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