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State Elections Officer Warns Of 'Irregular' Voter Registrations

Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted has advised the state's local election officials to scrutinze new voter registrations that are coming in from the Ohio Organizing Collaborative (OOC).

Husted issued a press release stating "a rise in the number of irregularities warrants a closer review of registrations submitted by the organization."

Registration forms from people who have died, forms with multiple names, addresses or identification mismatches, and updated registrations that appear to be signed by someone else are some of the irregularities being found.

In the statement released Wednesday, Secretary Husted said "becoming a registered voter in Ohio is not a complicated process. “You have to be a resident, provide accurate, up-to-date information, and obviously still be alive,” he said.

“Anytime we receive reports that invalid and fraudulent voter registrations are being submitted we take it seriously and will work to ensure those individuals or groups responsible are held accountable.”

Husted said all election boards have a responsibility "to investigate all suspicious registrations in accordance with Ohio law."

The Ohio Organizing Collaborative says they are taking the allegations “very seriously” and issued this statement:

“Unfortunately, it has come to our attention that a number of voter registration cards filed in Columbiana County appear to have been fabricated. The canvasser suspected of fabricating these cards is no longer employed by the OOC and her supervisor has been placed on administrative leave pending an investigation. We are conducting a thorough internal investigation into the incident and working closely with the Columbiana County Sheriff’s office and the Board of Elections to fully support their investigation.... We are committed to resolving this issue immediately and effectively.”

The OOC is a statewide collective of 18 voter groups, labor unions, faith organizations, and policy institutes. It was formed in 2007.

Jerry Kenney was introduced to WYSO by a friend and within a year of first tuning in became an avid listener and supporter. He began volunteering at the station in 1991 and began hosting Alpha Rhythms in February of 1992. Jerry joined the WYSO staff in 2007 as a host of All Things Considered and soon transitioned into hosting Morning Edition. In addition to now hosting All Things Considered, Jerry is the host and producer of WYSO Weekend, WYSO's weekly news and arts magazine. He has also produced several radio dramas for WYSO in collaboration with local theater companies. Jerry has won several Ohio AP awards as well as an award from PRINDI for his work with the WYSO news department. Jerry says that the best part of his job is being able to talk to people in the community and share their experiences with WYSO listeners.