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Federal Judge Rules Homeless Can List Park Bench as Address

A park bench can be used as an address for a voter registration form? How do you even list is as an address? How do you prove you've "lived" at that park bench for 30 days, which is how long you have to be a resident of Ohio before you can vote. No utility company or bank will send a bill to a park bench.

A federal judge in Ohio has ruled that counties must allow homeless voters to list park benches and other locations that aren't buildings as their addresses.

U.S. District Judge Edmund Sargus also ruled that provisional ballots can't be invalidated because of poll worker errors.

Monday's ruling resolved the final two pieces of a settlement between the Northeast Ohio Coalition for the Homeless and Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner.

The coalition agreed to drop a constitutional challenge to Ohio's voter identification law until after the Nov. 4 election. In return, Brunner and the coalition agreed on procedures to verify provisional ballots across all Ohio counties.

This is part of an effort by a homeless advocacy group to get the law that requires voter ID and residency for voting overturned on the grounds that it violates Ohio's Constitution. It doesn't matter if it will cause massive voter fraud. Let anyone from anywhere go into Ohio and vote there. People who live in border states would be able to vote in their own states and then drive to Ohio and vote again if there is no longer a residency or voter ID requirement.

The ruling by this district judge should be overruled by a higher court because it's ridiculous on its face. And I'm expecting any attempt by this homeless advocacy group to kill the law requiring voter ID and residency to vote would be shot down as well. But if you get a bunch of liberal activist judges hearing the case, you just never know.

Added: Just to clarify, I don't have an issue with the homeless voting. My issue is with using park benches and overpasses as residences. Those who are homeless should be required to use a shelter's address because at least it can be verified that the person in question has been there, which would provide an indication that he or she is actually a resident of Ohio. But using a park bench? How do you confirm that information?

Also, Brian pointed out that the park bench as a residence issue became law in 2006 but that Cuyahoga County required a shelter as an address. Well, I agree with Cuyahoga County on this one. I'm curious if some of Ohio's voter registration fraud problems can be traced back to this law.


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Comments (43)

. . . giving some downtrod... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:

. . . giving some downtrodden fellow Americans a voice and allowing them to vote.

Thank you Jennifer Brunner (D).

Wait, you'd rather not let ... (Below threshold)

Wait, you'd rather not let them vote than deal with a complicated precedent that allowing them to do so would set?

A lot of homeless people are veterans. You probably shouldn't hate on them so hard just because they don't get hydro bills and can't afford a roof to sleep under.

Kim, your headline is misle... (Below threshold)

Kim, your headline is misleading (shocker) and requires some clarification. From your second link:

The ID law, passed in 2006, ... The law allows homeless voters to use a shelter, alley or park bench as an address, but Cuyahoga County -- Ohio's largest -- requires the address to be a homeless shelter, she said.

The Ohio Sec. State came to an agreement with an advocacy group that Cuyahoga County is subject to state law, not its own, and that it will be held to compliance with the two year old state-wide law.

What this federal judge ruled on was simply making that agreement official. It does not appear that the judge issued any new ruling on the issue.

Look on the upside, as the... (Below threshold)

Look on the upside, as the economy gets worse it will be easier for dispossesed homeowners to keep voting.

I hate to somewhat agree wi... (Below threshold)
retired military:

I hate to somewhat agree with Hyper.

But. As long as adequate protections are taken to ensure against voter fraud then I dont have a problem with this. Just because people are homeless they should be allowed to vote. At the same time they need to present proper ID and their IDs should be checked against other states to ensure they did not vote there via some system.

BTW Hyper. In the US they are called WATER BILLs.

Racist!... (Below threshold)


I think using a homeless sh... (Below threshold)
just me:

I think using a homeless shelter or City hall makes the most sense, only because those are verifiable addresses, what address does a park bench have attached to it?

That said, I have no issues with homeless people registering to vote, provided they are citizens, and have proper ID to prove they are who they say they are.

I agree. A homeless citize... (Below threshold)

I agree. A homeless citizen is a citizen of the USA and should be allowed to vote. I kinda wish the law of Cuyahoga county as Brian cited was more the norm but it does indeed look like the judge is upholding the law as written.

Stolen election.... (Below threshold)
Les Nessman:

Stolen election.

The patients are defintely ... (Below threshold)

The patients are defintely running the asylum that used to be the State of Ohio.

I hear a Tull song coming o... (Below threshold)
Pretzel Logic:

I hear a Tull song coming on...

"other locations that aren'... (Below threshold)

"other locations that aren't buildings"

That would be amusing to see the list. Are they still homeless? They don't want to do anything about them being without a roof over their heads, but damn it, they can vote!

Does Ohio have twice the nu... (Below threshold)

Does Ohio have twice the number of voters registered as they have residents, yet? All Acorn members and Brunner should inhabit the state prison for many years. I'm already checking the state when I buy online and at EBay and if the seller list Ohio I skip that item. Evidently only criminals and crazy people live there. I wouldn't expect a quality product from either.

I'd just like to point out ... (Below threshold)
Jabba The Tutt:

I'd just like to point out that this is nothing new. 20 years ago in California, voters could register at street intersections, beaches and other locations.

Keep in mind the voters in ... (Below threshold)
Sky Captain:

Keep in mind the voters in Ohio got rid of the top-level Republicans because of Bob Taft's corruption.

Looks like Bob Taft was an amateur.

Registering at the b... (Below threshold)

Registering at the beach or at an intersection is quite different from saying it is your residence.

I'm old enough to remember ... (Below threshold)
Captain America:

I'm old enough to remember a show called Laugh In where there was a flasher who used to sit on a park bench.

Today, he would vote for Obama (D-ACORN).

FROM TEAM MAV: Special Req... (Below threshold)
powerpro Author Profile Page:

FROM TEAM MAV: Special Request to Make "Keep Your Money" Phone Calls Wednesday Night

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To spread the truth during this 30 minute commercial, we are asking everyone to make "keep your money" calls to voters. Our goal is to make thousands of phone calls during that the thirty minute time period so that we can deliver the truth about Obama's plans to "spread the wealth around."

Please join us in this effort. You can help in one of two ways:

Go volunteer at your Local Victory Office

Use our Voter2Voter Phone Bank
to make calls from home


We only have 7 days left to stop Senator Obama from spreading the wealth around. Take action today!

THIS IS FUCKING REDICULOUS.... (Below threshold)


SO ANYBODY, FROM ANY STATE ... (Below threshold)


HE'S A DEMORAT. WHAT A SHOC... (Below threshold)


THIS IS NOT RACIST. ONLY A ... (Below threshold)


Of course there is voter fr... (Below threshold)

Of course there is voter fraud in Ohio. They're admitting to it in a semi-indirect way.

@#5: we call them "utilitie... (Below threshold)

@#5: we call them "utilities" formally, which can be split into hydro(electricity) and water, retired military.

Hey, we agreed on something! Must be a full moon or something. :)

The possibility of voter fraud exists as a corollary of the wholesale enfranchisement of the adult population (with the exception of felons). Don't like voter fraud? Find a way to improve the system that will not lead to eligible voters being excluded. Stop blaming ACORN, your federal government has had ample opportunity to address the integrity of your democratic mechanisms and it has not. If McCain had as comfortable a lead as Obama right now nobody here would be whining about ACORN.

You do know that there are lots of real people with fake sounding names like Mickey Mouse and Saddam Hussein living in the United States, so to prevent them from voting would be worse than letting people vote with phony registrations.

This judge is a Clinton app... (Below threshold)

This judge is a Clinton appointee. Surprised? There are hundreds of seats open on the Federal Judiciary across the country according to Judicial Watch. The Senate has held up the nominations of the Bush administration. And the last two years they told the White House "don't even bother none of them will be confirmed". These judges are generally where the SCOTUS nominees come from. Obama no doubt with a Democrat dominated Senate will fill them as one of his top priorities. That won't be pretty.

As much as I generally desp... (Below threshold)

As much as I generally despise social workers (I used to work with them) they do a good job of making sure homeless people have IDs and a verifiable address, shelter or otherwise.

I know of one shelter that runs a sort of "general delivery" post office for the "serious" homeless who are often afraid to stay at shelters.

This is done so that they can get social security checks, veteran's benefits, etc.

There are very very few homeless people who do not have an address other than a park bench or cardboard box in an alley, or can easily and quickly get one.

Ohio's law is senseless, but until the law itself is challenged, the judge made the correct decision in following it.

I have to wonder why people get so much more upset at judges for following the law than at the stupid legislators who make the law.

It's misdirected outrage and a waste of energy. Legislatures are this country's big pimples -- with Congress the biggest, ugliest, and most prominent.

Remember, the law that "all... (Below threshold)

Remember, the law that "allows homeless voters to use a shelter, alley or park bench as an address" was passed in 2006. When Ohio had a Republican governor, Republican Sec. State, and Republican legislature.

This judge is a Clinton ... (Below threshold)

This judge is a Clinton appointee. Surprised?

And he upheld a Republican law. Surprised?

The contempt with which ACO... (Below threshold)

The contempt with which ACORN, and by association OBAMA, hold the concept of "One Person...ONE Vote!" is appalling!

The next "election" may well be a fre-for-all where BOTH sides attempt to out-fraud each other!! When the final "vote" tally is upwards of one BILLION (in a country of 350 million) maybe SOMEONE will, uh, notice!

There are LOTS of park benches around this country...and everyone can vote using every one as a residence that's a helluva lot of VOTES!

Maybe it is time to Be John Galt!

Generally the homeless at l... (Below threshold)

Generally the homeless at least have to name a homeless shelter as an address to receive their mail. However, there are many neighborhoods who ask city hall to close feeding stations at churches, etc. due to neighborhood concerns, leaving the homeless with few places to turn as Winter nears. The average homeless person is expected to survive maybe 18 months on the streets before exposure, illness, alcoholism or drug abuses proves fatal.

A large sector of the chron... (Below threshold)

A large sector of the chronic homeless are suffering from chronic mental health disorders, so the "insane running the asylum" quote has a second entendre. Isn't it good that we don't have a sanity test to qualify for voting? That would indeed bring big brother into the picture in a Stalinesque use of mental health "treatment" to deal with those who don't want to vote a particular ideology. Be the sufferer carry a BDS or an ODS diagnosis, it would be a much more unpleasant country. Kinda like where Canada is headed.

Why do you need an address ... (Below threshold)

Why do you need an address to register to vote at all if you can prove you're a citizen?? Is it soley for the jury duty rolls? can't we just go to a national database that registers people when they're born???

Ya know...If this ... (Below threshold)

Ya know...

If this isn't reversed, there is the VERY REAL DANGER that fed up, angry Republicans from New York, New Jersey and other solid blue states might take the day off, dress up like bums (it is just after Halloween), and vote as homeless people in Ohio.

They may feel compelled to try to counter the apparent massive voter fraud that the Democrat party seems to comfortable with. Sauce for the goose and all that.

But no, the Dems know that only Dems (in any relevant number) would stoop to undermining our precious liberties to get a Socialist President and a supermajority. So they know they will once again get away with their brownshirt tactics.


How does Canada screen vote... (Below threshold)

How does Canada screen voters for eligibility based on mental health or anything other than age, epador? In fact, I think (though I'm not sure--correct me if you care to look it up) that felons, once having served their time, are allowed to vote in federal elections in Canada.

So you can piss off with the bogeyman of disenfranchisement as it rears its ugly head in the United States but not nearly to the same extent in Canada.

Rob - "Why do you need ... (Below threshold)

Rob - "Why do you need an address to register to vote at all if you can prove you're a citizen?? Is it soley for the jury duty rolls? can't we just go to a national database that registers people when they're born???"

Good idea, I'm all for it. Call it a national ID card, with bio-metric/DNA data and everything.

Sorry.... never fly, the dems, Dems, lefturds, leftards, progressives, code pinkos and various and sundry nutcakes would never let it get into law.

I'm looking to move to Ohio... (Below threshold)

I'm looking to move to Ohio..

My real estate broker has found me two nice choices...
A wooden structure bench duplex, nice alley's great trash cans etc. The other is a card board box ranch style under a bridge with great river views....

Can't wait to vote and get Christmas cards at my new address bench #9,876,634,567 Cleveland, Ohio....

F'n Liberals...

If the Ohio judge upheld a ... (Below threshold)

If the Ohio judge upheld a law as it was written, there's not much one should be able to complain about. Work towards refining or rewriting the law if one doesn't like it. There will always be those who will attempt to use laws to the detriment of citizens.

I would like to say this though: I don't know how much experience some of you have had with the homeless. I've had plenty of experience with them day in and day out. Month after month, year after year, I observed dozens of them in a park right next door to my place of employment.

With that said, yes, some are really just down-on-their-luck people who are kind and clear of mind. A large percentage of the homeless are, however, mentally ill. Some are destructive; to themselves and others around them. Some are dangerous.

Twice, in the ten years I worked there, a murder occurred in their midst. One murder was committed by a homeless guy who got his hands on a gun and shot another homeless guy. The other was when three of them got together and broke into a nearby home and killed its occupant. A third death occurred when another also was able get get a gun and was shot by police as he pointed it at them.

This is just to give you an idea of what happens when the homeless and mentally unstable congregate. These are the extreme cases, but the general havoc that occurred daily is too much to go into here.

It's my feeling that the real crime here is activism gone awry. These people are being exploited for political gain. They're being encouraged by some to game the system. They're encouraged and given the means by which to wreak havoc on the election system and wrongly influenced.

It's not that I don't feel they have a "right" to vote. Because they do. It's my contention that they're merely pawns in some people's games.

And that's wrong.

Will or did, Acorn help ... (Below threshold)

Will or did, Acorn help the home less up in to there vans on a road trip to vote at all more then one polling place with same day registration no Id requird regist & vote on the same day in aleeise names will some vote 4, 5 , 6 times and did thy screw the republicans in early voting in Ohio with so called homeless or Acorn reps dressed up as bums?
Or will or did Acorn people them selfs pos as homeless on election day in your area where there is NO ID REQUIRED SAME DAY For there homeless or so called Acorn dress down drive up the vote flood the polling place's voting malti times?

1.Did Acorn flooded the causisess in the primaries & strong arm the elderly to obama's side of the room?
2.Did Acorn register the same people over and over?
3.Did Acorn strong arm the delogates at the RNC convinion
by putting garbage cans through store window's?
4. where collage students that help run Acorn trainned to be thogs by the same educators that were trainned in the 60s & 70s to be thoggs?
5.Did Acorn these collage students flood banks and strong arm bankers to loan money nothing down interest only to people that just left there property when the value droped?
6. Is Acorn a radicle vigolantee groop hell bent on only helping a certen class or groop of people and no all Americans?
Guilty as hell - free as a bird
Only in America

Ah! Our little canadian fri... (Below threshold)

Ah! Our little canadian friend Hyper who professes to know all about our citizenry doesn't know for sure about voting in his own country. Pot meet kettle.

I am sure the homeless are really informed voters focusing on only the meat of the issues. And Hyper, ACORN is a problem for democracy idiot, not a party. You are so single focused you cannot break out of your leftest shell. ww

"Pot meet kettle"? Yet anot... (Below threshold)

"Pot meet kettle"? Yet another series of words that, when put together, form a phrase that "Wild" Willie appears not to understand. If there were episodes of widespread malfeasance here I would have read about them. This past election, apart from a few instances of thuggish intimidation against Conservatives' opponents, nowhere did I read anything regarding systematic disenfranchisement or voter fraud or anything else of that nature. It's not that I don't know about Canadian politics, Willie. Stop changing the subject, by the way.

I know what ACORN is. The problem for democracy, actually, is your embarrassingly low voter turnout. It doesn't matter if the homeless are informed or not, you P.O.S.: if you're allowed to vote, Willie, then they sure as hell should be allowed to as well.

F'n Liberals...... (Below threshold)

F'n Liberals...

And thus Knightbrigade shows that he can't read.

"And thus Knightbrig... (Below threshold)

"And thus Knightbrigade shows that he can't read."

And thus Brian shows he is still a liberal pompous assh%$e..

It's not a question of anyo... (Below threshold)

It's not a question of anyone not wanting the homeless to vote. Of course they should vote if they are eligible. Like someone said, they usually have an address where they pick up their mail, etc. I just have a problem with stuffing the ballot boxes with the votes of people who have NO right to vote. I had to register to vote. I had to fill out a form, mail it in, and wait for my card. It wasn't much trouble, but I had to follow the rules, like mailing it in by a certain date, and so on. But I've noticed the Democrats always want the rules broken for them (WAAAAAAAAHHHH!!!) It's always something. Now everyone knows it's not because people are 'disenfranchised' that word that is thrown around with abandon every election, it's because they want to be able to stuff the ballot box. The Dems always HATE the idea of having to show your id to vote. VOTER INTIMIDATION! But guess who is REQUIRING ids to get into the Obamathon election night? That's right, NOW ITS OK TO REQUIRE IDS. Obama will not let you in without your id. WHY? Because he knows THERE IS NO WAY TO CONTROL WHO GETS IT WITHOUT AN ID. JUST LIKE HE KNOWS THERE IS NO WAY TO CONTROL WHO VOTES WITHOUT AN ID. He doesn't want anyone getting in that shouldn't be there. But NOT SO with our precious vote. They don't want ids for voting because that way they couldn't vote over and over and bus people in from Chicago and other places. I've NEVER seen anything like this total rape of our system. If he gets in, I promise you next time the illegals will be able to vote as well. Obama campaign slogan: VOTE EARLY, VOTE OFTEN WIN AT ANY COST
Democrats we have your number. (With apologies to law abiding Democrats-I know you are still there, but dammit, speak up about this)






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