Ohio Secretary of State Predicts Cleaner Vote in 2008 than 2004

Ohio Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner, a Democrat, predicted a record turnout of 80 percent of registered voters in the November election, at a press briefing where she also outlined the steps she has taken to make Ohio's voting system less prone to the problems experienced in 2004.

"This year you will see a big difference in Ohio from what you have seen in the past," she said at an Electionline.org forum in Denver at the Democratic Convention. "We had a bigger (administrative and legal) infrastructure in place for the March primary."

For November, Brunner said there will be better poll worker training with a focus in the state's new voter ID laws and using provisional ballots. She also said that she recently issued a directive limiting how partisan voter challenges can be conducted -- they can question poll workers but cannot challenge voters.

Brunner said that many of the reforms she has instituted since assuming office in 2006 have professionalized election administration in Ohio. She said new hiring standards prompted many people appointed to county election boards as political patronage jobs to retire.

"It has been a breath of fresh air," she said.


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