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Ohio: Secretary of State rules provisional ballots must be paper

AP reports: Ohio's new elections chief ordered the state's 88 boards of elections Thursday to record all provisional ballots on paper, beginning with the first elections after the May 8 primary.

Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner said electronic machines assign each provisional voter a number that is printed on a paper record in each machine, putting ballot secrecy at risk if a recount occurs. If the number is visible while votes are being counted, it would be possible to learn the identity of the voter.

A provisional ballot is cast when a voter does not have suitable identification or if the address on the voter's ID differs from the one written in precinct poll books.

Most counties still use paper for provisional ballots, said Matt Damschroder, director of the Franklin County elections board and president of the Ohio Association of Election Officials. Elections officials should have no problem making the switch, he said. -- Beacon Journal | 04/06/2007 | Provisional ballots must be on paper

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