The complaint begins with:
Plaintiffs bring this lawsuit to restore in-person early voting for all Ohioans during the three days prior to Election Day – a right exercised by an estimated 93,000 Ohioans in the last presidential election. Ohio election law, as currently enacted by the State of Ohio and administered by Defendant Ohio Secretary of State, arbitrarily eliminates early voting during the three days prior to Election Day for most Ohio voters, Amendment to the United States Constitution and can be rectified by the Court enjoining enforcement of statutory changes that eliminate early in-person voting for most Ohioans during the three days before an election.a right previously available to all Ohio voters. This disparate treatment violates 42 U.S.C. § 1983 and the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth [emphasis added.]What happened that they feel they need to restore it?
That's in the next paragraph:
Specifically, taken together, Amended Substitute House Bill Number 194 (“HB 194”), Amended Substitute House Bill Number 224 (“HB 224”) and Substitute Senate Bill Number 295 (“SB 295”), all enacted by the 129th Ohio General Assembly, impose different deadlines for in-person voting prior to Election Day (“early voting”) on similarly situated voters. Prior to the enactment of these laws, there was a single uniform deadline of the Monday before Election Day for inperson early voting. After the enactment of these laws, voters using the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voter Act (“UOCAVA”) may vote early in-person at a board of elections office up through the Monday before Election Day, while non-UOCAVA voters can vote early in-person at a board of elections office (or designated alternate site) only up until 6 p.m. on the Friday before Election Day.The 129th Ohio General Assembly is the current General Assembly (as of August, 2012). So these are recent changes - that is changes since the last presidential election.
The complaint is to restore the Ohio voting law to what it was before these laws were enacted.
So on with the he says/she says. From ABC News:
A new flap in the ongoing battle on voting equality began this week when Mitt Romney accused President Obama's re-election committee of suing to restrict military voting rights in Ohio. And while Romney did not address the issue campaigning in Indiana today, he called the lawsuit "an outrage" in a written statement "The brave men and women of our military make tremendous sacrifices to protect and defend our freedoms, and we should do everything we can to protect their fundamental right to vote," it reads. "I stand with the fifteen military groups that are defending the rights of military voters."See that? Which side is actually telling the truth? ABC never quite gets there. In fact it takes two more paragraphs for ABC to say:
Republicans say a lawsuit brought by Obama for America in July seeks to eliminate additional time for in-person early voting allotted to service members in the battleground state. Democrats, on the other hand, contend the presumptive GOP nominee is deliberately trying to distort the facts.
"Mitt Romney is falsely accusing the Obama campaign of trying to restrict military voting in Ohio," a Friday statement said. "In fact, the opposite is true: The Obama campaign filed a lawsuit to make sure every Ohioan has early voting rights, including military members and their families."
[T]he Obama campaign sued the Buckeye State last month to block those laws from taking effect, restoring weekend voting as it was in 2008. Democrats say those last days before Nov. 6give a crucial extra cushion for Americans who might not have had the opportunity to enter the voting booth in the days prior. If the challenge is successful, they say, military voters would not see any difference in their rights. [Emphasis added.]And if they quoted (or even read) the complaint they'd see that that is true.
So, what does that say about ABC reporting Romney's "stand" to "defending the rights of military voters"?
Or the media's "get both sides to tell their side and we've proved our objectivity" stand?