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Challenge of Supreme Court race refiled

Associated Press  21 December 2004

COLUMBUS, Ohio - Challengers of the Nov. 2 presidential vote in Ohio refiled a similar challenge on Tuesday against the re-election of Chief Justice Thomas Moyer of the Ohio Supreme Court over opponent Ellen Connally.

On Thursday, Moyer threw out the original challenge, ruling that state law does not allow voters to contest the results of more than one race in a single complaint. The plaintiffs had filed the challenges together. Since Moyer's race also was challenged, Justice Maureen O'Connor ruled on that portion of the complaint. She reached the same conclusion as Moyer.

Claiming fraud, the challenge filed on behalf of 37 voters cited reports of voting machine errors, double-counting of some ballots and a shortage of voting machines in predominantly minority precincts as reasons to throw out the election results.

The challenge also claims unusual differences in votes for Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry and Connally, also a Democrat. However, judicial candidates in Ohio general elections appear on the ballot without party affiliation.

The challenge was backed by the Rev. Jesse Jackson and Cliff Arnebeck, a Columbus attorney for the Massachusetts-based Alliance for Democracy, who accused President Bush's campaign of "high-tech vote stealing."

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