Sen. Nina Turner (D-OH) excoriated Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted in an interview Monday, accusing him of “arrogance” over his role in cutting voting opportunities for the state and calling him the “secretary of suppression.”
“Let us not forget that he is the secretary of state in this state who appealed all the way to the United States Supreme Court to try to take away the last three days of early voting,” Turner told MSNBC host Chris Jansing. “It’s laughable now that he wants to try and stand up and be the agent, when he tried to suppress every single vote in this state. He is the secretary of suppression, make no doubt about it.”
Husted, a Republican, did indeed file an appeal with the high court when he was ordered to open up the polls on the weekend before Election Day.
After the Supreme Court refused to take his case, Husted ordered election officials not to fill out a section on provisional ballots confirming what kind of identification voters provided, a move that led to an emergency lawsuit against his administration.
Regardless, in his own interview with Jansing Monday, Husted said he had done all he could to get as many voters to the polls as possible.
“When I was given the option, I opened up the polls for Saturday, Sunday and Monday,” Husted said, neglecting to mention the fact that the “option” was actually ordered upon him by a federal appeals court. “In Ohio we have 35 days to vote. This is the 34th day of voting that we’ve had. It’s very easy to vote in this state.”
The Cleveland Plain-Dealer reported that more than 2,500 people lined up to vote Sunday, many of them African-American voters, underscoring what Turner called a factor in attempts to curtail early voting in Ohio and Florida.
“They know that, disproportionately, African-Americans use that in a very communal and cultural way,” Turner said. “So I don’t care how he tries to dress it up, how he tries to pretend like he is non-partisan and fair, he is going down in history in the state of Ohio as the secretary of state who appealed all the way to the United States Supreme Court to try to take away the last three days of voting opportunities in the state of Ohio, and he’s going to have to live with the environment of confusion, fear and mistrust that he has created in the state of Ohio.”
Turner’s response to Husted, aired Monday on MSNBC, can be seen below.