U.S. Supreme Court puts hold on early voting plan by Republican officials

The U.S. Supreme Court has put a hold on early voting in Ohio, which had been set to begin on Tuesday.

The court issued the move requested by Republican Secretary of State Jon Husted, delaying the start of voting in the buckeye state until Oct. 7.

A 5-to-4 decision on Monday granted a request from state officials to eliminate the start of absentee voting by mail and in person. According to a Fox news report, Ohio’s Republican officials have been trying to cut down the number of days for early voting and restrict weekend and evening hours.

A federal judge blocked the law and forced Mr. Husted to set additional times that included evening hours.

“Elections in Ohio should be run by the same rules in every county and Ohioans should have the right to make those rules through their elected representatives,” said Husted. “I plan to implement state law and the voting schedule established by Democrats and Republicans at the local level.”

U.S. District Judge Peter C. Economus said the new law would unconstitutionally affect blacks and the poor, who tend to cast earlier in-person votes at a higher rate than whites do. The move has prompted a lawsuit from black churches and civil rights groups.

A panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th circuit upheld the judge’s order.

The five Republicans who voted to grant Ohio’s request according to Fox news are: Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Samuel Alito, Anthony Kennedy, Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas.

The four democrats who would have let early  voting begin Tuesday are: Justices Stephen Breyer, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor.