Governor John Kasich’s home state of Ohio is cracking down on any potential voter intimidation tactics ahead of Election Day. In doing so, a judge has answered a complaint by Democrats, who learned of plans for harassment at the polls by extremists and otherwise passionate Donald Trump enthusiasts. Indeed, pro-Trump white supremacist groups did not hide their intent to intimidate voters into staying home In addition, Trump adviser Roger Stone was organizing nationwide “exit polling” that didn’t sound too friendly.
Now, an Ohio federal judge is putting any hopeful voter harassers on notice with a restraining order. Cleveland.com reports how U.S. District Judge James Gwin has ordered both the Trump campaign and Roger Stone to refrain from “harassing or intimidating conduct” outside polling destinations on November 8th. You can see the court order right here, and it definitely calls out Stone and the Trump campaign.
Judge Gwin chose not to specify what conduct would qualify as harassment or intimidation but aims to prevent such behavior from both parties. Also, Gwin expressed the difficulty in “[identifying] somebody being a Trump supporter or not.” In all likelihood, the order would prohibit conduct that is already illegal but would make the behavior eligible for a contempt citation as well. This public form of notice could work wonders.
Unfortunately, there are even more dangerous potential threats on the horizon next week. U.S. intelligence has already warned that terror threats for multiple states seek to wreak havoc on Monday. Harassment and voter intimidation on Tuesday seems like a mere annoyance in comparison, but both tactics are designed to suppress democracy.