Stephanie Tubbs-Jones: Champion of Justice

Stephanie Tubbs-Jones
U.S. Rep. Stephanie Tubbs-Jones, who died of a cerebral hemorrhage yesterday, was not just the first African-American woman elected to Congress from Ohio, but she was always a politician of the people, easily accessible and responsive.  Stephanie Tubbs Jones frequently displayed the sort of political courage that put her at odds not just with her president and his party but, at times, even with her own party.

That courage was most evident when, after the disputed 2004 presidential vote in her home state, Tubbs Jones led the House floor fight against certification of President Bush's re-election.

 With New York Senator Hillary Clinton, her friend and ally, the Ohio congresswoman introduced the Count Every Vote Act (CEVA) with the purpose of insuring that there would be no more Ohios, no more Floridas, no more denials of democracy in presidential elections.

    The CEVA bill proposed steps to

  • make Election Day a national holiday
  • make it easier to register to vote, including universal Election Day registration
  • improve security for electronic voting machines, including accessible voter-verified paper records and audit requirements
  • enhance voter fraud penalties
  • support initiatives to reduce long waiting lines at the polls
  • ensure equitable allocation of election resources
  • expand and improve provisional balloting options
  • reduce partisanship and conflicts of interest in election administration by banning top state election officials and manufacturers of voting systems from engaging in political activities related to the federal elections they oversee
  • expand and adequately support poll worker training and civic education.

There will be many tributes to the woman who sponsored this important legislation.    But it would be difficult to imagine a greater tribute than for the House and Senate to pull the Count Every Vote Act out of committee, pass it and establish a measure of the electoral justice that was so ardently championed by Stephanie Tubbs Jones.   Click here to read the full article.

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