[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/10/16/brunner1.jpg caption="Ohio Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner has filed an appeal and is working to improve voter registration."]
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Ohio's secretary of state on Thursday filed an emergency appeal with the U.S. Supreme Court in an ongoing dispute over verifying the identities of the state's newly registered voters.
The appeal, from Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner - a Democrat - and other elections officials, follows a Tuesday ruling from the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati that sided with the state GOP. It ordered Brunner to create a system by Friday to provide a list of newly registered voters whose Social Security numbers or driver's license numbers do not match their names.
The state Republican Party contends that there is widespread voter fraud in Ohio - a crucial battleground state for the 2008 presidential election - and that Brunner "turned off" its process for verifying voter registrations while allowing Ohioans to cast ballots on the same day they registered. State GOP Chairman Bob Bennett has accused Brunner of concealing fraudulent voter registrations in hopes of swinging the state to Sen. Barack Obama, the Democratic presidential candidate.
Brunner's office has acknowledged that preliminary information provided by about 200,000 registered voters may not match up. Brunner said Tuesday she had prepared for the appeals court's "possible adverse decision" ahead of time by announcing plans to "further improve the statewide voter registration database."