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PNS Daily Newscast - November 16, 2018 


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Ohio May Primary Unaffected by Election Law Changes

PHOTO: Tuesday is primary day in Ohio, and while changes have been made to the state's voting laws, they will not be in effect until the November election. Photo courtesy of Secretary of State.
PHOTO: Tuesday is primary day in Ohio, and while changes have been made to the state's voting laws, they will not be in effect until the November election. Photo courtesy of Secretary of State.
May 5, 2014

COLUMBUS, Ohio - Ohio's voting laws have been the subject of controversy, but recent changes will not affect Tuesday's primary election. Carrie Davis, executive director, League of Women Voters of Ohio, says the changes take effect in November, when early in-person voting will be reduced from 35 to 29 days before the general election. Additionally, a directive from the Secretary of State reduced early voting hours.

"They're all business hours during the week, no evenings at all. Two Saturdays, no Sundays. This disappointed a lot of voters who take advantage of early voting on evenings and weekends," Davis says.

Last week, the ACLU filed a federal lawsuit challenging the changes, claiming limits to early voting would eliminate opportunities used by more than 157,000 voters in 2012. Early voting for tomorrow's primary began on April 1, and an estimated 120,000 voters have already cast their ballots. The polls open tomorrow at 6:30 a.m. and close at 7:30 p.m. All voters must bring identification, either an Ohio drivers license or a government document with their valid address.

Tomorrow's primary includes candidates for several offices seeking their party nominations to compete in the November general election, including governor and state representatives. Davis says some voters don't seem to realize that this election is just as important as the one in November.

"Turnout for primaries is always much lower than we see for the general, which is disappointing because the voters who show up to vote in the primary get a say on which candidates are going to appear on your November ballot," she says.

More than 130 school districts are asking voters to approve issues, the majority of which are renewals. Voters statewide will also decide on Issue 1, which funds capital improvements throughout the state.

Mary Kuhlman, Public News Service - OH