Columbus, OH — As Ohio House Democrats kick off their weeklong Freedom to Vote Town Hall Tour tomorrow, every day this week the Ohio Democratic Party will be digging in deeper to a harmful provision included in statehouse Republicans’ anti-voter legislation that takes Ohio backward in the fight for voting rights. The town hall tour will make stops this week in Cincinnati, Columbus, Akron, Cleveland and Toledo. Learn more HERE.
Today, ODP is focused on some of the most restrictive dropbox provisions in the country that are included in the GOP bill. The anti-voter bill would codify Frank LaRose’s nonsensical limit of one dropbox location per county, even after a federal judge ruled the restriction was ‘arbitrary and unreasonable.’
Ohio broke records for early voting in 2020 with dropboxes playing an important role in allowing Ohioans to exercise their right to vote safely and securely. Local elections officials have said that dropboxes are safe and secure and some county officials have utilized dropboxes even before the 2020 election, meaning the only explanation for these dropbox restrictions is so Republicans can play politics with Ohioans’ access to the ballot box.
“Dropboxes are a critical tool that allow Ohioans to have their voices heard and exercise their right to vote. While local elections officials have said that dropboxes are safe and secure, Frank LaRose and statehouse Republicans are driven by politics, not facts. They continue to rig the rules in their favor to put their own political interests first and leave Ohio voters behind,” said Matt Keyes, spokesperson for the Ohio Democratic Party.
Even the widely-panned Florida elections bill recently signed into law allows more than one dropbox location per county, making Ohio’s anti-voter bill one of the most restrictive in the country. Limiting dropboxes would hurt Ohio voters across the state, including rural Ohioans who will be forced to travel longer distances to cast their vote and urban voters who will face long lines and voter backups at their single dropbox location.
As the Columbus Dispatch recently editorialized, these provisions “potentially disenfranchise voters in sprawling rural counties with no public transportation, as well as voters in populous urban counties where some faced traffic jams and backups while trying to reach curbside drop boxes last year.”