Two Ohio representatives are set to introduce legislation aimed at modernizing and reforming several election laws.
Reps. Bill Seitz (R-30-Cincinnati) and Sharon Ray (R-69-Wadsworth) announced they will introduce legislation that will codify several reforms implemented during the 2020 elections and introduce several other measures.
Among the changes included in the legislation are automated voter registration through the Bureau of Motor Vehicles, the codification of a temporary provision about voting drop boxes, and expanding the “Youth at the Booth” program that would allow 17-year-olds to serve as precinct officers.
“Happily for Ohio, the reforms we have already implemented helped to ensure that there were only minimal complaints about the Ohio election results in 2020,” Seitz’s office told other representatives in a co-sponsorship request circulated Tuesday, according to the AP News. “But there is always room for improvement in safeguarding the integrity of election processes.”
The bill would also clarify that the Ohio Secretary of State can use public funds to pre-pay postage to mail absentee ballot requests forms to all registered voters, although not pre-pay postage on returned absentee ballot request forms or absentee ballots themselves without legislative authorization.
“This balanced bill will indeed further goal of making voting easy and cheating hard,” the representatives said in a statement released Tuesday. “Compared to other states’ laws, Ohio will still have far more voting opportunities than in nearly any other state.”
The legislation has received pushback, even though it has not yet been formally introduced.
“As far as I can tell, this bill will make it harder to vote and continue the traffic jams we saw at the dropbox in 2020,” said Rep. Bride Rose Sweeney (D-14-Cleveland).
.@repbridesweeney: "As far as I can tell, this bill will make it harder to vote and continue the traffic jams we saw at the dropbox in 2020."
— Ohio Dems (@OHDems) April 26, 2021
Read the list of changes that would be proposed by the legislation here.
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