Statewide News
5:15 pm
Tue August 23, 2011

New Law Helps Military Members Vote

Secretary of State Jon Husted says a new law should make it easier for all of Ohio’s military members serving abroad to cast ballots.  Under this new law, Husted says military members will receive a kit that gives them all of the information they need to vote in Ohio.  And he’s established a website, OhioMilitaryVote.com, that will provide those who serve the country abroad with the same information in the kit. Husted says this new process will make sure military members can get a ballot on the internet.

In the past, there have been questions about how to handle military ballots that arrived after the election but before the vote was finally certified.  Husted says military ballots will be mailed out 45 days prior to an election, making it all the more likely that those who serve can return their ballots in plenty of time to make their voices heard on Election Day.

One of the Democrats who supported the bill does throw in a word of caution. Representative Teresa Fedor says it raises a disparity in election law that needs to be addressed.  She says, because of this law, absentee ballots from Ohioans who are not military members are not treated the same as those who are.

"We need clarity. We need consistency. If one group has an easier way of voting that another, why would we do that?" says Fedor.

Fedor says she’s concerned there will be problems this fall and next if the disparities she sees between different voting procedures are not addressed.