No Plan Set To Merge Primaries Into One In April, But Talks Continue

Candidates who want to run for one of Ohio’s 16 Congressional seats have to file petitions today, even though the primary they’d run in isn’t set till June. Ohio Public Radio’s Karen Kasler reports that’s because there’s still talk about merging that primary with the ones set for March into some other springtime date.

The chair of the committee that would consider any date changes to the primaries says he wants one primary. But Republican Matt Huffman of Lima says a possible combined primary in late April isn’t firm.

“It’s not necessarily an April primary. I think it’s important that if we can do it legally, and if we can get support from the Democrat side of the aisle, enough support, that we should have one primary,” says Huffman.

Republicans created the June primary when the Ohio Democratic Party launched a ballot challenge to the Republican drawn map of Congressional districts. But to merge the primaries, Huffman says lawmakers don’t need to wait for a new map, which would be needed if the current map will be put before voters next year. That won’t be decided until after Christmas, because Democrats have until then to turn in signatures.