Democrats in the Ohio Senate say local boards of elections should have the flexibility to set their own early voting schedules following a federal court decision.
Last week, U.S. District Judge Peter Economus temporarily blocked an Ohio law that trims early voting and ordered the swing state's election chief to set an expanded voting schedule. The judge also barred Republican Secretary of State Jon Husted from preventing local elections boards from adopting additional early voting hours beyond his order.
The organization that represents elections officials throughout Ohio has not taken a position on the federal court’s most recent ruling on changes to the state’s elections laws. Last week the court ordered the state to go back to some of the early voting options that were in place in 2010, but have since been eliminated by new laws. Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted plans to appeal the ruling, but Aaron Oeckerman with the Ohio Association of Election Officials says his group didn’t ask Husted to do that.
Secretary of State Jon Husted has established new early-voting hours for Ohio’s 88 counties for all upcoming elections following a recent federal court ruling. Early in-person voting will span four weeks before elections, including two Saturdays and one Sunday.
A federal judge has ordered Ohio to reinstate early in-person voting the three days before Election Day.
Earlier this year, Republican Secretary of State Jon Husted had directed the 88 county boards of elections to hold uniform voting hours -- and they did not include the Saturday, Sunday and Monday before November’s gubernatorial election. Democrats challenged that, saying it disproportionately affects their voters, who dominate early-in person voting on those days.
In a speech in Akron last week, Husted said his only concern has been uniformity.