Wrongful voter purges. Rejected ballots in Black communities. Attempts to decrease the number of poll workers who serve on Election Day so that polling places aren’t prepared. These are just the latest threats to free and fair elections in Ohio. We can’t allow these attempts to roll back the right to vote.
In 2019, Ohio removed nearly half a million voters from the registration rolls, thousands of whom should have stayed on the rolls because they were actually eligible voters. Voter purges are an urgent threat to the right to vote. Even Ohio’s secretary of state admitted the process was flawed. And yet, the purges continue.
All Voting is Local Ohio was the first advocacy group to reach voters in the pipeline to be purged by texting and calling nearly 500,000 people in 2018 and 2019. Our Ohio team is on the ground with creative solutions and advocacy focused on three priorities:
- Fighting wrongful purges while also advocating for reforms we know can fix a broken system such as Automatic Voter Registration.
- Traveling statewide to train advocates to fight for better access to voting for people in Ohio’s jails and to watchdog local boards of elections for reductions in poll workers so that no voter has to wait in a long line because a polling place is not prepared.
- Empowering voters at Ohio’s Historical Black Colleges and Universities to know their rights at the polls. Students at Wilberforce and Central State universities disproportionately cast more provisional ballots and are more likely to have those ballots rejected.
News from Ohio
COVID-19 exposed Ohio’s voting barriers – now the state must fix them: Kayla Griffin
CLEVELAND -- In the spring, there was every reason to believe that the November general election in Ohio would be a disaster. The way the state fumbled the handling of the delayed presidential primary didn’t give Ohioans much reason for optimism.
ideastream.org: Ohio Voter Rights Groups Cheer Early Voting Success, Point To A Few Issues
While votes are still being counted, Tuesday’s election process was mostly a smooth one, according to Ohio voting rights groups.
A few problems were reported to the groups’ voter assistance hotlines – things like delays at polling places, the sometimes poorly executed expansion of curbside voting and scattered incidents of voter intimidation.
Cleveland.com: With Election Day approaching, here’s what you need to know about the presidential election in Ohio
Kayla Griffin, Ohio director of All Voting is Local, a nonpartisan voter-rights group, said a possible concern is aggressive protesters, which have been reported at some county early-voting centers. She’s also worried that the long lines for early, in-person voters in some counties could repeat themselves on Election Day.
Ohio Needs More Drop Boxes.
In Ohio, there’s only one ballot drop box in each county, but Secretary of State Frank LaRose has the power to change that. Ohioans deserve options to vote and return their ballots. Drop Boxes give freedom and flexibility to vote safely and securely. We partnered with several religious and community organizations to send a letter to urge him to increase the number of ballot drop boxes in each county. We also mobilized our supporters through digital campaigns to email LaRose to demand more drop boxes.