Election reform plan includes League recommendations
Monday, Aug. 10, 2009
Last Tuesday, Ohio Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner and Reps. Dan Stewart and Tracy Heard, both of Columbus, unveiled an election system reform bill that they hope will be implemented in time for the 2010 elections.
Election reform advocates such as the League of Women Voters of Ohio have been calling for many of the improvements that appear in the new legislation. Learn more about last week's announcement.
Because of the advocacy effort and issue education offered by the League and several election reform advocates, the newly introduced bill reflects many key issues that the League has long supported as critical to improving Ohio's election system, ensuring that eligible voters are allowed to cast a regular ballot and have their ballots counted.
The Joint Working Group of Election Advocates worked together over several months to develop specific recommendations for reform and presented a joint letter to Secretary Brunner outlining its collective reform ideas. Read the Joint Working Group's press release, and read the Secretary of State's response to the Joint Working Group of Election Advocates.
Key provisions that the League recommended for consideration include:
- Limiting the reasons why voters should be required to cast provisional ballots rather than standard ballots, with the intent of reducing the number of provisional ballots cast and ensuring that eligible voters are allowed to cast regular ballots; and
- Additional voter identification options to allow a valid photo ID or two current and valid documents with the voter's name, issued by businesses, nonprofits, or government organizations.
The inclusion of these provisions demonstrates the power of the League to influence the policy debate on the critical issue of voter rights and election reform.