Last updated: Oct 22, 2020

Ohio

Ohio Election Policies & Readiness

Last updated: July 8, 2020

Despite Ohio’s 15 years of experience with no-excuse absentee voting, converting a presidential primary to predominantly vote-by-mail on a tight timeline proved challenging. Election officials worked diligently to scale up mail-balloting by the new date of April 28. However, a time-consuming mail-ballot process, inconsistent information, mail delays, and limited in-person voting led to significant voter confusion across the state. Ohio voter turnout in this election was lower than in most recent presidential-election years, but this effect may be due to a noncompetitive presidential field rather than the conditions of the primary. Nonetheless, if the issues encountered this spring are left unaddressed, Ohio voters may expect similar confusion and delays in November. 

A Quantitative Dive into Ohio's 2020 Voting Trends

Last updated: July 27, 2020

Latest Updates:

  • 10/20/20 - Peacekeeping Team: Ohio voting rights groups are organizing de-escalation teams for Election Day. Spearheaded by the League of Women Voters, there are efforts to train social workers and others in efforts to promote calm at polling locations.

  • 10/8/20 - PPE: Ohio has partnered with Walmart in order to provide PPE to poll workers. 800,000 masks, 27,000 gowns, and 29,000 face shields were acquired through this effort.

  • 10/7/20 - Long Lines At the Polls: As early voting started in Ohio, there were long lines at the polls. Due, in part, to social distancing measures, the Franklin County Board of Elections on Columbus' north side saw lines up to a quarter mile long.

  • 10/7/20 - Drop Boxes: The Secretary of State issued a directive, allowing for counties to receive ballots from multiple drop box locations. As a result, the case regarding the Secretary's limits on drop box locations was dismissed.

  • 10/1/20 - Drop Boxes: In response to the Secretary of State's position that each county will only receive one drop box, trade unions have offered to make additional drop boxes for free.

  • 10/1/20 - Poll Worker Surge: Ohio's Secretary of State says that at least 9 of 88 counties have fulfilled their poll worker goals, and more than half of Ohio's counties need less than 100 poll workers to sign up.

  • 9/29/20 - Employees as Poll Workers: In an effort to supplement poll worker shortages, Ohio State University, one of central Ohio's largest employers, will pay employees their regular rate if they take the day off to work as poll workers.

  • 8/27/20 - Ballot Drop Box: The Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law recently sued the Ohio Secretary of State for banning more than one ballot drop box per county.

State Resources: