The Ohio Democratic Party and Organizing for America turned in another 166,481 petition signatures on Tuesday to qualify for the November 2012 ballot for a voter referendum on House Bill 194, an elections reform package backed by Republicans. It was the second wave – they already submitted 333,063, of which 221,572 were deemed valid. To make the ballot, they need 231,150 valid voter signatures.
If the issue makes the ballot, the law will be put on hold until voters have their say. If enacted, House Bill 194 would shorten the window for early voting in person and absentee from 35 days to 17 days, eliminate early voting on Saturday afternoons and Sundays and remove a requirement that poll workers redirect voters to the correct precinct.
Currently, voters who forget to bring identification to the polls must cast a provisional ballot and then have 10 days to show their ID. House Bill 194 would require them to return the same day with ID.
Supporters of the bill have said the changes would bring about uniformity for voters. Currently, large urban counties tend to have more in-person early voting hours and also automatically send out applications for absentee ballots and often pay return postage for absentee ballots.
Full Article: Election reform petition continues to gain signatures.