Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted said he isn’t sure the U.S. Postal Service has a solution to the postmark issues that plagued absentee ballots during last year’s general election. Speaking at the Ohio Association of Election Officials Convention at the Hilton Downtown Columbus on Wednesday, he said it was partially up to election workers to figure out a solution to the problem. “We don’t need to look at blame. We need to look at a way forward,” Husted said. Ohio voter law allows absentee ballots to be counted if their postmark date falls before Election Day, even if the ballots don’t arrive until after. In November, 1,523 ballots were not counted because the U.S. Post Office did not postmark them. “My priority is to ensure voters who follow the law that their votes will be counted,” said Husted, a Republican.
The sorting process at the post office and what kind of envelopes the ballots are in seems to be the problem, Husted said. Husted also talked about improving the use of technology in the election process, starting with online voter registration. “I don’t want to talk about this the next time we come here,” he said. “It’s time we just do it.”
Husted said he hopes the House will pass the bill by the end of February in order to get the system up by June. The bill was passed in the Senate 31-1 in June.