Four or five months ago, Secretary of State Jon Husted probably would have been grateful for people to forget about Ohio elections for a while. Now, however, he needs the attention of state and federal lawmakers. When in-state and out-of-state partisans are done besieging this swing state during presidential-election years — trumping up charges of widespread voter fraud or voter suppression to rally their troops across the country — it seems they forget all about the importance of smooth, valid elections in Ohio. But Husted’s job remains the same: ensuring that every election is well run. The General Assembly should do its part to help, by enacting the common-sense reforms for which Husted has asked, starting with allowing online voter registration and establishing uniform days and hours for voting.
Given the keen interest in when early, in-person absentee ballots can be cast, this should be a top priority. Husted could impose uniform voting times, as he did in November, but he knows a unilateral decision on such a contentious issue will be contested by whichever party is displeased. Lawmakers should help out, by finding their way to a bipartisan consensus that can withstand partisan complaint.
Husted says he won’t quibble with the days and hours lawmakers set, but his sensible suggestion is to allow at least one day of early voting during the final weekend before Election Day and to start early, in-person voting a few days later, to avoid the so-called “golden week” during which people can register and vote on the same day.
Full Article: Ohio election law needs an upgrade | The Columbus Dispatch.