Ohio Secretary of State Reports Surge in Absentee Ballot Requests

September 22, 2020 by Dan McCue

COLUMBUS, Ohio – With just 42 days to go before Election Day, Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose said Tuesday that 1,784,004 absentee ballot applications have been received by the county boards of election, including a whopping 385,657 in the past week.

At the same time in 2016, a total 805,844 absentee ballots had been collected.

Ohio has already begun sending absentee ballots to the 17,217 residents who are currently in the military or overseas. Absentee ballots will be sent to the rest of those who requested them beginning Oct. 6.

“One of the big reasons why Ohio is considered the national leader in absentee voting is because we’ve been doing it this way for nearly two decades,” LaRose said.

“You get good at something when you practice, and Ohio has proven to be game-ready,” he added.

According to a recent analysis by the Brookings Institution, Ohio is among the states most ready to deal with an onslaught of pandemic-induced absentee voting.

The New York Times reported Tuesday that more than 61.4 million absentee ballots have already been requested or sent to voters in 28 states and the District of Columbia for the general election, an indication that the number of Americans who plan to vote early or by mail will set records.

Requests for absentee ballots have already surpassed total 2016 requests in at least 11 states, the newspaper said.

In addition to Ohio, these include Florida, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Georgia, Wisconsin, North Carolina, Maryland, Maine, South Carolina and Rhode Island.

A total 7,774,000 Ohio residents were registered to vote as of March 17.

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