Voters turn to absentee ballots amid pandemic
More Ohioans are embracing absentee voting this year than ever before, figures provided by Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose show.
A total of 1,784,004 absentee ballot applications had been received by the 88 county boards of elections offices as of Sept. 18, LaRose announced. That includes nearly 400,000 in just the week leading up to that date, meaning Ohio is well on pace to surpass 2 million absentee ballots requested.
The 1.78 million ballot applications received thus far in 2020 is already more than twice as many as received at the same point in 2016, according to LaRose.
There is still time to register to vote. Registration is available online by clicking here. The deadline to register is Oct. 5 in order to vote in the General Election.
Oct. 5 is also the deadline for Ohioans to update their voter registration ahead of the November election. It is important that voters submit any changes to their name or address. These changes can be made online by clicking here.
Want to double check you are registered and have the correct information listed? The voter registration check is available online by clicking here.
If you’re looking to vote absentee ballot (by mail or by ballot drop box), you will have to request the ballot like 1,784,004 Ohioans have done. There is still ample time to request one. Voters received a blank request form in the mail earlier this month.
You can also find blank forms online here to send back, or can fill out this online form to have a request form mailed again to you. The deadline to apply for an absentee ballot is the Saturday before Election Day, though LaRose is stressing that voters do so sooner than later to ensure the request can be processed in time.
The actual absentee ballots themselves will be sent to voters who requested them beginning Oct. 6. They can be mailed back to the voter’s respective county board of elections office, or can be dropped off in a secure drop box located at each elections office address.
If you’re voting by mail, the ballot must be postmarked by Nov. 2 (the day before Election Day) in order to count. If you’re looking to drop off your ballot, it must be returned to the drop box by 7:30 p.m. on election night.
If you’re planning to head to the polls to vote on Election Day, you can find the correct polling location by searching here.