COLUMBUS, Ohio - On Thursday, the group behind the effort to recall Ohio's new election reform law submitted more than 300,000 signatures (318,460 to be exact) to Ohio Secretary of State John Husted.
Husted's office will now catalog those signatures and ship them off to local county board of elections to be validated.
The petitioners, known as "Fair Elections Ohio" were also required to have collected signatures from at least 44 of Ohio’s 88 counties, and within each of those counties collected enough signatures equal to three percent of the total vote cast for governor in the most recent gubernatorial election, 2010.
With the submission of the signatures comes a few items of interest to Ohio voters (this is assuming that the total number of validated signatures comes out to greater or equal to the required 231,000):
Ohio legislators passed the election reform law earlier this year, which called for a number of updates and reforms to current election laws. One of the updates includes allowing the secretary of state to notify voter registration applicants when they have submitted an incomplete application and allow them to submit the necessary information to complete it.
A more controversial reform that was originally proposed made voters show a government-issued photo identification before casting a ballot. However, this proposal was dropped from the bill before it was passed into law.
You can read the entire bill as it was passed in May here: http://5.wews.com/hZC .
The election reform law has been challenged by "Fair Elections Ohio", led by former Democrat Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner (who was defeated by Republican Husted in the 2010 General Election) since its outset.
Both sides issued statements about the issue Thursday:
“Today’s submission represents the voice of Ohio citizens standing up and re-asserting their voting rights despite efforts by the legislature to take us back,” said Brunner in a press release.
“When Ohioans are fighting for a chance to ensure fairness at the voting booth, the Obama reelection machine sees an opportunity to suppress Republican votes – plain and simple. Political partisanship and reelection prospects should not play a role in ensuring that each every Ohioan, regardless of where they live, receives a fair and equal opportunity to vote. Under the system supported by Obama’s reelection campaign, that simply is not the case," said Ohio GOP spokesman Christopher Maloney.
Regardless of opinion on the specifics of the law, the placement of Ohio's primary on Super Tuesday is sure to make the Buckeye State a presidential primary battleground for 2012.
Once the petition signatures are validated the referendum will then be placed on the November 2012 ballot where Ohio voters can decide whether to adopt the law.
Copyright 2011 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
Latest News Headlines
A fire displaces two people who lived in an apartment on Saranac Road near East 160th Street in Cleveland.
James Gandolfini, whose portrayal of a brutal, emotionally delicate mob boss in HBO's "The Sopranos" helped create one of TV's greatest drama series and turned the mobster stereotype on its head, died Wednesday in Italy.