Fair Elections Ohio notes that Ohio voters will not have an opportunity to vote for or against a repeal of HB 194, Ohio's latest voter suppression law. Over 500,000 Ohio voters petitioned and were granted their constitutional right to place the measure on the November ballot, only to see this right disappear in an unprecedented move by the Ohio Ballot Board today that treated their voices as a nullity. Today's decision by the Ohio Ballot Board ignored the voices of more than half a million Ohioans who sought to vote on what the legislature tried to do to their voting rights. Today's actions further illustrate the political culture of disrespect for the rights of Ohioans to determine the propriety of laws adopted by their leaders. Ohio's leaders took that right away from them.
Fair Elections Ohio Campaign Director Greg Moore added "Today's omission by the Ohio Ballot Board serves as a rubber stamp for the kind of partisanship that has no place in the state's election laws. The voices of a half-million Ohio voters who wanted to see this issue on the November ballot were silenced today. While today marks the 90th day since the passage of SB 295, which has now officially repealed all of the remaining provisions of HB 194, the earlier maneuvers of the state legislature still deny Ohio voters the final three days of weekend voting.
No one can deny that HB 194 has officially been defeated., Every voter who signed the petition and every organization and activist who worked to circulate petitions should take heart that their efforts were not in vain. Despite the unprecedented partisan maneuvering we have seen this year, we claim victory and thank our supporters for forcing legislative leaders to act as they never have before in the 100-year history of referendum in Ohio.
These Ohio voters have sent a strong warning signal to future legislators who attempt to roll back the voting rights of Ohioans.. "We now turn our attention to the courts where the issue of the full restoration of the final three days of voting preceding Election Day remains to be decided. This will allow voters to vote in the same manner as they voted during the relatively problem-free 2008 elections. We will fight vigorously until we obtain this full restoration. We are pleased that President Obama's election campaign has filed its lawsuit to restore the final three days of voting.