Ohio’s Secretary of State has set new hours for voting in this November’s election. They include two Saturdays before the election. But as Ohio Public Radio’s Jo Ingles reports, there are a lot of people who are not happy with the new hours.
Secretary of State Jon Husted says Ohioans in all 88 counties will be able to vote early, in person at their local board of elections facility from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday for four weeks before the election. And voters will be allowed to cast ballots from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on the two Saturdays preceding the election. But there will be no in person voting on the Sunday before the election.
And Mike Brickner with the American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio says that decision will likely disenfranchise African-American voters.
"There are many programs within the African American community that focus on those voters on Sunday, like souls-to-the-polls programs that were organized by African-American churches that brought parishioners to the polls on Sundays," Brickner said.
Brickner says his organization, which successfully sued over weekend voting in 2012, is looking at its options. There’s another early voting option available for Ohioans. Absentee ballot request forms will be sent to all voters for those who would prefer to vote by mail.