Ohio’s elected officials should be making it easier to vote, but Secretary of State’s directive does irreparable harm to the people of Ohio. One-size-fits-all solutions don’t work for our diverse state. Our largest county is 95-times the size of the smallest—our local elections officials need the flexibility to craft a system that works for their voters. At a time when 400,000 plus Ohioans are unemployed or underemployed, and we have middle class folks working two and three jobs to make ends meet, working families should not lose their voice in our government because we suddenly we want to close the polls on Sundays–the only day that some have off.
Democratic Secretary of State Candidate Nina Turner, issued the following statement:
“There is no justification for arbitrarily denying the vast majority of Ohio voters’ access to open polling places. The courts have previously spoken on this, but once again, our current Secretary of State is ignoring justice. It is a shame that the Secretary would not have committed his office’s energy instead to implementing the outstanding court orders and administering the orderly and effective early voting process that has served Ohio voters so well since 2005. As Secretary of State, I will work to expand the voice of working families, not limit it.”
Hamilton County Board of Elections Chairman Tim Burke, a Democrat, issued the following statement:
“We know from experience in Hamilton County that a Sunday voting option is very important. On the Sunday before the 2012 election our Board of Elections was virtually surrounded by people waiting for 3 and more hours to vote. It was a clear demonstration of why preserving Sunday hours, especially in our large urban counties, is critical. And given who was in that line it perhaps offers an explanation for why this Secretary of State doesn’t want Sunday voting.”
Chairman Burke has served on the Hamilton County Board of Elections for 22 years, 17 as Chair.