Federal Judge Confirms Constitutionality of Ohio’s New Election Law that Includes Photo ID Requirement

Ohio Voter ID Law

This story has several elements of COMMON Sense in it.  When you break it down, the Bill provides for a simple and effective way to provide as clean of an election as you can without putting a burden on the voters. It delivers an effective way to match a person voting to the records, eliminating people voting multiple times, dead people from voting, out of state people from voting and so much more.  It vastly reduces the ways one could cheat an election.

With tighter controls over the voting process the people can rest assure that the results are pure.

This ruling and process is forward and truly does make sense.  The only people that would be against it would be those that would have a mind to want to cheat the system, in my opinion, why else would you fight so hard to make it easier to cheat?

I think all states should adopt something similar to this…

Story by Mariam A.

Microsoft News Story

In a landmark ruling, a federal judge upheld Ohio’s new election law, introduced last year, as constitutional.

Ruling Backs Ohio’s Voting Rules

This ruling dismissed a challenge by a Democratic law firm against the new stringent photo ID rules, limitations on ballot drop boxes, and stricter deadlines for absentee and provisional voting. 

Ohio’s Voter ID Requirement

On Jan 8, Judge Donald Nugent of the U.S. District Court concluded that the state’s new photo ID requirement presents at most a minimal burden for the majority of voters. 

The judge also dismissed additional complaints from the Elias Law Group. 

What Counts as Voter ID in Ohio

As of April 2023, Ohio’s voter ID requirements specify that all photo IDs presented by voters must have an expiration date that is still valid, feature a photograph of the voter, and include the voter’s name in a way that closely matches the name listed in the Poll List or Poll Book. 

Acceptable forms of photo identification include Ohio driver’s licenses, state of Ohio ID cards, U.S. passports, U.S. military ID cards, and several other types of identification​​.

Critics Argue Law Is Discriminatorily

This group, representing diverse groups including military veterans, teachers, retirees, and the homeless, had challenged the law as unnecessarily and discriminatorily restricting voting rights. 

Signing Bill Amidst Calls for a Veto

The suit was filed as Republican Governor Mike DeWine signed the bill, ignoring calls for a veto from several organizations concerned with voting rights, labor, environmental, and civil rights issues.

No Mail-In Voting Guarantee

In his ruling, the judge emphasized that there is no constitutional guarantee for mail-in voting or early voting. He pointed out that Ohio’s current timeline for obtaining and returning absentee ballots is still comparatively accommodating, exceeding the standards of 30 other states.

Ballot Drop Box Limitations

The judge also addressed concerns regarding limiting ballot drop boxes to one per county, noting that the 2023 law is Ohio’s initial legislation allowing their use.

Long-Running Debate

This decision follows a longstanding debate, with Republican legislators recently deciding to enforce a single-drop box restriction per county.

Court Backlash

Leading up to the 2020 election, three different courts criticized Ohio’s Republican Secretary of State Frank LaRose for his directive to limit ballot drop boxes to one per county, describing it as unreasonable and arbitrary.

Demands for Additional Drop Boxes

Democrats and advocates for voting rights pushed for more drop boxes in populous counties during the coronavirus outbreak. A 2020 lawsuit by Democrats led to a state appellate court ruling that LaRose could increase the number of drop boxes without further legislative approval, though it wasn’t mandatory.

2023 Legal Endorsement

The 2023 law, for the first time, officially endorsed the single-box limit. However, Judge Nugent noted in his ruling that the law’s critics failed to convincingly argue that the drop-box rules of HB 458 placed any significant, or “undue,” burden on Ohio voters.

Republican Applauds Law Validation

In a statement, Derek Lyons, who leads Restoring Integrity and Trust in Elections (RITE) — a group co-founded by Karl Rove, a noted Republican strategist — applauded the court’s endorsement of Ohio’s election law. 

“RITE is very proud to have helped defend Ohio’s important and commonsense election law,” he stated. “With Ohio courts affirming the new law, voters can have confidence Ohio’s elections are an accurate measure of their will.”

Law Meant to Enhance Election Integrity

Last year, Governor DeWine praised the law for securing electoral integrity and appreciated the Assembly’s cooperation in refining House Bill 458. 

“Legislators included our suggestions to expand access to valid photo IDs and to maintain Ohioans’ ability to cast absentee ballots without the more restrictive identification requirements that were debated,” he explained. 

Complete full story can be seen at the link above at the beginning of the story… by Microsoft

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