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Congresswoman Joyce Beatty

Representing the 3rd District of Ohio

Ohio Congressional Democrats Urge Sec. of State LaRose to Provide Prepaid Return Postage on Ballots, Ballot Applications

Sep 9, 2020
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC—The Ohio Congressional Democratic Delegation sent a letter yesterday to Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose urging him to use his existing authority to provide prepaid return postage on ballots and ballot applications to help eliminate voting barriers and ensure a free and fair election in November.

“In an election where many citizens’ only practical option is to vote by mail, forcing Ohioans to pay postage in order to exercise this right is akin to a modern-day poll tax. Nothing in the Ohio code prohibits you from prepaying return postage on both ballot application forms and ballots themselves,” wrote the lawmakers.

The lawmakers also demanded that LaRose work with the United States Postal Service to guarantee ballots that originate in Ohio are delivered on time, with visible postmarks, and do not succumb to delays and cost cutting measures—which could endanger timely delivery of vote by mail ballots.

Of note, in August, the Delegation also sent a letter to LaRose urging him to reconsider his decision to prohibit local boards of elections from providing multiple, secure ballot drop boxes in each county. In the wake of an ongoing, unprecedented public health crisis, Secretary LaRose banned county boards of elections from providing more than one ballot drop box for completed absentee ballots. A breakdown of Ohio voters per drop box in each county can be found here.

Full text of the letter sent yesterday can be viewed online.