Editorial: Voting Changes Just Make Sense

Editorial: Voting Changes Just Make Sense

Tuesday, May 26th, 2009

SALEM — May 21, 2009. Ohio legislators face a variety of tough decisions, most of them related to the state budget. It should come as a relief to them that one item on their agenda appears to be an easy call.

Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner has recommended several changes to state election laws. All of them seem to be obvious ways in which improvements can be made. While we are certain some ultra-partisan observers will accuse Brunner of trying to rig the process to favor her Democratic Party, we don’t see it that way.

Changes suggested by Brunner were recommended in a report issued in March by the Brennan Center for Justice, in New York. Among the center’s conclusions:

More locations should be provided for early voting. At the same time, the period during which people can register to vote and cast ballots on the same day should be eliminated.

A better database of registered voters should be established by the state. That would reduce questions on election days over whether voters are registered and if so, where they are eligible to cast ballots.

Voter identification laws should be streamlined, maintaining the requirement that voters must provide proof at polling places of who they are.

Rules for dealing with provisional ballots should be simplified.

Amendments to the rules, as proposed by Brunner, should be adopted by the General Assembly.

Editorial, Salem News, 5/21/09