Extreme Republicans in the Ohio Legislature are at it again. Over the last two sessions, Republicans in the Statehouse have slowly been chipping away at Ohioans right to vote and this latest move in the Transportation Budget continues that assault.
Late last week, the Senate snuck an amendment into the state transportation budget (H.B. 53) that would require those who register to vote in Ohio to register their vehicles with the Bureau of Motor Vehicles within 30 days. Current law permits people to register to vote in Ohio while retaining an out-of-state driver’s license. License and registration fees cost upwards of $75 and therefore would be a significant deterrent for college students and active military members stationed in Ohio to register and vote in this state.
Governor Kasich has the ability to veto this provision. CLICK HERE to send the Governor a letter asking him to stop the legislature’s attacks on Ohio’s electorate.
The provision unfairly targets out-of-state students who choose to use their campus address to vote in Ohio – a right that is protected by the U.S. Constitution. More than 116,000 out-of-state students who attend college in Ohio could be affected by this bill. If implemented, the law would almost certainly be challenged in court- a waste of our tax dollars.
Just this week, the Ohio House concurred on the bill with little notice or opportunity for the public to provide testimony against this extreme measure. The Transportation budget now heads to Governor Kasich’s desk for signature. The Governor has an opportunity to show the Nation that we welcome people from all over to move, live, and participate in our most basic of rights. The Governor needs to hear YOUR voice on this matter.
The transportation budget is crucial to moving Ohio forward, providing billions of dollars to Ohio’s crumbling roads, bridges, and infrastructure while supporting thousands of living wage jobs. Adding ANY provision dealing with the constitutionally protected right to vote to a several hundred paged document with little or no time to debate is insidious.