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Morning Headlines: Thousands Cast Ballots on First Day of Early Voting; Kent State Partners With CVS for COVID-19 Testing

A 'voting today' sign outside of an Ohio polling station
Karen Kasler
/
Statehouse News Bureau
Thousands of voters began lining up at boards of elections around the state Tuesday, which was the first day of early in-person voting in Ohio. About 1,600 votes were cast in Cuyahoga County, 1,600 in Stark and about 1,300 in Summit.

Here are your morning headlines for Wednesday, October 7:

  • Thousands cast ballots on first day of early voting
  • KSU partners with CVS for COVID-19 testing
  • Ruling on Ohio ballot boxes contradicts GOP elections chief
  • Biden makes ad push into rural Ohio as early voting begins
  • COVID-19 hospitalizations spike
  • Governor says aid for Ohio renters, businesses, coming soon
  • Cleveland Clinic names top 10 medical innovations
  • Indians enter offseason of major decisions, uncertainty

Thousands cast ballots on first day of early voting
Thousands of voters began lining up at boards of elections around the state Tuesday, which was the first day of early in-person voting in Ohio. About 1,600 votes were cast in Cuyahoga County, 1,600 in Stark and about 1,300 in Summit. Early voting continues until Nov. 2, with extended night and weekend hours the final two weeks. Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose reported Tuesday afternoon that a record of more than 2.1 million absentee ballot applications had been received by Ohio’s 88 county boards of elections. Voters who requested ballots should receive them this week.

KSU partners with CVS for COVID-19 testing
Kent State University is launching a broad testing program of students as increasing numbers are in quarantine. Kent State is randomly testing 450 students each week to gather more information about the spread of COVID-19. The school is teaming with CVS pharmacy to provide free testing for symptomatic and asymptomatic students. Nearly 100 students are currently in quarantine in two campus dorms. Kent State has seen 165 known cases since school started in September.

Ruling on Ohio ballot boxes contradicts GOP elections chief
A federal judge in Cleveland has broadly interpreted a new Ohio directive allowing ballot drop boxes at locations “outside” boards of elections as permitting them at multiple locations within a county. The finding runs directly counter to the state election chief’s intention. It was not immediately clear what impact U.S. District Judge Dan Polster’s decision would have on the number of drop boxes available across the presidential battleground state ahead of the Nov. 3 election. Secretary of State Frank LaRose’s staff said Monday that, when his latest order said “outside,” it meant only on board property.

Biden makes ad push into rural Ohio as early voting begins
Democrat Joe Biden is expanding his ad buys into every corner of Ohio as early voting begins in the state. The push into traditionally Republican areas signals his campaign’s growing hopes that a state Donald Trump won easily four years ago may be within the former vice president’s grasp. The campaign told The Associated Press that the new spots will air in 55 Ohio counties across Appalachia, farm country and the blue-collar Mahoning Valley, as well as on TV in Dayton. That adds to television advertising already announced in Cleveland, Columbus and Cincinnati and on Black radio stations.

COVID-19 hospitalizations spike
Ohio is seeing an increase in people hospitalized with COVID-19. There are currently 777 people hospitalized with the virus statewide, including 132 reported on Tuesday, which is above a three-week average. At the beginning of the pandemic, hospitalizations were centralized in the state's urban areas. As of Sept. 27, 42% are occurring in rural parts of Ohio.

Governor says aid for Ohio renters, businesses, coming soon
Gov. Mike DeWine said he hopes by next week to provide details of an economic aid package for small businesses, nonprofits and people struggling to pay rent. The governor said at his Tuesday news briefing it's unclear how long the economic downturn will continue and he knows people need help. The governor said he's balancing the use of federal pandemic aid dollars for such assistance while reserving some for testing. He said some of Ohio's approach depends on whether Congress will pass another aid package. President Trump said Tuesday that no such aid will be negotiated until after the election.

Cleveland Clinic names top 10 medical innovations
An experimental treatment for sickle cell disease tops the Cleveland Clinic’s list of the top ten medical innovations. The gene therapy technique provides hope to those with the genetic disease that has no widespread cure. Other breakthroughs that made the list are new treatments for multiple sclerosis, cystic fibrosis, prostate cancer, and hepatitis C. Technological innovations also made the top 10 list including smartphone-connected pacemakers and a non-invasive ventilation strategy for preemies.

Indians enter offseason of major decisions, uncertainty
The Cleveland Indians moved from a stressful season into a harrowing offseason. Team president Chris Antonetti said the franchise has lost tens of millions of dollars due to the coronavirus pandemic and that it will take “years” to recover. The Indians must consider trading All-Star shortstop Francisco Lindor this winter. He's only under contract for one more season before he's eligible for free agency, and he's turned down long-term offers from Cleveland. Meanwhile, the team expects manager Terry Francona to return for the 2021 season after he missed most of this season with health concerns.