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Government & Politics

OSU Election Expert Says Ballot Initiative Could Increase Voter Engagement

man checking in with woman to vote
Debbie Holmes
People voting on Election Day (Bills: 133-SB186 and 133-HB466)

The Ohio Attorney General's Office has a week to respond to a petition that would expand voter rights through the state's constitution. An election expert says the ballot initiative could lead to more voter engagement.

The ACLU of Ohio is leading the charge for a constitutional amendment that would create automatic voter registration through the BMV and allow same-day registration and voting.

Ohio State University election law professor Dan Tokaji says these provisions lift barriers to elections and can result in higher voter turnout.

"And they also help diversify the electorate bringing in at least some voters who are less likely to participate," Tokaji said.

Dan Tokaji on why it's important to put these provisions in the constitution. Some already exist but only through rules or revised code.

Some of the provisions already exist in law, but the issue would create constitutional protections.

As of now, there is no organized opposition to the proposal. There are currently bills to create automated voter registration with the ability to opt out.