Ohio Lawmakers Scramble to Get Biden on Ballot Amid Deadlines and Disputes

Ohio lawmakers are facing challenges in ensuring that President Joe Biden’s name will be on the state ballot for the upcoming November election. The state law requires presidential candidates to certify their nomination to the secretary of state’s office 90 days before the election. However, the Democratic National Convention’s confirmation of Biden as the nominee is set for August 19, which is after the Ohio 90-day deadline on August 7.

To address this issue, the Ohio Senate leaders passed a bill to temporarily resolve the problem by allowing certification 74 days before the election. This legislative move also included provisions to prohibit foreign investment in state ballot measures. However, the House Democrats disavowed this Senate version of the bill, as it differed from the House version introduced earlier in the week. The House version not only allowed Biden to be on the ballot but also aimed to prevent future scheduling conflicts.

Despite these efforts, the House adjourned on Wednesday without taking up any version of the bill, leaving the issue unresolved. Secretary of State Frank LaRose had previously warned Democrats about Biden’s potential exclusion from the ballot due to the state law. He emphasized the need for an emergency fix, stating that the Democrats’ late scheduling of their nominating convention created a problem that needed to be addressed promptly in the best interest of Ohio voters and the general election’s preparation.

If an emergency fix is not passed and signed by Governor Mike DeWine by Thursday, the legislation would not take effect before the August 7 deadline. This situation may prompt Democrats to consider filing a lawsuit to ensure that Biden’s name appears on the ballot in November, as seen in other states where similar issues have arisen.

Conservative allies of President Biden have expressed concerns about the potential harm to the democratic process and urged Democratic leaders to take action to prevent any obstacles to the president’s participation in the upcoming election.

Written by Staff Reports

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