May 08 2012

Ohio Legislature Passes Bill, Repealing Election Law Changes Made in 2011

Source: Ballot Access News

On May 8, the Ohio legislature passed SB 295, which repeals the omnibus election law bill of 2011. This means (assuming the Governor signs the bill, and it is considered certain that he will) that the statutory petition deadline for newly-qualifying parties goes back to what it was in 2006 when it was held unconstitutional by the 6th circuit. That deadline is November of the odd year before the election in presidential years, and January of the election year in mid-term years.

It has now been over five years since the old deadline was held unconstitutional, and yet the Ohio legislature has not fixed the law. In the meantime, Ohio federal courts and the Ohio Secretary of State have been helpful in permitting five minor parties to appear on the ballot.

In contrast to Ohio, the Tennessee legislature last month passed a bill for an August petition deadline for newly-qualifying parties. The Tennessee legislature acted only two months after the old deadline was held unconstitutional.

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