Any registered Ohio voter may choose to cast their vote by using the Ohio Early Voting/Absentee Ballot process. The Ohio Early Voting/Absentee Ballot offers a simple, convenient way for Ohio voters to vote in the election without having to endure long voting lines, extended waiting periods or even leaving the house on election day.
You make your choices on a simple paper ballot by filling in the blocks with a pen. That eliminates problems caused by hanging chads, broken voting machines or improperly self-scanned ballots. All of these things have occurred during past elections.
Under Ohio’s Early Voting/Absentee rules, you mail your ballot in. Board of Election officials scan your identification envelope to verify they received it. Then they store them and tally your votes on election day. The process sounds a bit complicated; but, in fact, the steps are simple:
-Get an Absentee Ballot application
-Complete and return you application
-Vote at home with the ballot you receive by mail. Mail it back or
-Take your ballot application to your local Board of Elections and vote up to the day before election day.
1-Request an Ohio Early Voting/Absentee Ballot
You will not automatically receive an Ohio Early Voting/Absentee Ballot. You must submit an application, which you may do several different ways:
Download a Regular Early Voting/Absentee Ballot Application at the Ohio Secretary of State’s website:
-Click here to download a regular Absentee Ballot Application:
-You may also download your Ballot Application in Spanish.
-If you don’t have access to a printer to print your application, you may still apply for an Early Voting/Absentee Ballot by submitting a written request. See the Ohio Secretary of State’s website for instructions on what information to include.
–To request an Absentee Ballot for Military Relative – review the qualifications for who may submit the request at the Ohio Secretary of State’s website.
For other Armed Service Absentee Ballot options click this link: http://www.sos.state.oh.us/elections/voterInformation/absentee.aspx
2- Submit Your Ohio Early Voting/Absentee Ballot Application
An Ohio Early Voting/Absentee Ballot voter may turn in their application several different ways:
-35 Days before the election or once Ballots are available, you may take your Absentee application to your local Board of Elections, request a ballot and vote on the same day. You may do this up until the day before election day.
-You may mail in your application. It must be postmarked by the Saturday before election day.
-Members of the armed services or state militia may fax their Early Voting/Absentee Voting application to the appropriate Board of Elections. Your faxed application must be received by noon the Saturday before election day.
-If you or your minor child are “confined in a hospital because of an unforeseeable medical emergency” on election day, you may obtain a special Absentee Voter Application. You must then follow the instructions outlined at this link on the the Secretary of State’s website.
3- Complete your Early Voting/Absentee Ballot and Submit it On Time
To make your vote count, your Early Voting/Absentee Ballot mailing envelope must have a valid postmark the day before election day at the latest. The 2010 postmark deadline is November 1, 2010.
-Your postmark must be made by the U S Post office. A metered or other automated postage system date will not be accepted.
-Your sealed, properly postmarked ballot envelope must be received by mail no later than 10 days after election day.
-You or an “eligible family member” may hand carry It to your Board of Elections by election day.
-You may not take your Early Voting/Absentee Ballot to your regular polling place.
A Few Tips for Completing You Ballot
-Read all the instructions that come with your ballot.
-Make sure your ballot is unmarked when you receive it.
-Ballot instructions say use black or blue ink only.
-Select the candidate of your choice by completely filling in the square next to his/her name.
-Do not mark the box with an “X” or check mark. If you do, it may not be counted. Fill it in completely!
-Select only the number of candidates required for each voting category. If the box says “Select 1,” then select only 1. Selecting more candidates than requested may make your choice invalid.
-Vote on both sides of your ballot.
-Judges and School Board Candidates do not show party affiliation on the ballot. Research the candidates ahead of time if you wish to make choices based on party endorsements.
-Complete your “Identification Envelope.” Make certain to include all the information requested.
-If you make a mistake on your ballot or envelope, call your Board of Elections to ask about a replacement ballot.
-Place your completed ballot into the “Identification Envelope.”
-Next Place your “Identification Envelope” into the “Mailing Envelope.”
-Mail your Early Voting/Absentee Ballot or drop it off on time.
-See the Ohio Secretary of State’s Website or call your local Board of Elections if you have any questions.
-Mail early. Don’t wait until the last minute to complete and mail your application and ballot
-Ohio Secretary of State Website:
-Hamilton County General Election Ballot