Under Ohio law, political parties must confirm their presidential candidates 90 days before the general election on Aug. 7. While Biden secured the Democratic nomination months ago, he was not the official nominee until the Democratic Convention on Aug. 19, after the Ohio ballot deadline.

Republican Secretary of State Frank LaRose initially raised this concern, cautioning last week that unless lawmakers shifted the ballot access deadline to after the Democratic Convention, Biden would not be listed on the state’s ballot.

By conducting virtual party proceedings to certify Biden as the Democratic nominee ahead of Ohio’s deadline, the virtual nomination bypasses Ohio’s ballot access concerns, guaranteeing Biden’s nomination before the Aug 7. deadline and ensuring he appears on Ohio’s general election ballot in November.

The Committee intends to proceed with its in-person presidential nomination convention in Chicago in late August; however, it has yet to announce an official date for the virtual roll call vote.

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“Joe Biden will be on the ballot in Ohio, and all 50 states and Ohio Republicans agree,” announced DNC chair Jaime Harrison in a statement. “But when the time has come for action, they have failed to act every time, so Democrats will land this plane on our own.”

“Through a virtual roll call, we will ensure that Republicans can’t chip away at our democracy through incompetence or partisan tricks and that Ohioans can exercise their right to vote for the presidential candidate of their choice,” added Harrison.

Despite the DNC’s announcement to expedite the nominating process, Ohio Republican Gov. Mike DeWine has urged legislation to remedy the state’s ballot access concerns.

“While I understand the Democratic National Committee has just proposed a work-around to help get President Biden on the Ohio ballot, it is prudent legislation be passed to get this done,” said DeWine, “As I previously said, we do not want to leave something so basic as having the sitting President of the United States on the ballot to others when this can-and should-be done legislatively. It’s the right thing to do.”

On Tuesday, the Ohio Senate deliberated a bill to address the state’s ballot access concerns. However, GOP lawmakers insisted on linking any deadline modification to a campaign finance measure prohibiting foreign donations to state and local ballot-issue campaigns.

State Senate Democrats opposed the proposal, contending that the GOP’s approach to address ballot certification, previously granted to both parties in past elections, has become politicized.

“We don’t need your fix,” Ohio State Sen. Bill DeMora announced to lawmakers. “We don’t want a legislative fix that subjects the voters and their rights to the whim of the majority.”

Typically, a few states each election year must be more aligned between their ballot certification deadlines and the party’s official nominating convention. However, these issues are usually resolved through state legislatures.


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