Section: News

Kasich vetoes in-state license requirement for voting

by Nathaniel Shahan

During the 2004 elections Kenyon students made national news after some stood in line for 10 hours to vote. Election officials had provided just two voting machines for Gambier’s 1,300 voters, which critics said was insufficient and amounted to voter suppression. This month, some Kenyon Democrats similarly criticized an Ohio rider which would have tied voting eligibility to an in-state driver’s license. Yesterday, Ohio Governor John Kasich (R) struck down the initiative. Kasich signed the 2016-2017 state transportation budget with three line-item vetoes, including the much-debated line item regarding voting requirements for the state. The proposed rider would have required persons to acquire Ohio driver’s licenses and register their cars within 30 days after registering to vote in the state. The bill was unclear regarding residents who wish to register to vote within the state who lack cars, and those possessing only driver’s permits.

Democrats accused the Republican-controlled legislature of instituting a “poll tax” because the registration fees cost over $75. President of Kenyon Democrats Sam Whipple ’16 said he was pleased that Kasich vetoed the proposal. “This sort of seemed in keeping with a trend of restrictions on voting rights on anyone in Ohio,” he said.


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