How to Vote in Ohio's 2020 Primary

Right now, the news may seem scarier than ever with reports of corruption, death and growing demonstrations of inequality between the wealthy and the rest of us, but it’s more important than ever to remain engaged and not give in to apathy, especially in regards to elections. As clearly displayed in the United States today, the elections of local politicians all the way to the President, play such an incredible role in each one of our lives. I believe, especially for Gen Z’ers, this is the first time that the magnitude of the power politicians wield in times of crises and uncertainty and the individual effect on all of us has been demonstrated in quite some time. It is so crucial that all of us who are able to vote in the upcoming primaries for the next president and also senators, representatives and county-level officials do so.

For those of us who live in Ohio, we have been granted a second opportunity to cast our vote, and there has been a lot of misinformation and rapidly changing information that has complicated the primary process. In summary, in an extraordinary effort to curtail public gatherings and enforce social isolation, Governor Mike DeWine canceled in-person elections for the State of Ohio that were set to be held on March 17th. Now, you have until April 28th to cast your in-the-mail absentee ballot. If you still need to vote in person due to a disability or other possibly pertinent reasons check out the State of Ohio’s website for more information, but according to Cincinnati.com, you will likely be casting your ballot on April 28th at your county board of elections or other county voting center. 

I voted sticker

For everyone who does not qualify to vote in-person: if you are registered to vote and still need to, all you need to do is go to the State of Ohio’s website to request an absentee ballot or call your county board of elections for them to mail you one. I have voted via absentee ballot for quite a few elections now, so it’s really important you give yourself time to get the request for the ballot filled out and sent back before April 28th. It’s a simple form: it asks for your name, permanent address, current address, a form of identification, your birth date, the date and what kind of ballot you want. You do have to provide a stamp to send in this form by mail, or you can drop it off at the board of elections in person. Next, you wait a few days for your ballot to arrive. You vote as normal on paper and follow the instructions listed and then mail back your ballot. According to Cincinnati.com, free postage will be provided, but in the past, I had to provide my own stamps. You have until the day of the election for your ballot to be postmarked for it to be counted. 

It is so crucial that everyone participates in this election, not only because we can see so clearly right now that how we vote has a direct impact on human life, but also because voter turnout among the youth, especially, is laughably low. Most of us college students have more free time than ever now, so there really is no excuse to vote if you’re registered which you can double check here. Happy Voting!