Secretary of State Frank LaRose said Wednesday he is banning county boards of elections from offering more than one drop box for completed absentee ballots this November, saying it’s grown too late to make changes to how Ohio will administer this year’s presidential election.
LaRose, a Republican, more than three weeks ago formally asked Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost, also a Republican, for a legal opinion on whether the extra drop boxes were allowed under state law.
But LaRose said Wednesday Yost had not yet responded, and that it’s now too late make such an election change. Early voting in Ohio begins on Oct. 6, while the election is on Nov. 3. He said offering extra drop boxes, which Democrats and voting-rights activists say is legal, would invite lawsuits that could upend the process of preparing for the election.
The move led to a swift reaction from Democrats, who accused LaRose of voter suppression, saying the request of Yost was just a charade that would allow LaRose to eventually run out the clock.