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Election Protection is WKSU’s community information initiative focused on access, policy and community resources around voting this November.

Problem With Your Ohio Absentee Ballot? You Still Have Options to Vote

photo of Erin Thomas
Kelly Woodward
Erin Thomas ran into a last minute issue with her absentee ballot.

Election officials want Ohio voters who applied to vote absentee to know that they can no longer vote in person with a regular ballot at the polls, regardless of the situation.

Erin Thomas of Canton and her husband went to the polls today, hoping to vote in-person, after finding a problem with her absentee ballot.

Erin Thomas talks about the problem with her absentee ballot.

“ The other night we went to put them in our mailing envelopes and our mailing envelopes were already stuck shut. We were concerned that our votes might not count, that they might possibly be considered tampered with. So I came down to the polls today, hoping to place an in-person ballot and was turned away.”

Thomas was told to take her absentee ballot to the Stark County Board of Elections, where it would be accepted, regardless of the rip she made to insert her ballot into the pre- sealed envelope.

If you still have an absentee ballot, your choice is to vote provisionally at your polling place or take the absentee ballot to your Board of Elections or drop box by 7:30 pm.

Officials say rips do not matter, as long as your information is correctly filled out.

Kelly Murphy Woodward, a regional Emmy Award-winning producer, loves to tell a good story and has been privileged to do that for more than 20 years, working in public television and radio, commercial news and running her own production business. She is passionate about producing quality programming for Northeast Ohio.