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Monday is final day to register before Ohio's May primary

Karen Kasler
Statehouse News Bureau

Monday, April 3 is the deadline to register to vote in the May 2 primary, which will feature issues and candidates in more than three quarters of Ohio.

As of the morning of the last day of voter registration before the primary, there were 7,924,576 registered voters in Ohio. A law that takes effect Friday means those voters will have to show photo ID when they cast their ballots for the May primary.

“For most Ohio voters, nothing's changed because let's say in a normal election, 98% of voters already bring a state ID or driver's license. That's been the case for decades now,” said Republican Secretary of State Frank LaRose, who supported the voter photo ID law, HB 458, which was signed in January.

LaRose advised voters to check their registration status, which can be done online at

Voters who want to register online will need a driver's license or state ID as they have since 2016.

"When you register to vote online, we still need to capture your signature. And the people that have that signature is the Ohio BMV, because you signed when you got your driver's license or your state ID," LaRose said. "So we need a state ID number or a driver's license number in order to make that link and transmit a little photograph of that signature from the BMV to your county board of elections, because that signature is used to match when you sign a petition, for example, or when you sign an absentee ballot request form."

That new voter photo ID law also allows for free state IDs for those need them, but they won’t be free until after the law takes effect Friday.

67 of Ohio's 88 counties have issues and candidates on the May 2 ballot.

Contact Karen at 614-578-6375 or at
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