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Ohio Democrats turn transportation bill into yet another false “voter suppression” story, then vote for it overwhelmingly.

Another season, another ridiculous accusation from Ohio Democrats that the Republican legislature is making it hard to vote in Ohio.

Voting in Ohio is easier than most other states in the union, and certainly easier than in ANY of Ohio’s neighbors.
What’s even more hypocritical is that liberal Democrat-controlled states like New York, Massachusetts, Delaware, Rhode Island and Connecticut offer NO early voting and NO absentee voting without an excuse. Ohio lets you vote absentee without any excuse whatsoever and you can do it weeks early in person or by mail. Ohio even sends registered voters absentee ballot applications by mail. You never have to leave your house.
But Ohio Democrats still insist that a constitutional amendment is needed to pass what they call a “Voter Bill of Rights”.

Now, their latest accusation revolves around a provision in this year’s transportation budget that has NOTHING to do with voting whatsoever.

Ohio is one of only six states that has no legal requirement for obtaining an in-state driver’s license after you move to Ohio and establish residency. 44 other states have a time limit for gaining an in-state license once you move there.

So there is a clause in the budget to remedy that by requiring that you obtain an Ohio driver’s license within 30 days of establishing Ohio residency. Senate President Keith Faber released a list of the 44 other states with such a requirement, and 30 days is by far the most common requirement.

So what does this have to do with voting?

Ohio Democrats claim that out-of-state college students will now be discouraged from registering to vote in Ohio because that will establish Ohio residency, (which it absolutely should of course), and they will now have to obtain a driver’s license with 30 days. They even claim it amounts to a poll tax.

It’s absolute absurdity. Heck even uber-liberal California requires you to get a CA license within 10 days after registering to vote. It’s common among the states, and it’s common sense. If you are registering to vote in a new state, you are declaring residency. It isn’t a stretch to ask new residents to obtain a driver’s license in their new state within a reasonable amount of time.

The irony of Ohio Democrats’ objections runs very deep

Here’s where it gets even more interesting. Despite all of their protests in the press and social media, Democrats in the Ohio legislature overwhelmingly voted to approve the budget. Here is Democrat State Rep. Alicia Reece on the House floor railing against the measure yesterday.

Yes, Representative Reece is so convinced that this is a voter suppression effort, that she voted YES for it. (Cue facepalm)

In fact, out of 34 Democrats in the House, a clear majority of them, 21, voted for the bill. And the bill passed the Ohio Senate unanimously. Twice.

Instead, you see Reece in the video demanding that Governor Kasich use his line-item veto to remove the license requirement. Even more appalling is that she warns him that “jobs is critical!” and that if he doesn’t, people in Ohio will lose jobs. Yes, you read that right. She warns Kasich that he must line-item veto a bill she voted for, or else jobs will be “held hostage”. All because of asking people who move here to get an Ohio driver license within a reasonable window.

Normally, I’d say her argument couldn’t be more absurd if she tried. Except…it does.

Reece applauded a woman convicted of voter fraud

The derp gets even deeper, though. State Rep. Reece is the very person who we wrote about months ago after she applauded and welcomed on stage Melowese Richardson after being released from prison. Richardson was convicted of multiple counts of voter fraud, and Reece applauded her on stage.

Convicted vote cheater Melowese Richardson applauded by Al Sharpton and Democrat State Rep. Alicia Reece

Convicted vote cheater Melowese Richardson applauded by Al Sharpton and Democrat State Rep. Alicia Reece -Enquirer Photo, Jeff Swinger

Even more irony

Last year, it was discovered that the Ohio Democratic candidate for governor Ed Fitzgerald drove for ten years without an Ohio license. His excuse? When he moved to Ohio he neglected to obtain an Ohio license and simply procrastinated after that. Partly because of this, the entire Democratic slate of candidates was subsequently destroyed statewide in a historic defeat.

The bottom line is this: If Ohio Democrats truly believed that this small change in the transportation budget actually had anything to do with voting, they would have voted against it. Instead, they overwhelmingly approved it.

They didn’t have to. Ohio voters have put them in the minority in both houses, and the bill was going to pass either way. They could have ALL voted against it and not endangered its passage, nor the infrastructure projects and the jobs those projects will bring.

The fact that they are screeching about supposed “voter suppression” again, but still voted for the bill speaks volumes.

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Third Base Politics is an Ohio-centric conservative blog that has been featured at Hot Air, National Review, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, and others.


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