Ohio is latest state to see GOP-backed voting law rewrite

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FILE – This Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2020 file photo shows Board of Elections worker Bob Moody moving boxes of ballots at the Trumbull County Board of Elections in Warren, Ohio. (AP Photo/David Dermer, File)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Ohio has become the latest state where Republicans are proposing a significant rewrite of state election laws.

Legislation introduced Thursday calls for prohibiting off-site ballot drop boxes, eliminating a day of early voting and tightening voter ID requirements, all restrictions criticized by Democrats.

The bill also would add some conveniences to elections, including an online absentee ballot request system and automated voter registration.

Its sponsor, Republican state Rep. Bill Seitz, says the sweeping overhaul isn’t suppressive but incorporates changes advocated by both parties, as well as election officials and voting rights advocates.

It comes despite a smooth 2020 election.

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