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There Are Options For Ohioans Who Hit A Snag With Online Voter Registration

Dan Konik

Ohioans have just a few more days to register to vote if they want to cast a ballot in this year’s elections. Most people can go online to register but that might not be as easy for college students or others who move often.

When you register to vote online, the address given on your application must match the one on your driver’s license. If they don't match, you can't register through the online portal. An Ohio license or state issued ID card is not required to register to vote but the system is tied to the BMV for other purposes so registrations that don't match can get kicked out. 

College students, in particular, might discover the, especially problem if you live on or near campus but your parent's address is on your driver's license. 

There are ways to get around the problem. One is to change the address on your driver's license. That can be done by going to the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles website. You can change the address on your driver's license without having to get a new license issued. After you change your address online at the BMV, the agency should send you a change of address card, not a new license. And as soon as the address change is registered in the system, you can register to vote online.

The other option is to go old school. You can register on paper. Print out the voter registration form. Fill it out and take it to the local board of elections. That will bypass the match system. 

It's important to register to vote now rather than later. The last day to register is October 5th.

Copyright 2020 The Statehouse News Bureau

Jo Ingles is a professional journalist who covers politics and Ohio government for the Ohio Public Radio and Television for the Ohio Public Radio and Television Statehouse News Bureau. She reports on issues of importance to Ohioans including education, legislation, politics, and life and death issues such as capital punishment.