2021 Election Postscript
Ohio now requires county boards of election to audit their results in every general election. The audit consists of conducting a hand count of randomly selected precincts for three contested races. In Clermont County, we audited the countywide race for Municipal Court Clerk, the only contested countywide race in 2021, and the races for Miami Township Trustee and Milford Exempted Village School Board. In all three, the audit results exactly matched the earlier official results. Similarly, the results of the mandatory recounts of the race for Jackson Township Trustee and the vote on the Milford City Charter amendment matched the earlier official results. Great thanks are due to the staff of the Board of Elections and all the Precinct Election Officials for a well-run election.
The 2022 election has started. Nominating petitions for several statewide officers are at our headquarters at 174 East Main Street in Batavia. We need signatures on these petitions so that candidates like Tim Ryan and Jennifer Brunner have their names on the May 3, 2022 Democratic primary ballot. We need your signature! For your convenience we have rounded up some volunteers to have headquarters open to collect signatures.
Here’s the schedule:
WED 12/15/21 10am-3pm
WED 12/15/21 4pm-7pm
THURS 12/16/21 4pm-7pm
FRI 12/17/21 10am-1pm
FRI 12/17/21 3pm-7pm
SUN 12/19/21 1pm-4pm
MON 12/20/21 10am-4pm
MON 12/20/21 4pm-7pm
SUN 12/26/21 1pm-4pm
MON 12/27/21 10am-4pm
MON 12/27/21 4pm-7pm
WED 12/29/21 4pm-7pm
The Ohio House
The Republican majority of the Ohio Redistricting Commission drew new state house and senate districts that are even more gerrymandered in favor of the Republicans than the districts created in 2011. No Democrats voted for these districts, so they remain in effect for only four years, if that long. Litigation was filed in the Ohio Supreme Court challenging these new districts for violating Article XI of the Ohio Constitution. That case was argued before the Ohio Supreme Court on December 8, 2021. While many outside the Supreme Court are predicting there will be a decision early in the new year, that is not guaranteed and there is no formal deadline by which the Court must issue its decision.
The new General Assembly districts so egregiously violate our state constitution, in my opinion, that lawsuits had to be filed. However, the lawsuits create a challenge for candidates. At present, the deadline for filing petitions to run for the Ohio House of Representatives remains February 2, 2022. It is not yet clear what will be done if district boundaries are changed at the last minute. It is possible that our candidates will have a very short time to get the necessary petition signatures to get on the ballot. Please be ready to help out if we need to take extraordinary measures to get signatures in late January or early February.
At present, we have one announced candidate, Brian Flick, for the new House District 62 covering Milford, Loveland, and Miami, Stonelick, and Union Townships. The remainder of Clermont County, and much of Brown County, is presently in new district 63. We still need someone to step up and run to represent our citizens in that district in the for the Ohio House of Representatives
There will be two major county offices up for election in 2022: Auditor and one County Commissioner. The filing deadline to appear on our primary ballot for either office is February 2, 2022. It is expected that the Republican incumbents will seek re-election. There is a rumor that one of them may be challenged in their primary. Regardless of what they do, we need Democratic candidates for these offices. Republicans have held all countywide offices for far too long. China’s government is run entirely by one party. Why do we want Clermont County to be like China?
U.S. House of Representatives
Ohio lost one seat in Congress through the 2020 census. For the next ten years, Ohio will have only 15 representatives in Congress and 17 electoral votes. Republicans unilaterally drew our new congressional districts to make sure that they get the vast majority of those seats and that the almost 50% of Ohio voters who do not vote Republican are not represented. Of course, there is also litigation challenging these gerrymandered districts.
New petition filing rules have been issued by the Ohio Secretary of State (“SOS”) that apply only to candidates for U.S. Congress. The SOS has directed that any nominating petitions for Congress filed before February 19, 2022 are invalid. Any candidate who filed their petitions before February 19 must file new petitions and may not use the earlier ones. Petitions to run for Congress must be filed by March 4, 2022, so Congressional candidates will only have a window of about two weeks to file their petitions to have their name appear on the primary ballot. That’s all clear, right?
Clermont County Democratic Party Offices
Our party elects new officers in 2022. This process starts with Democrats running for our Central Committee in the May 3, 2022 primary election. You can only run for Central Committee for the precinct in which you live. However, all you need to do to run is file a declaration of candidacy with the Board of Elections in Batavia by no later than 4:00 p.m. on February 2, 2022. The Declaration of Candidacy is a form you complete. There are no petitions you need people to sign. The form is Secretary of State form 2M. The 2M form can be downloaded here. Only elected Central Committee members may vote for the Central Committee officers and for the members of our Party Executive Committee.
Stay Safe. Happy Holidays.