Home News Military Voting Underway as Ohio Kicks of 2024 Primary Election

Military Voting Underway as Ohio Kicks of 2024 Primary Election

Army Command Sgt. Maj. John W. Troxell, Senior Enlisted Advisor to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, visits soldiers assigned to the 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard) at Joint Base Meyer - Henderson Hall, Jan. 30, 2017. During his visit, Troxell met with the Cassion Platoon, Tomb Sentinel of the 4th Battalion, and the 947th Military Police Detachment. (DoD Photo by Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Dominique A. Pineiro/Released)

Ohio’s 88 county boards of elections began sending out ballots today to military and overseas voters, officially opening the March 19 primary election.

“No matter where they are in the world, our service members and their families have the right to make their voices heard in our elections,” said Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose. “I’ve been in situations on the front lines where casting a ballot isn’t the easiest process to figure out, so we’ve made it a top priority here at home to help these patriots exercise one of their most fundamental freedoms while they’re protecting us abroad.”

Overseas voters can visit MilitaryVotes.Ohio.Gov to find everything they need to request and return an absentee ballot.

The Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA) and the Military and Overseas Voter Empowerment (MOVE) Act are federal laws ensuring this right in federal elections, while the Ohio General Assembly has incorporated those federal protections into the Ohio Revised Code and extended them to state and local elections.

United States citizens covered by UOCAVA include:

  • members of the United States Uniformed Services and merchant marine;
  • their family members; and
  • United States citizens residing outside the United States.

Recognizing the complexities of voting from overseas, both state and federal law protect the right and ability for these citizens to vote by providing additional and adequate time for them to apply for and cast an absentee ballot. Ballots may be requested by mail, email, or fax, but the voted ballot must be submitted by mail or in person, like any other absentee ballot.

Due to Ohio’s cybersecurity efforts, users in some countries or unsecured locations (i.e. public WiFi, internet cafes) may not be able to immediately access their county or state website. If that occurs, voters are encouraged to visit the Federal Voting Assistance Program website at FVAP.gov or call the Ohio Secretary of State’s office at 614-466-2585 or 877.SOS.OHIO. The Federal Voting Assistance Program is affiliated with the U.S. Department of Defense.

UOCAVA ballots may be returned by U.S. Postal Service, APO/FPO System, diplomatic pouch or another delivery service such as UPS or FedEx, or in person. An absentee ballot delivered in person must arrive at the board office by the close of polls on Election Day. Absentee ballots returned by mail must be submitted for mailing by 12:01 a.m. on Election Day and must arrive at the board of elections office within four days after the election.