- The Washington Times - Wednesday, April 10, 2024

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President Biden might not be able to get on the Ohio ballot because of the timing of the Democratic National Convention.

The Ohio secretary of state’s office raised the issue to state Democratic Party Chair Liz Walters in recent days, saying the Democratic convention in Chicago will kick off Aug. 19 — after a state deadline of Aug. 7 to certify a presidential candidate.

“I am left to conclude that the Democratic National Committee must either move up its nominating convention or the Ohio General Assembly must act by May 9, 2024 (90 days prior to a new law’s effective date) to create an exception to this statutory requirement,” legal counsel Paul Disantis wrote in a letter to Ms. Walters that was first obtained by ABC News.

Top state Democrats — House Minority Leader Allison Russo and Senate Minority Leader Nickie Antonio — were copied on the letter, which requests a rapid response.

The Biden campaign is reportedly working on the issue and confident it will be on the ballot in all 50 states, which is customary for a major party in a presidential election.

SEE ALSO: Biden could be left off ballot in Alabama, the state’s election chief says

Ohio will award 17 electoral votes in November, making it a major prize. It is a traditional battleground state but has shifted to the right, opting for Donald Trump in the 2016 and 2020 elections.

Officials in Alabama raised a similar issue about Mr. Biden’s eligibility, citing a mid-August deadline, though Mr. Biden has little hope of winning the deep-red state.

Earlier this year, Mr. Biden won the New Hampshire party primary as a write-in candidate. His name was not on the ballot because of a spat with the Democratic National Committee, which opted to let South Carolina have the first primary of the cycle instead of the Granite State.

• Tom Howell Jr. can be reached at thowell@washingtontimes.com.

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