Government & Politics

Political news

The U.S. Postal Service has sent a letter to dozens of state election officials around the country including Ohio, warning that delays in delivering the mail could result in voters not being able to cast their absentee ballots in time.

Election officials around the state are trying to recruit 35,000 poll workers for Election Day in November. Leaders are weighing-in on what conditions poll workers might face when people cast their ballots in-person, which includes if people will be required to wear masks.

Democrat Joe Biden's lead has expanded to double-digits against President Trump in the presidential election, an NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll finds. Biden now leads Trump 53% to 42%, up from an 8-point advantage at the end of June.

The change comes as 71% of Americans now see the coronavirus as a real threat, up significantly over the last several months, as more than 167,000 Americans have died and more than 5 million have become infected with the virus, as of Friday.

With less than 12 weeks before the presidential election, Secretary of State Frank LaRose (R-Ohio) is sending out the rules all boards of elections must follow, including a decision to only allow one ballot drop box for each county.

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine will provide an update with the latest information about the coronavirus pandemic in Ohio.

Watch it live here: 

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Davis-Besse Nuclear Power Plant in Ottawa, Co., OH
TIM RUDELL / WKSU

Cleveland City Council passed a resolution Wednesday allowing its finance committee to investigate the actions of entities involved in the recent House Bill 6 corruption scandal.  The resolution includes the ability to issue subpoenas for witnesses.  

Updated at 7:38 p.m. ET

Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden and his newly named running mate, Sen. Kamala Harris of California, made their first joint appearance Wednesday following Biden's announcement of the selection a day earlier.

After three months of declines, Ohio took in 8% more in taxes than the Office of Budget and Management estimated, though much of that is connected to the delay of the tax deadline to July 15. But there was a different kind of growth in the state’s July report that could be concerning.

Updated at 7 p.m. ET

Former Vice President Joe Biden, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, has picked Sen. Kamala Harris of California as his running mate.

The selection will make Harris the third woman and first Black and first Asian American candidate to be nominated for vice president by a major political party.

The state is moving forward with President Donald Trump's executive order to offer additional money for people getting unemployment benefits since the pandemic, but it's half of what unemployed people were getting before a federal relief measure expired.

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Ohio National Guard members have been helping foodbanks out with distribution. The Guard was supposed end its mission this month, but there's news it will continue to help in a reduced capacity.

Gov. Mike DeWine tested negative for coronavirus in a third test on Saturday, after a positive rapid result in a test arranged by the White House Thursday and a negative result from a different kind of test a few hours later.

photo of Mike DeWine
SCREENSHOT/OHIO CHANNEL

After testing positive earlier in the day for COVID-19 while awaiting the arrival of President Trump at Burke Airport in Cleveland, Governor Mike DeWine subsequently tested negative, twice, upon returning to Columbus, according to a statement put out by the governor's office late in the day on Thursday.

Four major players in Ohio's capital have pleaded not guilty to federal racketeering charges. They're accused of being part of a bribery scheme that pushed for the passage and defense of the nuclear power plant bailout.

A coalition of eight groups advocating for more gun control is starting an online petition campaign to stop efforts to pass the “Stand Your Ground” bill under consideration in the Ohio Legislature. 

Gov. Mike DeWine wears face mask
The Office of Gov. Mike DeWine

Gov. Mike DeWine has tested positive for COVID-19. DeWine took the test as part of the protocol that everyone goes through to be around President Trump – DeWine and Lt. Gov. Jon Husted were to greet Trump on the tarmac at Burke Lakefront Airport in Cleveland. Husted tested negative. DeWine’s office says he has no symptoms and will quarantine at his home in Cedarville. He had cancelled Thursday’s press briefing for the Trump event – no word on whether he’ll do the one scheduled for Friday. As of yesterday there were more than 91,000 confirmed case of COVID-19 in Ohio.

Hip hop star and fashion designer Kanye West filed to run as a presidential candidate on the Ohio ballot today, the deadline for minor party and independent candidates to turn in their paperwork. But the cagey campaign leaves many questions unanswered.

Cuyahoga County will pay $3.5 million to reimburse the Cleveland Indians for already completed work at Progressive Field, including suite renovations, an expansion to the players’ parking lot and escalator repairs.

The county is drawing the money from a reserve fund set up as part of the 2017 deal to renovate the Cavaliers’ Quicken Loans Arena, now Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse.

Gateway Economic Development Corporation, the quasi-public entity that owns and pays to renovate both Progressive Field and Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse, approved the work in 2018, 2019 and 2020.

As COVID-19 related job losses continue to affect thousands of Ohioans, many are in danger of losing their homes. A bill that’s been introduced by a Democratic state representative could help some of them. 

Ohioans who have been deemed by a court to be mentally incompetent are not allowed to possess firearms or have concealed carry licenses. Yet a recent cross-check of databases by the state’s Attorney General showed more than three dozen mentally ill Ohioans still had active concealed carry permits. 

Dr. Amy Acton, the chief health adviser to Gov. Mike DeWine (R-Ohio), is officially leaving the administration. This is another transition for Acton who resigned as director of the Ohio Department of Health in June, concluding a long, high-profile journey. 

The anniversary of the mass shooting in Dayton is reviving conversations about gun regulations in Ohio. While lawmakers have refused to move Gov. Mike DeWine's (R-Ohio) gun regulation proposals, his administration is rolling out a program that he says can improve the accuracy of background checks.

The state’s Republican chief elections officer and Ohio Democrats continue to battle over installing additional drop boxes where absentee voters could deposit their ballots if they’re concerned about the security and speed of mailing them in this fall. 

A photo of Sen. Rob Portman.
/ U.S. SENATE

An Ohio Senator says the chamber’s failure to pass a new stimulus bill to help Americans adversely impacted by the coronavirus is disappointing. Senator Rob Portman says Democrats and Republicans want similar things in the bill. “Everybody seems to be for the $1,200 rebate checks, the PPE expansion people are for that is for small businesses.” Portman says tax credits to help people and businesses are also receiving widespread support as are more resources for healthcare workers and increased testing.

When Ohio Governor Mike DeWine tried to speak at a candlelight vigil less than 24 hours after last year's mass shooting in Dayton, he was shouted down by a crowd chanting, "Do Something!"

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