2020 Election

WOSU has your guide to the 2020 election in Ohio and around the country. Find stories here on the presidential contest, U.S. House races and more from WOSU and NPR.

Read our Ohio voting guide for information on how to vote and what's on your ballot.

Here’s some key spring election dates to keep in mind:

  • Primary election voter registration deadline: Feb. 18, 2020
  • Early voting begins: Feb. 19, 2020
  • Deadline to request absentee ballot: April 25, 2020
  • Deadline to postmark mail-in ballots: April 27, 2020
  • Limited in-person voting: April 28, 2020
  • Deadline for mail-in ballots to be received: May 8, 2020

Dates to know for the fall election:

  • General election voter registration deadline: Oct. 5, 2020
  • Early voting begins: Oct. 6, 2020
  • General election: Nov. 3, 2020

WOSU also wants to hear from Ohioans about what you care about in 2020. Below, tell us what issues you want candidates to talk about during this election.

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No door-to-door canvassing. Public gatherings are canceled. Motor vehicle offices are closed. Naturalization ceremonies are on hiatus.

Almost every place where Americans usually register to vote has been out of reach since March and it's led to a big drop in new registrations right before a presidential election that was expected to see record turnout.

If you're a supporter of President Trump, longing for the excitement and MAGA-kinship of a big rally, Trump's campaign has built the next best thing. It's a massive digital operation that creates an interactive world where Trump is flawless and Republicans are saviors, while Democrats and Joe Biden are wrong and dangerous.

They encourage supporters to "forget the mainstream media" and get their "facts straight from the source," an insular information ecosystem featuring prime time programming, accessed in its most pure form through the new Trump 2020 app.

Rebecca Roth reviews applications for election ballots at the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections, Wednesday, April 22, 2020, in Cleveland.
Tony Dejak / Associated Press

A federal court ruled Tuesday that an Ohio group will have more time to collect petition signatures to put a voter rights amendment on the November ballot. The groups will also be permitted to collect those signatures electronically due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Updated at 6:38 p.m. ET

President Trump on Wednesday escalated his rhetorical campaign against an expansion of mail-in voting amid the coronavirus pandemic by threatening federal funding to two states with Democratic governors.

Trump appeared to be set off by an announcement Tuesday from Michigan's Democratic secretary of state, Jocelyn Benson, who said her office will mail an absentee ballot application to every voter in the state for August and November elections.

Former Vice President Joe Biden again denied the sexual assault allegation made against him by former Senate staffer Tara Reade in an interview on MSNBC Thursday night, but added that voters who stand by Reade should not support him.

"If they believe Tara Reade, they probably shouldn't vote for me," Biden said when asked what message he would give to female voters who accept Reade's allegation as true, but were planning on supporting him.

"I wouldn't vote for me if I believed Tara Reade," Biden added.

Republican state officials who want to expand absentee and mail-in voting during the pandemic have found themselves in an uncomfortable position due to their party's rhetoric.

President Trump has claimed repeatedly, without providing evidence, that mail-in voting is ripe for fraud and bad for the GOP. He and other Republicans have charged that Democrats might use it to "steal" the election.

Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden and his chief primary rival Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., announced on Wednesday the members of a joint task force meant to unify the party ahead of November's general election, bringing together figures from different wings of the party, ranging from New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to former Secretary of State John Kerry.

The Democratic National Committee is taking steps to prepare for a possible remote convention this summer, with a resolution being introduced to allow for changes to official proceedings given public health concerns.

Because of the coronavirus pandemic, convention planners are exploring a range of contingencies for the August event in Milwaukee where Joe Biden is expected to be officially nominated as the Democratic Party's candidate for president.

Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose, right, overseeing the Election Night Reporting Center in Columbus, Ohio, watches early returns in the Ohio primary election from the Election Night Command Center, Tuesday, April 28, 2020.
Gene Puskar / Associated Press

Ohio’s Secretary of State says an election day with in-person voting is still the plan for this fall, but he’s suggesting some changes in case concerns about coronavirus keep voters away.

Four years ago, Donald Trump won Ohio by eight percentage points, which caught the tribe of political pundits by surprise, along with the political professional class.

Can he do it again?

Pike County Sheriff Charles Reader, here at a news conference in November 2018, made worldwide headlines following the 2016 murders of eight Pike County family members.
John Minchillo / Associated Press

Pike County voters will choose a new sheriff this November, but one thing is certain—it will not be suspended sheriff Charles Reader.  

Front of 106-year old Hebron Elementary School.
Debbie Holmes / WOSU

Voters in Licking County once again rejected a bond levy for Lakewood School District. It would have raised more than $31 million to replace the 106-year-old Hebron Elementary building.

Updated at 5:59 p.m. ET

Editor's note: This story contains graphic descriptions of an alleged sexual assault.

More than a month after being publicly accused of sexual assault by a former Senate staffer in the 1990s, former Vice President Joe Biden says the allegations "aren't true. This never happened."

Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose, overseeing the Election Night Reporting Center, in Columbus, Ohio, calls for the closing of the polls in the Ohio primary election, Tuesday, April 28, 2020.
Gene Puskar / Associated Press

In this week's episode of Snollygoster, Ohio's politics podcast from WOSU, hosts Mike Thompson and Steve Brown discuss how Ohio handled its primary election during this global pandemic. They also talk about the controversy over who is and is not required to wear masks in stores and other businesses.

Just under a quarter of Ohio’s registered voters actually cast ballots in the primary election which ended earlier this week. Low turnout was expected after the original March 17th in person Election Day was canceled because of coronavirus concerns, and absentee voting by mail was extended until this past Tuesday. And there are now calls for change to make it easier to vote this fall.

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