The Ohio state Senate on Thursday, June 23 passed HB 194 by a party line 23-10 vote after a spirited debate in the upper chamber over the particulars of the omnibus elections bill. Democrats were on the outside looking in on a bill some of them accused Republicans of having "stacked the deck for 2012" (shortening the early voting and mail-in absentee voting windows). Republicans sponsors of the bill countered that the bill was not partisan so much as it added uniformity to the process in counties across the Buckeye state.
Less controversial was the provision within the bill to move the state's presidential primary from the first Tuesday after the first Monday in March to the first Tuesday after the first Monday in May. Other than the introductory comments about the bill, the presidential primary date change was not even mentioned during the discussion and amendment process.
Given that the bill was amended in committee, it will now head back to the House before likely moving on to the governor.