Voting in Ohio
Although there are more than 8 million Ohioans registered to vote, there are many citizens who remain ineligible because they have not registered.
You are qualified to vote in Ohio if:
- You are a citizen of the United States;
- You are at least 18 years old on or before the day of the general election. If you will be 18 on or before the day of the general election, you may vote in the primary election for candidates only, but not on issues;
- You will be a resident of Ohio for at least 30 days immediately before Election Day;
- You register to vote at least 30 days before the election;
- You are not incarcerated (in jail or prison) for a felony conviction under the laws of this state, another state or the United States;
- You have not been declared incompetent for voting purposes by a probate court; or
- You have not been permanently disenfranchised for violations of the election laws.
Registering is easy and can be done at:
- Any county board of elections or the Secretary of State's office;
- Branch registration offices or locations established by a board of elections;
- Any public high school or vocational school;
- An office of the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles;
- Offices of designated agencies providing public assistance or disability programs;
- Public libraries; and
- County treasurers' offices.
You may request a registration form from a board of elections or the Secretary of State's office by mail, e-mail, telephone, in person or by having another person obtain it for you. You may also download a voter registration on our website. After completing the form, return it to the board of elections or Secretary of State's office by mail or in person.
Click here to learn more about the voting process and information on registering.
The Ohio Election Cycle
The election system of Ohio can be demonstrated through a four-year cycle. The following represents that cycle:
Presidential Election Year (2012, 2016, 2020, etc.) - President of the United States, U.S. Senator (if term expires), Representatives to Congress, State Senators (even-numbered districts), State Representative, State Board of Education (one-third of members), Supreme Court Justices (two or three) and some county officials will be elected.
Municipal Year (2013, 2017, 2021, 2025 etc.)
- Most municipal officials, some township officials and members of local boards of education will be elected.
State Election Year (2014, 2018, 2022, etc.)
- U.S. Senator (if term expires), Representatives to Congress, Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Secretary of State, Treasurer of State, Auditor of State, Attorney General, State Senators (odd-numbered districts), State Representatives, State Board of Education (one-third of members), Supreme Court Justices (two or three) and some county officials will be elected.
Municipal Year (2015, 2019, 2023, etc.) - Most municipal officials, some township officials and members of local boards of education will be elected.
The Secretary of State has elections results online going back to 1940. Click here for historical results from statewide elections.
Every Election Day, thousands of Ohioans contribute to their communities by helping to operate polling places. Ohio's precinct election officials help safeguard our election process. Many precinct election officials find their experience rewarding and return to serve year after year. Click here to learn more about being a precinct elections official.
Through the years, men and women in our armed forces have made great sacrifices to protect our freedom and democracy. Today, the courageous members of our military branches continue to serve our country so we all can enjoy one of our most sacred rights - the right to vote. Click here to learn more about the Secretary's Vote in Honor of a Veteran Program.