FACT CHECK: Do Mail-In Ballots In Ohio Require Two Stamps?
A post shared on Facebook purports Ohio voters need to use two stamps on their mail-in ballots for the upcoming midterm elections.
The amount of postage required on mail-in ballots varies by county, a spokesperson for the Ohio Association of Election Officials (OAEO) told Check Your Fact in an email. Ballots that do not have the correct postage are still counted.
Republican Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose recently told voters in the state that residents cannot return absentee ballots to their respective precincts on Election Day, The Associated Press reported. The remarks were in response to misinformation campaign online spearheaded by “a prominent national group of Republican election deniers,” according to the outlet.
The Facebook post purports to show a screengrab of a tweet claiming mail-in ballots in Ohio require two stamps. “OHIO VOTERS: Your mail-in ballot needs TWO STAMPS!” the screengrab reads in part. One iteration of the post on Twitter, uploaded by Grammy award-winner Grey DeLisle, received over 3,900 retweets.
— Grey DeLisle (@GreyDeLisle) October 20, 2022
“Spread the word!” wrote one user in response.
The claim is incorrect. Officials in Ohio state that counties are required to specify to voters how much postage is required to return the ballot by mail, according to Cleveland.com. The Secretary of State’s website reads that it is a voter’s responsibility to pay for and ensure the ballot has enough postage.
“Postage varies from county to county in Ohio, and sometimes even with a county,” OAEO spokesperson Aaron Ockerman told Check Your Fact via email. “It all depends on the length of the ballot.”
Ockerman added that proposed amendments have caused ballots to span multiple pages, which in turn, has increased their postage. He confirmed that election officials include instructions with the ballots indicating how much postage is required. (RELATED: Did Colorado Outlaw Mail-In Ballot Boxes?)
“Secretary LaRose requires each county board of elections to specify the correct postage for the respective ballot on the instructions that come with each ballot,” Rob Nichols, a spokesperson for secretary LaRose’s office, told Check Your Fact via email. “Regardless, the post office will deliver the ballot even if the voter were to put insufficient postage on it.”
There are no credible news reports, nor any releases from OAEO nor LaRose’s office, suggesting the guidelines for postage on Mail-in ballots had changed. The claim also does not appear on their respective websites.
Misinformation regarding ballots have circulated on social media as the 2022 midterm elections approach. Check Your Fact recently debunked a claim suggesting Connecticut would remove the requirement of a seal on ballots.