Ohio Republican primary ballot causing confusion

Ohio GOP Primary ballots cause confusion

CLEVELAND -- Some Ohio Republicans are asking questions about the party's primary ballot.

It's an emotional election that doesn't really need any sidebar issues or distractions.

The ballot is similar to past presidential primary elections.

But a switch to a winner-take-all system, apparently meant to boost Ohio Governor John Kasich's chances, is prompting uncertainty.

"The Republican primary ballot is very confusing," said Rob Walgate, vice president of the American Policy Roundtable. 

The group red-flagged the issue in a posted video that is getting lots of traffic after voter feedback.

Voters get to vote first for at-large delegates. Right below it, the same candidates are listed for district delegates.

"They have places for each. But if the winner takes all, how do you determine a winner? Do you take at-large delegates and district delegates? Can you vote to split them?" asked Walgate.

Republicans are awarding all 66 delegates to the winner.

But apparently, needed language to remove the district vote on the ballot was omitted.

So it's sort of a fifth wheel on the wagon.

Walgate claims he got no clear answers from multiple calls to election officials.

Cuyahoga County Elections Director Pat McDonald acknowledged the confusion.

"I know very little about this. I was just aware last week when I saw it on Facebook," said McDonald.

McDonald is reaching out to the Secretary of State and other election officials to seek clarity.

Obviously, poll workers need to have some guidance on how to answer questions from voters.

Ohio's top Republican can't understand why this is stirring up so many questions.

"If you like a candidate, vote for them at-large and for district delegates...Why the hell would anyone vote twice (for different candidates)?" said Matt Borges, Ohio's GOP Republican chairman.

Both will be counted.

But both McDonald and Borges said it's the at-large choice that will count.

The Republican ballot also contains names of candidates who did not drop out in time to be removed from the ballot.

The Democratic ballot is simpler and clearer.

Democrats are awarding 143 of 159 delegates proportionately.


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