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Cleveland Mayor Justin Bibb slams Ohio's controversial new voting laws

Bibb told 3News' Russ Mitchell the state is 'going absolutely in the wrong direction when it comes to voting rights.'

CLEVELAND — On Monday, Cleveland Mayor Justin M. Bibb commented on the new voting laws that were signed into effect by Gov. Mike DeWine.

"Ohio is going absolutely in the wrong direction when it comes to voting rights," Bibb declared in an interview with 3News' Russ Mitchell.

Bibb claimed just 20% percent of Cleveland residents voted in the last election, and his hope is that he can help that number rise. However, just last week the governor signed House Bill 458 into law, and it requires Ohioans to provide photo identification in order to cast their ballot.

The legislation also limits ballot drop boxes to one per county, which has to be on the board of elections' property.

"Access to the ballot box is a sacred right in this state and a sacred right in this nation," Bibb told Mitchell. "We have a lot more to do across this country to protect the voting rights."

Watch the full interview in the player below:

The ACLU of Ohio estimates one million people will be impacted by the photo identification requirement. Deputy Director Collin Marozzi told WKYC residents will no longer be able to use documents like a bank statement, a paycheck, or a government document to cast their ballots. Instead, residents must have a state driver's license, state ID, passport, or a military ID in order to vote.

Ten percent of Ohioans are impacted by the photo identification requirement. However, there will be more impacted by the other changes to the elections system.

"Keep in mind, people disabilities, senior citizens, students, low-income Ohioans, people that may be unexpectedly in the hospital are all groups who may not have access to their ID when it comes time to vote," Jen Miller, director of the League of Women Voters of Ohio, explained.

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