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Postage should be paid for ballots

One would think Ohio’s elected and appointed officials would want it to be as easy as possible for registered voters to cast ballots in the Nov. 3 election, regardless of the letter after their names. Democrats and Republicans alike had an opportunity to help make that happen, thanks to a suggestion by Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose.

He sought state Controlling Board approval to spend $3 million to provide postage for those using mail-in absentee ballots this year. COVID-19 means there will be many of them.

But board members turned LaRose down on Monday, in a 4-2 vote.

They should reconsider — but quickly, in time for LaRose’s office to make the necessary arrangements.

If money is the pretense under which they squashed the idea, they should bear in mind that $3 million is a pittance compared with other state expenditures; and if that is what it takes to help ensure a fair, safe election, it is a small price to pay.

Providing return postage for mail-in ballots obtained and marked legally by voters would make the process more convenient. It also could avoid some delays that may affect the election. Surely the Controlling Board members want to do all they can to be part of making the process as smooth as possible.

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