(The Center Square) – Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose called Democrats’ push to change voting laws at the federal level a partisan power grab, and he pointed to the highest voter turnout in more than a century as proof.
LaRose took to Twitter on Tuesday, challenging President Joe Biden, who delivered a speech in Atlanta and vowed to fight voter suppression and called on Congress to pass the Freedom to Vote Act.
“The President claims voter suppression when 2020 saw the highest voter turnout in 120 years,” LaRose tweeted. "Here in our state, more Ohioans voted than ever before. According to Pew polling, 94% of Americans say it’s easy to vote. This is not about voting rights – it’s a partisan power grab.”
LaRose, a Republican, long has been opposed to federal changes in election laws, speaking out last spring when what he called the federal takeover of elections passed the U.S. House.
The Ohio General Assembly became one of the first states to call on Congress to defeat the proposal in early March, when state Rep. Thomas Hall, R-Madison Township, introduced a resolution calling on Congress to defeat the measure.
U.S. Senate Democratic leadership is making passage of laws to federalize elections their top priority by even threatening to “nuke” the filibuster to make it happen.
U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, called for the end of the filibuster last month in an interview with the Columbus Dispatch, echoing statements he made on Twitter last March.
“I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: We won’t allow Senate Republicans to block every meaningful bill to improve people’s lives. If they stand in the way of the progress Americans voted for, that means ending the filibuster,” Brown tweeted in March.
Brown, however, was one of 61 senators in April 2017 to sign a letter to Republican and Democratic leadership to preserve the tactic.
LaRose likened Democratic calls to change longstanding Senate rules to his children changing the rules of a game so they could win.
“Changing the rules of a game so you have a better chance at winning is what my daughters try to do when they are losing at Candyland,” LaRose tweeted. “It’s not what responsible leaders do when their agenda is failing.”
Democrats are pushing new voting legislation that would give the federal government sweeping power over state elections in response to Republican legislatures around the country enacting new voting regulations after the 2020 general election.
Ohio recently passed legislation that prohibits any public official from collaborating with nongovernmental groups or individuals on any election-related activity. It passed as part of the state budget after failing to make it out of the House when introduced with other election changes as a standalone bill.