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(Toledo News Now) -
The Ohio Senate passed a bill that could make it more difficult for minor party candidates to get their names on future ballots.
Senate Bill 193 passed Wednesday. The bill makes it difficult for politicians like Perrysburg City Councilman Todd Grayson, a Libertarian, to identify by their party on a county or state ballot.
"I'd be stuck," Grayson said. "As of right now, I wouldn't be allowed to do it unless we go out and gather all these signatures as a party, and that becomes very time consuming, and also very expensive to do, because you either have to do it yourself, or pay someone to do it."
The Senate passed the bill, and now it will goes to the House. If passed, third-party candidates will have to gather about 56,000 signatures to be able to identify themselves as one, or would have to meet 3 percent of votes within a governor's race.
"It should be simple to create a political party. That's just my fundamental belief," Grayson said. "First Amendment, say what party you're from, that's what your belief is. You should be able to express that at the ballot box, assuming you've got the appropriate signatures to run for office."
Grayson says he doesn't see the purpose of the threshold, and doesn't see the harm of having a candidate label themselves as what he or she sees fit. If passed, he would like the measure to stay on hold until 2015, so the Libertarian candidate for the governor's race would have time to adjust.
"To have his time to run, to meet that gubernatorial threshold, which is an alternative to gathering all the signatures, and to allow time for us to adjust and plan, and save funds and get a real plan together if we need to gather signatures," he said.