ELECTION 2018: Know these deadlines if you want to vote for Butler County, state leaders

Ohioans have until April 9 to register to vote for the May 8 primary if they want their voices heard in deciding who advances to the November general election.

That includes who will be competing to be the next governor of Ohio.

Republicans on May 8 will choose between Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine and Ohio Lt. Gov. Mary Taylor. Democrats have a field of six candidates to choose from: former congressman Dennis Kucinich, former Ohio Attorney General and U.S. consumer watchdog Richard Cordray, Ohio Sen. Joe Schiavoni, former Ohio Supreme Court Justice Bill O’Neill, ex-stripper Larry Ealy and political newcomer Paul Ray.

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Butler County and state elections officials are stressing the importance to not only vote in this primary election, but every election.

“People need to get out there and get their voices heard,” said Diane Noonan, Butler County Board of Elections director. “Everyone wants to vote for president, but every election is important, especially local elections.”

In addition to partisan governor nominees, voters will choose who will be their party’s nominees for U.S. House and Senate, Ohio Statehouse and County Commission.

Statewide, Republicans will decide which U.S. Senate candidate they want to see face U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Cleveland, in November. Congressman Jim Renacci, R-Wadsworth, and Cleveland businessman Mike Gibbons are competing for the GOP nomination.

Democrats in the 8th Congressional District — which includes all or parts of Butler, Clark, Darke, Mercer, Miami and Preble counties — have four candidates to choose from: Bill Ebben, Vanessa Enoch, Matthew Guyette and Ted Jones. That winner will face Republican incumbent Congressman Warren Davidson, of Troy.

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In Butler County, Republicans in the 51st Ohio House District will choose between the incumbent, Rep. Wes Retherford, R-Hamilton, or one of his two challengers, Greg Jolivette or Sara Carruthers.

They will also choose between incumbent Butler County Commissioner Cindy Carpenter and her challenger, Lee Wong, who is a West Chester Twp. trustee. All local candidates will face a Democratic Party challenger this fall.

Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted, the state’s top elections official, said not only is voting important, but every vote matters.

“Voters have easy access to both in-person and absentee voting,” he said. “Ohioans looking to register to vote can now do so in a matter of minutes.”

Voter registration can be done at the county board of election office at 1802 Princeton Road in Hamilton, and online at the Ohio Secretary of State's office by clicking here or the Butler County Board of Elections office by clicking here .

“No longer can someone say they didn’t have time or didn’t know how to vote,” Husted said.

Butler County elections Deputy Director Jocelyn Bucaro said April 9 is also the deadline for people to check their voter registration status to ensure information is current.

“It’s easier than ever before to register to vote,” she said. “Voters can check their status and register online.”

Early voting for this primary election begins on April 10, and Bucaro said that voters who vote by mail could sign up for a new service.

“You can now sign up to receive notifications via text, email or voice call about the status of your mail ballot, including when it is mailed to you, received back and counted,” she said.

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