Skip to main content
State Seal State Seal State Seal
Home Button Home Button Home Button

Foreign Interference in State Elections Ban Becomes Law

June 3, 2024
Jena Powell News

COLUMBUS - Governor DeWine signed House Bill 1 into law Sunday, legislation banning foreign nationals from contributing to ballot initiatives, announced State Rep. Jena Powell (R-Arcanum).

Under current state and federal law, it is illegal for foreign nationals to donate to political candidates, but there is no precedent for contributions to ballot issues. This loophole left the Buckeye State vulnerable to foreign national interference. Expanding the current law to ban foreign donations to Ohio’s ballot issues will protect Ohio’s election integrity and ensure foreign influence will not sway future election results.  

“In 2022, Ohio voters sent a clear message by passing Issue 2 by nearly 77% that non-US citizens cannot vote in Ohio elections,” said Powell. “It makes no sense that those same individuals should still be able to spend millions of dollars to influence other voters in those same elections. I am pleased that the legislature acted quickly, and the Governor has signed this important legislation into law, making it crystal clear that foreign nationals, have no place in our election process.”

To remedy this issue, House Bill 1 will do the following: 

  • Prohibit direct and indirect contributions from foreign nationals;
  • Ban the spending, including independent expenditures, of funds tied to foreign nationals; and 
  • Ensure independent investigatory and enforcement power by the Ohio Attorney General.

On Sunday, Governor DeWine signed the legislation into law after passing the House and Senate.