COLUMBUS, Ohio (WTVN) -- The Ohio Senate has passed a bill that would set new requirements for third parties to appear on ballot in Ohio.
Representatives of the Green and Libertarian parties oppose the measure, which passed on a 22-11 vote Tuesday. It now goes to the House.
"That gives us a whole new set of standards that we have to work with and thresholds that we have to accomplish to get on the general election ballot in November," said the Libertarian Party of Ohio's Bob Bridges.
The American Civil Liberties Union told lawmakers that the proposals' petition requirements are onerous for third parties. Plus, the legal organization says the changes come too close to Ohio's 2014 statewide elections.
Sen. Bill Seitz, a Cincinnati Republican, said the bill establishes new rules for minor parties following a court's rejection of Ohio's previous law.
"Obviously if you are in one of those minor parties you probably would like that current lawless state of affairs to continue because you get to stay on the ballot without demonstrating any modicum of support," he said.
The proposal comes as Ohio Republicans face growing competition from Tea Party supporters who say they may support a third-party challenger to Gov. John Kasich next year.
"We've kind of nicknamed it the Kasich Protection Act," joked Bridges.
Under the new proposal political parties will either have to see their candidates get at least 3 percent of the vote in the race for governor and president or they'll have to re-file with the state 125 days before the general election by turning in signatures equal to 1 percent of the number of voters in the last election for governor or president. That would be about 56,000 signatures today.