Well, that was certainly an election night! Voters in 25 of Ohio’s 88 counties were numerous enough to be more than one half of the overall voters voting on the question and caused Issue 1 to be passed. The “three C’s” (Cleveland, Columbus, and Cincinnati) plus Toledo and Dayton as well as Painesville/Mentor, Chardon, Ashtabula, Athens, Bowling Green, Youngstown, Cortland, and Put in Bay were all part of the areas of the state that voted to pass this. Issue 1 will enshrine abortion rights in the Ohio state constitution in roughly 30 days.
It is a pity that this probably didn’t settle anything at all. Julie Carr Smyth had an interesting report run by the Associated Press linked here. Here’s the part that bothers me:
Republicans remained defiant in the wake of Tuesday’s vote. Ohio House Speaker Jason Stephens said Issue 1’s approval “is not the end of the conversation.”
“As a 100% pro-life conservative, I remain steadfastly committed to protecting life, and that commitment is unwavering,” Stephens said. “The Legislature has multiple paths that we will explore to continue to protect innocent life.”
Previously, state Senate President Matt Huffman, a Republican, has suggested that lawmakers could come back with another proposed amendment next year that would undo Issue 1, although they would have only a six-week window after Election Day to get it on the 2024 primary ballot.
We are a “Super Tuesday” state so this very well could come back to haunt us in March during the presidential primary. If it does there might well be some havoc. After almost a full year being overwhelmed with this issue and facing the special election in August that tried to derail this effort I think voters would move hard to punish legislators if they pushed an immediate repeal attempt.
There are some weird costs to living in this state…