Today’s editorial, “Poor Timing at Play With Ohio Issue 1,” follows its Monday predecessors – it’s old and it’s from an Ogden Ohio paper. (In this case, it appears to have been first published by the Youngstown Vindicator over two months ago on May 21.) Most importantly, it wants us to believe that Ohio Issue 1, which will change the Ohio constitution to require a 60% approval on ballot initiatives to change the constitution, is simply about efficiency (less ballot initiatives) and preventing “outside interests” from overwhelming the state:
As Ohio’s chief election officer, Secretary of State Frank LaRose, points out in his support, narrow special interests should not be permitted to invade Ohio’s broadly constructed governing document.
What the editorial doesn’t tell you, but what both proponents and opponents of abortion will, is that the issue is really about the right to abortion. As the Associated Press wrote last week:
Ohio voters will decide this fall whether the right to an abortion should be added to the state constitution, after officials said Tuesday that enough signatures were gathered to get the proposal on the ballot.
However, it’s an open question how much support the amendment will need to pass, as Republican lawmakers have set a special election next month on whether to raise the threshold from a simple majority to 60%. AP VoteCast polling last year found 59% of Ohio voters say abortion should generally be legal.
The measure would establish “a fundamental right to reproductive freedom” with “reasonable limits.” In language similar to a constitutional amendment that Michigan voters approved last November, it would require restrictions imposed past a fetus’ viability outside the womb — which is typically around the 24th week of pregnancy and was the standard under Roe v. Wade — to be based on evidence of patient health and safety benefits.
If you do any reading about Issue 1, it will quickly become clear that it is not about constitutional safeguards, it's about preventing Ohio citizens from voting on abortion. Even Ogden favorite, Secretary of State Frank LaRose (quoted above), has said so. As reported in early June:
A Republican-backed effort to make it harder to amend the Ohio Constitution is “100%” about blocking an abortion rights question eyed for the November ballot, Secretary of State Frank LaRose said recently.
For the first time since he and Rep. Brian Stewart (R-Ashville) unveiled a proposal to raise the threshold for enacting a constitutional amendment, LaRose directly linked the measure – which will appear as Issue 1 on the Aug. 8 ballot – to preventing the passage of a citizen-led petition to permit Ohioans’ access to abortion.
“Some people say, ‘This is all about abortion.’ Well, you know what, I’m pro-life; I think many of you are as well, right?” LaRose said at a Lincoln Day event in Seneca County on May 22. “This is 100% about keeping a radical, pro-abortion amendment out of our constitution. The left wants to jam it in there this coming November.”
Today's editorial says nothing about about abortion. Once again, Ogden Newspapers can’t honestly deal with an issue.