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THE PREMIER GRASSROOTS MOBILIZING AND ORGANIZING TEAM IN THE MIDWEST

Ohio Citizen Action organizes and mobilizes people to advocate for public interests. In person, by phone, and online, we engage people in actions that protect public health, improve environmental quality, and benefit consumers. Our campaigns connect Ohioans and build a movement to protect democracy and create a sustainable future.

The Premier Grassroots Mobilizing and Organizing Team in the Midwest
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Current Focus

Hold legislators accountable for their vote on HB6
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Latest Updates

LaRose asks Ohio Supreme Court to not answer questions on referendum process

Nov 18, 2019 4:52 PM

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COLUMBUS — "Mr. LaRose maintains that since Judge Sargus already rejected the federal First Amendment claim, there is no federal issue left that would be resolved by answering the five questions.

The law’s opponents urged the court to accept the federal queries.

'[T]he Ohio Supreme Court has the opportunity to right a wrong — the legislature has restricted the right of referendum for far too long,' the brief filed by environmental and government watchdog groups reads in part.

'In today’s context, restricting the democratic power of the people represents serious risks to Ohio’s democracy, the future of Ohio’s energy system, and the fight against climate change …,' it states. 'Ohio has the opportunity to enhance and invigorate its democracy — or, it can reduce democracy to a pay-to-play game, whereby only those with the largest bank accounts can achieve meaningful change.'"

— Jim Provance, The Toledo Blade 

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HB 6 referendum fight highlights the troubling ways Ohio voters can be silenced

Nov 08, 2019 4:41 PM

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"Whether Ohio voters will or won’t get a chance to veto House Bill 6, the nuclear bailout bill, is a question entangled in a legal thicket. But complexity and pettifogging can’t mask the stakes: Do procedural laws, and the ability of those with deep pockets to monetize success in a petition drive, wrongly impair Ohioans’ constitutional right to vote up or down laws the General Assembly has passed?

Nearly a century ago, in 1915, the Ohio Supreme Court seemingly answered that question. The court said the 1912 constitutional amendment giving Ohioans the referendum was crafted 'to put it beyond the power of an unfriendly General Assembly to cripple or to destroy [it].' That’s not the only precedent on the issue, but, coming when it did, so soon after Ohio adopted the referendum, it deserves weight.

HB 6, passed in July, requires Ohio electricity consumers to subsidize the Davis-Besse and Perry nuclear power plants on Lake Erie, plus two coal-fueled Ohio Valley Electric Corp. plants, one in Indiana, and it phases out the state’s renewable-energy mandate."

-- Editorial Board, Cleveland.com and The Plain Dealer

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Federal judge writes of blockers, bribes and bombast in HB 6 referendum fight

Oct 28, 2019 10:19 AM

The Ohio Statehouse

COLUMBUS -- "'Few Ohioans are unaware of Amended Substitute House Bill 6 ... opponents and supporters of the measure locked horns in what has become one of the most expensive and divisive campaigns in Ohio history,' the judge wrote.

'Plaintiffs claim, and have supported the allegations with sworn testimony, that circulators of the referendum petitions have been assaulted and harassed,' Sargus said.

His honor also cited testimony about bribes to lure away circulators and a “fake petition” circulated by Ohioans For Energy Security, the dark money-fed pro-HB 6 force that dropped over $16 million on TV commercials.

Sargus concluded that the referendum organizers’ request for more days to solicit signatures, and a need for answers to unsettled state law, belong before the Ohio Supreme Court. Ohioans Against Corporate Bailouts contend that state law illegally robbed it of 38 of the 90 days for its petition drive by requiring state approvals before signature gathering could begin."

-- Darell Rowland, The Columbus Dispatch 

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