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