". . . and having done all . . . stand firm." Eph. 6:13


If Issue 1 Fails: ‘It’s the Complete Californication of Ohio’

August 1, 2023

In the frantic lead-up to next Tuesday’s vote on Issue 1, the latest polling from Ohio Northern University shows both sides in a dead heat. Proponents are even up by a hair (42.4% to 41%) — shocking the radicals who’ve pumped millions of dollars into the state from outside groups. While the media rushes to discredit the numbers, Mike Conidakis, president of Ohio Right to Life, is urging voters to get out and split the tie. “It’s a neck-and-neck race,” he said about the ballot initiative that will decide the fate of everything from late-term abortion to the gender mutilation of kids in Ohio. “We’ve got [less than a week] to do our closing arguments,” he warned. Make them count.

Protect Women Ohio, like so many organizations, is racing to flood the zone with last minute messaging. A new $5.5 million-dollar ad buy will help them make that case: “Ohio has some of the weakest requirements in the country for passing constitutional amendments and greedy, out-of-state special interest groups with deep pockets know it,” board member Molly Smith said. “Enough is enough.”

Under Issue 1, the threshold for passing a constitutional amendment would jump from 50% to 60%, a move that would make it inordinately more difficult for the Left to hijack the state’s founding document. It would also force groups to persuade voters in every county — not just the areas most agreeable to their agenda.

“All we’re talking about here is [changing] how we amend our state constitution,” Citizens for Community Virtues President Aaron Baer explained on “Washington Watch” Monday. “We don’t change the initiated statute process, which can still change state law at 50%. We don’t change the General Assembly on how we create most of our laws as passing laws through the General Assembly and the governor signing them. … The bottom line is, our state’s constitution, just like the U.S. Constitution, should be more difficult to amend than just state law. We’re talking about fundamental principles, right? To change the U.S. Constitution, you need two-thirds of Congress and then 75% of the states to ratify. That’s because the Constitution should only be changed in rare instances on widely agreed upon principles.”

Otherwise, Baer went on, “with a state constitution that’s so easily manipulated, so easily amended, the Left has recognized that their biggest advantage is the deep pockets of their funders like George Soros and the ACLU and Planned Parenthood and the unions. And so they recognize they don’t actually need to win state legislative races or governor’s races or things like that in states like Ohio that have a very vulnerable state constitution because of this low threshold. They can just spend as much money as they want to manipulate voters, to put on deceptive ads, and get their entire agenda into our state constitution, locking it in for generations to come.”

That agenda is breathing down the Buckeye State’s neck, now that an amendment to Ohio’s constitution has qualified for the November ballot. “If this amendment [passes],” legal expert Carrie Severino warns, “and Ohioans allow it to become part of the state constitution, their elected representatives in Columbus will be powerless to pass any statute that would undo the damage. If voters do not reject this proposal, they can expect to suffer its extreme consequences well into the indefinite future.”

Those consequences, Severino spells out in frightening clarity, are not only abortion-on-demand right up to the moment of birth (erasing the six-week limit the governor just signed), they also extend to “any medical procedure that involves the human reproductive system, including sex-change surgery.” Worse, “the proposal makes no distinction between adults and minors,” and parents would have zero authority to intervene — that is, if they’re even notified. It is, as so many experts have pointed out, an absolute nightmare scenario for families.

Issue 1 is the state’s attempt to cut all of this off at the pass. The legislature intentionally scheduled this vote for August 8, in the hopes that a special election could beat the Left’s disastrous amendment to the punch and disqualify the initiative before it gets to voters.

And while the media likes to frame this as a battle over abortion, Baer wants people to know: “It’s even bigger than that in so many ways.” “They’ve put their entire political agenda into this constitutional amendment,” he told guest host Jody Hice. “It’s not just abortion-on-demand up until birth. It’s also a complete abolishment of parental rights, parental consent. You know, under this constitutional amendment, a minor would be able to get an abortion without their parent’s knowledge or consent. They’d even be able to get transgender medicine, sex change surgeries without their parent’s knowledge or consent. I mean, really, … this is the complete Californication of Ohio in one ballot amendment.”

For now, Baer said, what’s important is for people outside Ohio to understand the stakes. If it seems too far removed for the rest of America, he cautioned, it isn’t. “Today, it’s Ohio. Tomorrow, it’s going to be your state. The Left has really made clear [that] this is their agenda. … They’re going to throw everything they’ve got at this in Ohio. And if we can’t stop them here, they’re going to be going all across the nation next.”

Paid for by Family Research Council (frc.org) and not authorized by any campaign or ballot issue committee.

Suzanne Bowdey serves as editorial director and senior writer at The Washington Stand.