August 8 Is Getting Closer 

It’s coming!  August 8, the date of the statewide special election on State Issue 1 (aka SJR 2), is only 43 days away. Early voting on State Issue 1 starts in two weeks, on July 11. Voter registration to vote on Issue 1 closes on July 10.

As I said in a previous column, I’m spending a lot of time on Issue 1. That is because Issue 1 is very important. If passed, it will effectively eliminate the ability of Ohioans to change our basic state law independent of the General Assembly. Anyone who thinks that the General Assembly watches out for the interests of all Ohioans needs to remember one name: Larry Householder, the former Republican speaker of the Ohio House convicted by a jury of racketeering for selling his power to pass legislation to special interests. Just as Issue 1 would make it practically impossible for Ohio citizens to amend our Ohio Constitution, the same provisions in Issue 1 will make it practically impossible to repeal Issue 1 in the future. If Republicans were not so short-sighted, they would realize that Issue 1 would render them largely powerless if a Democratic majority returns to our General Assembly. Of course, a major motive behind Issue 1 is to ensure that never happens, and passage of Issue 1 could well have that effect.

Those of us who pay attention to politics have been aware of Issue 1 since the Republicans in Columbus first proposed it around the beginning of 2023. However, many Ohio voters do not know about Issue 1. I was knocking on the doors of registered voters in Pierce Township yesterday. While many people I spoke to do know about Issue 1, many, many, did not know that there will be an election on August 8, much less what that election is about.

This is what Republicans were counting on when they created, contrary to statute, an August special election for Issue 1.  People do not think about elections in the summer and history shows that August elections have extremely low voter turnout. There is still a huge public education task to make voters aware of the August 8 special election on Issue 1 and to make voters aware that the only reasonable vote on Issue 1 is NO.

Make no mistake, there is a lot of money that will be spent to try to pass Issue 1, from wealthy out-of-staters to big business to the anti-abortion machine. Each has a specific issue which they oppose but which they know a majority of Ohioans support. Each of these big money interests intends Issue 1 to thwart majority rule on their issue.  As we get close to August 8, expect to see a very expensive campaign to pass Issue 1.

Our task is to get the majority of Ohioans who still want some majority control over what state government out to vote NO on Issue 1.  Polls show that a majority of Ohioans oppose the idea of Issue 1. We need to get that majority to vote on August 8.

Many people do not think that knocking on other people’s doors is fun. It is time-consuming and can be physically draining in summer. In many parts of our county, it can be frustrating because you cannot park in one place and hit several doors. In many parts of the County, you need to drive several minutes to reach just one voter. However, there has probably never been an election in which those single voters were more important. Issue 1 will pass or fail, as it should, on the votes of relatively few Ohioans. NO votes in Williamsburg, Felicity, Moscow, New Richmond, and Bethel are just as important as NO votes in Loveland and Milford. If people truly understand Issue 1, they will vote against it. We need to give voters the truth about Issue 1 and get them to vote.

I know many people are able to canvass but are not willing to canvass. However, defeating Issue 1 is so important that we must do things we ordinarily would not. Time is short. The election will be over at 7:30 p.m. on August 8. Please contact the Clermont County Democratic Party and volunteer, if you are able, to help defeat this unprecedented assault on Ohio’s democracy. I can be reached at 513-621-9603 or

Please help Ohio defeat State Issue 1!