THE TIME IS NOW!
The question we are voting on in State Issue 1 is not whether abortion or contraception is right or wrong. The question we are voting on is who makes that decision. A Yes vote on Issue 1 is a vote for individual Ohioans to decide for themselves whether abortion or contraception is the right decision for them. A no vote on Issue 1 is a vote for the state government to make those decisions for every single Ohioan. Do you really want the politicians in Columbus making that decision for you? Put simply, the choice voters are making on Issue 1 is between individual liberty and government power. If voters understand that fact, Issue 1 should pass overwhelmingly.
Don’t believe the lies. Vote Yes on Issue 1.
The dark forces opposed to Issue 1 will be bombarding Ohioans with falsehoods over the next week, hoping to confuse Ohio voters about what they are voting on.
If passed, Issue 1 will not change Ohio law regarding parental consent for a minor to get an abortion or any other form of medical care. Since before statehood, Ohio law has recognized, as has U.S. law generally, that minors do not have the same legal capacity and all the same legal rights as adults. The Reproductive Freedom Amendment, on the ballot as Issue 1, makes no effort to change that. The claim that passing Issue 1 will change the parent-child relationship regarding any type of medical care is false.
Abortion As Birth Control
Passing Issue 1 will not make abortion another form of birth control. It is easy to understand why not. An abortion is a medical procedure which is expensive. Under a federal law known as the Hyde Amendment, no federal funds may be used to pay for abortions, with a couple of narrow exceptions. That means people who receive some form of government aid to pay for their healthcare cannot use that aid to get an abortion. In contrast, contraceptives such as condoms are readily available and very inexpensive. The pill and IUDS are cheap compared to the cost of an abortion.
Contraceptives are another reason why Issue 1 should be passed and why it protects the rights of all Ohioans, not just women. The U.S. Supreme Court decision in Rowe v. Wade, recognizing a constitutional right to abortion, was based on the reasoning of a 1965 decision in a case known as Griswold v. Connecticut. Griswold held that there was a federal constitutional right for at least married couples to buy contraceptives. Since a new majority of U.S. Supreme Court Justices has decided that the legal reasoning of Rowe v. Wade was wrong, it follows that Griswold v. Connecticut was wrong also and that states may legally ban access to contraceptives. Indeed, Republicans in the Ohio General Assembly want to pass laws which would do exactly that in Ohio. Issue 1 explicitly protects the right of both female and male Ohioans buy contraceptives. If Issue 1 is defeated, the Republican dominated government in Ohio will take that right away.
The Necessary Action
Voter ID Requirements
For the reasons outlined above, a Yes vote on Issue 1 is a no-brainer. However, you must cast that vote so it will be counted. You can vote Yes on Issue 1 at your polling place on Tuesday, November 7. Please remember that you will need an approved photo ID to vote. The ID requirements imposed by Ohio law changed early this year. A list of the types of IDs that will allow you to vote is at sos.state.oh.us/elections/voters/id-requirements/.
Drop Off Your Absentee Ballot
If you received your ballot by mail and you have not already voted that ballot and sent it back to the Board of Elections, please do not mail that ballot now and take the chance that the Postal Service delivers it in time for it to be counted. Another change in Ohio law this year shortened by six days the time within which your ballot must be received by the Board of Elections to be counted. If the Postal Service delivers your ballot late, it cannot be counted even if you mailed it before Election Day. Instead, please put your ballot in the ballot drop-box outside the Board of Elections office at 74 South Riverside Drive, Batavia. The drop box is available 24/7 and your ballot counts so long as you put in the box before 7:30 p.m. on Election Day.
Vote Early In Person
You may also vote early in person. The same ID requirements apply for early voting as apply on Election Day. The early voting location in Clermont County is also at the Board of Elections at 74 South Riverside Drive, Batavia. The Board is open for early voting starting at 7:30 a.m. every day through this Friday. Tonight, the Board will be open for early voting until 8:30 p.m. Wednesday through Friday, the Board will be open for early voting until 7:30 p.m. Early voting will be open at the Board this coming Saturday (November 4) from 8:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. and Sunday, November 5, from 1:00 p.m. until 4:00 p.m. Please remember that you may no longer vote early on the Monday before Election Day. Please vote and make sure your vote is counted.
Other Things on the November 7 Ballot
Besides Issue 1, your ballot has candidates for your local school board, for township trustee, and for municipal government. These are non-partisan elections, meaning that candidates are not identified as Democrats or Republicans and the parties generally do not endorse people running for these offices. That said, there are a few candidates who do, I think, stand out. If you live in Monroe Township, you have the opportunity to vote for Alice Rolfes for township trustee. That would be a wise vote. If you live in the Milford school district, there are two candidates running for school board who care more about educating children than about scoring points in the culture wars. They are Emily Chesnut and Myra Powers. If you live in the City of Loveland, you have a very good candidate for city council in Deidre Hazelbaker.
Please make your vote count, and please stay safe.