Jennifer Brunner and the Ballot Board Plays Politics, Blocks Healthcare Reform Amendment
From The Ohio Liberty Council:
Ballot Board Attempts to Block Health Care Freedom Amendment
Constitutional Rights Legal Center to File Action with Ohio Supreme Court
Columbus – Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner and the Ohio Ballot Board today ruled a proposed constitutional amendment aimed at protecting Ohioans from forthcoming health care regulations should be split into two parts. As a result, the board rejected the proposed amendment and told its sponsor, the Ohio Liberty Council, to start over.
The move places the Ohio Liberty Council in the untenable position of restarting the amendment language approval process and collecting two sets of 402,275 signatures by June 30. The group will ask the Ohio Supreme Court to block the Ballot Board’s action.
“The Ohio Ballot Board got it wrong today,” said Warren Edstrom of the Ohio Liberty Council. “We will ask the Ohio Supreme Court to uphold our amendment language and correct this error.”
Maurice Thompson, executive director of the 1851 Center for Constitutional Law, drafted the amendment language and represented the Ohio Liberty Council at today’s hearing. “The Ballot Board’s decision is contrary to the law and its past precedent,” said Thompson. “I am at a loss to find any logical reason for the board’s decision other than its own policy preferences. Board members cited concerns with the single subject rule regarding the amendment. However, if different parts of an amendment address a common purpose, the single subject rule is satisfied. And, this amendment’s common purpose is to allow Ohioans the right to choose their health care.”
On March 22, the Ohio Liberty Council began the process of the placing a health care freedom constitutional amendment on the November 2010 ballot. The group filed petition summary language and nearly 3,000 signatures from registered voters in 48 counties with the Ohio Attorney General, who later approved the language as truthful and accurate.
The amendment provides that:
* In Ohio, no law or rule shall compel, directly or indirectly, any person, employer, or health care provider to participate in a health care system;
* In Ohio, no law or rule shall prohibit the purchase or sale of health care or health insurance; and
* In Ohio, no law or rule shall impose a penalty or fine for the sale or purchase of health care or health insurance.
The Ohio Liberty Council is a statewide coalition of non-partisan grass roots groups in Ohio including Central Ohio 9/12 Project, Cincinnati Tea Party, Young Americans for Liberty, Dayton Tea Party, Ohio Freedom Alliance and many more grass roots organizations. By working together, the member groups of the Ohio Liberty Council seek to achieve real results to protect and promote liberty in Ohio. More on the Ohio Liberty Council can be found at http://www.ohiolibertycouncil.org.
The 1851 Center for Constitutional Law is non-profit, non-partisan legal center dedicated to protecting the constitutional rights of Ohioans from government abuse. The 1851 Center litigates constitutional issues related to property rights, voting rights, regulation, taxation, and search and seizures. More on the 1851 Center can be found at http://www.ohioconstitution.org.
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