Home > House Republican Leader Bill Batchelder Strikes Back at Speech-Stiffing Democrats

House Republican Leader Bill Batchelder Strikes Back at Speech-Stiffing Democrats

February 25, 2010 at 3:00 pm Matt Leave a comment Go to comments

As I reported late last night, Speaker Budish and his tax-loving caucus made sure that two scholars would be unable to testify in favor of Rep. John Adams’ plan to slowly eliminate the state income tax.

From Rep. Batchelder:

“Yesterday I believe an unfortunate situation took place in the House Ways & Means Committee that does an injustice to the institution of the Ohio House of Representatives. Never have I seen such a total departure from what should happen in a committee hearing and the first amendment right to petition for redress of grievance be so clearly, infringed upon.

The integrity of the House is built upon a tradition that allows for a transparent and open process between those with differing viewpoints on issues, who come to committee and provide our members with information which allows them to make the most well-informed decisions. Having the privilege of serving in the House for more than 34 years I was dismayed by what these actions will convey to the citizens of Ohio, who entrust in their public servants to allow all opinions and viewpoints to be shared in an open way. Opponents of the testimony hadn’t traveled far and were able to pontificate first. No witnesses who attended to offer proponent testimony were afforded the opportunity to testify. Many of these witnesses traveled from out of town to offer their insight and comments. Prior notice of their departure times and appearance was provided to the chair.

I have never known a request such as the one made before this committee to be rejected and ignored in such a manner. These kinds of actions do nothing but shake the confidence of the public’s trust that we are genuinely discussing the issues most important to Ohio in a fair process. It is impossible to have a fair and intelligent debate when one group of witnesses is silenced during the committee process.

It is my hope that Ohioans know that no matter where they stand on an issue, they can be confident their voices will be heard by those they have elected in the people’s house.”

If you missed Statehouse News Bureau Bill Cohen’s report, here it is again:

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