From the monthly archives: June 2013

Governor John Kasich just signed the next two year budget in typical Kasich fashion: he showed up late, signed the document and then left without taking any questions from the press.

The budget increases sales and property taxes on Ohioans, continues cuts to the Local Government Fund that impact public safety in Ohio,  continues cuts to education, introduces some of the most extreme, anti-women abortion restrictions in the nation all while increasing state General Revenue Fund (GRF) spending by over $11 Billion compared to Governor Strickland’s last budget.

As we’ve discussed before, here are the GRF [...]

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Yesterday’s pro-choice rally at the Ohio Statehouse gave us a preview of what future “security upgrades” at the public building might look like.  It wasn’t pretty and it’s only going to get worse.

The mostly-female crowd of over 100 showed up to protest the anti-choice amendments recently added to the state budget and to deliver 17,000 petitions to Kasich at his Statehouse office.   Kasich’s staff locked the office and refused to accept the petitions, which were then left in a pile outside.

Attendees noticed an increased presence of Ohio Highway Patrol troopers inside and outside of the Statehouse, and troopers [...]

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Two nights ago I posted about a last-second anti-woman amendment to the Ohio budget, which awaits Governor Kasich’s signature. Because of the large quantity of commentary, I’d like to clarify with a second post.

The lens for viewing the last-second undebated ultrasound provision in the Ohio budget is that of Personhood, not of Heartbeat legislation. Why? Because it defines “pregnancy” as:

the human female reproductive condition that begins with fertilization, when the woman is carrying the developing human offspring, and that is calculated from the first day of the last menstrual period of the woman.

And it defines “fetus” [...]

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On Friday, the Kasich-verse went nuts over the May jobs report that shows Ohio’s unemployment rate didn’t move but Ohio led the nation in job growth in May.  It was so impressive that Ohio’s ranking in job growth over the past twelve months is now 43rd in the nation and not 46th.  Another site, using a very complicated formula, ranks Ohio’s private sector job growth since Kasich took office as 26th in the nation.  That survey notes that Ohio has, under Kasich, “an annual growth rate of 1.69 percent. That lags below the national average of [...]

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The Supreme Court’s decision the Federal Defense of Marriage Act (“DOMA”) probably means the end of the ban on same sex marriages in Ohio.  Sooner rather than later.

Justice Kennedy, writing for 1 5-4 Court majority, found that the DOMA violated the dupe process guarantees of the constitution.  This opinion will likely form the basis of successful court challenges to Ohio’s constitutional provision that prohibits same sex marriage.  The decision on the California case on the procedural standing issue doesn’t change anything.

The rulings leave in place laws banning same-sex marriage around the nation, and the Court declined to say [...]

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This morning I reported on a last-minute amendment to Ohio’s budget that had some strange new language I hadn’t seen. In my post-Texas pre-coffee haze, I reported that it requires an ultrasound before abortion. I was wrong and I apologize.

It requires an ultrasound and 24-hour wait before birth control.

Buckle up, because we’re going through the looking glass.

“Pregnancy” in the context of the informed-consent requirements now means “any fertilized egg”.

Abortion is undefined, but presumably it’s construed to mean “the termination of a pregnancy”.

The FDA claims that hormonal birth control reduces the likelihood of egg implantation. [...]

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It should be clearly resolved by now that today’s class of political conservatives is a mindless group of ideologues that tries to save itself from being losers by committing its energies to not being winners. In Ohio, for example, we are burdened with  a bizarre  collection of  rusticated Republican lawmakers carting into the Statehouse on the Chisholm Trail from the great open  spaces of their carefully guarded districts out of reach of urban voters.

Despite the evidence of the past presidential election that they are scarcely a regenerative force in broadening their slack appeal to the masses (beyond Mitt’s 47 pct.), [...]

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And the media goes nuts over it.

The Ohio Republican Party and conservatives are crowing about yesterday and today’s poll in Quinnipiac that show Kasich has increased his approval rating (by a point) to an all-time, Obama’s approval rating in Ohio has never been lower, and Kasich has opened up a wide lead against Ed FitzGerald.

The head of the conservative Opportunity Ohio, Matt Mayer, is crowing about how Ohioans are starting to turn against expanding Medicaid.

Unlike other polls that shows Hillary Clinton crushing all GOP candidates in various States (including in Florida [...]

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As the women of Texas shut that whole thing down, the Ohio GOP has added another War on Women provision to the Ohio budget.

As is apparently the norm, they want to redefine “medical emergency” and put women’s lives on the line for the sake of their obsessed ideology (and campaign donations).

The latest provision–in addition to the provisions that will close most of Ohio’s abortion facilities, the one that defunds family planning providers, and the one that uses federal welfare money to pay for scientifically fanciful anti-abortion billboards–is largely an ”ultrasound-and-mansplaining” requirement in the Ohio budget.

At least [...]

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Over the protests of farmers, retirees, and even right-wing economists, Gov. Kasich wants to raise the sales tax, CAT tax, and property tax to finance cuts to high-end income taxes. It’s an article of faith on the Right that this will make us more like fast-growing states, and the Dispatch dutifully parrots the talking point that raising income taxes is “harmful to growth”.

This seems counterintuitive for anybody with a memory longer than a decade. Ohio’s relative GDP growth before the 2005 tax cuts was 43rd in the nation; since the tax cuts, it’s been 48th in [...]

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Over the course of the budget debate, Governor Kasich and his conservative allies have gone through countless revisions of his “tax reform” plan claiming each succeeding version was more pro-business and more “job creator-y” then the last.

The only problem is that the conservative Tax Foundation, whom the tax reform proposal was intended to be geared to, keeps raining on the parade.  When the Senate enacted its version, the Tax Foundation couldn’t contain its disappointment in a conservative one-party government so fumbling conservative tax reform so poorly:

This is bad policy, and many supporters are errantly pushing it [...]

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