After a day like today, many of us are still trying to process the unthinkable tragedy in a Connecticut elementary school. As a parent, I’m horrified and extremely grateful to be able to tuck my kids into their beds tonight, thinking about those who won’t have that pleasure.
And I’m angry. Angry, mostly because these events keep happening and nothing is ever done. After Virginia Tech and again after Tucson, we had brief national conversations about mental illness and guns, but nothing happened. More recent incidents haven’t even led to a conversation. The NRA and gun advocates have become so [...]Full Story... →
That’s how close Democrats are to avoiding something just shy of the worst-case-scenario in the Ohio statehouse.
Republicans currently control the 99-member Ohio House of Representatives with a 59 member majority. That’s plenty to pass legislation into law, as we’ve seen since 2010. But if the GOP had 60 votes, their powers increase.
With a 60-vote “super majority,” legislative Republicans add to their powers in two key ways:
1. With 60 votes, the GOP can unilaterally put measures on the ballot. Typically, because of the 60-vote requirement, measures placed on the ballot legislatively are popular, bipartisan proposals like [...]Full Story... →
A key aspect of Obamacare is its mandate for health insurance. To make finding coverage easier, beginning in 2014, consumers and businesses will be able to shop for and compare insurance plans on websites known as “exchanges.
States can set up their own exchange, putting them in control of key decisions such as which insurance plans are offered and what they must cover. States can also opt out and let the federal government make all the decisions. A third option exists for a state-federal hybrid. Today was the deadline for states to indicate whether they would run a [...]Full Story... →
Defending his performance managing Ohio’s election, Husted argued that because of the high stakes involved with being an electoral vote-rich swing state, Ohio’s elections chief is always scrutinized and criticized. (Funny, we don’t remember that happening in 2008, but that’s beside the point).
Husted’s solution to this perceived problem of Democrats and the national media picking on him? He says we should make Ohio less important in the election by dividing up our electoral votes by Congressional district.
This is huge [...]Full Story... →
Today’s story is the incredibly long lines to vote across Ohio. Unlike in 2008, early voting was limited to weekdays by Secretary of State Jon Husted. But thanks to a lawsuit by the Obama campaign, two weekend days were restored — yesterday and today — and the lines clearly demonstrate that Ohioans want (or need) to vote on the weekend.
Don’t like long lines to vote? Be sure to let your State Representative and State Senator know. The GOP is already promising to revisit Ohio’s early voting process during the lame duck legislative session later this month, and you can [...]Full Story... →
In my ongoing effort to ensure no Plunderbund reader makes it through the next nine days without doing something to help a campaign, today we have another great project that could use your help.
On election day, the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law – the authoritative source of voting rights research in the U.S. – and Common Cause are teaming up on an important research project. They will be conducting an exit poll in several battleground states to look at the effect of restrictive voting laws and other obstacles voters may experience in voting.
[...]Full Story... →
Today’s New York Times reports that Mitt Romney, in an attempt to repair the damage done by his “47 percent” comments, is running a new ad in key swing states in which he tries to relate to the unemployed and underpayed among us.
Interesting thing about the ad, according to the Times. It’s not running in Ohio:
On Wednesday, the Romney campaign reserved $3.4 million worth of advertising time in eight swing states. Nearly half of that — more than $1.5 million — was for Virginia. The rest was spread across Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, North [...]Full Story... →
Another day, another bad poll result for Mitt Romney.
Today’s edition is the new NBC-Marist poll. The group surveyed 979 likely Ohio voters by phone from September 9-11. A poll of likely voters is typically more predictive and reliable than those merely targeting registered voters, many of whom do not turn out in November.
The results are devastating for Romney. Obama leads among likely voters 50-43.
But, more importantly, the results show that voters don’t have the same warm and fuzzy feelings for the Republican candidate. Only 40 percent of voters have a favorable [...]Full Story... →
Since 2005, Ohio has allowed early, in-person voting with many counties opening at night and on weekends to help reduce the lines on election day. The program was so well received, especially in the black community, that the GOP has done everything it can over the past year to limit early voting in hopes of avoiding a repeat of Obama’s win in 2008.
Last year, they passed a law that blocked early voting on the 3 [...]Full Story... →
You may have read that the Governor signed a new “tourism bill” yesterday. Indeed, Senate Bill 314 includes funds for the state’s office of tourism, which had otherwise been zeroed out in Kasich’s two year budget last June. So, yes, with the passage of SB314, Kasich found a way not to kill the tourism office after all.
But SB314 was anything but a tourism bill. Just 6 of the bill’s 150 pages deal with the new TourismOhio program and its experimental five-year funding plan.
Of course, thanks to holding the bill signing at the Rock and Roll [...]Full Story... →
There is a war on science and the environment in Ohio. Numerous recent pieces of legislation and decisions by state agencies make it clear—the GOP has put politics over science and the health of Ohio’s environment time and time again. One need only look to recent legislation to allow drilling in state parks, unlimited water withdrawals from Lake Erie, or new fracking regulation which prevent disclosure of chemicals used in the fracking process and continue to allow disposal of fracking waste by deep underground injection.
Today we’ll explore one of several recent examples of the Kasich administration making decisions based more on [...]Full Story... →