Ohioans for Healthy Families, the state wide coalition that has sought enactment of a paid sick day law in the Buckeye state, announced today that it will ask that the Ohio Healthy Families Act not appear on the November ballot.
You might call this the Thomas Eagleton of ballot initiatives.
The group that filed the ballot request will formally request of the SOS later that the initiative not appear on the ballot. Apparently Gov. Ted Strickland was involved in getting them to retract it.
My question is, since they’ve already submitted the petition, with 240,000 signatures, to Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner, by what reasoning should they be able to unilaterally retract it? I mean, nearly a quarter million people signed up to put it on the Ohio ballot. Does the group that submitted the petition have the authority to speak on behalf of all those people when the group changes its mind? Did a quarter million people also change their minds?
It might be legal, but it doesn’t seem ethical. Those folks signed up to get the initiative on the ballot, not to pledge their allegiance to whatever Ohioans for Healthy Families decided to do next.