Issues 1 and 3 aren’t in best interest of Ohio

Published 10:02 am Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Ohio voters will be asked to make difficult decisions on three statewide ballot issues on Tuesday. Issue 2, the collective-bargaining legislation, has gotten most of the attention, in part, because the other two offer much clearer choices.

Both are amendments to Ohio’s Constitution, something that should never be taken lightly. Issue 1 would increase the maximum age for judges to seek office from 70 to 75. Issue 3 essentially states that Ohioans could not be mandated to purchase health care.

Even though both have some merit, the best choice for Ohio’s citizens is to vote “no” on both.

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Ohio’s judicial system has worked well for many years and having an age limit of 70 keeps Ohio in line with about half the other states in the nation. It also allows change and new ideas to be infused.

We have seen no evidence that the current age limit is detrimental to Ohio’s judicial system so there is no reason to change it at this time.

Issue 3 is far more challenging. Although we agree with the underlying principle of it — that citizens deserve to have freedom of choice when it comes to health care — the legislation itself virtually means nothing. It will not prevent “Obamacare” from impacting Ohio because federal law takes precedence over state law.

So, the measure is mostly symbolic and there remains legitimate questions about how it would negatively impact Ohio’s existing laws in this area.

These issues may not be grabbing the headlines but they are important. Voters should do everything they can to educate themselves about both sides of these important issues.

We believe voting “no” on issues 1 and 3 will best protect Ohioans and not unnecessarily alter the state’s constitution.