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Tuesday's results serve as springboard for 2012

Published: Thu, November 10, 2011 @ 12:01 a.m.




Proponents and opponents of collective-bargaining reform and federal health-care mandates are using Tuesday’s election results as a springboard into next year’s presidential election.

Voter turnout for the off-year election was at its highest in two decades.

And pollsters say their surveys leading up to Election Day were in line with the final double-digit margins on the major issues.

Here are a few other things you should know about Tuesday’s


1. Democrats in 2012

Democrats will use the rejection of Issue 2 as a launching point for their campaign against Republicans in presidential and state contests next year, including Republican state Treasurer Josh Mandel’s expected run for the U.S. Senate.

Ohio Democratic Party Chairman Chris Redfern said Wednesday that campaigns will target GOP lawmakers who voted “yes” on

Senate Bill 5.

“Next year ... all Republican candidates, whether they are running for the Statehouse or the White House, will have to answer the

basic question of whether or not they stood up for Ohio’s middle class over the last year,” he said. “Our Republican friends at the Statehouse who voted for Senate Bill 5 will have to answer for those votes today, tomorrow and through the course of the next cycle and


2. Republicans in 2012

Likewise, Republicans will use the passage of Issue 3 as a launching point for their campaign against President Barack Obama and Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Avon.

In a released statement, state party chairman Kevin DeWine said, “The people of our state sent a message today that they want common-sense reform, not onerous job-threatening mandates that will increase costs for small businesses, and raise health-care premiums and taxes on the backs of seniors and working class Ohioans.”

He added, “Ohio’s reputation as the quintessential bellwether state is well-earned; and our formal rejection of Barack Obama’s signature domestic achievement only further underscores the uphill battle the president and Sherrod Brown presently face on their path to re-election in 2012.”

3. Voter Turnout

More than 3.5 million of the state’s 7.7 million registered voters participated in Tuesday’s election, a turnout rate of 46 percent, according to the secretary of state’s preliminary count.

That’s the highest percentage turnout during an odd-year election since 1991, when 51.26 percent of voters cast ballots.

The highest turnouts were in Geauga, Ottawa, Noble and Putnam counties, which topped 55 percent. The lowest was in Athens County, with about 32 percent. In 28 counties, at least half of registered voters cast ballots.

4. Final Margins

About 2 million (62 percent) voters opposed Issue 1, which would have extended the mandatory retirement age for judges. About 1.2 million (38 percent) supported it. The number of voters opposed outnumbered the number of supporters in all of Ohio’s 88 counties.

More than 2.1 million voters (61 percent) voted to stop Issue 2, while close to 1.4 million (39 percent) supported it. In six counties, voters who supported Issue 2 outpaced those who opposed it. The opposite was true in the rest of the counties in the state.

The final margins on Issue 3, a tea party-backed effort to block health-care mandates from taking effect in the state, were a bit wider, with more than 2.2 million (66 percent) of voters supporting it and close to 1.2 million (34 percent) of voters opposed. The number of supporters outnumbered opponents in all of Ohio’s counties.

5. Polling Accuracy

The Quinnipiac University Polling Institute threw out a quick “told-you-so” Wednesday, after the margin in Tuesday’s election came close to its projections.

The Connecticut-based institute regularly gauges Ohioans’ opinions of candidates and issues.

It’s polling on Senate Bill 5 throughout the campaign was consistent in showing voters opposed the legislation, with 25-point margin between opponents and proponents in its last poll before Election Day. The final results Tuesday night had a 22-point margin.

6. White House Response

Tuesday’s defeat of Issue 2 prompted written congratulations from Vice President Joe Biden: “Fundamental fairness has prevailed. By standing with teachers and firefighters and cops, Ohio has sent a loud and clear message that will be heard all across the country: The middle class will no longer be trampled on.”

7. Future Consideration

Statehouse chatter in recent weeks has suggested that Republicans would move forward with portions of Senate Bill 5 that voters approve — namely requirements for the percentages public employees pay toward their health insurance and pensions.

But it doesn’t sound like future collective- bargaining reform is on a fast track.

“When a fella falls down the stairs, the next time he’ll turn on a light,” Republican House Speaker Bill Batchelder said Wednesday in response to a question about whether his chamber would handle future legislative reform attempts differently. “We have no intention at this time of doing anything about any of those [Senate Bill 5] issues in the House of Representatives.”

8. Referendums

Batchelder, Senate President Tom Niehaus and Gov. John Kasich were asked on Tuesday night whether the results of Issue 2 affected their governance, given the referendums against Senate Bill 5, GOP-backed election law changes and the Republican congressional redistricting plan .

“We have a political party in Ohio that apparently doesn’t believe in some of the premises upon which our government was established,” Batchelder said. “So they’re going to question things [with referendums], that’s their business of course. They have a right to do that. I think at one point sooner or later the public will become unhappy with that, and for good reason.”

9. Legal Challenges

Opponents of Issue 3 said the overwhelming approval of the tea party-backed constitutional amendment wouldn’t be the last word on health-care mandates in Ohio.

In a released statement, Ohio Consumers for Health Coverage said the issue will “likely generate numerous lawsuits at taxpayer’s expense. Depending on court interpretation, Issue 3 could tie the hands of our lawmakers and put the future of important public health programs in the hands of lawyers and judges.”

And Dale Butland, spokesman for the main campaign group that opposed Issue 3, added, “In time, Ohioans will be forced to fix or repeal this amendment.”

10. Judge Ages

As was the case throughout the campaign, there was little comment on Issue 1 after its defeat, though Ohio Supreme Court Justice Maureen O’Connor said Wednesday she hoped Ohioans would eventually reconsider the state’s judicial age limit.

In a released statement, she said, “Issue 1 would have been a step in the right direction for age equality in Ohio, but progress sometimes takes time. I understand the hesitation people have to make a policy change like this. I hope we continue to move toward a world where arbitrary age limits are not placed on public service, and the only thing that matters is a citizen’s ability to serve.”


1taxme(361 comments)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

Issue 3. Health care. DOCTORS MAKE TO MUCH MONEY! It's simple. They need more competition to bring their prices down. Open up more medical schools. Blame the AMA. The strongest union in the nation is the blame for health care cost. Research for yourself. The AMA purposely and intentionally limited competition years ago. Isn't there something in our constitution to protect us from this?

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2lee(544 comments)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

taxme, yes Dr's make a lot of money but they also employ a lot of people. One Dr's office in alliance has 4 Dr's and 40 employees, years back they didn't need any, then the Govt. got involved, maybe you heard of it medicare

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3NoBS(2757 comments)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

lee, more than the doctors and more than the government, blame the insurance companies!! They're the ones making obscene profits during these times, and they own some of the finest politicians money can buy.

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4Attis(1128 comments)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

Voter turnout continues to be a disgrace. We need election day registration, like voters revived in Maine, everywhere in the nation. Of course, those running the show do not want most people to vote so they will continue to push voter suppression laws like voter ID requirements. Democracy is not a spectator sport or a rigged game.

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5taxme(361 comments)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

Lee and NoBS. Doctors continue to make money hand over foot regardless of how many people they employ. Maybe along with there incomes they should reduce their workforce. MORE COMPETITION for doctors will bring health care down. Insurance companies pass on doctors high incomes and insurance fraud onto us. How can you blame the insurance companies for that. Im not saying they arnt part of the problem but the BIGGEST part is the AMA and doctors.

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6glbtactivist(320 comments)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

Hopefully this will be just the first volley by the middle class in the war being waged by the top 1% to redistribute the wealth of the middle class to the rich. If the war on the middle class doesn't reverse soon, there will be no economy to talk about. Next volley: Wall Street Kasich.

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7card64inmyrtle(26 comments)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

People all over the world are getting sick and tired of the rich running everything on the planet......the 1% can't enslave the 99 %.........UNION FOREVER

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8JME(802 comments)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

Malpractice insurance premiums also driving up health care costs.
Thank people like Dave Betras for that.

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9NoBS(2757 comments)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

GTX, please learn a few things before you embarrass yourself further. The police and fire departments aren't allowed, BY LAW, to strike. That's why they have collective bargaining and binding arbitration. Those are civilized alternatives to striking.

And, with the side-show comedy that the Republican presidential race has become, they're giving Obama his second term on a platter. If that crop of idiots is the best they can do, they're not going to go very far.

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10walter_sobchak(2672 comments)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

If you believe a doctor is overcompensated, you are misinformed. First, four years of undergraduate work, then four years of medical school, then years of internship and residency. Then, if they want something like a pediatric specialty, it takes another couple of years of internship. All the while, racking up massive student debt of many $100,000's. Then, to top it off, there is the cost to buy into an established practice since starting your own is very costly also. All of this and starting a paying career at about 28 years old. They are compensated well and they deserve it because the price is very high in both monetary and life toll. My son at one time wanted to pursue an MD degree but realized the cost was one that he didn't want to pay. Couldn't blame him when there are people like you out there that think like you.

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11redvert(2238 comments)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

myrtle, the truth is that it is not 1% and 99%. actually it is 53% and 47%. The 53% supports the 47% with their taxes so the 47% (members of the teat party) can get their free ride. Remember, just because you may pay taxes all year long, if you get it all back and more at the end of the year, you are not a actual tax payer, you are just a drain on society.

I am one of the 53%ers., what are you?

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12Jumpstart50(1 comment)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

Dr.'s are worth every penny they make. Everybody likes to sit back and bitch because somebody makes more than them for what ever reason, and feel the Government should step in and give that money to them. Union, Union, Union, is a war cry that will run this country into the ground if you let it. Union's care about nothing but taking money. They don't care about the worker. Don't be fooled. I am a union worker and they don't care. If you are laid off or sick, better make sure you get those dues in. If you have fallen on bad times, better get them dues in. All they want is your money to pay themselves. Stop complaining about what others make, get off your asses and go make your own way in life. Nobody owes you a thing. Earn your way, thats the American dream. It gives everybody in the United States the right to make it. You like to blame others for holding you back. The only person holding you back is yourself. Its not the "1% enslaving the 99%". Thats an excuse for your own shortcomings. There's not a damn one of you out there that wouldn't want to be one of the 1%. The insurance companies can make what ever they want to make. Doctors can make what ever they want to make. So can you. If your current job doesn't pay what you think its worth, get another job or make yourself worth more. You can't keep taking and not performing. If you wanna sit back and say the "Government does", then vote them out. That's one of the rights you have. Get to the polls. Stop being an armchair quarterback. Get out there and do something about it. Or better yet, YOU run for office.

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13captdinger(110 comments)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

Why no mention of the 30 million "member's" dollars spent by the union to get it shot down.

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14TonyL(44 comments)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

If you want jobs and fix our economy, get out from under the strangle hold of the public and private sector unions and allow Companies to bring profits from overseas tax free. Ohio voters just cooked their goose with issue 2. Like the old proverb says, The Stupid will always remain stupid!! Without dumb and stupid people, Labor Unions will eventually disappear!

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15borylie(946 comments)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

These are the same robots that used fear; as in if there's a fire who do you count on,a fireman. Pay the fireman all he wants,and policemen too. Pay the teachers all they want,because they teach your kids. Yet a doctor makes too much money.
Do you see what you're dealing with on these blogs? They're really a bunch of stupid people,which is what the union honchos depend on.

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16NoBS(2757 comments)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

No, boryLIE, it's not about unions. Jeeze, obsess much? It's about how in this valley instead of working harder to earn for yourself what someone else has, the peasants do their best to tear everyone down who has more than anyone else.

So they think doctors make too much. But I haven't seen one word - not one stinkin' word - about the grown men who make tens and even hundreds of millions of dollars when they're so dumb they can barely write their own name. But they can chase a little ball around a field better than anyone else can.

There's no hope.

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17Freeatlast(1991 comments)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

If you think the unions have 30 million to spend I have a bridge to sell you Stupid

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18Phil_EngAmer(32 comments)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

I think it’s a bit premature to assume that this will such a springboard. On the same day of the SB5 vote, another vote was held in districts around the state proposing tax levies and increases to support education in the state. Most of these levies were strongly voted down by the citizens of the state (http://eng.am/vXAwy4).

As a result funding towards schools will decrease in many districts. Clearly we see a conflict of interest here. The state wants to protect the public employees’ right to bargain, but not at the expense of their own tax dollars. Other states, like Colorado, have been vehement about voting down tax increase to support public sector institutions (http://eng.am/vfscdi). As states continue to run out of money, job loss is likely to follow.

Once we see how the state reacts financially to the lack of legislation we should get a better sense of what kind of impact this will have nationally. This vote became very emotional, so we should probably wait to pass judgment until the state has cooled down and impact of the legislation (or lack thereof) is actually felt

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19borylie(946 comments)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

I'm not sure if we agree or disagree. Maybe if you weren't trying to be a smart ass all of the time we could understand you. Jeeze!

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20mufla(1 comment)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

HaHaHa! Unions are great!
They have done soooo much for Youngstown, Detroit, and Cleveland. What about Ohio,
California, and Illinois. Let us not forget about Forum Health being run into the
ground by a union. Anyone want to talk about the auto or steel industry and how unions help their longevity. Unions are now killing our state and local budgets with their members benefits and pensions. Go ahead pro-union folks. Keep it up. I enjoy watching blind dogs being lead around by unions that are no better than the big corporations you hate. It is the person like me that is really getting sick and tired of unions and big corporations screwing us. That is when both of you are going to be sorry when we stop paying for your union benefits and stop using big corporations products. Will the real Americans please stand up and fight these two groups ruining this country!

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21taxme(361 comments)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

Fudputer. that ain't gonna cut it. I dont care how much debt doctors run up with student loans. Most come from rich families and have none. I feel sorry for the young person who graduates college with 50,000-100,000 of student loans and can't find a job or finds a job because of the economy makes very little. Im very not saying doctors arn't worth what they make, and I'm saying they arn't sacrificing like most Americans and they need to look in the mirror when it comes to to health care cost. Today doctors make to much money.

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22ohldepharte(25 comments)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

taxme -- your comments regarding doctors and the AMA reveal a shocking lack of knowledge and, perhaps, intelligence. The AMA represents only 29% of doctors. That fairly small minority representation can hardly bear the responsibility for health care costs, much less limiting competition.

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23taxme(361 comments)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

I stand by what I say ohldepharte. Years ago the AMA limited the amount of medical schools so there would be less doctors. Less competiting means more $$$$$. I thought we had laws against this but they are above all! DO a little googling or binging of the issue.
Once again I am not saying they arnt worth it just that they need to sacrifice like us all. $22,000 a year for my health care. HUH... tell me their incomes arnt part of it! u make me laugh

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24db(280 comments)posted 4 years, 7 months ago

Lawyers & insurance companies make too much money. Doctors work too many hours.

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