FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, June 19, 2015
STATEMENT FROM OHIO SECRETARY OF STATE JON HUSTED
COLUMBUS – In response to media questions regarding the potential outcome if both the monopoly-prohibiting amendment and the ResponsibleOhio marijuana amendment were to be placed on the November 2015 ballot and both be approved by the voters, Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted issued the following guidance:
“As the state’s chief elections officer, I feel it is important for voters to fully understand what a vote for or against either proposal will mean and what the potential outcomes will be if one or both of these proposed initiatives were to prevail in November. It is important to note that this is a discussion of two potential proposals, neither of which has officially reserved a place on this November’s ballot at this point.
“It is clear that the marijuana proposal from ResponsibleOhio and the anti-monopoly language proposed by the General Assembly are in conflict with each other. Specifically, the section of the ResponsibleOhio proposal that creates a private marijuana monopoly directly conflicts with the General Assembly’s proposal, which seeks to prohibit the creation of such commercial monopolies.
“In such cases, the Ohio constitution clearly establishes a resolution to this conflict by declaring that the amendment that receives the greater number of votes prevails.
“However, the Ohio Constitution also stipulates that a citizen-initiated petition will go into effect 30 days after passage, whereas the constitution makes no mention of any delay for initiatives placed before the voters by the General Assembly. Thus, should both proposed measures be approved, the anti-monopoly amendment put forth by the legislature would go into effect first and it’s provision banning a monopoly from inclusion in the constitution would serve as an effective roadblock to ResponsibleOhio’s amendment taking effect.
“In either circumstance, should the legislature’s amendment be approved at the ballot box, it will establish dominance and prevent ResponsibleOhio’s provision from taking a place in the state’s constitution.”
Ohio Constitution, Article 16, Section 1 states, in part:
“If the majority of the electors voting on the same shall adopt such amendments the same shall become a part of the constitution.”
Ohio Constitution, Article 2, Section 1B states, in part:
“Any proposed law or amendment to the constitution submitted to the electors as provided in 1a and 1b, if approved by a majority of the electors voting thereon, shall take effect thirty days after the election at which it was approved and shall be published by the secretary of state.”
For more information, please contact Joshua Eck at (614) 466-2729