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Ohio: Before the Storm


The major news in the Buckeye State centered on several statewide “reform” initiatives that were slapped on the ballot in the wake of scandals surrounding Gov. Robert Taft and other statehouse Republicans.
The major initiatives, campaigns for which were all funded by left-of-center groups, were all defeated: No. 2, more stringent requirements for absentee voting; No. 3, to reduce the limit on campaign donations to state candidates from $10,000 to $2,000; No. 4, to have a panel of retired judges oversee redistricting instead of the present system of leaving it to three statewide elected officials; and No. 5, to take oversight of state elections from the secretary of state and placed in the hands of a special commission.

One interesting result that may portend bad days ahead for Republicans came in the race for clerk of Franklin County (Columbus).

In what would normally have been a slam-dunk for the GOP, incumbent Republican Clerk Michael Pirik was unseated by Democrat Lori Tyack. Tyack, who rolled up more than 55% of the vote, is the wife of former Court of Appeals Judge Gary Tyack, who is already being boomed as a possible opponent to Republican Rep. Pat Tiberi next year.