Government: Constitution

Support a clear, flexible, organized, and internally consistent Constitution.
Position In Brief: 

Support a clear, flexible, organized, and internally consistent Constitution. Support specification that taxation is a General Assembly responsibility and that funding should be flexible. Support independence of judges, with preference for merit selection. Oppose term limits for the General Assembly.

Ohio Constitution

General Criteria (Adopted May 1968)

LWVO believes a constitution should be a clearly stated body of fundamental principles. It should provide for the flexible operation of government and be logically organized and internally consistent.

Taxation and Finance (Adopted Mary 1969)

LWVO supports constitutional revision that would:

  • Remove the fixed dollar debt limit and provide a flexible limit tied to some indicator of the state’s economic wealth.
  • Specify that the power to levy state taxes and determine their uses resides in the General Assembly. This necessitates removal of constitutional provisions dealing with earmarking of taxes.

Judiciary (Adopted March 1973, amended May 2003)

LWVO believes that the selection and tenure of judges are fundamental matters and therefore should be provided for in the Constitution. LWVO supports policies that promote the independence of the judiciary. LWVO supports constitutional revision to provide for:

  • Nomination of judges for Appellate and Supreme Courts by judicial nominating commissions that are carefully balanced and broadly based. Commissions must be nonpartisan or bipartisan and must include both legal and lay members and not be dominated by the former.
  • Appointment of judges by the Governor from lists provided by a nominating commission.
  • The inclusion of constitutional provisions to require appointive judges to run against their own records in noncompetitive elections.
  • While an all-elective judiciary exists, LWVO supports provision for the nonpartisan election of judges in both primary and general elections, public financing, stricter standards for recusal, enhanced reporting and transparency of contributions, and increased education of voters as to the role of the judiciary and the qualifications of candidates for judicial office.

Term Limits (Adopted May 1992)

The LWVO opposes term limits for members of the Ohio General Assembly.

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