Both sides of the issue have condemned the influence of outside special interests in Ohio elections, but both sides of the campaign are bringing in millions of dollars from out of state.
The “vote yes” campaign has money coming into three main political action funds.
“We are where we thought we were going to be,” advisor to the Protect Our Constitution Political Action Committee (PAC) Matt Dole said.
The Protect Our Constitution Political Action Committee has filed documents showing $4.8 million total. It has spent $1.5 million, mostly on advertising, research, and fundraising. According to finance filings, $4.1 million (85.66%) came from out of state, with $4 million contributed by an Illinois billionaire named Richard Uihlein.
“Richard Uihlein is attempting to plan the demise of his own influence in Ohio,” Dole said. “By supporting Issue 1, he is making it hard for his influence to be felt in the future. Honestly, and I say this with a straight face, it is a selfless act on his part.”
The “yes” side also has money coming into funds called Protect Women Ohio and Protect Women Ohio Action, INC.
Protect Women Ohio reported $9.7 million, with $8.1 million coming from out of state, about 83.64%. All but $4,639 of that out-of-state money comes from Virginia.
The Protect Women Ohio Action Fund is registered to a Virginia address and reports $5.2 million, all out-of-state money. That fund has contributed at least $2 million to the Protect Women Ohio PAC.
“What you’re seeing is people coming in and saying the time to spend money is now because it will make it significantly more difficult to get the radical changes in November,” Dole said.
The “no” side of the issue is led by the “One Person One Vote” organization that is reporting $14.8 million raised, with $12.4 million (83.94%) coming from out of state. Of that out-of-state money, $4.3 million is from California and $5.9 million from Washington DC.
“The money coming into the ‘no’ side indicates that folks are desperately trying to cling to their influence in the constitution,” Dole said.
NBC4 reached out to the One Person One Vote campaign, which declined NBC4’s request for an interview, saying it is sticking by a statement released Thursday. That statement reads:
“We are proud of the enormous bipartisan coalition that has come together to defeat Issue 1. The stakes couldn’t be higher, and we’re working every day to communicate with every voter about how Issue 1 would end majority rule in Ohio.”One Person One Vote campaign