COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — There are a few days before early voting begins for Ohio’s August election.
Starting Tuesday and until Aug. 8, Ohioans are going to the polls to vote on Issue 1. The sole purpose of the multi-million-dollar election is top decide whether to increase the threshold to amend the state’s constitution from a simple majority to 60%.
“People are aware, they’re angry, they’re engaged, they’re enraged,” Communications Director for One Person One Vote Dennis Willard said. “Because they know that majority rule as they know it is at risk.”
“Our people are motivated all across the state of Ohio,” President of Ohio Right to Life Mike Gonidakis said.
If the issue passes in August, it will make it more difficult to pass measures like the reproductive freedom proposal that could be on November ballots.
“We’ve got a couple weeks here before our August election and it’s ‘yes’ on 1 and that’s what we’re focused on,” Gonidakis said. “And on August 9 it is ‘no’ in November.”
Gonidakis said, while Right to Life has spent $6 million in advertisements and campaigning for the November vote, the August vote is more about reaching people directly.
“Our goal is to explain why we have to motivate people to show up in August to show up to the polls,” he said. “A 30 second commercial won’t do that.”
But, Willard said One Person One Vote is taking a different approach; he said their goal is to make sure Ohioans know about this election by all means possible.
“They [vote ‘yes’ groups] are trying to sneak this election past the voters,” Willard said. “We are raising awareness that there is a special election for special interests on August 8.”
NBC4 asked Gonidakis and Willard how much they are spending on campaigns and neither gave a figure, but both said they are in a good place.
“We have the resources to reach the voters, that’s really what matters. We have the resources to reach the voters on air, on the ground, by door knocking,” Willard said. “We also have 200 organizations, Natalie, that have come out against Issue 1 and are going to vote ‘no’ on August 8. We have 40 CEOs of major companies in this state who have come out against this.”
“Will there be tv? Yes, some groups will spend money on vote yes on Issue 1 on tv but that’s not paramount right now,” Gonidakis said. “There are four or five different entities that are focused on August 8 and that’s the beauty of our coalition, the diversity. Whether it’s life, your second amendment rights, small business owners, family farming.”
Gonidakis said big groups, like the NRA have also campaigned in Ohio on the vote ‘yes’ side.
The deadline to register to vote is July 10. Four weeks of early voting starts one day later on July 11.