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For all but four of the last 23 years, Republicans have held control of the governor’s mansion and both houses of the Ohio General Assembly. Buoyed by conservative support across huge swathes of the state’s rural landscapes, the GOP has dominated politics in Ohio and placed a chokehold on the our state’s working class.

A generation of Ohioans has grown up in the shadow of this conservative death star, constantly clamoring for lower taxes, more deregulation and more handouts to big businesses, even as their rural constituents struggled to make ends meet. Jobs were slashed en masse, wages plummeted in […]

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Last week State Rep. John Becker unveiled the latest round of attacks on unions and Ohio’s working class, aiming to dissolve unions in both the public and private sector. However, Ohio AFL-CIO is fighting back with a fiery letter sent to all state representatives.

Timothy Burga, president Ohio AFL-CIO, in his letter urging other representatives not to become co-sponsors said, “If these proposals were enacted, hard-working Ohioans from every part of the state would be negatively impacted… These measures are nothing but a thinly-veiled attempt

to silence employees at the workplace, strip them of their political voice, and slash […]

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Kasich Budget promises cuts to vital programs

In two weeks, Govenor Kasich will introduce his last state budget, and early indications suggest it will reduce services for people who need them the most to pay for tax cuts for people who need them least.

Why cuts? There are two reasons Kasich is asking his agencies to cut spending. First, tax revenue is not growing as fast as forecasts suggested, which is hardly surprising when the state cut income taxes, primarily on those at the very top, for 11 of the past 12 years. On top of the revenue shortfall, Republicans still want […]

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This post comes to us from Innovation Ohio, where it was originally published.

Take Action Now: contact your State Representative today to oppose SB331

Today, the Ohio House is moving a bill that radically undermines the notion of local control and ties the hands of communities to set standards for the treatment of workers.

Enshrined into the constitution is a strong commitment to local control, or “home rule”:

Municipalities shall have authority to exercise all powers of local self-government and to adopt and enforce within their limits such local police, sanitary and other similar regulations, as are not in conflict with […]

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Last year, Republican State Representative Barbara Sears introduced a bill (HB394) aimed at making Ohio’s Unemployment Compensation Trust Fund solvent again after it took a beating during the recession.  The bill was an extreme, right wing, anti-worker wish list, written with the help of business groups and without input from labor

HB394 dramatically reduced the length of time a worker collects benefits while unemployed, eliminated bonus pay for workers with dependents, added mandatory drug testing for unemployed workers, all while leaving employers paying the same as they have been since 1995, only instituting a modest increase if a downturn drains the trust fund.

Hearings for HB394 […]

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While it’s pretty much common knowledge that Ohio’s junior Senator, Rob Portman, has millions of dollars coming into his reelection campaign from billionaires who don’t live in the state, a recent report has emerged that breaks down some of the murky (and unflattering) details about how this is being done and who it benefits.

The report, conducted by an advocacy group called Hedge Clippers — a coalition of policy, labor and grassroots organizing groups — details how “vulture capitalists” from Wall Street have destroyed companies and killed jobs in Ohio, and want to do more of the same, all while […]

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Today, Trump campaign representatives spelled out a plan he is prepared to unveil tonight to provide six weeks of paid maternity leave to new parents through unemployment benefits for those whose employers don’t offer paid maternity leave. There are a number of immediately obvious problems with the plan.

(Birth?) Mothers Only

According to reporting by the Washington Post, the plan would apply to mothers and not be transferable to fathers. This flies in the face of considerable research showing that when fathers take paternity leave, it leads to a number of positive outcomes for children and parents. For example, when men take leave to […]

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Lost in the fray of what is probably the craziest election year ever, is a recent report about the health of Ohio’s public pension systems — one that should probably cause any Ohioan paying into those systems a bit of concern.

As outlined in an article by John Damschroder, a former member of Gov. George Voinovich’s administration no less, Ohio’s public pension systems are currently “sinking in the quicksand of terrible investment returns and ultra high expenses.”

According to Damschroder, “Ohio relies on secretive alternative investments more than any state in America” and because of this, the state’s five public pensions ended […]

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They’re scared of us, folks, and they’re smart to be. Ohio Republicans know that making any significant move on the “right to work” plan state Rep. Tom Brinkman has put forward would harsh their 2016 like nothing else could.

Ohio Gov. John Kasich is still frowning his way through the big GOP Presidential Dance, and doesn’t want any part of the teeth gnashing such a bill would set off in his home state. While Ohio Republicans, in their heart of hearts, would love to kick unions as hard as they can, they know that if they try, Lucy’s going to pull […]

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When P.G. Sittenfeld all but admitted that he lied to multiple senior Ohio Democratic Party leaders, elected officials, and activists that he would support Ted Strickland and drop out of the race if Strickland got in, some dismissed it as such “inside baseball” that it wouldn’t really hurt Sittenfeld to backtrack on his word with so many high profile Democrats (including Governor Strickland himself.)  When Sittenfeld’s publicly touted hire of a campaign manager walked off the job after only two months,  Sittenfeld’s campaign initially tried to play it off as all part of the plan (despite […]

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Democratic State Senator Kenny Yuko, who represents the 25th District and is the primary sponsor of SB 25, talked Tuesday about his bill to increase Ohio’s minimum wage shortly after House Republican leadership presented highlights of a substitute budget bill, HB 64, that veers sharply away from the record-setting executive budget presented by Gov. John Kasich. The bill has many highlights, one of which is that it reduces the governor’s historic-high budget bill by $775 million.

GOP’s Ryan: Market Responsible For Boosting Wages And Benefits

GOP leadership said Sub. H.B. 64 cuts taxes, ensures state […]

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