“Federal appeals court to reconsider case affecting Attorney General Dave Yost’s authority to block proposed ballot issues”


A federal appeals court will reconsider a recent decision that could affect Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost’s ability to block future proposed ballot-issue campaigns via a state law that gives his office authority to sign off on proposed language that those campaigns must circulate with petitions to qualify for the ballot.

The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, in a 2-1 decision late last month, ordered Yost to approve petition language for a proposed state constitutional amendment that would make it easier for Ohioans to sue police for misconduct. Yost, a Republican, had repeatedly rejected petition language proposed by backers of the Protecting Ohioans Constitutional Rights amendment for numerous reasons, including the amendment’s proposed title.

But the appeals court announced on Monday that enough of the court’s judges had voted to perform what’s called an en banc review, in which every judge on the court votes on a case, and not just the randomly selected three judges that issue an initial decision. The broader review will replace the previous decision, issued by two judges appointed by Democratic presidents.

My earlier coverage is here.

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