Statehouse Day speaker calls for civility
Sunday, Apr. 10, 2011
Fred Andrle offered strategies for responding to incivility and harmful behavior at this year's Statehouse Day, Apr. 7, sponsored by the League of Women Voters of Ohio.
Andrle, retired host of WOSU's "Open Line" radio program, opened the day-long focus on Ohio public policy. He spoke of his reaction over the years to radio program callers who expressed uncivil, hostile, and bigoted remarks.
The room on the 31st floor of the Vern Riffe Center was packed with more than a hundred League members, welcomed by LWV-Ohio President (and Metro League member) Meg Flack. Attendees later heard from a panel discussing the state's biennial budget; the panel featured State Budget Director Tim Keen, Health Policy Institute of Ohio director Amy McGee, and Advocates for Ohio's Future co-chair Margaret Hulbert. The theme of civility continued, with Keen and Hulbert exchanging viewpoints on the role of the budget to protect vulnerable populations.
Over lunch, Secretary of State Jon Husted lobbied the crowd for support for his election reform plan. He spoke of a compromise on the proposal passed by the Ohio House of Representatives to require voters to show voter ID before voting, which the League opposes. Husted's plan is to require all nine digits of a voter's social security number, instead of the last four digits now required.
The afternoon was filled with workshops on redistricting, health care reform, education, and criminal justice reform. The day concluded with members making visits to legislators and with a reception honoring Peg Rosenfield and Joan Lawrence for their longtime work on election reform and redistricting reform.