Analysis: 33 attempts to change Ohio’s constitution since 2000, who was behind them and which ones passed

Credit: Barbara Perenic

Credit: Barbara Perenic

As state lawmakers debate increasing the threshold for amending the Ohio Constitution, the Dayton Daily News analyzed attempts to change the state’s guiding document since the turn of the century.

Of the 20 amendments made to the Ohio Constitution since the turn of the century, three-quarters were proposed by state lawmakers, not through the citizen-initiated process that Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose and state Rep. Brian Stewart, R-Ashville, proposed to make harder.

Go here for a full report on proposed legislation that would change how the Constitution is amended.

There were 16 citizen-led amendments on the ballot since 2000, only five of which passed. The Ohio General Assembly has proposed 17 amendments since 2000, of which 15 passed.

Below are the constitutional amendments Ohioans voted on this century, who proposed them, and how they fared

Voter-initiated petitions:


To allow some people convicted of drug possession or use to choose treatment instead of jail. Failed, 33% to 67%


To define marriage as between one man and one woman. Passed, 62% to 38%


To allow all voters to use absentee ballots in all elections. Failed, 37% to 63%

To limit political contributions and revise campaign disclosure rules. Failed, 33% to 67%

To create a state legislative redistricting commission. Failed, 30% to 70%

To create a new board to administer elections. Failed, 30% to 70%


To raise the minimum wage. Passed, 57% to 43%

To allow limited gambling to fund education. Failed, 43% to 57%

To ban indoor smoking with some exceptions. Failed, 36% to 64%


To allow a casino near Wilmington, with tax revenue distributed statewide. Failed, 38% to 62%


To allow one casino each in Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus and Toledo, with tax revenue distributed statewide. Passed, 53% to 47%


To ensure Ohioans can choose their healthcare and coverage. Passed, 66% to 34%

To create a state commission for legislative redistricting. Failed, 37% to 63%


Grant a monopoly for the commercial production and sale of recreational and medicinal marijuana. Failed, 36% to 64%


Rights for crime victims. Passed, 83% to 17%


To reduce penalties for obtaining, possessing and using illegal drugs. Failed, 37% to 63%

Proposed by General Assembly:


To issue bonds or for environmental conservation and revitalization projects. Passed, 57% to 43%


To support research and create jobs. Failed, 49% to 51%


To create jobs and stimulate growth. Passed, 54% to 46%


To set earlier filing deadlines for statewide ballot issues. Passed, 69% to 31%

To issue bonds for continuing the Clear Ohio environmental program. Passed, 69% to 31%

To protect property rights in water features. Passed, 72% to 28%


To issue bonds to compensate veterans of the Afghanistan and Iraq wars. Passed, 72% to 28%

To create the Ohio Livestock Care Standards Board and establish standards of care for livestock and poultry. Passed, 64% to 36%


To issue more bonds to extend the Ohio Third Frontier Program. Passed, 62% to 38%

To move the authorized Columbus casino location. Passed, 68% to 32%


To raise the maximum age for election or appointment as a judge, eliminate the General Assembly’s authority to establish courts of conciliation and eliminate the governor’s authority to appoint a supreme court commission. Failed, 38% to 62%


To issue bonds for public infrastructure and capital improvements. Passed, 65% to 35%


To create a bipartisan public process for legislative redistricting. Passed, 71% to 29%

To protect the initiative process from being used for personal economic gain. Passed, 51% to 49%


To create a bipartisan public process for drawing congressional districts. Passed, 75% to 25%


To require courts to consider public safety during bail hearings. Passed, 78% to 22%

To forbid noncitizens from voting in any state or local elections. Passed, 77% to 23%

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