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History of Reform Efforts: Ohio

Unsuccessful Reform Efforts

Issue 3, a ballot initiative to adopt merit selection for appellate judges, was defeated by voters by a 2 to 1 margin, losing in 80 of Ohio's 88 counties. Major proponents of Issue 3 were the Ohio State Bar Association and the League of Women Voters of Ohio, who co-authored the proposal, and the insurance and business communities. The most active opponents were the Ohio Academy of Trial Lawyers, Ohio AFL-CIO, and the state Democratic and Republican parties. [For an in-depth discussion of the Issue 3 campaign, see Felice, Kilwein, and Slotnick, "Judicial Reform in Ohio," in Champagne and Haydel (eds.), Judicial Reform in the States (Lanham, Md: University Press of America, 1993).]