Apr 11, 2024 - News

DeWine and legislature don't always cooperate

Illustration of the Ohio State Capitol with lines radiating from it.

Illustration: Allie Carl/Axios

Gov. Mike DeWine has not always had an easy time working with the state legislature, despite his political party holding supermajorities throughout his tenure as governor.

By the numbers: DeWine has vetoed eight bills since taking office in 2019, an Axios analysis of legislative data finds.

  • Additionally, he's issued dozens of line-item vetoes nixing provisions within spending bills such as the state budget.

State of play: The pandemic, which began during the second year of his first term, underscored this division.

  • He vetoed several bills seeking to curb his administration's authority to enact public health restrictions, along with an effort to refund fines to bars that violated COVID-19 health orders.

Yes, but: The Legislature can override his veto with a three-fifths majority vote. Republicans currently hold such majorities.

Between the lines: Besides these veto clashes, DeWine has struck out in getting enough legislative support for his proposed restrictions on gun control and changes to marijuana legalization.

Flashback: Previous governors of both parties had their disagreements with the Legislature too.

  • Gov. John Kasich, also a Republican with a GOP-controlled legislature, notably vetoed a lawmaker pay raise (it was overridden) and a bill expanding gun rights.
  • Kasich also twice vetoed the heartbeat bill, which bans abortion when a fetal heartbeat is detected. That was later signed into law by DeWine.
  • Democratic Gov. Ted Strickland vetoed a handful of bills in his single term, including several while the Legislature was split with a Democratic-led House and GOP-led Senate.
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