Gun restrictions divide democratic candidates for ohio governor baking soda heartburn

The hopefuls responding on these hot-button issues are Richard Cordray, former state treasurer and state attorney general and ex-director of the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau; Dennis Kucinich, former congressman, Cleveland mayor and presidential candidate; former Ohio Supreme Court Justice Bill O’Neill; and state Sen. Joe Schiavoni. Guns

Kucinich is pushing a ban on so-called assault weapons in Ohio. Kucinich is circulating a model resolution with local-government leaders, hoping they will pass it and thus pressure state lawmakers to overturn Ohio’s prohibition on most local gun restrictions.

As Kucinich repeatedly reminds listeners, Ohio enacted that prohibition when Cordray was attorney general, and Cordray defended the law all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, where it was upheld and extended nationwide.


That case, plus advocacy of concealed-carry rights, helped win Cordray an A rating from the NRA when he unsuccessfully sought re-election in 2010 against Republican Mike DeWine.

But Cordray says his stature wit the NRA probably has been diminished by his current espousal of conducting universal background checks before gun purchases, reducing allowable gun-magazine sizes and banning the sale and use of bump stocks and other devices that in effect turn semi-automatic guns into automatics.

Cordray’s gun stance is the most nuanced among the leading Democrats. In 2010, he stood on the Statehouse grounds and told a gun-rights demonstration — one at which participants were allowed to openly carry weapons because of his intervention with authorities — his philosophy on the issue:

These are rights that don’t depend on putting them in a Constitution. These are rights that we have as human beings. They’re natural rights, they extend beyond any government, whatever form that may take. The Constitution merely reminds government to respect and honor these freedoms.

Asked last week whether he still believes in those rights as strongly, he replied: I believe in Second Amendment rights, and I believe in the rights of responsible gun owners to be able to exercise the right of self-defense, self-preservation — which precedes government — and that means being able to hunt to put food on table, and it means being able to defend yourself, particularly in your own home.

O’Neill advocates a mandatory permit process for all military-style assault weapons, with a requirement that the owner physically report with their weapon to their local law enforcement office once a year to apply for an annual state of Ohio permit.

As governor, if you brought me a sensible ban on certain firearms, I would sign it, because I don’t think that civilians need to have some of these military-style weapons. I just don’t see the practical purpose: It’s not to protect your family and it’s not to hunt, Schiavoni said. He added: ‘Fun to shoot’ doesn’t make it. Abortion

O’Neill is the only one of the four leading Democrats who calls himself pro-life, based on his Catholic faith. As an individual, I’m opposed to all abortions, he says. But as governor, he would adhere to the law of the land as decided (he believes wrongly) by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Neither he nor Cordray nor Schiavoni advocates exceptions to abortion rights. Schiavoni said he also would remove state support for crisis-pregnancy centers, which inform women about alternatives to abortion but usually aren’t medical facilities. Marijuana