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Click Issues Statement on Governor DeWine's Veto of House Bill 68

December 29, 2023
Gary Click News

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COLUMBUS – State Representative Gary Click (R-Vickery) has released the following statement Friday on Governor DeWine’s veto of HB 68:

“I spoke with the Governor this morning, and it’s clear that we share a common passion for children. Even in moments when we disagree on policy, I have never questioned his heart or his character. I commend him for digging through the details of this legislation and for speaking to several qualified individuals capable of shedding light on this issue. I conducted more than six months of research before dropping this bill and another two years of in-depth study, interviews, and relationship-building with members of this community. Governor DeWine has had vast amounts of input to consume in a very short span of time.                                                                                

Over the last ten days, he cleared his schedule and immersed himself in this weighty topic. While I commend him for those efforts, The SAFE Act has been thoroughly vetted through two general assemblies, both chambers of the legislature, and numerous witnesses. I have invited the administration to participate in the process from the beginning and continue to believe that we would have benefited sooner if that had been accomplished. 

It is abundantly clear that the Governor’s heart was moved by those who spoke to him concerning the loss of life through suicide. Any reasonable person has the same reaction, and he cannot be blamed for that. My initial reaction was no different. However, multiple conversations with professionals and families who felt manipulated by similar rhetoric brought a more in-depth understanding of the time-tested best practices in suicide prevention. 

Despite our initial differences on some of these issues, I am happy that the Governor wants to work together to find a common solution. I am hopeful that increased communication can bring the best solution to our great state. 

I remain concerned, however, that the SAFE Act is only half of House Bill 68. Save Women’s Sports is a critical piece of legislation that is long overdue in Ohio. Our young women should not need to wait another day for equality, dignity, and privacy in the athletic arena. They have been put on hold for far too long. It is difficult to watch Ohio’s women experience yet one more delay in the rights they deserve.”